BC Historical Books

BC Historical Books

BC Historical Books

Fifth avenue to Alaska. With maps Pierrepont, Edward, 1860-1885 1884

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New York: 27 and 29 West 23D Street
^London: 25 Henrietta Street, Covent Garden
1884 Copyright,
Introduction i
Summary of the Journey 2
From New York to Omaha, and from Omaha to Salt Lake       .       5
The Mormon City and the Mormons   .       .       .       .       . 17
From Salt Lake City to San Francisco        .... 41
San  Francisco. — The Bay. — The Markets. — The Buildings.
— The Chinese Quarter 43
To the Yosemite Valley. 52
iii IV
The Yosemite Valley
From the Yosemite to the Calaveras Groves. —The Big Trees.
— North and South Groves. — Fishing, Bear-hunting, etc.    .     69
Return to San Francisco. — The Climate. — Public and Private
Menlo Park.—Gov. Stanford's Horses. —Mr. Flood's Country
Place. —Mr. D.O. Mills 94
Cliff House.—Sea-Lions. —Golden-Gate Park .
The Chinese. — William T. Coleman's Speech. — The Chinese
Quarter 99
San Francisco to Astoria. — Columbia River. — Portland.       .    no
The Willamette Valley. — Oregon and California Railroad       .    125
Passing through Puget Sound to Victoria. — Victoria. — British
Columbia. — The Treaty surrendering the Line of 540 40'.
— Big Clams.—Vancouver's Island
From Victoria to Alaska, Steamer "Eureka"
.    129
Alaska. — Indians. — Scenery. — Lynch-Law. — Resources. —
Climate, etc 140
Kilesnoo. — Bartlett's Cove. — Pyramid Harbor. — Salmon-Cannery  196
Climate. — Soil.— Products of Alaska. — Back to Victoria      .   217
Back to Victoria. — From Victoria to Portland. — The Forest
Fires      ' .       .       .       .       .       .       .       .       .       .       .   223
From Portland along the Columbia River. — The Cascades.—
The Dalles. — The Cliffs. — The Northern Pacific Road to
Bozeman  ...........   224
Bozeman. — Henry Ward Beecher 231
Yellowstone Park 237
Tour of the Park 249
Lost in the Hoodoo Mountains while hunting Elk and Big-
Horn 265
Back at Mammoth Springs Hotel. — The Shooting of a Woman,   309 VI
Livingston to St. Paul
Chicago again
Home again
Chapter not to be Read
The writer is quite aware that he needs an
introduction since he wishes to be read, and is
assured by everybody that an unknown author
will not be read by anybody : But how to become a I known " author before one has published anything- is the puzzle.
I take comfort, however, on remembering a
remark of Mr. Gladstone, who said that if the
maiden speech of Disraeli in the House of
Commons, hissed down and ridiculed as it was,
had been made by Lord Beaconsfield, it would
have been considered a great oratorical effort.
I had seen something of the older civilization
of Europe, and wanted to see the newer civilization of the Great West, and the savage life
of our newly acquired | Russian Possessions."
On the last day of May, 1883, in company
with my father, I left Fifth Avenue for Alaska.
We went by the Union Pacific Railroad to
Ogden, and down to the Mormon city of Salt
Lake, then back to Ogden, and by the Central
Pacific Road to San Francisco. After visiting-
the Yosemite Valley, and the North and South
groves of giant trees in Calaveras County, San
Rafael, and Menlo Park, we passed from San
Francisco Bay through the Golden Gate, and
up the Pacific Ocean by steamer to Astoria;
thence up the Columbia River to the junction
of the Willamette River, and up the Willamette
to Portland; thence up the Willamette Valley
by the Oregon and California Railroad, two*
hundred and sixty-two miles, to Glendale, its
present terminus ; then back to Portland, and
through * Puget Sound to Victoria, and on
through the British waters to Alaska, reaching a
latitude where there was no night, and where the
sun rose some four hours after he set.    Hav- SUMMARY OF THE JOURNEY.
ing sailed in the fiords, straits, bays, and inlets,
of Alaska, above two thousand miles, returning-
by way of Victoria and Puget Sound to Portland, where we took the Northern Pacific Railway, passing through the magnificent scenery
of the great Columbia River, and continuing
on that road until we reached Bozeman, where
at Fort Ellis we took a government escort, and
passed through the country seventy-five miles
(camping out two nights) to Yellowstone Park.
After making a tour of the park, I went into
the " Goblin Land " of the Hoodoo Mountains
in Wyoming, to shoot elk and " big-horn of the
Rockies ; " after which, by the branch road we
went north to Livingston, and took the trunk-
line of the Northern Pacific to St. Paul, and
thence to New York by way of Chicago.
We were absent four months; and by rail,,
steamer, stage-wagons, and on horseback together, we travelled more than twelve thousand
five hundred miles.
I kept full notes of each day; and from them'
f I make up this book, in which I hope to give
some information useful to those who may wish:
to visit the Pacific Coast, or to learn about it.
Incidents and impressions I have endeavored
to record with fidelity. But, travelling with,
my father, I was invited to the various dinners
and entertainments given to him, where we met 4 FROM FIFTH A VENUE  TO ALASKA.
many intelligent and some eminent men. I
listened attentively to their varied conversations and discussions; and I dare say that the
sentiments and opinions herein expressed are
not original, but rather the filterings through
my memory of what older and wiser men have
said. We met while crossing the Rocky Mountains, at Salt Lake, and everywhere in California
and Oregon, numbers of interesting men and
attractive women, to whom we are largely indebted for the pleasure of a journey which
would otherwise have been often weary and
For references to the treaties, laws, and railroad grants, herein mentioned, I am indebted
to the Hon. Edwards Pierrepont.
In going from New York to San Francisco
by the Pennsylvania Central, the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy, and the Union and Central Pacific roads, the distance is 3,281 miles.
The difference in time between the two cities is
three hours and fourteen minutes. .FROM NEW YORK TO OMAHA AND SALT LAKE.     5
Leaving New York by the Pennsylvania
limited express train, we reached Chicago in
twenty-five hours and forty minutes.
The key of my bedroom at the Palmer House
had a piece of lead six inches in length arranged
■at right angles, and so cleverly fastened that it
was impossible to secrete it. Inserting part of
it in my pocket, I entered the billiard-room,
where it was mistaken for a six-shooter ostentatiously protruding; and, becoming an object
of apparent suspicion, I quickly left it at the
Chicago is a remarkable place, about which I
shall have something to say hereafter.
Mr. Wallace, the general agent of the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy Railroad, took us
over their very large and solid building, in
which all the chief offices of this great road
are combined. The building is remarkably
well constructed. We were indebted to Mr.
Wallace for many courtesies. FROM FIFTH A VENUE   TO ALASKA.
We took that road at two o'clock p.m., the
next day, and arrived at Burlington late in the
evening. Crossing the Mississippi, which divides Illinois from Iowa, we reached Council
Bluffs the next morning. We found the place
greatly damaged by a flood which had swept
away bridges and destroyed several lives.
The train was admirable in equipment, witb.
the best of sleeping and dining-room cars ; and
the road was in perfect condition.
Council Bluffs is on the east bank of the
Missouri River, which divides Iowa from Nebraska. The Union Pacific road commences-
on the east bank, Omaha being on the west.
Here are excellent arrangements for the transfer and checking of baggage. No guns were
allowed in the cars, but arrangements were
made to carry them safely in the baggage-
The bridge at Omaha, across the Missouri
River, is 2,750 feet long, built on twenty-two.
hollow iron columns, eight and a half feet in
diameter, sunk to the bed-rock of the river.
We found on the Union and Central Pacific
roads, through the entire length, the most careful and courteous attention from every officer
and every employe of the roads; and a surly
answer, or coarse conduct, we never once experienced.    The  meals  at  the  roadside inns FROM NEW YORK TO OMAHA AND SALT LAKE.     J
were not good; but any lack of politeness, or
willingness to impart information or give assistance, we never met.
At Omaha, a town of more than forty-five
thousand inhabitants, we checked our baggage
for Salt Lake City, and started by the Union
Pacific road at nine o'clock on the 3d of June.
On the train  I met an Englishman of the
Seventh Fusileers, a Mr. S , who lived near
Oxford; and we, in company with several New-
Yorkers who joined in the chorus, revived
memories of the I 'Varsity," by singing portions
of " John Peel," I Drink, puppy, drink," and
other melodious refrains, until the other passengers thought we were a small detachment of
the Salvation Army.    S , with H and
I  of New York, were  all going to leave
the train at Cheyenne, to go into that business
which has enticed so many plucky fellows from
both England and the Eastern States ; namely,
to begin a rough life of boisterous good health
in the bracing air of the great grazing plains of
Wyoming. The hardy life one follows there
has its many drawbacks, arising from the lack
of cultivated society, and from having to
undergo the hardships of cold nights, biting
blizzards, furious hurricanes, and occasional destruction of property. As a counterbalance
against these, we have health and vigor restored 8 FROM FIFTH AVENUE   TO ALASKA.
to many a jaded idler of society; and he who-
was  once  a gay member  of the   I Knickerbocker," I Union," "White's," or I Boodle's," a.
frequenter of the j Burlington," a haunter of the
I Aquarium," or a dissolute dashing guardsman
(Ouida's model Englishman), the  darling  of
society, and the best of riders, — he it is who,,
through lack of means, or dearth of excitement,
chooses the wild life of the cattle-driver, with
no music but the roar of the wind or the dash
of cataracts, and no partner in the dance but
his Indian pony.
The cowboy of whom I have heard and read,
so much is not always the dare-devil depicted
in "The Police News;" for during my whole
journey from Omaha, during which time I saw
hundreds of cowboys and cow " punchers," I
never saw a revolver fired, or any evidence of
that recklessness which is so proverbial. In
isolated mining camps, revolvers are recklessly-
carried ; but one might start from New York,
and make the whole Western trip by the regular roads, and seldom see a single exposed
weapon. There were occasions, on our farther journey, when it was prudent to be well
Four hundred and fourteen miles from Omaha, we reached Sidney. From Sidney, stagecoaches  start daily for Deadwood, 267 miles, FROM NEW YORK TO OMAHA AND SALT LAKE.     9
north, where are the celebrated gold-mines in
the Black Hills of Dakota.
On the 4th, at half-past three p.m., we reached
Sherman, the highest elevation on the road, —
8,235 feet." So gradual is the ascent from
Omaha, that you would hardly suspect that you
were going up hill; and the region over which
you pass looks not at all like 1 crossing the
Rocky Mountains." The highest grade between Cheyenne and Sherman is eighty-eight
feet per mile. The whole distance is bare of
trees, has no very steep appearance, and the
land is only valuable for grazing. The distance
from Omaha to Sherman is 549 miles, and from
Sherman to San Francisco 1,318 miles.
Sherman is a place of wild and lonely desolation, in the Territory of Wyoming. It is named
after the distinguished general. On a high
point south of the station, a monument is rising to honor the memory of Oakes Ames, one
of the most enterprising men whom this country has produced. He was cruelly maligned,
and hastened to his grave by the calumnies
with which he was pursued in connection with
the completion of a colossal highway to the
Pacific, which has done more to perpetuate
the union of our vast empire than the greatest
battle which was fought.
Seventy  miles   south-west  of   Sherman   is TO
Long's Peak, and 165 miles to the south is
Pike's Peak, both visible.
Laramie City is 573 miles from Omaha, the
county-seat of Albany County, Wyoming. It
contains about four thousand inhabitants; has
a rolling-mill, but stock-raising is the great
industry. The I Laramie Plains" comprise a.
belt, twenty-five by sixty miles, of the finest
grazing-lands. Countless buffalo once roamed
these plains, and had as good title to the lands
as had the Indians who roamed in like manner.
It is said that over three thousand horses and
mules, ninety thousand head of cattle, and as
many sheep, can now be found within forty
miles of Laramie.    The plains are well watered.
Carbon is 657 miles from Omaha, and here
was the first happy discovery of coal on the
road. Since then, far better mines have been
found farther west, — at Rock Springs, and at
Rawlins is 709 miles from Omaha. Before
reaching Rawlins we come to the sage-brush
and alkaline beds: they extend west for more
than a hundred and twenty miles. The sagebrush is a bush about four feet high; its leaf
and form are like the garden sage (but the bush
is much larger), and it tastes like wormwood:
it grows on the alkaline beds, where nothing
else will grow.    The alkaline dust through this FROM NEW YORK TO OMAHA AND SALT LAKE.     11
region is excessive, filling every car, irritating
to the eyes, throat, and lips; and the water of
the region is very unhealthy for man or beast.
At Point of Rocks, 805 miles from Omaha,
is an artesian well, 1,015 deep, from which
issues a stream of pure water; and here are
extensive coal-mines. On a high bluff, above
the coal, is a vein of oyster-shells six inches
thick. Professor Hayden, in his Geological
Report, says, I Preserved in the rocks, the
greatest abundance of deciduous leaves of the
poplar, oak, elm, and maple, are found. . . .
Among the plants is a specimen of fan-palm,
which, at the time it grew here, displayed a
leaf of enormous dimensions, sometimes having a spread of ten or twelve feet."
When President Arthur came to the Yellowstone Park, he had with him sea-shells which
he took from the Rocky Mountain heights.
At Rock Springs, eight hundred and thirty
miles from Omaha, is another artesian well,
1,145 feet deep: the water flows in great quantities, twenty-six feet above the surface. Rich
coal-mines are near. From this point to Green
River, a distance of fifteen miles, the road runs
through a deep mountain gorge where the
scenery is quite impressive.
Green River is 845 miles from Omaha. The
bluffs near this station are of peculiar forma- 12
tion: they are perpendicular, rising several
hundred feet, composed of layers of sedimentary rocks, sandstone, white sand, pebbles, clay,
and lime, with layers of bowlders also, each
layer of a different shade of color. The hills
around are capped with a yellowish sandstone
in peculiar castellated forms. This scenery has
a just celebrity.
At Granger, 876 miles from Omaha, the
Oregon Short Line, a branch of the Union
Pacific, begins, and rups north-west through
Oregon to Baker City, and, in connection with
the Oregon Railway and Navigation Company,
to the Columbia River.
At Hilliard, 942 miles from Omaha, is a
flume crossing the track twenty feet above it,
in which large quantities of lumber are floated
from the Uintah Mountains, between twenty
and thirty miles to the south. Here are
located the Cameron bee-hive kilns, for burning charcoal.
Castle Rocks are about 975 miles west of
Omaha, and form a long line of sandstone
bluffs, on the right bank of Echo Canon, and
vary in height from five hundred to fifteen hundred feet. In the distance they look like vast
castles. Nine miles west of Echo City we
come to the thousand-mile tree, a thousand
miles from Omaha: it is a branching pine, and FROM NEW YORK TO OMAHA AND SALT LAKE.     13
on its trunk is the notice. We have passed
through the Wasatch Mountains, and now come
to the valley of the Great Salt Lake.
At Ogden, 1,032 miles from Omaha, and 835
from San Francisco, we reach the end of the
Union-Pacific Road, and begin the Central
Pacific. The elevation here is 4,294 feet.
Ogden is said to contain six thousand five hundred inhabitants, mostly Mormons. Valuable
mines are reported as near the town, and the
waters of the Ogden River irrigate the place.
The Wasatch Mountains, towering high above
with their granite walls, made the surrounding
scenery imposing, and the air salubrious.
We came through from Omaha to Ogden
the first week in June, and were surprised to
find the roads for a thousand miles so dusty,
the treeless hills so barren, no green of any
kind, — a general aspect of barrenness, and
but few crags or mountain peaks to break the
dreary monotony. Miles of snow-fences and
vast snow-sheds were frequent; but we learned
that live stock thrive and fatten upon the dried
grasses, which remain nutritious, as in California, till the autumn rains destroy the nutriment,
when new grasses spring up, and make the hills
green again b.efore November, -m It is certain
that the yearly number of sheep, mules, cattle,
and horses, which are reared along this road, is 14
immense. During the summer months there
is no rain in the Rocky Mountains, California,
or the Yellowstone Park.
It matters little what the Government advanced to build the Central and Pacific roads.
This great highway is of priceless value to the
nation: had it cost the Federal treasury ten
times more than it did, it were money well invested. The Government did not advance cash,
but loaned its credit *in the form of six-per-cent
bonds, at thirty years, with interest half yearly.
On the i st of July, 1862, in the heat of the
war, President Lincoln signed a bill which was
the charter of the road. The Act was entitled:
| An Act to aid in the construction of a railroad
and telegraph line from the Missouri River to
the Pacific Ocean, and to secure to the Government the use of the same for postal, military,
and other purposes." The grant of land was
every alternate section for twenty miles on each
side of the road; that is, twenty sections for
each mile, or twelve thousand eight hundred
acres a mile, a section being six hundred and
forty acres. In addition to the land grant, the
Government, in aid of the work, issued its
bonds to the Union Pacific, in all $27,226,512 ;
to the Central Pacific, in all $25,885,120. Such
is the pecuniary benefit of the road, that, if no
part of the government subsidy is ever repaid, FROM NEW YORK TO OMAHA AND SALT LAKE.     15
the Government will have saved many millions
by its loan of bonds.
The building of the Pacific Road commenced
Nov. 5, 1865, on the Missouri River neap
Omaha. By the Act of 1862, the time of completion was limited to July I 1876. It was finished in three years six months and ten days.
On the 10th of May, 1869, the Pacific met the
Central at Promontory Point, Utah Territory.
At Ogden we are near the Great Salt Lake,
which is about a hundred miles long by forty-
five miles wide. Its general direction is from
north-west to south-east; and, as you will see
by the map, Ogden is about midway of the lake,
a short distance to the east. The lake has no
outlet, though many rivers empty into it, — the
rivers Jordan, Weber, and others. Of late the
waters have risen slowly, and they are now
twelve feet higher than they were twenty years
ago. The water is so buoyant that it is difficult to swim in it, and very difficult for a steamer
to navigate it.
The water is exceedingly salt, and very acrid j
and the white salt along the shores will take
the skin from the tongue which tastes it too
freely. While bathing with others in the lake,
I carelessly swallowed a little of the water, and
my throat closed, and I was nearly suffocated:
a man who saw the trouble  hastened  to  my i6
relief with a flask of brandy, without which I
never could have reached the shore. Several
bathers have been made seriously ill by inadvertently allowing a drop from a wave to enter
the throat; and some have died from a swallow
of it. No living thing is found anywhere in
the lake's vast waters. No ice ever forms upon
it. I better understand the passage in the
Bible where the swine " ran violently down
a steep place, and were choked!'
We were told that a German Jew went to
bathe in this lake, and was never seen again.
His clothes were found in the bathing-house,
but all search for his body proved fruitless. It
has since attracted notice, that his life was insured for thirty thousand dollars, and that his
cheerful wife, after arranging his affairs, soon
left the city with the insurance-money. The
impression prevails, that he had other clothing,
and played the game for the purpose of securing the money; since the buoyancy of the
waters would surely have disclosed the dead
body if drowned in the lake. THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     \"J
Salt Lake City is near the south end of the
lake, in latitude 400 47' north, and is thirty-
eight miles south of Ogden. It lies at the
foot-hills of the Wasatch Mountains, at the
northerly end of a level plain which is about
forty miles long and fifteen wide, and is called
the Valley of the Jordan. The Jordan River
runs northerly from Utah Lake, nearly forty
miles south of the city, to the west of the town,
and empties into Salt Lake twelve miles distant.
These snow-topped mountains, from twelve to
thirteen thousand feet high, form nearly a semicircle on the east of the plain, and nightly cool
the city after the cloudless sun has heated the
valley. There are no summer rains; but copious mountain streams run through the streets
on each side, and the lands around are green
and productive from easy irrigation. On the
south-west the Oquirr range of mountains seem
to bound the plain, and far beyond is a moun- 18
tain where abundant rock-salt is found in a remarkably pure state.
On June 8 Modjeska arrived at the Walker
House, and created some little excitement. In
the evening we went to hear her play in "As
You Like It," in company with Gov. and Mrs.
The Mormons are fond of giving Bible names
to their children; one child of the President
being called Ezra, another Moses.
The Mormons gave us a history of their trials
and persecutions, of their wanderings from Missouri and Illinois; and how, when they were in
the latter State, they volunteered five hundred
strong to the Mexican War.
Mr. Cannon drove us to the warm Sulphur
Springs, ninety-six degrees, especially good for
cutaneous diseases. Bathing in this spring is
excessively weakening. We observed one man
with a bald head taking his tub, and as he had
an egg in his hand we watched him with some
curiosity. After breaking the egg, and dividing
the contents in each half-shell like a sherry-
cobbler slinger, he first rubbed his hairless top
with the white, and then with the yolk, expecting the hair to rise like Jack's beanstalk,—
some barber having probably sold him the
receipt. While we remained, no apparent
transformation took place on  his  bald  head; THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     19
and since the flies began to be attracted by the
yolk I felt like giving him the well-known recommendation, — that of painting a cobweb on
his cranium while the fly months lasted. After
going to the spot where this sickly warm mixture rises, we drove on to the hot springs,
where the water is nearly boiling, an egg being
easily cooked in a few minutes.
Fort Douglass, a military post, is situated on
the east side of the Jordan, four miles from the
river and three miles east of the city. It is
on a high base of the mountains sloping west.
The officers' houses are of uniform appearance,,
well built in a semicircle, with a green lawn
in front, cheerful with running water cold and
abundant, and the whole combination is truly
charming. The post is now commanded by
the gallant Gen. McCook. Not far away is the
Emma Mine, and many other mines which are
We were told by Gen. McCook that he had
seen clams at Puget Sound weighing fifteen
pounds, tender, of delicate flavor, and excellent
for food. We shall speak of these mammoth
clams farther on.
We were assured that Utah Territory is very
rich in gold, silver, coal, iron, copper, zinc-, cinnabar, and every other metal found in the West;
and it is the opinion, that, had not Brigham 2.Q
Young warned his Mormon followers against
I seeking for corrupting gold," and told them to
confine themselves to "multiplying, and replenishing the earth," Utah would have developed
mineral wealth equal to that of California.
The Mormons are not miners; but there are
many smelting-furnaces in and around Salt
Lake City, and a large number of manufacturing establishments.
The population of Salt Lake City is now
twenty-seven thousand. It seems to be a
well-ordered and prosperous town, and is illuminated with electric lights. The streets are
wide, bordered with trees, and laid out at right
angles. The cold streams from the snow moun-
tains, which wash the streets on either side in
rapid flow, add largely to the health, comfort,
and cheerfulness of the place.
The Mormon Tabernacle is a strange-looking
building of immense proportions. It is an
ellipse; the inner axes are one hundred and
fifty feet by two hundred and fifty; the roof is
a single arch supported by forty-six large columns of cut stone. It will hold fourteen
thousand people. Its acoustic properties are
wonderful: the dropping of a pin into a hat
can easily be heard from one end to the other.
We were informed that the preachers were called
upon just as the Divine influence prompted, THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     21
being in this respect somewhat like the Plymouth Brotherhood in England.
The Temple is a Gothic structure, built of
granite, not yet complete. Its base is one hundred and sixteen by one hundred and ninety
feet. It will be very high, with five pointed
towers. The base walls are sixteen feet thick,
built with inverted arches of granite blocks.
It seems built for eternity — rather inconsistent
for Latter-Day Saints who believe in an early
" second coming."
From the top of the main wall we obtained
a grand view of the magnificent valley, which
far exceeds in size anything I have seen in Italy,
Switzerland, France, or Germany. We were in
a basin which from the shell-deposits must have
once been a huge lake twenty miles by forty.
All around us, even now the sixth day of June,
vast mountains rose to a height of thirteen
thousand feet in snowy grandeur; and at a distance of twenty miles we could see the Great
Salt Lake, rich fertility greeting us on all sides.
With such natural advantages, no wonder that
Brigham Young, even if this had not been
seen by him through divine revelation in a
dream, could hardly have refrained from saying, I Here we will pitch our camp, and build
our temple."
In this Temple we were shown the places of 22
the Endowment House, the baptismal font
(their baptism is by immersion), and the "Holy
of holies;" where we were told that angels
were expected to be met, and where probably
Christ the Saviour would be seen (this was
said with the utmost seriousness and apparent
While my father was Attorney-General in the
Cabinet of Gen. Grant, he became acquainted
with Mr. George Q. Cannon, then the delegate
to Congress from Utah. Mr. Cannon was now
very polite to us, and introduced us to the
president and council of the church.
The next day we dined at the Amelia Palace
(as it is called), the spacious residence of the
president of the hierarchy, where we met Mr-
Kane the present delegate to Congress, Mr,
Cannon, and others of the church, besides some
of the daughters of Mr. John Taylor the president. Mr. Taylor is a tall, venerable old gentleman, with white hair, courteous manners, and
of quiet and cultivated demeanor: he was
dressed in black, with a white cravat, and
seemed altogether like a Presbyterian clergyman of the old school, with a rich congregation,
a large salary, and sincere faith. The dinner
was excellent, served in good style, and the
currant-wine was delicious. The conversation
was upon general subjects, such as would have THE MORMON CITY AND  THE MORMONS.     23
oeen discussed at a dinner of intelligent gentle-
•men in New York.
Those who fancy that the Mormon leaders
lack shrewdness, or fixedness of purpose, are
In Utah, the women all vote the same as
Their temples and religious houses are built
b>y tithes, which the faithful contribute for the
church. Saturday is the day for payment; and
throughout the morning wagon after wagon
•comes slowly through the dusty street, bearing
its little offering. One poor Scandinavian woman is now passing before me with a dozen eggs,
the tenth of her week's increase ; another now
fills her place, tightly holding three obstreperous hens ; still another Mormon lengthens the
line, chiding good-humoredly his two oxen bearing along some hay and turnips, his tenth ;
still one more passes, holding with one hand
the rope which leads a cow, while her other
grasps the reins of her horse.
Under the Edmunds Bill of last winter, a
commission was appointed to take the registry
of voters in Utah, and to exclude all polyga-
mists. Gov. Ramsay of Minnesota was chairman of the commission, — an- eminent and
experienced public man, whom my father knew
well.    He told us at Salt Lake, in early June, 24
that the commission had finished its work, exercising all the power which the law gave them;
that he suspected, notwithstanding, that the
Mormons would succeed at the election in August. The election took place on the 6th of
August, and every member of the legislature is
a Mormon. Under this faithfully executed commission, all, both men and women, were disfranchised, who had ever married a second wife while
the first was living, or who had ever taken a
husband who had another wife. In this way, all
polygamists were excluded from the polls, to the
number of twelve thousand. The Mormons of
Utah are a hundred and thirty thousand.
No doubt there is some difficulty in dealing
with the Mormon question. Mormon obedience
to Church authority is absolute: the Church is
the tribunal to which all their disputes are submitted. Their readiness to make any sacrifice,,
or suffer any privations, in support of their creed,
has been attested. Their prosperity under trials
has largely increased; and the idea that if let*
alone they will disband, and become dispersed,
belongs only to those who are ignorant of the
facts, of past history, and of human nature.
Their priesthood has concentrated power, and
through their tithing-system commands great
wealth. Outside of any fanaticism, this gratifies their able leaders, and most of their believ- THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     2$
ing followers are far better off than ever before : they are sure of comfortable support and
a decent burial.
We met several Christian gentlemen of large
intelligence, who were inclined to suspect that
the growth of Mormonism was partly due to the
evils which modern luxury and extravagance
have brought upon us, in consequence of which
young men cannot support a family, and young
women are deprived of their natural exercise
of the domestic affections. They say that it is
quite certain, that, if the wealth which is earned
by the nation were more evenly distributed,
more women could get married; and that no
young woman who could get a single husband
would ever marry a man who had a plurality of
wives; and that the Mormon Church is largely
increased by those who seek refuge from poverty and degradation, against which the Gentile
Church, with all its abounding luxury and riches,
does not protect them.
Converts are coming in from the poorer
class of the South. Scandinavia, Germany,
England, Wales, and even Scotland (not Ireland), are sending recruits in abundance. The
Church sends missionaries far and wide to promulgate its gospel, and promises a home forever, free from want, to all who will lead an
industrious and frugal  life.    They do not call 26
themselves    I Mormons,"   but   " Latter - Day
Contrary to our expectations, we found them
the most severely orthodox of any sect we have
met. They believe in the plenary inspiration
of the Old and New Testaments, and receive
every word of these sacred books in absolute
faith, and according to their literal reading,
obscured by no scientific doubts or development theories. They cite profusely from the
Bible in support of their every doctrine; and
from the practices of Abraham, to the latest of
the wise men of old whom we are taught to
revere, they defend their views about polygamy:
they claim that the practice was enjoined by
the God of Abraham, and was followed by all the
faithful of Abraham's seed; that it tends to
purity and good order, and will prevent debauchery, celibacy, and the poverty and degradation of women. They do not claim that the
teachings of the* " Book of Mormon," in the
smallest measure, contravene the teachings
of the Old and New Testaments; but that it
is merely an additional revelation, through a
prophet of the Lord, coming down so late as
four hundred and twenty years after the birtli
•of Christ.
Mr. Cannon presented us with several volumes, which  give  a history  of the  Mormon THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     27
Church, and a statement of their doctrines; from
these I give the following summary : —
The I Book of Mormon " which w#s presented
is an English edition of six hundred and twenty-
three handsomely printed pages.    It is divided
into chapters and verses, and is written much
after the style of the Old Testament.    It professes to be an inspired historic book, and claims
to give the origin and history of the North-
American Indians.     It teaches, that, when the
Lord confounded the languages at the Tower
of Babel, he led forth a colony from thence to the
Western Continent, which is now called America ; that this colony, after crossing the ocean in
eight vessels, and landing in that country, be
came in process of time a great nation.  They inhabited America for some fifteen hundred years
they were at length destroyed for their wicked
ness.    A prophet by the name of Ether wroto
their history, and an account of their destruc
tion.   Ether lived to witness thetr entire destruc
tion, and deposited his record where it was afterwards found by a colony of Israelites who came
from Jerusalem six hundred years before Christ,
and re-peopled America.    This last colony were
descendants of the tribe of Joseph.    They grew
and  multiplied, and  finally gave  rise  to  two
mighty nations.    The people of one of these
nations were called Nephites, one Nephi be- 1
ing their founder ; the other were called Lam-
anites, after a leader named Laman. The Lam-
anites became a dark and benighted people, of
whom the American Indians are still a remnant.
The Nephites were an enlightened and civilized people ; they were a people highly favored
of the Lord; they had visions, angels, and the
gift of prophecy among them from age to age;
and finally they were blessed with a personal
appearance of Jesus Christ after his resurrection, from whose mouth they received the doctrine of the gospel, and a knowledge of the
future down through all succeeding ages. But
after all the blessings and privileges conferred
upon them, they fell into great wickedness in
the third and fourth centuries of the Christian
era, and finally were destroyed by the hands of
the Lamanites. This destruction took place
about four hundred years after Christ.
Mormon lived in that age of the world, and
was a Nephite and a prophet of the Lord. He,
by the commandment of the Lord, made an
abridgment of the sacred records, which contained the history of his forefathers, and the
prophecies and gospel which had been revealed
among them; to which he added a sketch of
the history of his own time, and the destruction of his nation. Previous to his death, the
abridged records fell into the hands of his son THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     2Q
Moroni, who continued them down to A. D,
420; at which time he deposited them carefully in the earth, on a hill which was then
called Cumorah, but is situated in Ontario
County, township of Manchester, and State of
New York, N.A. This he did in order to preserve them from the Lamanites, who overran
the country, and sought to destroy them and all
the records pertaining to the Nephites. This
record lay concealed, or sealed up, from A.D-
420, to Sept. 22, 1827; at which time it was
found by Mr. Joseph Smith, jun., he being
directed thither by an angel of the Lord.
This Joseph Smith was born in the town of
Sharon, Windsor County, Vt., on the 23d December, 1805, of very humble parents. When
he was ten years old, they removed to Palmyra
in the State of New York. When he was
seventeen years old, he claimed to have had a
vision, in which a heavenly messenger revealed
to him that certain sacred records engraved on
plates were buried in the earth, which would be
delivered to him.    He says : —
" I left the field, and went to the place where the
messenger had told me the plates were deposited;
and, owing to the distinctness of the vision which I
had had concerning it, I knew the place the instant
I arrived there. Convenient to the village of Manchester, Ontario County, N.Y., stands a hill of con- 3Q
siderable size, and the most elevated of any in the
neighborhood. On the west side of this hill, not far
from the top, under a stone of considerable size, lay
the plates, deposited in a stone box. This stone was
thick and rounding in the middle on the upper side,
and thinner towards the edges, so that the middle
part of it was visible above the ground, but the edge
all round was covered with earth. Having removed
the earth, and obtained a lever, which I got fixed
under the edge of the stone, and with a little exertion raised it up, I looked in ; and there indeed I
beheld the plates, the Urim and Thummim, and
the breastplate, as stated by the messenger. The
box in which they lay was formed by laying stones
together in some kind of cement. In the bottom of
the box were laid two stones crossways of the box;
and on these stones lay the plates and the other
things with them. I made an attempt to take them
out, but Was forbidden by the messenger; and was
again informed that the time for bringing them forth
had not yet arrived, neither would until four years
from that time; but he told me that I should come
to that place precisely in one year from that time,
and that he would there meet with me, and that I
should continue to do so until the time should come
for obtaining the plates."
It is asserted that once in each year, after
the interview with the angel, before referred to,
in 1823, Joseph repaired to the hill where the
plates were still deposited, where he each time
met with this same heavenly messenger, and THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     31
received further instructions, until the time was
fully arrived when the plates were to be delivered into his hands; which took place on the
22d of September, 1827. He then, it is claimed,
provided himself a home with his father-in-law
in Northern Pennsylvania, and began the translation of the plates by the gift and power of
God, through the means of the Urim and
Joseph Smith was killed by a mob at Carthage, 111., June 27, 1844; and Brigham Young
succeeded him as president of I the Church of
Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints." He led
the Mormons across the dreary wilderness of
the Rocky Mountains, out of the United States,
and settled by the Great Salt Lake in the Republic of Mexico. On the 24th of July, 1847,
his advance guard entered the valley; and on
the 31 st of July, Salt Lake City was commenced.
By the treaty of Guadaloupe Hidalgo in 1848,
this territory was ceded to the United States.
Brigham Young was born in Whitingham, Vt.,
June 1, 1801. His father served under Washington in the Revolution. He was originally a
Methodist; and in 1830 he first saw the "Book
of Mormon," and became a firm believer, and
was baptized into the Mormon Church two
years later. He established a prosperous community, and died at Salt Lake City, Aug. 29, I
1877 ; and was succeeded by John Taylor, who
was severely wounded by the mob at Carthage
when they assassinated Joseph Smith. Brigham Young took an active part in all the public
improvements likely to advance the interest
of the Territory, and facilitate communication
with the East. He counselled his followers
against the pursuit of. gold by mining, and
urged them to engage in agricultural pursuits.
He died rich, at the head of the Mormon
Notwithstanding the example of Abraham
and the practices of Solomon, it shocks the religious sentiments of every Christian to see one
man with several wives and several families of
children, and we feel that no decent man can
have more than one wife ; and the facility with
which divorces are granted, and successive wives
and successive husbands are taken by many
people, bodes no good to the Republic, and
gives the Mormons the opportunity, of which
they avail themselves, to reproach us.
If it is difficult to deal with the Mormon
question, time will only enhance the difficulty.
When Utah shall have the requisite population,
and with a republican form of constitution
applies to be admitted as an independent State,
she must be received, unless rejected on some
reasonable  ground.    If she  becomes a sove- THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     33
reign State, the Federal Government cannot
interfere with laws which she may enact, relating to marriage, divorce, descent of property,
legitimacy, or any domestic matter in harmony
with republican government, and not in violation of the Constitution of the United States.
If refused admittance on the ground of her
peculiar faith, party politics are likely to intervene ; and one side or the other may consider
how two new senators and two additional representatives may influence the presidency.
We had supposed that polygamy, so abhorrent to all our ideas of Christian civilization,
was the great objection to the Mormons; but
Gov. Murray assured us that it is of small importance compared to their disobedience and utter
disloyalty to the Constitution and laws of the
United States, and expressed to us his amazement at the indifference of the loyal and Christian East, to what he considered a great
abomination, tending to undermine the true
religion and subversive of republican government. He assured us that the Mormons openly
set at defiance the Acts of Congress; that they
were loyal to the decrees of the Mormon priesthood, and disloyal to the Constitution and laws
of the United States.
If the governor's statements are correct, one
fails to see why Mormons who break the laws Vf[
are not punished, the same as other citizens
who violate the statutes. If a citizen of Utah
robs the mail, or commits a rape, the laws
of the United States can deal with him, and
the Government would not have executed the
law against the guilty offender by depriving
him of the right to vote. There are laws
enough applicable to Utah against bigamy,
arson, robbery, slavery, and polygamy: Let
them be enforced. If there are not enough,
let them be enacted. Some of our countrymen
think it a lame and impotent conclusion to
admit that the United States cannot enforce
her laws, and that therefore popular government must be abandoned in the Territory. The
Valley of the Jordan is capable of sustaining a
large population, and Utah is rapidly increasing:
we having long since established a Territorial
government over her, under which the people
annually elect a legislature, and in conformity
to which they have for many years sent delegates to Congress. It would be novel in our
history to take away the elective franchise from
all the people, the innocent and the guilty,
and place the government of the Territory in
Senator Edmunds, than whom no one is
more eminent as a constitutional lawyer, writes
to I The Independent:" — THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     35
8 Polygamy seems to me to be one of those evils
that are to be overcome by processes apparently-
slow, and by means that will gather into the opposition to it all that portion of the Mormon people —
,and it is considerable — who do not believe in the
plural-marriage business. I have good reason to
believe, that, since the passage of the last act, polygamous marriages have almost entirely ceased there,
and that, with firm and capable administration of
the law, they will not be revived. The difficulty
with the proposition to put the government of the
Territory into the hands of a commission is : —
"First, That I believe it to be entirely unconstitutional, if the commission is to be given any lawmaking power; and, I fear,
I Second, Quite impracticable unless a local lawmaking power shall be lodged somewhere.
I Third, It is revolutionary, and deprives the innocent as well as the guilty of all voice in public
affairs. Nothing but the direst need could justify
such a step.
"Fourth, It is quite clear to my mind, that the suppression of polygamy will be just as far off with the
government of the Territory in the hands of a commission as it is now, if not farther; for it will solidify
and intensify a class feeling of the Mormons, and
tend to draw to the support of the hierarchy and
polygamists the whole body of the Mormon people."
The practice of polygamy is not general
among the Mormons, nor is it likely to increase
in the ratio  of  population.     Since Solomon* 36
with his seven hundred wives, found it all
" vanity and vexation of spirit," he has had no
rival; most men finding the management of
one wife quite equal to their strength.
The advance of Christian civilization, and
the influence of public opinion, already demand
that the same power which put down slavery
shall end polygamy. But laws have nothing to
do with faith in Joseph Smith, or belief in the
inspiration of the " Book of Mormon." This
book nowhere enjoins polygamy: the idea of
plurality of wives came of an independent revelation, pretended to have been communicated
through Joseph Smith.
In the preface to this I Book of Mormon " is
the following: —
Be it known unto all nations, kindreds, tongues,
and people unto whom this work shall come, that
Joseph Smith, jun., the translator of this work, has
shewn unto us the plates of which hath been spoken,
which have the appearance of gold; and as many of
the leaves as the said Smith has translated, we did
handle with our hands ; and we also saw the engravings thereon, all of which has the appearance of
ancient work, and of curious workmanship. And
this we bear record with words of soberness, that
the said Smith has shewn unto us, for we have seen
and hefted, and know of a surety that the said
Smith has got the plates of which we have spoken. THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     37
And we give our names unto the world, to witness
unto the world that which we have seen; and we lie
snot, God bearing witness of it.
Where are these golden plates, engraven
with the I sacred record" ? Where are the
"Urim and Thummim" by the aid of which
the engraving was translated ? When my
father put these questions to a believing Mormon, he looked hurt and bewildered as did the
negro preacher, who, while loudly exhorting his
brethren to repentance, finally wound up his
peroration by giving his audience a glowing
description of the creation, as follows: § My
brederen, de good Lord stuck out his eye, and
gazed ober de whole earth, and den he said,
' Let us make a man:' so den he took some
wet clay by de ribber side, just ob de right sort,
and he moulded his arms, and den de legs, and
den he put a head on him, and sot him up
agin a fence." A young fellow in the front
row at this stage shouted out, " War dot fence
come from?" The old preacher paused one
moment: then a look of sadness came over his
withered face; and, sternly pointing his long
forefinger  at  the   reprobate,   he said,  "Tree 38
more of dem questions will undermine de whole
system ob t'eology."
It seems amazing that sane men can believe
that there ever were any such plates; and yet
we know that the Buddhists far outnumber all
the Christian sects combined, that the followers
of Confucius are more than the followers of
Christ, and that the Mahometans largely outnumber all the Protestant Christians, showing
that false religions have more votaries than the
We have no right to interfere with Mormon
faith, however preposterous; but when Mormons, or any other sect, disobey the laws, the
Government should enforce obedience at any
I do not claim to have any valuable judgment
upon this subject, and only jot down the substance of many discussions which I have heard ;
but I cannot understand why the laws of the
United States should not be enforced in the
Territory of Utah, the same as in our other
At Salt Lake it seldom rains in summer; but'
the facilities for irrigation are ample, and three
good crops of luzerne clover are procured in
a season: and, though the midday is hot, the
nights are always cool.
It is conceded by all that the Mormons are THE MORMON CITY AND   THE MORMONS.     39
temperate, industrious, and economical. The
Church, and not the State, decides disputes
between contending Mormons. Its authority
is absolute, and this concentration of power
over willing obedience seems to aid the accumulation of wealth.
The city has two commodious theatres, many
fine buildings, and several beautiful mansions,
with charming lawns, flowers, and shrubbery.
Besides the Amelia Palace where the president
resides, there are other residences equally fine :
the house of Mr. Jennings the mayor, where
we were entertained, would attract attention by
its size and beautiful grounds, in any city of
the East. We were much about the city, both
b>y night as well as by day; and it seemed
orderly and generally well cared for, and Gov.
Murray told us that it was so. He, however, at
all times denounced the Mormons, not so much
on account of their polygamous doctrines, but
chiefly on account of what he considered their
disloyalty to the Union.
A walk about the Mormon city after nightfall will reveal that it is by no means free from
the vices of other cities of its size.
The plural wives and different families of
the chief Mormons are not placed in the same
house, but have separate dwellings. The head
of a family has less trouble about keeping good 40
servants than the Gentiles have. If a laundress,
housemaid, or cook proves herself acceptable, he
can marry as many such as he chooses : and the
maid being "sealed unto him" is his servant
for life, — a slavery which seems voluntary;
but this also imposes the obligation of care,
protection, and support upon the man.
Polygamy cannot last long: all the better
instincts as well as the principles of our people
Wonderful is the railroad-train! The first
that ever ran over an American road was (in
1831) from Albany to Schenectady, N.Y. Mr.
Sidney Dillon, now president of the Union
Pacific, is said to have been on that train.
We are now on the Central Pacific Road,
one thousand and thirty-two miles from Omaha,
and eight hundred and thirty-five miles from
San Francisco. Fifty-two miles west of Ogden
is Promontory, where the last spike uniting the
two roads was driven on the 10th of May, 1869.
To accomplish this, ten miles of track were laid
in one day on the Central Pacific Road.
Eleven hundred miles from Omaha commences the American Desert; and for a hundred miles it is a desert indeed, in which you
swallow alkaline dust at every breath. The
dusty desert continues until you reach Wads-
worth, 1,587 miles from Omaha, and 555 miles
from Ogden. 1,633 miles from Omaha, we
reach California. 42
Summit is 1,667 miles from Omaha, and the
highest point of the Sierra Nevada Mountains
passed over by the Central Road. It is at an
elevation of 7,017 feet; but granite peaks are
near, rising over 10,000 feet. There are many
miles of snowsheds, and one tunnel of 1,659
feet, in these mountains.
Near Colfax, 1,722 miles from Omaha, is
some grand scenery.
Sacramento is 1,776 miles from Omaha, and
ninety-one miles from San Francisco. Until
1870 Sacramento was the end of the Central
Pacific Road; but when the road from Sacramento to San Francisco was completed (called
the Western Pacific), it was consolidated with
the Central Pacific. This is a thriving town,
on the east bank of the Sacramento River,
of some twenty-eight thousand inhabitants.
The country round is exceedingly fertile and
beautiful: vineyards, fruit-orchards, and immense wheat-fields spread over vast areas. We
reached there on the nth of June, and much
wheat was already harvested. SAN FRANCISCO.
On Monday, before eleven o'clock on the
nth of June, we reached Oakland Pier; and,
sailing five miles by steamer across the bay,
we reached the Palace Hotel in San Francisco
before twelve o'clock.
A remarkable city it is. It lies on the west
•side of a bay more than fifty miles long, large
enough to float the navies of the world. On
the west side of the narrow strip of land at
whose north extremity the city stands, are
mountains which entirely conceal the ocean
and protect the bay. The Golden Gate, very
deep and narrow, scarce three-quarters of a
mile wide, is the only way to the great ocean.
We went to the Palace Hotel, which no visitor should fail to visit, if only for a few hours.
It is the largest hotel in the world, with its
seven hundred and fifty rooms, its seven vast
stories, dining-rooms, electric bells, and every
modern convenience ; to say nothing of the an- D»
nouncement that it is earthquake-proof, which
means that large iron anchors hold it together,
rendering it tolerably secure against an occasional danger. The table d'hote is poor, each
waiter having the air of one who had never
been feed and who never expected to be; the
restaurant, on the contrary, being excellent.
We visited the jewelry-store of Col. Andrews, where the I last spike " for the Union and
Central Railroads was made. This well-known
repository of diamonds, gold, and silver, the
Tiffany of the West, is situated in Montgomery
Street, and bears the enticing name of the
■ Diamond Palace." They showed us the miniature imitation of the Parthenon in Paris, composed of some twenty native quartz specimens
containing gold in its natural state; the model
standing some two feet in height, exquisite in
point of workmanship, and valued at twenty
thousand dollars. Two men were employed for
a couple of years in the mines, gathering perfect specimens of gold-quartz for its manufacture. Gen. and Mrs. Grant, among the many
courtesies tendered them, had the honor of
walking over solid bricks of gold, so that Dick
Whittington's London dream was realized in
San Francisco.
Our first impression of San Francisco was.
that of a mushroom city; since every house,. SAN FRANCISCO.
which at a distance appeared like white marble,
granite, or sandstone, turned out, on closer inspection, to be painted wood. This in a city
noted for its wealth was surprising; but we
soon ascertained that it arose, not from lack of
means, but from caution against dangers from
earthquakes. The foundations, nevertheless, are
in many cases of granite.
We heard Charles Wyndham in the evening.
Curious how tastes differ! for in New York he
and his company played their famous great
" Divorce Case," to crowded houses; but here
their acting was poorly appreciated.
The agent of the Central Pacific Railroad
had volunteered to initiate me into the mysteries of the I Chinese Quarter," where vice,
opium, religion, thrift, laziness, gambling, and
penury may be heard, smelt, seen, in all the
realism of China itself. There are about
twenty thousand Chinese living like sardines
inside of their sandwiched houses. Here, to
live in this little space of a few acres, Chinamen cross the Pacific to wash clothes, smoke in
their "joints," and utterly eradicate every wholesome aspect of the place.
We rapidly walked up Sacramento Street;
and, as if by magic, modern civilization vanished, and we stood transported, as if by Aladdin's lamp, to a new world of Chinese lanterns, 46
colors, pigtails, and strange odors. Little stalls
with their neatly arranged wares were displayed,
and Chinese flags and flaring announcements
glared at us on all sides. My guide was indefatigable : the doors of gambling-hells, "opium
joints," and lower resorts, all seemed familiar
to my cicerone.
Detectives and some other personages are
said to be indispensable for this visit; and, believing these tales, I had taken my I British
bulldog" before starting. It was totally unnecessary; for nothing interfered with us, so
that I unfortunately cannot thrill my readers
with any startling details.
We strolled into the theatre, and took our
stand behind the eager crowd, who, mute and
motionless, watched the antics, and closely listened to the nasal twang, of the actors. The
play was "An Abduction," the chief Chinese
occupying boxes. We did not wait to see who
was abducted; for, even in San Francisco, the
play lasts eight hours, while in China it extends
over some six or eight weeks.
Next we sauntered into the famous Bun Sun
Low restaurant, in Jackson Street, where Gen.
Grant was entertained. As Chinese women do
not act, here my first opportunity occurred for
seeing their fair sex; small, all alike, blank
faces and dirty nails.    Every one as we entered SAN FRANCISCO.
was absorbed in using their chopsticks; and I
watched them for some seconds, amused at
their dexterity. On the top floor, with its seats
made of walnut and cherry, walls filagreed with
gold, together with numerous ebony ornaments,
several opium " lay-outs " looked conveniently
inviting. We sat on the veranda, gazing down
upon this vision of a strange uncivilization.
Now and again, along the sidewalk lighted sticks
were burning in a row, with a Chinaman salaaming to them ; this being their strange way to appease the spirits. Our waiter comes in ; and tea
is ready in the cups, with covers of the same
material as the saucers, for every cup is the
Chinaman's teapot. Up rolled our Celestial;
each little cup is full of boiling water, the covers being replaced, leaving a slight aperture for
the steam. Ginger delicious in its flavor, curious aromatic Chinese lichz-nuts, and delightful
cakes, regale us until the tea is made. Up
rushes Wing Wang, and with a dexterous turn
of his wrist without upsetting the lid, pours
each respectively his portion into a still smaller
cup. The aroma and richness of the oolong is
retained by this process.
We then entered the Chinese joss-house, or
temple, and unguents at once gave us warning
of what we might expect. We continued on;
dark ebony idols grinning at us from even more 48
sombre   corners,   while   dimly  lighted   tapers
brought out the strange, weird, and startling
hangings of these places of worship.    Finally
a sleepy Chinese pointed out the   idols,  one
grinning fellow with red glass eyes and sharp
teeth being shown us as the bad devil who had
killed his mother; next, one strong man who
had killed a lion, beside him lying a yellow
stuffed dog, the result of his prowess.    None
of my friends had ever seen the Chinese at their
devotions, so that I was anxious to witness this
ceremony.    The pig-eyed Celestial  laid   some
leaves containing prayers in a species of oven
with a flue, lit them, and then made a terrific
row on a kind of tom-tom, professing that the
gods hearing them take the  prayers  heavenward : as a matter of fact, they naturally grow
" lighter until the draught takes them up through
the flue.
We then strolled through the crooked alleys,
and rambled in and out the narrow lanes, reminding one of some little byways in Oxford
or Naples, Baveno and Belaggio, along Lago
Maggiore and Como, and other little Italian
towns which now occur to my mind. Through
many of the tortuous ways, debauch and carouse were rampant, and the ruffling sound and
brouhaha of the Chinese gaming-counters came
to our ears.    Many of the labyrinths that we SAN FRANCISCO.
passed through were composed entirely of little
Chinese stalls, a female face at each little window inviting in twangy broken English the
passer-by. Home we sauntered, more and more
assured, that, if the Eastern people could only
pay one half-hour's visit to China-town, their
cries in favor of future immigration from China
would soon cease.
June 12 my friends, Sir John Lister Kaye
and his plucky American wife, — whom I had
not seen since we crossed from England last
November in the "Germanic," — happening to
be at the " Palace," we all dined together, and
afterward went to hear 1 Fatinitza." Like many
Englishmen of title who desire to raise a golden
crop and enjoy a healthy outdoor life, he bought
some five thousand acres ninety-two miles north
of San Francisco, planted it with wheat, and
thus far has been very successful. Lady Kaye
spends much time in the saddle, riding over the
fields with her husband. Chinamen do their
cooking; and though their luxuries are ' primitive, the evident good health and spirits which
they both enjoy speak well for the life they lead.
We rode about the city in the cable-cars, a
valuable invention, especially for a place like
San Francisco, where the streets run over hills
immensely steep and high, where it would seem
impossible for horses to drag a carriage up, or 5o
to come down without destruction. Wire cables, running in a grooved iron tube below the
surface of the street, are moved by stationary
engines. The rail-track is on either side of the
cable, and a clamp in the middle of the front
car seizes the moving rope of iron, and thus
the car moves on. The clamp is opened, the
brake put down, when necessary to stop, and
this is done much quicker than a horse-car can
be stopped: to start again, a wheel is turned,
which by a screw clamps the rope, and the car
goes on again. Without this machinery, it is
difficult to see how the splendid mansions of
Crocker, Hopkins, Colton, and Gov. Stanford
could ever be reached on their steep, high hill.
On the 13th of June we went through all the
markets. We saw oysters large and small,
their flavor execrable, like the waters of Salt
Lake, — acrid and unpalatable, — saw clams,
soft and hard, large and small, smooth and
hairy, black muscles also (the taste was not
agreeable) ; the crabs were immense in size,
tender, and of excellent flavor; squirrels abundant on the stalls. The meats generally were
not very good. Strawberries and raspberries
were there, dry and acid ; cherries and potatoes
superb; artichokes large, but destitute of flavor.
I purchased two purple figs for half a dollar,
but could not eat them; they were  evidently \tm
plucked before the time. Most things we purchased for testing them cost a "bit." I had
never heard of that coin before, but found that
a " bit," when you paid it, was fifteen cents,
and, when you received it, was ten cents.
On our return from the Yosemite Valley, I
shall have much more to say about this wonderful city. *3
i?£0ilf /?/^7^ ^ VENUE  TO ALASKA.
At four o'clock p.m. on the 13th of June,
we left San Francisco for the Yosemite. We
reached Stockton by rail (a hundred and three
miles), and the next morning proceeded by
rail to Milton (thirty miles), then by stage to
Priest's (thirty-eight miles), where we lodged,
thence to Crocker's (thirty miles), where we
remained till the next morning, when we went
twenty miles more to the Yosemite House in
the valley: total distance, two hundred and
twenty-one miles. The valley is nearly due
east from San Francisco. By daylight, we were
three days in reaching it. The stage - road
nearly all the way from Milton was rough and
dusty, and the sun was intensely hot.
The round trip from San Francisco to the
Yosemite, the big trees of the North and South
Groves, and back, including the stage and horseback rides, is a journey of about five hundred
miles, arfd requires twelve days, if you see
all well.   TO   THE   YOSEMITE   VALLEY.
Reaching Milton, all the excursionists took
coaches of some description; father and I being alone in a light, two-horse conveyance, which
gave us much more room, and less dust. On
we bowled through an undulating, dry, barren
country; patches of evergreen decking here and
there the otherwise dusty hillocks, and every
thing which, before the commencement of the
Californian rainless season, had been green as
an English lawn, now parched and shrivelled;
the little residue of nourishment being quickly
nibbled by the bands of sheep, which, in an incredibly short time, give to the greensward the
appearance which follows the departure of a
locust plague.
We noticed, as the country began to assume
a more mountainous aspect, that large numbers
of pines were indented with immense numbers
of round, dark-looking holes, about the size of
a .44 or .50 calibre ball. A couple of Englishmen on- a previous trip, having asked our driver
what they were, received the startling information, "Wal, this air the identical correct spot
war Sittin' Bull, Spotted Tail, and Shootin' Star
tackled Gen. Custer; and them air things is
bullet - holes." At first glance we imagined
them to be the excavations which woodpeckers
had made in quest of the bark-maggots, or little
tree-worms; but we learned, that, fearing the '^r-
approach of snow, the woodpecker bores the
holes, and inserts with his strong bill myriads of
acorns, each receptacle forming a little storehouse for a nut, a safeguard against the winter.
Chaparrals dotted the surface on all sides;
and, for the first time, we encountered the
noted poisonous oak, a three-leaf tree, growing
some ten or fifteen feet high, a little in appearance like our three-leaf poisonous ivy, although
somewhat less shiny. Starch and water is said
to be a good antidote, the shrub producing a
swelling intensely painful; a lady travelling
with us showed us her arm, where its effects
were plainly manifest in red blotches and disfigurements.
The horses of California, and throughout the
West generally, can endure more work, and
last much longer, than our Eastern horses;
they also possess the wonderful power of trotting fast down steep hills without a stumble, or
strain to their shoulders. The brake has much
to do with this apparent reckless driving, and
the skill of its management is of immense help.
A coach - and - four started from "Priest's,"
where we halted for the night, and found the
best-cooked meals and neatest hotel on this
Yosemite trip. All the seats were occupied.
The brake was known to have been broken, and
was merely bound together with a cord, but TO   THE   YOSEMITE   VALLEY.
-was considered quite safe. All went well until,
going down an unusually steep hill, the brake
•gave way, the momentum was greatly increased,
the stage turned on a stump, toppled over, and
all were hurled to the ground, but — mirabile
.dictu — not a single individual was injured
save one, a Catholic priest, who having foolishly kept his foot out of the carriage, his foot
and ankle were completely severed: it festered,
:and the limb had to be amputated above the
knee; the poor fellow died.
All along our way, large numbers of moan-
ing-doves and quails, two and two, were crossing our road very frequently. The quails struck
me as especially beautiful, with their chocolate,
white, and mauve-colored markings. These
valley quail are much larger and more beautiful
than our Eastern birds; and the cock, with his
black and brown crest curling over his beak, is
especially gaudy when near at hand, somewhat
resembling the French partridge. The California mountain birds differ from their cousins in
the valley, both with respect to size, being
much larger, and also in that the cock has a
•crest which rises straight up instead of inclining
bow-shaped over the bill. Indians net them
very cleverly by means of low brush hedges,
containing apertures through which the birds
thrust their heads when endeavoring to escape, 56
thus getting caught in the little horsehair slip-
noose already set round these openings.
Multitudes of gray and red squirrels, with
occasionally a black fellow, skipped about, —
quite a happy hunting-ground for "Alice in
Wonderland ; " while little chipmunks skimmed
up bowlders, finding microscopic footholds in a
manner to have made a chamois or the nimblest
alpine-club man gnash his teeth with envy.
yu1le !5. — This morning we started  from
Priest's  for  another long   day's   drive.     The
scenery began to change, and grow in breadth.
and  altitude.    Sugar  and  yellow  pines,  with
other  evergreens,  slowly became   larger  and
more   lofty as we advanced  up  the  hillsides.
Now and again we rushed down  some  little
glen,  its rippling valley-stream spanned by a
rude bridge, or toiled up a steep ascent, until
weary,   dusty,   and  tired,  we  arrived  towards
night  at Crocker's, cool  and delicious, — the
evening's   halting - place.     Dinner    over,   we
turned in, and found that only paper separated
us  from  our  next-door  neighbors.    A  newly,
married couple on their wedding-tour were next
to me.    One man, next day, tried to shave at
sunrise; and even though he was several rooms
away, the grating of his beard could be distinctly heard.
June 16.— Left Crocker's at six a.m., quite TO  THE   YOSEMITE   VALLEY.
well satisfied with both last night's dinner and
this morning's breakfast. Now we journeyed
through a magnificent forest of big pines, and
finally encountered our first sequoia gigantia»
over thirty feet in diameter.
Some forty miles before reaching the valley,
we passed through miles of pine forest of the
most magnificent trees. The yellow and the
sugar pines are vast in size, and measure from
two hundred and fifty to two hundred and sixty-
five feet in height, retaining their great diameter
for more than a hundred feet. The cones of the
sugar-pines measure from eighteen to twenty
inches in length. A New-York lady picked up
one perfect in form and twenty inches long,
and intended to bring it home.
As our stagecoach rounds Inspiration Point,
we come in view of the valley, to reach the
bottom of which we are obliged to descend a
fearful road some four thousand feet. That
danger over, we cross the Merced River, which
runs through the bottom of the valley ; and,
driving three miles or more along its banks,
we reach the hotel, directly in front of the far-
famed Yosemite Falls. 58 FROM FIFTH AVENUE  TO ALASKA.
The next day (June 17), our party starting
on our six ponies, headed by our guide, we
finally arrived — by a series of zigzag turns,
reminding one of the ascent to the Gorner
Grat Hotel at Zermatt, Switzerland — at the
Vernal Falls (Indian name Pi-us-ack, signification I Cataract of Diamonds "), a splendid sheet
of tumbling waters. We sat on Lady Franklin's
Rock, and viewed the magnificent scenery, the
foaming tide struggling with the colossal bowlders. Remounting, after another hour's climb,
we reached the Nevada Falls : these, too, are
After a good lunch of trout at the little hotel,
we began our return. The proprietor of this
small inn has a pool containing some two thousand or so of trout, all over half a pound, which
be is keeping till the spawning is over, and
then, as an amusement to his guests, intends to
allow fishing in July and August.
Returning to the Vernal Falls, several of our THE   YOSEMITE   VALLEY.
party, including one lady, stood on a little
narrow edge of rock, supported by the guide,
and looked down some three hundred and
eighty feet of frothy foam. A member of the
English" Alpine Club and myself went down a
small hole in the rocks, and stood on a ledge
below in order to see the rainbow. These
winding trails, tracing their circuitous courses
up among the mountains, are daily traversed
by these sure-footed Indian ponies; and the
astonishing manner in which they pick their
way over logs and slippery rocks is wonderful.
I have hardly ever known them to stumble, and
should feel as secure as on the Swiss mules,
proverbially famous for their safety.
Racing our mustangs back, we reached the
hotel quite hungry and ready for dinner. We
visited a curious old bar-room hung around with
antlers, guns, swords, duelling-pistols with their
bloody history attached, and old racing cartoons ;
in fact, a large edition of j Uncle Tom's " chop-
house in New York. One curiosity is well
worth mentioning, — that of a huge autograph
volume, the repository of the names of visitors
who have visited the valley during the last ten
years. This book weighs some hundred and
fifteen pounds, and contains fifteen thousand
names. Among many well-known signatures,
my attention was drawn to this : — 6o
| If I! H
"J. A. Garfield, Hiram, Ohio.
"No one can thoroughly study this valley and its surroundings without being broader-minded thereafter.
"May 15, 1875."
What marred the poetry of this fine sentiment was the fact, that several people told me
that they had never met such narrow-minded
people as these grand cliffs enclosed. Perhaps,
if true, this comes from a feeling of imprisonment which even a casual visitor cannot help
remarking ; for, although the valley is some six
miles long, its breadth is but a quarter of a
mile, and considering the vast precipitous
height of these cliffs, — some four thousand
feet, — the sensation can be realized.
Our antiquated guide 1 Pike," the oldest
hunter in the valley, catching a severe cold one
morning while hunting deer on the mountain,
almost completely lost his voice; and a very
inquisitive, lean, gaunt, cadaverous-looking
Eastern man kept worrying; him with questions.
Finally the visitor said, " How comes it that you
appear to be deficient in your bronchial tubes ? "
— I Answering the questions of damn fools
sich as you," was the quick rejoinder.
1851 was the date of the first white man's
entrance into the valley, which arose from pursuing hostile Yosemite Indians.
About nine o'clock p.m., while seated on the THE   YOSEMITE   VALLEY.
veranda, we viewed one of the most romantic
scenes   that   can   be   imagined.     The   moon.
facing the falls, rose behind the craggy peaks,
and in all the majesty of her silvery sheen lit up
the falling waters.    The pure, clear air brought
out every shadow of the sombre pines;   and,
chiselled  upon  the view, the cathedral spires
stood out like guardians of the valley, sentinels
at  their watch.    So  grand,   so  awe-inspiring,
was the sight, that each was silent, and some
recalled, —
I Upon such a night
I stood within the Coliseum's wall,
Midst the chief relics of almighty Rome."
I can remember but three instances during
my travels that compare with this, — one, a
sunrise on top of Mount Washington ; another,
my first glimpse of the Matterhorn with the
moon rising from behind it; and lastly, as I
now recall it, a summer's night on Lago del
Como. It was near Bellagio. The old ballroom
of the chateau fronting the lake., which a moment previous had resounded with gayety, now
lost even the echo of the whirling dancers ; the
lights burned low; musicians all departed ; and
only an occasional morsel of torn tulle, or faded
flower ground under foot, bore witness of the
gay throng which   but   a   moment   previous
crowded every niche of the old baronial hall. 62
J? I
As three of us, quietly conversing in the dark
night, sat muffled on the veranda but a few
feet from the gliding waters, the deep-toned
bell hanging in the belfry hard by began to
•strike the midnight hour; and, as the last vibration was trembling away on the breeze, the
clouds broke, and the moon shone out in her
cold brilliancy, bringing out every object on the
deep waters. At that instant, upon the wind
rose the sway and measure of a dreamy waltz,
nearer and still nearer, until, within a stone's
throw, a gondola floated by, an Italian girl in
the stern playing the zithern, cheering on her
lover as he swept his bark along.
The Yosemite Valley is one of the few things
which will not disappoint you, however large
your expectations.
For an accurate description I cite from the
work of Professor J. D. Whitney, State geologist
of California, which was published by the Legislature.
To justly estimate the description, it should
be kept in mind that the bottom of the valley
is about a mile below the surrounding country,
and 3,950 feet above the sea. We will enter
by the Coulterville trail, on the north side of the
Merced River, which runs through the valley.
(See map facing p. 69.) THE   YOSEMITE   VALLEY.
" The valley is a nearly level area, about six miles
in length and about half a mile to a mile in width,
sunk almost a mile in perpendicular depth below the
general level of the adjacent region.
" Either the domes or the waterfalls of the Yosemite, or any single one of them even, would be sufficient in any European country to attract travellers
from far and wide in all directions. Waterfalls in the
vicinity of the Yosemite, surpassing in beauty many
of those best known and most visited in Europe, are
actually left entirely unnoticed by travellers, because
there are so many other objects of interest to be
visited that it is impossible to find time for them
" Of the cliffs around the valley, El Capitan and
the Half Dome are the most striking: the latter is
the higher, but it would be difficult to say which
conveys to the mind the most decided impression of
grandeur and massiveness. El Capitan is an immense
block of granite, projecting squarely out into the
valley, and presenting an almost vertical sharp edge,
3,300 feet in elevation. The sides or walls of the
mass are bare, smooth, and entirely destitute of
vegetation. It is almost impossible for the observer
to comprehend the enormous dimensions of this
rock, which in clear weather can be distinctly seen
from the San Joaquin plains, at a distance of fifty
or sixty miles.
"On the other side  of the valley we have the 64
Bridal Veil Fall, unquestionably one of the most
beautiful objects in the Yosemite. It is formed by
the creek of the same name, which rises a few miles
east of Empire Camp, runs through the meadows at
Westfalls, and is finally precipitated over the cliffs on
the west side of Cathedral Rock, into the Yosemite,
in one leap of six hundred and thirty feet perpendicular. The water strikes here on a sloping pile of
debris, down" which it rushes in a series of cascades
for a perpendicular distance of nearly three hundred
feet more, the total height of the edge of the fall
above the meadow at its base being nine hundred
feet. The effect of the fall as everywhere seen from
the valley is as if it were nine hundred feet in vertical height; its base being concealed by the trees
which surround it.
. "The Virgin's Tears Creek, on the other side of
the valley, and directly opposite the Bridal Veil,
makes also a fine fall, over a thousand feet high, included in a deep recess of the rocks near the lower
corner of El Capitan.
"From near the foot of Sentinel Rock, looking
directly across the valley, we have before us what
most persons will admit to be, if not the most stupendous, at least the most attractive, feature of the
Yosemite; namely, the Yosemite Fall par excellence,
that one of all the falls about the valley which is
best entitled to bear that name. The finest view of
this fall is in a group of oaks near the lower hotel,
from which point the various parts seem most thor- THE   YOSEMITE   VALLEY.
oughly to be blended into one whole of surprising
attractiveness. Even the finest photograph is, however, utterly inadequate to convey to the mind any
satisfactory impression or realization of how many of
the elements of grandeur and beauty are combined
in this waterfall, and its surroundings and accessories. The first and most impressive of these elements is, as in all other objects about the Yosemite,
vertical height. In this it surpasses, it is believed,
any waterfall in the world with any thing like an
equal body of water. . . . The vertical height of the
lip of the fall above the valley is, in round numbers,
2,600 feet.1
" The fall is not in one perpendicular sheet. There
is first a vertical descent of fifteen hundred feet, when
the water strikes on what seems to be a projecting
ledge, but which in reality is a shelf or recess, almost
a third of a mile back from the front of the lower portion of the cliff. From here the water finds its way,
in a series of cascades, down a descent equal to six
hundred and twenty-six feet perpendicular, and then
gives one final plunge of about four hundred feet on
to a low talus of rocks at the base of the precipice.
" One of the most striking features of the Yosemite Fall is the vibration of the upper portion from
one side to the other, under the varying pressure of
the wind, which acts with immense force on so long
a column.   The descending mass of water is too great
1 The great Horseshoe Fall at Niagara is but 154 feet high. The
fall on the American side is nine feet higher. IS!
to allow of its being entirely broken up into spray ;
but it widens out very much to the bottom, — probably to as much as three hundred feet at high water,
the space through which it moves being fully three
times as wide. This vibratory motion of the Yosemite and Bridal Veil Falls is something peculiar, and
not observed in any others, so far as we know; the
effect of it is indescribably grand, especially under
the magical illumination of the full moon.
"At the angle where the Yosemite branches, we
have, on the north side, the rounded columnar mass
of rocks called the Washington Column; and, immediately to the left of it, the immense arched cavity
called the 'Royal Arches.' Over these is seen the
dome-shaped mass called the North Dome.
"The Half Dome, on the opposite side of the
Tenaya Canon, is the loftiest and most imposing
mass of those considered as part of the Yosemite.
It is not so high as Cloud's Rest, but the latter seems
rather to belong to the Sierra than to the Yosemite.
The Half Dome is in sight in the distance as we
descend the Mariposa trail, but it is not visible in
the lower part of the valley itself: it is seen first
when we come to the meadow opposite Hutchings's.
It is a crest of granite rising to the height of 4,737
feet above the valley, seeming perfectly inaccessible,
and being the only one of all the prominent points
about the Yosemite which has never been, and perhaps never will be, trodden by human foot. It has
not the massiveness of El Capitan, but is more aston- THE   YOSEMITE   VALLEY.
ishing, and probably there are few visitors to the
valley who would not concede to it the first place of
all the wonders of the region. Even the most casual
observer must recognize in it a new revelation of
mountain grandeur : those who have not seen it could
never comprehend its extraordinary form and proportions, not even with the aid of photographs.
"The first fall reached in ascending the canon is
the Vernal, a perpendicular sheet of water with a
descent varying greatly with the season.
"From the Vernal Fall, up stream, for the distance of about a mile, the river may be followed; and
it presents a succession of cascades and rapids of
great beauty. As we approach the Nevada Fall, the
last great one of the Merced, we have at every step
something new and impressive.
"The Nevada Fall is, in every respect, one of the
grandest waterfalls in the world, whether we consider its vertical height, the purity and volume of the
river which forms it, or the stupendous scenery by
which it is environed. . . . To call the Vernal four
hundred and the Nevada six hundred feet, in round
numbers, will be near enough to the truth. The
descent of the river in rapids between the two falls
is nearly three hundred feet.
" The elevation of the bottom of the valley above
the sea-level is, from a combination of several series
of observations, 3,950 feet. Through the valley flows-
the Merced River, about seventy feet in width, making many sharp and curiously angular bends, touching the talus first on one side and-then on the other."' I
This valley was a secret fastness of the Yosemite tribe until March, 1851, when it was discovered by Major Savage, Dr. Bunnell, and
their party, while in pursuit of hostile Indians.
It was once a. favorite resort of the grizzly bear,
from whence its name. The Major had five
Indian wives at one time.
There are two ways of entering the valley, —
one, by rail to Milton, and thence by stage via
Priest's and Crocker's, in which case you enter
by the Coulterville trail on the north side of the
' Merced River: the other is by rail to Madera,
thence by stage via Clark's; in this case you
enter by the Mariposa trail on the south side
of the Merced. The Mariposa way is much the
longer, but I hear that the stage part is easier.
After visiting the Yosemite, we saw the high
mountains of Alaska, capped with eternal snows
and mirrored in the still deep waters at their
base ; the lofty castellated cliffs along the banks
of the Columbia River; the vast Hoodoo ranges;
the boiling caldrons, the geysers, the falls and
canons, in the Yellowstone Park. But no
scenery comes back to the memory with such
amazement as that of the Yosemite Valley, and
nothing in the valley seems so awfully grand as
the granite walls of El Capitan.
The air of the valley is heavy and close; it
seems never to have been ventilated: and the
mosquitoes are of the most vicious kind. THE  CALAVERAS GROVES.
From the Yosemite we go to the " Big Trees"
of Calaveras County, far the largest of all.
They are north-west from the valley, and
reached by Sonora and Murphy's, as seen on
the map. The distance is many miles, and
much of the road is rough. It is partly over
the same road by whch we came out, and takes
two days.
At Sonora, Mr. and Mrs. Ruthven, who had
been delightful travelling companions, concluded
to abandon a journey to the Trees, and return
to San Francisco. My father and I went on
On all sides we encountered signs of the
gold-fever of 1849, — soil torn up, rocks blasted, trees uprooted, green pastures devastated,
streams turned from their course, rich land
given to aridness; pastures, wheat-crops, fruit,
vineyards, all set aside by the golden dreams 1
of sudden wealth. As we sped along, glancing
at the mining operations either in full sway, or
at the machinery left deserted for lack of
means, — here and there were Chinamen sluicing, or the lonely "prospector," with his rifle
and solitary dog, seeking his rich " pocket," or
sounding for a vein; now and then coming
upon an hydraulic company tearing down the
hills with their powerful stream ; and not far off
the poorer "placer miner," — we thought of the
remark of Senator Jones of Nevada, who said
to father one day, I Every dollar of gold which
California has produced, in general average,
cost three to get it." The truth of this estimate
can be realized when we consider the useless
shafts which have been sunk, the vast amount
of machinery which proved of no value, the
millions of days' labor which were fruitless, and
the millions of dollars which were spent in
mining explorations which yielded no return.
But several miners who had been prospecting
and digging for thirty years, and were still poor,
told us, that, with all the hard labor and privation, there was a pleasure in the hope of great
luck that never ceased to lure them on, in spite
of so many years of disappointment. Gold-
mining and gambling are not unlike.
The Chinamen, accustomed to their irrigated
rice-fields, and being already inured to the ex- THE  CALAVERAS GROVES.
posure of wading, rank among the best miners
on the coast, their endurance being remarkable;
and as one watches them climbing the hills
with their long, swinging walk, you can easily
appreciate their usefulness as soldiers, capable
of undergoing forced marches under a burning
sun. The placer Chinaman derives from his
washing, oinder the best circumstances, some
two dollars a day, out of which their largest expenditure is for opium, the Chinaman's scourge.
This deadly narcotic they sometimes chew in
the mines, claiming that its use exhilarates,
and enables them to undergo the unceasing
toil of their vocation. The washing for dust is
nearly all done by this race; Americans actually
being expelled from their original occupation
by this strange people, whose chief food, rice,
they buy at a low price from their own merchants, and, their systems being habituated to
living without meat, their visits to a " Bignon,"
Delmonico's, or " Lion d'Or," are naturally
very rare. Ordinary linen-washing they have
also brought to such a low rate, through their
economical way of living, that none others can
compete; and thus, as is generally known, they
have almost a complete monopoly of this
Our driver informed us concerning the wages
which experienced I whips 1 get on the road. 72
Their salaries average from sixty dollars to
eighty dollars a month for four and six horse
stages, drivers of ordinary vehicles receiving
some thirty dollars to forty dollars. These fellows are old veterans, knowing every turn on
the road; and the two or three hundred miles
which their duty sends them over is what the
"Mississippi panorama" was aforetime to the
old pilots, in which every snag and shoal was as
clearly placed and marked, in their minds, as
the signals are now to an engineer on the railroad. Occasionally we noticed that five horses
were used before a stage, three of them lead-
ers, and two wheelers. We found, that, on
crooked roads, five pulled fully as much as six,
the two leaders of the latter number being
hardly serviceable for abrupt turns; but, in a
straight course, six were capable of dragging
more than five.
We met numerous wagons heaped up with
dirt going to be "washed out;" and ascertained
that four bits (fifty cents) was calculated as the
profit upon each load. Companies or private
individuals frequently start water-works for
washing, and mills for quartz-crushing, at fixed
rates ; and thus even here chances for studying
political economy are afforded.
We passed several nests of the poisonous
tarantula, with their neatly constructed houses. THE  CALAVERAS GROVES.
Crossing in the chain-ferry propelled by the
current, we met on the other side a madwoman,
who greatly amused us by her fire of invectives,
hurling anathemas at all the world, decrying
the general belief in a future life, and pointing
out with immense cunning the weakness of our
public men.
On the 20th of June we reached the 1 Trees,"
and found an excellent hotel in the very grove.
It is kept by Mr. J. L. Sperry, a man of excellent good sense, who understands his business.
He owns the grove, and the South Grove also.
The climate here is charming; the air delightfully cool, clear, and elastic. This grove contains ninety-three large trees, and many small
ones. You cannot conceive the impression
which these will make until you have seen
them, and, climbing the ladders which rest upon
several of the fallen trunks, you walk over their
vast bulk, and look down to the ground some
thirty feet below you.
There is great diversity of statement as to
their size. The account published by Mr.
Whitney, ten years ago, makes the tallest
standing tree three hundred and twenty-five
feet high and forty-five feet in circumference;
he calls this the 1 Keystone State." One, called
| Starr King," he reports as fifty-two feet in circumference and two hundred and eighty-three 74
feet high. Surely there is some mistake in the
print, or error in the measurements, or else
a confusion of names. Later, Professor C. T.
Jackson in 1857 measured the "Starr King,"
and found it three hundred and sixty-six feet
high. The Mother of the Forest has its bark
off up to the height of a hundred and sixteen
feet. The bark thus removed was set up at
Sydenham Palace, where it was burned many
years ago. This tree is reported in Mr. Whitney's book to be three hundred and fifteen feet
high and sixty-one feet in circumference. The
Whitney measurement was made six feet above
the ground, and where the bark had been removed. It should be noted that these trees
have no tap-root: they are considerably fluted,
like the cedar; they flare a good deal at the
base, and the bark near the bottom is from
nineteen to twenty-three inches thick; it is
of a reddish-brown color, soft and fibrous, like
the outer shuck of a cocoanut. Professor Jackson makes this tree three hundred and twenty-
seven feet high. One of its roots, five feet
from the tree, measures nearly nine feet in circumference. There is much room for honest
difference regarding the height of the standing
trees; but none where the trees have lately
fallen, and none as to the circumference of any
one.    On the 24th of June we  measured the
" Old Dominion," which fell in April, 1882, and
it is three hundred and fifty feet long. Another
fallen tree is " Hercules," which fell in 1862.
It measured three hundred and twenty-five feet
long, and ninety-seven around the base.
In 1853, the next year after the grove was'
discovered, some vandals, with the mistaken
idea that they could make money by exhibiting
sections of it, cut down one of the largest trees.
Neither saws nor axes could effect their object,
but the tree was felled by boring it through
and through with pump-augers and driving-
wedges on one side. It took five men twenty-
five days to accomplish this unpardonable devastation. This tree at the base measures
ninety- two feet in circumference. Its rings
proved that it had been growing at least thirteen hundred years. Some of the " Big Trees"
are believed to be over two thousand years old ;
less old, I believe, than some of the old yew-
trees of England. One of the finest trees is
the " Empire State," ninety-four feet in circumference. The 1 Father of the Forest," having
fallen long before the forest was discovered,
has given rise to much controversy. Hittell,
in his I Resources of California," says that it
must have been four hundred and fifty feet
high, and forty feet in diameter; but Professor
Whitney  discredits   this  estimate.     A  hollow 76
burnt - out cavity extends through the trunk
about two hundred feet, large enough for a
man to ride through on horseback. The '' Fallen
Monarch " is believed to show proof, from the
surrounding trees, that he fell much more than a
hundred years ago ; and is chiefly interesting as
proof of the lasting qualities of the wood, much
of it being perfectly sound.
The morning after arrival at Sperry's hotel,
I went trout - fishing, with Andrew Jackson
Smith as my guide. This man became my especial admiration,— a brave and honest man:
his like I have never seen. I will try to present
him. Conceive a man six foot two, with broad
shoulders, but gaunt, lean, long-armed, narrow
head, and Roman nose, mouth and teeth like a
gray squirrel as he gnaws a nut; hair and beard
long, yellow, and untrimmed, an immense straggling imperial, which he occasionally twisted in
his hand; eyes of a yellowish-gray, small and
calm, honest, and near together; fingers very
long and bony; hands and face tanned the
brown color of his overall clothes ; his legs very
long and sinewy, ending in coarse heavy boots ;
and on the back of his narrow head a battered
old drab sombrero hat: add to this a fearless
mien and a kindly voice, and you have before
you the old trapper, whom I heartily commend
to any one who needs the services of a skilled
fisherman and a trustworthy guide. THE  CALAVERAS  GROVES.
In the early morning, June 20, Smith and
I started alone, on our horses, for thev trout-
streams. He cocked his smashed hat on one
side, and mounted, taking the fish-basket con-
taining our lunch, and each of us had our rods.
Over hill and mountain, across the Stanislaus
River, — which, although containing the largest
trout, was still too high, — i loping " down the
hills, passing at intervals the beautiful fresh ice-
plant, which springs up as the snow disappears,
and then as soon fades away at the approach
of hot weather. I rode a Mexican broncho;
that is, a pony trained for the lariat and lassoing steers. Smith gave me a lesson in picking
up a handkerchief when at full gallop, and in
picking up coin from the ground, — which feat,
owing to the Spanish way of securely cinching
a horse, may be accomplished : the English way
of fastening the girth of the pig-skin saddle
makes the chances of its turning too great for
safety, especially as there is no horn to hang to
while lowering one's self to the ground. The
Mexicans all over the West have various ways
of exhibiting their skill; one favorite amusement being " chicken-pulling." A hen or cock
is firmly embedded in the earth, leaving nothing
but its head stretching itself in all directions:
our Mexican competitor rides off a short distance, and then dashing forward at full gallop 78
lowers himself from his seat, and seizes, if he
be so fortunate, the neck and head, and tears
it from the body ; though, of course, like " tent-
pegging " in England and India, there are more
misses than wins, for its accomplishment needs
a perfectly trained horse, and steady nerve.
After some serious up-hill climbing, we reached
■ Grouse Spring," so called by Smith one year
when out deer - hunting, on seeing twenty-six
;grouse roosting in a big pine which overshadows the water.
My companion entertained me with various
interesting stories, and impressed me, as his
reputation afterwards confirmed, with a feeling
that he was not telling the usual hunters' yarns
with which these old characters like to arouse
the wonderment of i tender-feet." Having
killed several "grizzlies" during his life, he
considered the following rules the most reliable
guide for their slaughter. These rules have
been approved by many camp-fire hunters: I
here give them for the benefit of those desirous
of some day possessing a necklace of claws : —
i st, Do not attempt to kill a grizzly by the
first shot unless he charges you, and the need
of shooting be inevitable : then aim directly for
the centre of his breast, sighting a little patch
of grizzly, wiry hair always visible.
2d, Wait, if possible, until the bear is going THE  CALAVERAS GROVES.
away from you, as the chances of your getting
in a couple of bullets before he sees you are
much more likely.
3d, Don't imagine, that, like other beasts or
animals, shooting a grizzly through even the
very core of the heart necessarily prevents him
from having strength to kill three men before
4th, Aim a few inches above the top of the
shoulder, just under the spinal column: this will
shatter and so cripple his fore-legs, and impede
his progress, as to enable you to get in with
safety enough lead to finally stop his career.
5th, A ball precisely placed in the brain will
almost always cause instant death ; but as, when
the bear moves, he continually swings his snout
from side to side, and is never still, if the man
be not a quick shot and a dead shot, it were
better, unless in imminent danger, to leave the
mark unattempted, especially since the retreating formation of the bear's skull, when facing
him, render the chances great that the bullet
will glance off.
' Smith agrees with the many other authorities
consulted, that a grizzly will not attack unless
you are directly in his trail, or unless it be a
she-one with cubs. Grizzlies, like other bears,
prefer flight, and will do their utmost to avoid
a conflict; but let them once feel lead, and no 8o
animal on earth can equal them in point of
ferocity, or tenacity of life.
The Indian tiger is generally pursued on a
houdah, or I pad elephant;" and the African
lion, when shot through the heart, is much
inferior in power to the dreaded "grizzly."
Livingstone, in his book on Africa, corrobo-
rates the many authorities with respect to the
folly of making the lion the king of beasts, if
regard be paid to courage ; and goes on to say
that his roar, when heard at a distance from a
camp-fire, can hardly be distinguished from an
ostrich's " trumpeting." Jules Gerard, the lion-
hunter, in his interesting work, plainly shows
how a well-directed ball through the heart, given
behind the fore-shoulder, will generally produce
instant death, or, at all events, lay low this
so-called " king of animals." His title is derived more from his massive head, with its magnificent wealth   of   mane,  than   from   intense
As   regards   the   1 cinnamon,"   au
thors, and those old hunters whom I have consulted, seem to concur, that, although equal in
ferocity, it lacks the "grizzly's" power of surviving wounds, and dealing death in his last
One method of escape has been adopted by
old hunters occasionally with success; namely,
by running straight along a steep hillside.    The THE  CALAVERAS GROVES.
bear rarely runs in a straight line; and this
peculiarity, combined with his great weight, prevents his retaining his balance on a slope ; and
this has occasionally saved a man's life. As
regards the climbing of trees, although the
report is circulated that the " grizzly," from the
length and form of his immense claws, alone
of the bear tribe, cannot ascend a tree, this is
true only of those trees entirely bereft of limbs
within his reach, or whose branches are so weak
as to give way beneath his great weight. The
cubs can run up a smooth trunk as easily as a
cat, by the aid of their claws.
Revenons a nos moutons. We dismounted
on the bank of our little stream, unsaddled, unbridled, and tethered our ponies, jointed the
poles, rigged the lines, and took our first throw,
one using a brown hackle, the other a black
gnat, attached to six-foot leaders. The bottom
being very clean sand with many bowlders dotting the bed, we fished down stream, there
being from these causes not much danger of
roiling the " riffles" in which the greater
part of our casting was done. The "white
miller " is used in this region, especially towards
nightfall; but we found, during the day, neutral-
tinted flies with dark bodies were the most
catching. Beginning at nine, hour after hour
we crawled and slipped  over huge rocks, or ^H
waded up to our waists in the water, over
ground so rough that visitors had as yet left it
untouched. The bushes on either side
to the water's edge, and made bank
impossible. We left off at four, with sixty-nine
slashed red trout somewhat less speckled than
Eastern spotted fish, but fully as gamey.
My finest day's lake-trout fishing was on
Lough Corrib in Ireland, close to Cong, twenty
miles north of Galway, during 1879. We used
an otter, whose use is the worst kind of poaching. Directions: Take a piece of wood, half-
moon in form; attach through its centre a
strong line, some thirty feet in length; and all
along, at intervals of four feet, allow six other
lines with leaders and flies to dribble over the
surface. After paying out this species of diminutive seine from the boat, keep up a regular
slow stroke, having due regard to the wind's
direction ; fasten your end to the boat, and
await results. With this deadly contrivance, on
this lonely and wild lake, we captured in two
hours some twenty large trout, averaging three
pounds, besides others caught trolling with a
ten-foot rod and spinning live bait, the small
chub being cleverly fastened to a "gang" of six
On the 23d of June, in company with a very
interesting young lady, Miss H , we rode THE  CALAVERAS GROVES.
to the South Grove, which is six or seven miles
distant. There is only a bridle-path, and that
is a steep and stony trail. We have to cross
the Stanislaus River. This grove also belongs
to Mr. Sperry, who has there more than a thousand acres. This grove contains 1,380 large
The " Massachusetts" measures at the base
a hundred feet in circumference, and is said to
be three hundred and eighty feet high.
The " Ohio " has a base circumference of a
hundred and four feet, and is said to be three
hundred and twenty-eight feet high.
The " New York " is a hundred and six feet
in circumference, and three hundred and forty
feet high.
" Cyclops," a live tree, has a burnt cavity at
its base, in which twenty-four men, each on
horseback, are said to have been at the same
time. We cannot say how true this statement
is, but it did not seem impossible.
The " Palace Hotel" is a hundred feet in circumference, with a burnt-out cavity of fifteen
feet in diameter and ninety feet high; and yet
the tree is alive.
I Old Goliath " is a fallen tree. It measures
at the base a hundred and five feet in circumference, and measures, as it lies, two hundred
and eighty-one feet.    It is easy to tell the size : 84
a limb alone measures twelve feet in circumference. This tree has its bark all perfect. It
retains its vast size longer than any fallen tree
we have seen. As you ascend, and walk over
its huge bulk, you form some conception of
its size, and you can hardly believe that it is
indeed a tree. Its magnitude impresses you
more than that of any standing or fallen of
these giants of the forest.
Near by is a living tree called " Smith's
Cabin," named after the old trapper. He was
our guide on the visit to these trees, and on
the ground gave us the particulars of his adventures. In reply to the question from what
State he came, he said: —
11 came out of a wooden-nutmeg machine
in Hartford County, Conn. I got the mining-
fever early; and I came to California, and went
to diggin' gold. I rather liked the business,
though it was hard work. I had no luck, didn't
make much, and lost that; then went to trapping, and sold what I could shoot to the miners.
I lived in that 'ere tree two years; nobody near.
It was rather lonesome at night. I read some:
had a horse, my dog and gun; they all slept
with me in that 'ere tree. It was rather a hard
row of stumps. I tried to get this grove by
pre-emption, squatting, and improving. I had
an axe, and built a strong shanty here;  but THE  CALAVERAS GROVES.
somehow I didn't enter any claims accordin' to
law, and was cheated out of it — hard row o'
stumps out here, without any thing to pay lawyers. But I am contented; have had a fine
time; never cheated nobody. At night, when
the wind blowed, rather lonesome sometimes
with only dog and horse. One night there was
a terrible gale ; trees were constantly coming
down, and I didn't dare go out of my old tree.
Finally this Old Goliath came down, and shook
all round like an earthquake. I was a little
scared; knew I could not help it, and hoped
my old tree would weather the storm. It did,
and stands there now."
The hollow part of Smith's Tree is sixteen by
twenty-one feet, plenty large for a man, horse,
and dog. All these oldest trees have suffered
from fire, and men of science say that "Old
Goliath" is at least two thousand years old.
Their great age is evinced also -by the sugar-
pines, two hundred and fifty feet high and
twenty feet in circumference, growing near by,
and showing no signs of fire. The great trees
are akin to the redwood, and resemble cedar.
Being resinous at the heart, they burn long,
and many of the older ones are hollowed out
by fire, and yet not dead.
Smith discoursed quite indignantly upon the
depredation which the Chinamen were making 86
upon the white miners, — how one Celestial,
somewhat better than the majority of his creatures, would get in his employ six or a dozen,
and send them over the country prospecting
for gold : if one happened to strike a rich vein,
he immediately collected and centred all upon
this one spot. Smith, himself an old miner of
1849, protested, and declared this to be entirely
against the general tenor of the unwritten min-
ing law, that man should be in this state of
Our guide, so accustomed to wandering in
the loneliness of unbroken forest, who in this
very grove had spent two years in the trunk of
a tree, and whose years rolled by regardless
of railroads, suspension-bridges, telephones, and
Panama Canals, spending weeks in the wilderness with no friend but his mongrel deer-hound,
and an old muzzle-loading rifle, — the poor old
fellow, feeling that he had been always honest,
gave vent to the expression, " Ah, sir! when
you are unaccustomed to the treachery of the
world, honest men find life a hard row of
stumps." Like most of those we met, he was
vehement in his denouncement of the Indian;
and he told us how the very redskins to whom
he had been so kind, broke into his cabin in
the tree one day during his absence on a deer-
hunt, and stole the few possessions which, to THE  CALAVERAS GROVES.
a poor trapper, are his all, — kettle, axe, and
The Mariposa Grove, sixteen miles south of
the Yosemite Valley, contains a large number
of splendid trees; none so high by more than
fifty feet as some of the Calaveras trees, but.
according to Professor Whitney, of larger cir-
•cumference. No trees of this kind have been
found outside of California, or even north of
the Calaveras Grove. According to Dr. Miiller,
the eminent botanist, the eucalyptus has been
found in Australia four hundred and eighty feet
high, but no one so large around as the largest
of the California trees. These trees are named
Sequoia gigantea, after a Cherokee Indian chief
of half blood who invented an alphabet for his
tribe. These trees were first discovered in the
Calaveras forest, in the spring of 1852, by Mr.
A. T. Dowd, a hunter, while in pursuit of a
wounded bear. His statement no one at first
believed. In 1853 Dr. Findlay published a description of this tree in Gardner's I Chronicle of
London," and called it Wellingtonia gigantea.
In 1854 eminent botanists concluded that the
Californian redwood was of the same genus as
the " Big Trees," and this species was by them
named Sequoia gigantea. The redwood, so
abundant and so valuable for timber, grows
along the Coast Range from 36° to 420.    Near 88
Santa Cruz is a growth of great beauty, in
which is a tree fifty-six feet in circumference
and two hundred and seventy-five feet high.
Professor Whitney supposes that there are
many redwoods from two hundred and fifty-one
to three hundred feet high. Their wood, like
that of the " Big Trees," is of reddish color,
hard, strong, and enduring.
On the road before reaching the Yosemite
Valley, we drive through the body of the
" Dead Giant," a sequoia tree. It is dead, and
most of the outside has been burned away; and
yet of the solid wood there is left a trunk whose
diameter is about thirty feet. A roadway ten
feet wide and twelve feet high is cut through
the firm wood, and coaches with four horses
daily drive through the old giant tree. Mr.
Hutchings, the guardian of the Yosemite Valley, told us, that, after careful investigation, he
was satisfied that when the bark was on, and
before fires had reduced the trunk, the tree was
forty-two feet in diameter.
The Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa
Grove are a reservation, given by the United
States to the State of California to be forever
Last August, while approaching the Yosemite by the Mariposa trail, a stage-coach was
stopped by armed robbers, and each person was
robbed of every thing he had about him. THE  CALAVERAS GROVES.
In the afternoon of the 24th, Mr. Sperry
kindly sent us in his private carriage twenty
miles through the pine-woods to Murphy's,
where we were to take the stage in the early
morning for Milton. On our drive we saw
large numbers of jack-rabbits feeding in the
fields, often rising on their long hind-legs, and
lifting their immense ears. A large wildcat
crossed the road, and scuttled away into the
We took the rail, and lunched at Stockton,
reaching San Francisco at seven o'clock the
25th of June, after sixteen hours of dusty
It takes twelve days to fairly visit the Yosemite and the i Big Trees" and return to San
During this trip we saw mining enough,—
placer-mining, quartz, and hydraulic mining
also; and we saw the many acres that had been
dug over by toilsome hands in pursuit of gold :
wherever that was done, barrenness appeared. 9o
On the 25th of June we returned to San
Francisco, and were again at the Palace Hotel.
The climate is peculiar, a sea-fog every morning which clears off before noon, revealing a
warm sun: this is soon followed by a wind
from the ocean, which is cold; there is scarce
a summer day in which you do not need an
overcoat if you drive out. But for the dust (as
there is no summer rain) it would be a charming climate, and it is an attractive place as it is.
There are more than two hundred and fifty
thousand inhabitants, made up of every nationality. The streets are well lighted, partly with
electric light: they are generally wide, and the
architecture is very imposing. The Palace
Hotel is very high, occupies an entire block,
and is built around a spacious court into which
carriages are driven, after the style of the
Grand Hotel in Paris. There are several other
magnificent  hotels  and  public  buildings,  im- RETURN TO SAN FRANCISCO.
mense commercial blocks, and some of the
most spacious and striking private residences
on this continent. Except the basement story,
the houses are generally built of wood: they
are painted a dark drab color, which seems to
harmonize well. The city is very uneven ; and
some of the streets run up hills which are very
steep, and would be almost inaccessible but for
their cable-railroads.    On one of the  highest
hills are the large mansions of Gov. Stanford,
Mrs. Hopkins, Mr. Crocker, Mr. Colton, and
others. The view from them is superb, and
the interior of some of them is very splendid.
The club-houses are good; and the Pacific,
where an entertainment was given to my
father, is new and very fine. The hospitality
of the place is unbounded, and our visit was
made exceedingly pleasant.
Mr. William T. Coleman took us fifteen miles
up the bay to his country-seat at San Rafael,
where he has a large estate and a charming
house and pleasant household, made doubly
pleasant by a dinner where we met a number
of eminent men and attractive women. We
came down the bay the next day, and had a fine
view of the Golden Gate and the beautiful
Mr. Coleman, an eminent citizen and one of
the early residents of San Francisco, was at the 92
head, of the "Vigilance Committee" in 1856,
which saved the city from pillage.
To him we are indebted for numberless
courtesies which added largely to the pleasure
of our stay.
We were introduced at the various clubs. The
"Union," "Bohemian," and "Pacific" clubs,
and others on the coast, have the excellent plan
of so contracting with the wine-merchants as
to allow the members to purchase their wines
at the same price as the clubs themselves.
The Pacific-Coast clubs differ from our New-
York ones, such as the " Union " and " Knickerbocker," in the mode of election. The following is taken from the constitution of the
" Arlington Club " of Portland, which was copied
from the " Pacific" and " Union" of San Francisco : —
Section I. All applications for admission to regular membership shall be submitted to the Board of
Directors, and approved by them, prior to the posting and balloting for the applicant, as hereinafter
We went to Oakland as the guest of Mr. Hubbard, where we spent another pleasant afternoon.   I tried a bareback ride on his dauerhter's RETURN TO SAN FRANCISCO.
mustang, and, to my surprise, ran him without
a tumble.     In  the evening Mr. G , jun.,
gave me an excellent dinner at the noted
I Marchands" (the Maison Doree, as regards
the cuisinej> of San Francisco. Then we went
over the Bohemian Club; and afterwards behind the scenes at the California Theatre, where
they were playing " The Silver King."
The next day my father was much pleased to
meet his old friend and classmate, the Rev. Dr.
Stone, now so eminent as a preacher. 94
k I1
Major Rathbun invited us to Menlo Park,
where he has a cottage fitted up in peculiarly
attractive taste. He has charge of Gov. Stanford's place during the governor's absence in
Europe; and took us over the estate of six
thousand acres, on which there are six hundred
horses and colts of various ages, in training.
The system has perfect organization, and as yet
the governor has not sold any horses. Two
hundred and fifty men are engaged on the
Although the governor has not until lately
paid attention to running horses, his stock is
said to be the third-largest private collection
in the world. Here one sees the horse in every
stage, from the foal to the old stallion with his
long pedigree. The governor believes in the
little oval circuses, where the young are trotted
every day free from harness. He maintains,
that, from their earliest existence, regular daily RETURN TO SAN FRANCISCO.
exercise develops the horse's speed better than
to allow the colt to remain during his younger
months inactive. This he is said to have proved.
Some ten or twelve stallions are kept, all of
which contain good racing-blood from noted
Here it was that the .experiment of successfully photographing the movement of trotters
at full speed was performed; and my readers
may remember the many illustrations which
appeared in the sporting-papers, depicting the
curious and almost impossible positions which
the horse assumed. To effect this result, about
a dozen very fine wires were drawn parallel to
each other over the race-track, at equal distances apart, which were connected with as
many cameras. As the horse in his speed
successively broke the wires, the slide opened,
and an instantaneous photograph was taken of
the horse's movement as he appeared during
that brief second.
Races take place on the various race-courses
of the farm; and the times of both trotters and
runners are accurately taken, improvements
recorded, and the horses classed accordingly.
The paddocks spread over a great area of
ground, and the novelty of the sight is one
not forgotten.
Menlo Park is a natural park, with very large,   t 96
scattered oaks, with pasture and arable land between. It is thirty-two miles by rail, on the
way south towards Monterey.
The country-seat of Mr. Flood is near by,
where we were invited to go. It is immensely
large, superbly decorated and furnished: each
room is different. It stands in the midst of a
large green lawn, kept fresh by irrigation, and
the lawn is bordered with native trees. The
outside of the pile is entirely white ; and, as you
enter the grounds, the white contrasted with the
green reminds you of the Castle of Pierrefond
in the Royal Forest of Compiegne. We saw
Mr. and Mrs. Flood, their son and daughter.
They were sensible, well - mannered people,
without the least pretension.
From the rail-car, we saw in the distance the
handsome country-residence of D. O. Mills, Esq.
Returning to the city, we met Mr. McAllister,
an eminent lawyer of San Francisco; Judge
Hoffman, formerly of New York; Mr. Justice
Field, well known as one of the ablest judges
of the Supreme Court of the United States ; and
also Mrs. Field.
We had letters to Messrs. Goodall, Perkins, &
Co., agents of the Oregon Railway and Navigation Company. Mr. Perkins was lately governor of California, from whom we received
most valuable civilities. RETURN TO SAN FRANCISCO.
June 30. — After lunching at Black Point
with Gen. Schofield, commander of the Pacific
troops, formerly commandant of West Point,
we visited the Cliff House, and saw the noted
sea-lions sunning themselves on their favorite
rocks. Their grotesque antics proved no small
attraction to visitors, and their roaring can be
heard a long distance. They grow to an immense size, some of them reaching from two
to three thousand pounds. They crawl up the
cliffs by aid of their flippers, in a most slouchy
manner. The noted old lion called Gen. Butler, weighing more than two thousand pounds,
gave us an exhibition of his prowess : seizing
a seal in his jaws, he threw him some ten feet
into the sea, and then waddled up the rock
again to enjoy his favorite basking. Roaring,
and fighting, and tumbling into the sea, varied
their lazy lolling in the sun. As if conscious
of their safety (the law forbidding them to be
killed), you  can   see from fifty to a hundred 98
near midday, lifting themselves up the rocks,
and making their hideous bellowing. They are
terribly destructive to the fish in the bay. Thousands of black I hell-divers," ducks, and white
gulls (also protected by law), use the same
resting-places in safety; so that strangers are
fully repaid for their drive to the sea. Returning through the Golden - Gate driving - park,
where the limit of speed is ten miles an hour
(four more than the Central Park), we reached
the I Palace," just in time to meet Judge Field,
On his return from Oregon.
July i. — To-day, in company with Judge
Field, we went over Mr. Crocker's house on
Nob Hill, which is immensely large. The suite,
including hall, dining, and billiard rooms, decorated by Herter, is quite imposing. RETURN TO SAN FRANCISCO.
California is a State of vast size and boundless resources. She was admitted as a State on
the 9th of September, 1850; and her growth
has been very rapid. That San Francisco will
become one of the greatest cities of the world,
there can be no question.
The Chinese quarter of the city is a unique
place, and again we visited it. At night it presents strange scenes. Without a guide, a stranger would be lost in the labyrinth of lanes and
turns and numberless stalls and bewildering
darkened lights. It is visited by both men and
women; and many odd things are seen, some
of which are not told.
The theatre, where the same play continues
through many nights, we saw once more, where
all the performers are men ; where the music is
made of the most clashing, unmelodious noise;
where no curtain drops upon the stage; where
the actors are clad in the most gorgeous robes; IOO
and where the fighting with swords is conducted
in the most preposterous way, — the combatants constantly whirling around after clashing
their swords, and then standing still for awhile
with their backs toward each other, then whirling in the swiftest possible way, and going at
it again, and thus continuing this absurd com-
bat  for a  long  time, when   the   other actors
© j
entered, and squalled with the most harsh and
discordant voices. There is no more melody
on this Celestial stage than in a sawmill.
The tea-houses are much frequented. Tea
is made by putting a few leaves into a cup,
filling the cup with boiling water, then covering it for a few minutes with a saucer, and
then pouring it out to drink: it is thus freshly
made, and has this advantage. The cunning
Chinee sells it to fools for seven dollars a pound,
as something impossible to obtain elsewhere ;
when, in fact, you can purchase better in New
York for seventy cents.
The Chinese question is curious and perplexing. The following speech of Mr. Coleman,
delivered in San Francisco a year and a half
ago, fairly expresses the sentiment of many of
the better class in that city : —
1 Fellow-Citizens, — I will treat the Chinese
question in different aspects, probably, from others,
and, as we are limited to ten minutes, will come RETURN TO SAN FRANCISCO.
directly to the subject. There are three things that
•can be said in favor of the Chinese that have attracted many people, and given them a status, where, perhaps, a fuller acquaintance with them, and a fuller
consideration of all questions involved, would not
have been so favorable to them ; viz., that physically,
mentally, and politically, they are equal, if not superior, to the average of mankind. Beyond that, the
•comparison is against them. Physically, as laborers
in the field, on the farm, heavy work and light, in
many departments, and as operatives and artisans,
they show quickness, strength, sprightliness, endurance, accuracy, and fidelity, in a great degree. Mentally, they are quick, acute, and correct in their
perceptions, apt, strong, and tenacious in memory,
and rarely fail in the lessons that have been taught
them. In the higher walks we know that as scholars, statesmen, and diplomats, they are astute and
far-reaching, and held in great respect. Politically
{and by politically I give that meaning which embraces politeness, adroitness, cunning, and artfulness), they are shrewd and circumspect, and full of
resources and adaptability.
" If we could continue these favorable comparisons,
there would be no need for this meeting to-day, nor
the excitement and active opposition that have been
made, and we are now making, and must make, against
their continued immigration; but unfortunately, or
possibly fortunately, here the fair comparison ceases.
We find that in their habits, customs, thoughts, impulses, education, action; in their ethics, morals, and
religion (or lack of religion); in their social and political views,—they are so different from us, so radi- 102
cally and essentially divergent, and in all so fixed, as-
to make it undesirable for them to be with us or near
us, and impossible for them to become citizens, or
part and parcel with us. Nor do they wish to become
a part with us. They come to this country merely
as adventurers and gleaners, or, in their estimation,
as conquerors of fortune. They come for a term, a
cruise, a campaign, leaving behind their families and
all they love and cherish and respect, — come purely
seeking the "golden fleece," to carry it back with
them, or remit it to their homes, and to follow it;
never dreaming 'of permanently quitting their own
country, or severing ther allegiance, adherence, and
submission to the laws and will of China. They
bring with them, and maintain, all their habits and
customs. By their dress, garb, and every vesture,
they disdain and spurn the idea of affiliating or assimilating with the Americans or other " outside barbarians." They don't want to become,—at least, the
larger part of them don't want to, — or think of ever
becoming, permanent residents ; certainly of not becoming, citizens, unless it be as conquerors and
masters, — holding their home allegiance firmly, and
looking down on us with a quiet contempt. They
feel that there they have a nation and history far
superior, far higher, and far beyond all others on the
"The Chinaman conceives he stands on a higher
plane, and looks back through the grand vista of
ages in one unbroken view; the grand colonnade of
emperors, statesmen, scholars, soldiers, reaching back
in one glorious sweep to the days of Confucius, now
twenty-seven hundred years ago.    Beyond that, he RETURN TO  SAN FRANCISCO.
counts, or claims to count, thirteen hundred years
more of unbroken history ; and beyond that — but
only in the depths of tradition and song — he yet
claims a grand ancestry. He points to the fact that
China was old and prosperous when Rome and Greece
were young; that she had attained great advancement
at the beginning of our Christian era ; that Confucius
had taught his philosophy nine hundred years, and
Gautama his doctrines five hundred years, before that
epoch. Coming down through the long period of
fifteen hundred years, he shows, that, when America
was 'discovered,' China was in her highest state of
•civilization, and had a system of internal improvements and other grand works superior to any thing
■else on the earth. He claims for all of this a superiority physically, mentally, politically, and otherwise,
and asks where can be a comparison made to him.
He has much in this to be proud of; and while his
•claims are excessive, and while our advancement in
•civilization, arts, sciences, literature, and wealth,
under Christian dispensation, are so far beyond his,
yet he is blind to them, and keeps his eye steadfast
on the age and grandeur and unification of China;
and, with his mind always on the past, he has not
believed, or has been indifferent to the fact, that the
world moved and improved, and that he was centuries behind the times, and is positively retrograding.
"Let not our philanthropic friends abroad think
that the Chinaman is fleeing to America to seek the
aegis of our protection. Let them bear in mind that
there are no refugees from China except criminals.
There are no social, political, or religious migrations, 104
like the Puritans to New England, the Huguenots to-
the South, like the Irish patriots, or the Jews from
Russia to-day, fleeing for safety, and seeking an
asylum and a home. . . . Even to-day she has a navy
that puts ours to shame. She lies within thirty days
of us, and could, if occasion require it, place on our
shores an army, the equal of which modern times-
have not seen. This is not likely to occur soon, but
it may come. The death of a single prominent Chinaman in this country, or a single American in that,
or any mishap, may work a complication that would
at once put us in arms.
I It is said that in Great Britain there will be
put afloat, this year, at least one million of tons register of iron ships and steamers; more probably,
twelve hundred thousand tons, or twelve hundred
vessels of a thousand tons each. If occasion required, -China could buy one-half this fleet; and with
her own, and such as she could get together, she
could start a thousand vessels on short notice, bringing two thousand men each, and hurl, almost before
we knew it, two million people on our coast. This
could be readily multiplied, so that five, ten, or even
twenty millions could be here in a comparatively short
"Now, fellow-citizens, let me ask you and our Eastern friends what would be the position of California
to-morrow with a Chinese invasion, and a Chinese
settlement in the centre of every city, every town on the-
coast, each one compact, unified, and solid against us ;
with isolated Chinamen throughout the country, —
men who could act, and would act, inevitably, for RETURN TO SAN FRANCISCO.
their people, as scouts, spies, and guides, leading
them through our mountain passes into our valleys,
villages, and towns; betraying to them all our strongholds, and exposing all our weaknesses; every
Chinaman in the country, with his knowledge of its
topography and surroundings, being to the invaders
worth a hundred of their own men ? With the large
forces China could land here with modern arms, the
land could be swept and devastated, as do myriads
of locusts in one unbroken mass sweep over a country, devouring every living thing before them. And
do not let our people suppose that the Chinese cannot make soldiers. See them walk our streets and
over our hills and mountains, — the long swinging
step, and easy regular gait; see them making long
marches, and carrying big burdens over hills and
valleys, and it is patent to every one that they would
make splendid marching militia ; and, well broken in
and well handled, they are good fighters too.
"We would ask brother Hoar, and those who agree
with him, to visit San Francisco, Sacramento, and
our interior towns, and j do' the Chinese quarters,
with all their filth, stench, and dissipation, and then
say if they wish to embrace them as 'friends and
You find the Chinese everywhere, from San
Francisco to the higher latitudes of Alaska,
where we found twenty at work in one salmon-
cannery soldering cans. We saw plenty of
them in Astoria, Portland, all along the line of io6
the railroad for two hundred and sixty-two miles
in the Willamette Valley; all the way from
Puget Sound to Victoria ; in the lead-mines,
iron-mines, gold-mines, as chambermen and valets, laundry-men, diggers on the road, workers
at the irrigation ditches, waiters on the steam-
ers, porters in streets, many thousand at work
on the Northern Pacific Railway, servants in
every grade and kind of labor and service
everywhere. In Victoria they are very numerous.
We talked with a captain of a steamer whose
business it is to bring them from China (there
being no restriction against their emigration to
the British dominion, they land there, and then
many of them make their way overland into
the United States) ; we talked with many men
in San Francisco, and along the cities of Puget
Sound; and we never found a man who did
not say that no part of the Pacific Coast could
get along without them: not a man wished to
have the Chinese go, though many were violently opposed to immigration.
The Chinese are a curious people. They
can never assimilate with us either in habits,
thoughts, ideas of government, or religion.
We took much pains to learn what we could
about them. They are cleanly, and will not
work where they cannot easily wash all over in RETURN TO SAN FRANCISCO.
water. They are industrious, economical, law-
abiding ; never intoxicated or quarrelsome;
wonderfully patient and enduring; can carry
heavy burdens on their shoulders if suspended
on a pole between two of them: but they are
by no means strong in general, and in hard
work with the shovel or pick can do but about
half the work of an Irishman. They are very
clannish, and will not work for a man who
has treated one of, them unjustly. When they
leave a house, they are not likely to give a reason ; but they are sure to leave a secret mark
which will prevent a Chinaman from remaining
who may take the vacant place if left for cause.
And yet, when one of them becomes maimed
beyond recovery, or sick beyond hope of restoration, they leave him alone to die, and go
not near him except stealthily to see that he
is dead, and then they hire some one (not a
Chinese) to bury him. We never once saw an
old, or halt, or lame, or blind Chinaman. This
inconsistent trait, of leaving the hopelessly ill
to die, seemed so strange that we asked many
superintendents of railways, who had many
Chinamen under their charge, about it; and
they all confirmed the statements which we so
often heard. They seem to have a horror of
touching a dead body. The bones are all that
they especially care to have taken to the Celes- io8
tial Kingdom. They give no explanation of
their peculiar prejudices. They are very revengeful, even unto death, towards one of their
countrymen who has wronged them. They
seem to be afraid of the dead, but not afraid
to die. To us they seem to have many strange
inconsistencies : they are not of us, and they
never can be. They are extremely acute, and
understand the value of the law (which excludes
new immigrants) to those who remain here, and
they grade their wages accordingly. They do
not drink, but many smoke opium injuriously.
They seem a present necessity for this coast,
where labor is so difficult to obtain; but no
American who has seen them in San Francisco would wish to have an indefinite increase
of their numbers. And when we remember
that China is now very near, and can spare a
hundred million without feeling the loss, the
Chinese question is not free of embarrassment.
The odors of the Chinese quarter misled me
as to the cleanliness of the Chinamen. At
first, I thought them filthy; but further observation convinced me that they are quite as neat
as any other people of the same class, and
more scrupulously careful in washing themselves daily than laborers of the same grade
generally are.
All races of men and animals have an odor RETURN TO SAN FRANCISCO.
quite distinctive. The African, the Indian, and
the Chinaman each differs from the white man
and from each other. If dogs could speak,
they would say that they can distinguish each
human being by the scent. The peculiar smell
which comes from the crowded dwellings of the
Chinese, so disagreeable to the white man, does
not arise from any especial lack of cleanliness.
On our way to the Yosemite, at a village
called " Chinese Camp," we saw, walking with
her mother, a Chinese girl of eighteen, tall,
graceful, and truly beautiful, the daughter of a
well-to-do Chinaman: she was born in California, and dressed in the American fashion,
and was the only one of the Celestial race
whom we met, at all good-looking. no
On Monday, July 2, 1883, we left San Fran-
•cisco in the steamer I Columbia" of the Oregon Railway and Navigation Line, for Portland,
Ore. Through the kindness of Gov. Perkins,
the bridal chamber, a spacious room, was assigned to us. The attentive Capt. Bowles made
us very comfortable at his table. The " Columbia " is a good sea vessel; but the Pacific Ocean
was exceedingly rough the entire way, and no
one but my father (who is never seasick) was
at the captain's table for nearly two days.
Passing the bar at one p.m., we sailed up the
far-famed Columbia River, grand in the extreme,
although our view was much marred by the
forest fires which completely shrouded some of
the higher snow-clad ranges. The b.anks, covered with dark and sombre trees growing to
the water's edge, reminded one of the St.
John's with the inundated cypress, and also
of the Lower Mississippi.    We saw quantities of SAN FRANCISCO   TO ASTORIA.
salmon-nets eighteen hundred to two thousand
feet in length, and some eighteen feet deep.
Sitting as I do on the bridge, the silence
broken by the captain's orders, the vast river
spread before us, the timbered shores dark and
wild, give a certain lonely feeling of awe in
the grandeur and freedom of the scene, which
one does not experience on such lovely streams
as the Hudson, Rhine, Danube, or St. John's.
Salmon here run as high as seventy pounds,
although of course this is greatly the exception.
They do not rise to a fly, and are caught,
throughout Puget Sound and the Willamette
River, by nets, with a spear during a run, or by
trolling with a spoon early in the morning or
late towards evening.
On the 4th we reached Astoria, near the
mouth of the great Columbia River. Astoria
is on the south bank, and by sea six hundred
and thirty-nine miles from San Francisco, and
a hundred and twenty miles from Portland,
which is on the Willamette River, a south
branch of the Columbia; and Portland is twelve
miles above where this river enters the Columbia. The Columbia is five miles wide at its
mouth; and, a few miles above, it widens to
about fifteen miles. There was a destructive
jire at Astoria on the morning of the 4th of
July, the day of our arrival. 112
The Columbia River was once called the
Oregon. This is the river which Bryant mentions in his immortal poem, I Thanatopsis."
I Or lose thyself in the continuous woods,
Where rolls the Oregon, and hears no sound,
Save his own dashihgs—yet the dead are there."
Visiting Astoria, which now contains about
six thousand people, I was induced to learn
something of its history. I had always understood that in some way it derived its name from
the eminent merchant, John Jacob Astor, the
founder of the Astor family of New York.
It appears, from the account given by Washington Irving, that Astor, with that wonderful
forecast with which he was gifted, conceived
the idea of establishing a trading-post on the
Northern Pacific Ocean for trade with the Indians. In the month of September, 1810, Mr.
Astor sent the ship "Tonquin" around Cape
Horn on her memorable voyage to the Columbia River, from which she never returned.
On the 12th of April, 1811, a launch from
the "Tonquin" was freighted with all things
necessary, and, with sixteen men, landed at the
bottom of a small bay within Point George on
the south bank of the Columbia River; and
there they commenced cutting the trees to build
their  fort  and  trading-house,  and   called  the SAN FRANCISCO   TO ASTORIA.
place Astoria, after the projector and supporter
of the enterprise.
It may be interesting to some persons who
read this book, to glance at a brief sketch of
the life of that remarkable man from whom
Astoria was named.
John Jacob Astor was born in the little village of Waldorf, near Heidelberg, on the banks
of the Rhine. He was brought up in the most
simple rural life; but while a mere boy, he
made his way to London with a strong presentiment that he would one day arrive at great
While in London he managed to gain a little
money, which he invested in goods which he
thought suited to the American market; and in
the month of November, 1783, he embarked
in a ship bound for Baltimore, and arrived in
Hampton Roads in January, 1784. The winter
was extremely cold, and the vessel was detained
by ice in the Chesapeake Bay for nearly three
months. Thus commenced the career of this
young man in the New World, a hundred years
On the 5th of June, 1811, the "Tonquin"
sailed from the mouth of the river, with twenty-
three men on board. They picked up an Indian interpreter, who agreed to accompany
them to the north.    Capt. Thorn arrived with ii4
his ship at Vancouver's Island in a few days,
and anchored in the harbor; Indians came off
in their canoes with sea-otter skins to sell.
Thorn had been trained in a man-of-war, and
was rather arbitrary in his manner, and had a
great contempt for the savages. Some difficulty arose about the price of the skins, and he
cleared his ship. The next day the Indians
returned in great numbers, appearing to be
very friendly and desirous to trade: they were
admitted to the deck, and in exchanging their
furs for merchandise it was observed that
nearly all the Indians took knives in exchange.
Having finished the barter, the captain ordered
the ship cleared. In an instant a signal yell
was given, and the treacherous fiends rushed
upon their victims. All on deck were butchered. Lewis, the ship's clerk, was stabbed, and
fell down the companion-way. Seven sailors
had been sent aloft to loosen sail, and saw with
horror the terrible carnage. Having no weapons, they let themselves down the outer rigging,
in hopes of getting between decks where there
were arms : three were instantly killed; four
made good their way into the cabin, where they
found Lewis still alive. Barricading the cabin-
door, and breaking holes through the companion-way, with their muskets they cleared the
deck.    The Indians took to their canoes; and SAN FRANCISCO   TO ASTORIA.
the four survivors of the crew discharged the
deck-guns, which drove all the savages to the
shore. Night came on ; and the four men left
the ship in a boat, and hoped to escape.
Lewis, having received a terrible wound, refused
to accompany them: his companions bade him
a sad farewell, and moved off with their little
boat into the dark. Exhausted by fatigue and
watching, they were driven ashore by the wind,
seized by the savages, and murdered with all
the lingering tortures of savage cruelty.
The next morning some of the canoes came
cautiously near the ship, taking with them the
Indian interpreter, whom they had not killed.
Lewis, who was not yet dead, reached the deck,
and made friendly signs inviting them on board.
It was long before they would comply. Lewis
disappeared from the deck, and finally the
Indians boarded in great numbers; and in the
midst of their eagerness and wild exultation,
the ship blew up, and more than a hundred of
these fiends were destroyed by the heroic act
of the young ship's clerk.
All these particulars were given by the interpreter, who was blown into the sea, but not
Thus perished Mr. Astor's ship, with every
soul on board, to the number of twenty-three;
but the town which the "Tonquin" founded
still exists. n6
Mr. Astor had carefully warned the j captain,
in his instructions, not to allow the savages to
come on deck; but the captain, blinded by his
courage, and his contempt for the savage, did
not heed the warning.
This was but one of the thousand mishaps
and depressing discouragements which Mr.
Astor encountered during many weary years of
his earlier life. He earned his great fortune.
It did not come of luck: it was the, legitimate
result of his great natural ability, energy, sagacity, and the persistent sacrifice of every passion, luxury, or pleasure, which might obstruct
his grand design.
Of course I never saw him; but I derive this
estimate of his character from the record which
Washington Irving, his intimate friend, has left
of him, confirmed by the portrait painted by
At midnight on the 4th of July we reached
Portland, and landed on the 5th. Large ships
come up to Portland. It is a very prosperous
city of about forty thousand inhabitants, and
increases rapidly. The stores and business
houses are large and well built, and many of
the private residences are very fine. It is believed that there are more rich men in Portland,
for its size, than in any other city in America;
but there is not a healthy or comfortable hotel SAN FRANCISCO   TO ASTORIA.
in the place. But the citizens are very hospitable, and Mr. Paul Schulze and his wife made
us feel at home as guests in their house. Mr.
Schulze is the energetic and enterprising head
of the land department of the Great Northern
Pacific road, which road will surely make Portland quite the largest city on the Northern
Pacific. It lies on the west bank of the Willamette River, which drains that fertile valley of
Oregon through which a railroad now runs from
Portland. Large ships lie at the docks. It is
useless to argue that Astoria, Seattle, or some
other place, will be its future rival: it is too late
for that; too much capital and enterprise are
there concentrated to be diverted ; and besides,
considering all things, there is no more natural
place for a great city anywhere in that region.
We found the Arlington Club a delightful
place, with excellent, fare and agreeable company. We saw many of the business-men of
Portland, besides Judge Deady, Senator Dolph,
Congressman George, Mr. Koehler, Mr. McLean, Mr. Failing, and many others. We met
several very interesting men at a pleasant dinner given by Mr. Richard Koehler to my father.
We noticed the same peculiarity at Portland
as at San Francisco; namely, a careful and
effectual desire to conceal the names of the
streets.    On scarce a street could a name be n8
found. In Portland I wanted to find Washington Street: meeting a gentleman, I asked him
where it was, and he said he didn't know; I
had better ask a policeman. I asked him where
I could find a policeman : he looked about, and,
smiling, said he " guessed they didn't have any."
I went along as my instincts directed, and met
a Chinaman who had on American clothes, and
looked as though he could talk American. I
asked him if he could direct me to Washington
Street. He said, " Ching chang see;" and I
went on. Soon I met another man, and put to
him the same question : he looked dismal, put
his finger in his ear, shook his head and his
hand, opened his mouth, and looked like an
idiot, and said nothing. I asked no more questions ; and, after searching about a while, I found
the street: a long, wide street it is.
There had been no rain in Portland for
nearly two months: every thing was dried up,
the dust deep ; and the surrounding forests were
on fire, so that the smoke obscured our view,
and Mount Hood, the pride of Portland, could
not be seen. The days were hot, the nights
The sewerage of the city is bad, the place
malarious, and it will become more so as the
population increases. But they are making
money so fast that they have no time to think SAN FRANCISCO   TO ASTORIA.
.about health ; nor will they, until many have
died, after a rapid increase of numbers, and the
consequent generation of disease where drainage is neglected.
The whole country is praying for rain to
quench the terrible forest-fires. I remember
one occasion, when deer-hunting near the Everglades of Florida, not far from Lake Okeechobee : our team of mules, " Jeff Davis" and
" Abraham Lincoln," drawing our provisions
and corn for the mustangs, cursed and sworn
at by the darky driver, slowly labored along
under their load ; the stag-hounds, with tongues
lolling out of their mouths, trotted by our
side; when suddenly the cry of " Fire! " was
given, and we found that the very fire that
we ourselves had lighted that morning to
drive the deer south (the wind having changed)
was on us; and we had just time to huddle
together the mules and horses, while we, for
an hour, burned in opposition, and with green
branches fought the flames. Then, worn out,
we lay down, the old hounds nestling round the
warm glowing embers of the camp-fire. How
well I remember keeping awake, looking up at
the dark canopy studded with stars, until all my
party fell asleep, and watching the flames running up the pines, flitting over the branches,
■crackling, .and spluttering, the limbs snapping 120
and creaking, until, charred and worn out, like
Laocoon and his sons when overcome by the
fatal serpents, writhing they fell. The next
morning after breaking camp, and driving over
the burning country, we found huge land tortoises burned in their shells, in vain having attempted to escape.
But to return : After dining with Mr. Schulze
at the Arlington Club, and playing pool with
Mr. Browne, a Harvard man, I reached my
host's house in time for our night's ride. Mr.
Schulze rode his high-stepping thoroughbred,
while I mounted a fast-trotting gray of his;:
and off we started in the night, about nine p.m.,
with the intention of reaching his little chalett
some three miles off, situated on a hill, where
we would pass the night, returning to the valley
early next morning for breakfast. It was quite
a treat, being on an English saddle, after using
the Mexican kind so much ; and I certainly think
that the English, although perhaps not quite so
comfortable, are much safer for jumping.
Slowly we wound our way up the hill, until
meeting Tom, Mr. Schulze's Irish servant, who
had been sent on ahead with an extra mattress,
we were informed that the forest fires were on
both sides of the road, making it dangerous,
and that he had just run the gantlet through
burning, falling limbs.    Deploying, therefore, to SAN FRANCISCO   TO ASTORIA.
the right, we took a more circuitous route ; and,
after a couple of hours' riding, we reached the
little frame house, neatly made of yellow pine,
perched high up on the mountain, having a
splendid view of alpine scenery during fair
weather. To - night, however, all the woods
blazed on nearly every side, raging like a molten
.sea; resembling more the Chicago fire than
any thing I can recall. No siege of Paris, or
burning of the Tuileries Palace by petroleum,
could equal this wild devastation of the flames.
Am I forgetting what occurred on this event-
ful night at Schulze's cottage ? No, never!
Am I oblivious to dear Schnapps, my host's
dog ? What ingratitude! Picture him, bow-
legged, protruding under-jaw, twelve years of
age, no teeth. No need to name the breed:
the bull is stamped on every feature, — yellow-
eyed, white-coated, with his off eye tinged with
soot. Where the bull began, and the dog
ended, I cannot tell. I don't know what his
mother was, but he was bull. A wheezy kind
of grunt first attracted my attention. What
mattered it ? Poor fellow, he has a cold. What
more natural ? He had wriggled behind our
horses all the way up the hill. In the garden
he changed his upper notes, becoming more
guttural; which tempted mine host to hazard
the question of the Chinaman in charge, if there 122
were any hogs on the place. Finally we concluded, that, considering the wind's course, we
need have no fear as to the fire blocking us
from our road back the next morning.
Now arose the question : Shall Schnapps remain out in the cold night air, or sleep inside ?
I Poor chap," said I:  " let's have him in."
I Yes," said Schulze : " I'll rig up a bed in my
Suiting the act to the word, he threw a piece
of old carpet on the floor. But no : Schnapps
trotted across to my room, and lay deceptively
quiet on the rug at my bedside.
Out went the light, and I lay facing the partially open window; the moon stealing in, with
the long line of flaring pines gleaming like a
furnace in the darkness. My fancy began to
wander; when suddenly something like distant
thunder fell upon my dozing senses, like what
Rip Van Winkle heard when the Catskill goblins played at ninepins with dead men's skulls.
Starting up, I saw Schnapps turning in his
sleep, every movement of his body clearly defined in the moonbeams ; a bronchitis-like clearing of the throat, with an upheaving of his hind
quarters. Then he slipped around the bed,
eyed me with his malarious yellow eyes, gazed
at the moon, tried various acrobatic stretching
performances,  arched  his  back,  fell  over  my SAN FRANCISCO   TO ASTORIA. 123
boots, and inadvertently overturned the water-
jug, the contents of which he proceeded to lap
up with a gurgling sound, like water escaping
through the vent of a wash-basin, and then proceeded to calm himself to rest, which meant
circling around several times in various parts
of the room, each revolution being followed by
a flop, like Mark Twain's jumping-frog. My
attempts to soothe were followed by threats of
his bony appendage, sounding like the pulsations of a donkey-engine.
Again I began to doze, and again night became hideous. I got mad, seized the candle,
and hurled it so successfully as to just strike the
tip of his tail. That settled it: he just chewed
the candle as if it had been spruce gum, and
then lay down.
Presently I felt an upheaval of my bed, and,
starting up, found the beast raising up his
back under my low-lying mattress. I could
stand it no longer. Seizing the brute by the
scruff of the neck, I hauled him over the
matting, his fore-paws spread out in resistance.
Catching the straw at every scrape, and half
pulling, half lifting, I got him into my friend's
room, — who had imagined all the time that he
was hearing my gambols, and not the dog's,
who had on former occasions conducted himself
properly.    Out into the night went Schnapps ; 124
and towards two o'clock we again turned in,
and soon fell asleep, lulled to rest by the distant breathing of our cunning foe.
All went well, until, towards three, I started
up, and seized my five-shooter, hearing one of
the most unearthly yells, that even a madhouse
could not equal. Looking towards the window,
I beheld in the moonlight Schnapps standing
on his hind-legs, his head thrust through the
open fissure of the window, caught like a mouse
in a trap. Extricating him, I shut that window,
and spent what remained of the night dreaming
of wheezing, asthmatic curs sitting on my bedpost, and regarding me with bilious eyes.
6th. — Returning down the mountain, we
took a short canter up the other road, and witnessed the result of last night's destruction.
Huge trees lay across the path; and pines, still
burning, ominously burst and creaked occasionally, as if to give warning of their imminent
downfall. Spent the remaining portion of the
day in riding round the town. THE   WILLAMETTE   VALLEY.
On the 7th of July we left Portland by the
Oregon and California Railroad (which will
soon connect with San Francisco), to go up the
Willamette Valley as far as Glendale, the present terminus of the road, two hundred and
sixty-two miles from Portland. Capt. Mitchell,
chief clerk of the Northern Pacific Land Department, escorted us, and was very agreeable and
We went in the president's private car, formerly owned by the well-known Ben Halliday,
the pioneer railroad-king. The car afforded
every facility and accommodation for sleeping
and dining, with lounges and sofas for the daytime. Two boxes of Roederer and good claret
were on board, so that we all lived in luxury.
For a long distance the valley is level and
productive. The road passes through Salem
the capital of Oregon, and the town is pleasantly situated in a fertile region : it is fifty-four
miles south from Portland. 126
Beyond Springfield, some one hundred and
thirty miles from Portland, the mountain region
begins, and the road is very crooked. At Glendale a tunnel of about three thousand feet was
being made through the mountains, and the
process of boring with diamond drills and compressed air we saw in perfection.
It was curious to see here, in the lone mountain woods, so many new houses, so new that
the sawdust was still clinging to the boards.
Small they were indeed, but they had great
names and many occupants. One had a sign
in large black letters, "Palace Hotel;" another,
■" California House;" and several more, high-
sounding names. The occupants were laborers
on the railroad. There were white men, Chinese, squaws, and one white woman with a
baby in her lap.
Mr. Burick, a Scotchman, a superintendent
of the road, joined us. He had long years of
experience with Chinese laborers, and he related to us many particulars of the way the
Chinese leave their sick to die. So strange
and unnatural did it seem, that, meeting Gov.
Chadwick at dinner that evening, my father
repeated Mr. Burick's statements ; and the governor confirmed them. Subsequently we heard
similar statements respecting the Chinese, from
a dozen men at least. THE   WILLAMETTE   VALLEY.
Since returning to New York, I have talked
with three gentlemen who lived in China: two
of them believed what was told us about the
neglect of the Chinese towards the hopelessly
sick or maimed, but one doubted. Another
added, that if you would place the same number
of the same class of citizens from this country,
in China, and let them be compelled to suffer
the same privations, they would be no more
considerate of each other.
t At a funeral, the corpse is borne on a litter,
exposed. Several men sprinkle little papers
along the road, as a trail for the departed to
return home. At the grave, a roast-pig is
placed crossways, with other eatables, and
lighted pieces of punk to chase away the evil
spirit; and hired mourners stand near, uttering
nasal cries of supposed anguish. It is said
that sneak-thieves occasionally after the ceremony go to the grave, and steal the roast-pig.
At Salem, the capital of Oregon, we learned
that seventeen convicts had escaped from the
city jail only two nights previous: four were
killed, and six captured, the remaining seven
being still at large. As they had taken refuge
among the mountain fastnesses, were well armed,
and possessed plenty of food, their seizure was
despaired of.
On this trip we were told, that, in the early 128
days of Oregon, Congress passed a law to
favor the more rapid settlement of the Territory, giving every settler three hundred and
twenty acres of land, and every settler with a
wife six hundred and forty acres. Women were
very scarce : and to get the double portion many
men married Indian women, and three men
married one squaw; they each kept the land,
but neither kept the squaw.
All along the valley we found the smoke
from forest-fires, which had produced and were
producing great destruction.
Having returned to Portland, we saw Judge
Deady, United-States district judge. He was
one of the original men of 1849, Dut differed
from most in foreseeing the ruin which the
gold-fever would produce ; for which reason he
settled in Oregon, rather than California, his
earliest convictions being that gold discovered
in a region brought more evil than good, and
that the same labor devoted to agricultural pursuits would produce far happier results. This
view has been corroborated by many persons
during our stay.
We dined with Mr. and Mrs. Koehler, where
we spent a pleasant evening; Mr. Dolph, senator from Oregon, being among the guests. THROUGH PUGET SOUND   TO   VICTORIA.
We took a steamer in the early morning of
the 13th of July, went down the Willamette
twelve miles to the Columbia River, then down
the Columbia as far as Kalama, where we took
the rail for Tacoma on Puget Sound. Tacoma
is on a very high sand-bluff. The dock is at
its base, where there is a good hotel. Here
we took the steamer " Northern Pacific" for
The country from Kalama to Tacoma is mostly
a gravel soil, and barren along the road.
Mount Tacoma, some sixty miles to our right,
a high and lone snow mountain, was often in
sight, and is very splendid.
From Portland to Kalama (by boat) is thirty-
eight miles.
From Kalama to Tacoma (by rail) is one
hundred and five miles. ill
From Tacoma to Victoria (by boat) is one
hundred and seventeen miles.
We now sailed through Puget Sound and the
Straits of Fuca, to Victoria on Vancouver's
Island — which ought to belong to the United
States, and which, if we had stuck to our claim
of 540 40', would not now have left Alaska
without its touching the United States at any
point, and so situated that we cannot reach
it without the permission of England, except
through a long rough voyage over the Pacific
Ocean (see map).
Puget Sound is formed by the waters of
the Pacific Ocean, which, running through the
Straits of Fuca, extend some ninety-eight miles
in deep, narrow inlets, down into. Washington
Commodore Wilkes, on his exploring expedition, went into the sound with his two ships.
He says of the sound, in his history of the
expedition: —
I Nothing can exceed the beauty of these waters,
and their safety. Not a shoal exists within the
Straits of Juan de Fuca, Admiralty Inlet, Puget
Sound, or Hood's Canal, that can in any way interrupt their navigation by a seventy-four-gun ship. I
venture nothing in saying that there is no country
in the world possessing waters equal to these." '
Gov. Stevens, who was assigned by the gov- THROUGH PUGET SOUND   TO   VICTORIA.     131
ernment to explore Puget ^Sound, thus describes
this marvellous body of water : —
" All the water-channels are comparatively narrow
and long. They have all more or less bold shores,
and are throughout very deep and abrupt, so much
so that in many places a ship's side will strike the
shore before the keel will touch the ground. Even in
the interior and most hidden parts, depths of fifty
and one hundred fathoms occur as broad as De Fuca
Strait itself. Nothing can exceed the beauty and
safety of these waters for navigation. Not a shoal
exists within them; not a hidden rock; no stidden
overfalls of the water or the air; no such strong
flaws of the wind as in other narrow waters, for instance, as in those of Magellan's Strait. And there
are in this region so many excellent and most secure
ports, that the commercial marine of the Pacific
Ocean may be here easily accommodated."
Through Puget Sound, for a hundred miles
or more, we have lake scenery which cannot be
surpassed in the world. The waters are deep,
clear, still, and beautiful. Forest-trees of evergreen are on the shores, and no marshy banks to
mar the scene; and the high Olympian Mountains in the west loom high, covered with snow.
The first thing I did on arrival at Tacoma
was to inquire for clams: they had none, to my
great disappointment. Gen. McCook had told
us, when at Salt Lake, of the enormous clams
at Puget Sound.    On the way I had said, — 132
"We shall now see  some  clams weighing'
fifteen pounds."
My father had replied, j My boy, I will give'
you five dollars each for every clam which you
will show me weighing fifteen pounds."
I Don't you credit Gen. McCook ? " said I.
1 Yes : I believe the general has eaten clams
of that size at Puget Sound, because he says
so ; but I do not believe there are any more
such. It takes a big baby to weigh fifteen
I did believe; and since — somehow or
other not easy to explain — my pocket-money
had all slipped away at Portland, I was actually I strapped," and wanted to replenish ; and
I relied upon the clams. But I was told at
Tacoma that there were no such clams unless
at Olympia, and that the big clams were never
found except at low tide in June. We were not
going to Olympia, and my financial prospects
grew sickly. I persisted, however; and, on
reaching Port Townsend, I found a man from
Olympia, and inquired about the I big clams."
He said that he had often seen them ; that they
grew in deep water; that they were very fat,
and their meat protruded far out of the shell,
and was very delicate. My father asked how
large they were, and the man began to give
their size by an expansion of his hands.    " But THROUGH PUGET SOUND   TO  VICTORIA.     133
how much would they weigh ?" my father repeated. After mature deliberation, the man
said, " I really think that I have seen them
weigh—four pounds!" evidently doubting
whether we would believe him.
But at Departure Bay we met a man of more
exalted mind, or of more faith in confiding
natures, who said that he had seen clams in
Puget Sound which would weigh twenty-two
pounds. I could not find the clams, and my
finances remained low.
Vancouver's Island lies along the coast of
British Columbia ; is separated from the mainland by Queen Charlotte Sound and the Straits
of Fuca. It is situate between 48° 20" and 500
55' north latitude, and 1230 10' and 1280 20'
west longitude. It is three hundred miles long,
with an area of eighteen thousand square miles,
— larger than the States of Massachusetts,
Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Delaware combined.
The best of iron-ores as well as coal are found
in abundance; gold, silver, copper, and lead
are also found in increasing quantities. The
crops are chiefly hay, wheat, barley, oats, and
pease ; but turnips of all kinds, and potatoes of
unsurpassed excellence, as well as many fruits,
grow abundantly. The land is well stocked
with game, and the surrounding waters are filled FROM FIFTH AVENUE  TO ALASKA.
with almost every kind of fish. The quantity
of arable land is comparatively small; but the
forests are extensive, and furnish most valuable
kinds of wood. The Douglas pines and the
immense cedars are exceedingly valuable.
The scenery is varied and beautiful, and the
nate is charming ; the winter is not
cold, — 840 Fah. being the maximum, and 22a
the minimum, for the year.
Victoria, the capital, is delightfully situated,
and commands the sea. The roads are excellent, and the drives along the shore and around
the lakes are unsurpassed. It is quite a summer resort, on account of its salubrious air;
and here British ships of war find a pleasant
We were obliged to remain here some days,
waiting the arrival of the | Eureka I from San
Francisco, a steamer of the Oregon Railway
and Navigation Line, which was to take us to
Alaska. Gov. Cornwall, the governor of British
Columbia, drove us about the country; and we
dined at the Government House, where we met
Mrs. Cornwall, her sister Miss Pemberton,
Chief Justice Sir Matthew Bigbie, and others.
Admiral Lyon and Capt. Aicheson of the war
steamer " Swift-sure " called upon us ; and we
were entertained at a ball on the ship, where
we saw many very agreeable people. THROUGH PUGET SOUND   TO   VICTORIA.     135
While dining at the Government House, the
-chief justice called my father's attention to the
difficulty now existing, and likely to increase,
about transferring prisoners through British
waters from Alaska and other places, and suggested that we needed a treaty. My father
suggested, that an easy way out of the difficulty
was to transfer Vancouver's Island and the adjacent waters to the United States; but the
-chief justice thought it would be better to annex Alaska to British Columbia.
In this prettily-laid-out city of over seven
thousand inhabitants, with its well-kept roads,
we felt as if living in England ; and I was the
more forcibly struck with the idea of being in
a foreign city, on finding, this afternoon, that
American stamps were useless for postage.
The name of Sir James Douglas is quite one
of the revered memories of the place; and a
monument stands near the Government Buildings, as a landmark, recalling one of Victoria's
earliest governors from 1851-1864, who died in
1877, honored by the people whom in earlier
days he used to defend against the encroachments of hostile Indians.
The " Swift-sure " is the admiral-ship of the
fleet, carries five hundred and fifteen men and
sixty officers.
The antics of a pet black bear-cub, a few weeks if,- n
old, gave us some amusement, as we made him
stand up on his hind-legs for cherries. His
teeth were already sharp enough to pierce my
glove, and in this practical way I had a foretaste
of the real thing. It was ludicrous to watch
him climb like a cat over the ship, and go
down the companion-way hind-quarters first.
This princely possession we threw away by
the treaty of June 15, 1846, and allowed England to take it; to her invaluable, and, since
we have acquired Alaska, to us a necessity.
Through our blunder in that stupid treaty, we
are severed from Alaska, and Great Britain has
possession of fine harbors on the Pacific, and
will soon send her railway-cars to the great
ocean, and dispute with us the trade, of China
and Japan, and the transcontinental traffic of
North America.
During the administration of James K. Polk
of Tennessee, the question of the north-western
boundary between British Columbia and the
United States arose. Congressional records
prove that we claimed to go to the Russian
Possessions, in north latitude 540 40'; and it
was shown by maps, in the archives of Holland,
that our claim was well founded. During
the public discussion about this boundary, the
debates in Congress and the columns of the
leading journals of the country defiantly pro- THROUGH PUGET SOUND   TO   VICTORIA.     137
claimed that we would insist on that boundary,
or go to war. " Fifty-four forty, or fight,"
rang throughout the country.
But James K. Polk of Tennessee was president, and James Buchanan was secretary of
state. The South was in the ascendant. The
slavery question was already agitated ; and the
dominant South did not wish to extend our free
territory, but, on the contrary, were beginning
to claim that much of it which was then free
should be subjected to slavery. This popular
cry of " Fifty-four forty, or fight," was hushed.
James Buchanan, secretary of state, and
Richard Pakenham the British minister at
Washington, concluded a treaty in June, 1846,
which ought to have made the minister a duke,
and placed the secretary in disgrace. The advantage obtained for England by this treaty is
incalculable, and was largely foreseen by British
statesmen at the time ; and the imbecility of it
on our part is just beginning to be seen by our
countrymen. Mr. Seward felt it keenly when
he secured Alaska for the United States.
Instead of insisting upon 540 40' as our
northern Pacific line, to which we had an undoubted right, this treaty provides that we take
the humiliation of even bending our line of
49° (running between the United States and
Canada) down through  the  channel, and out 138
through the Straits of Fuca, in order to give
England the whole of Vancouver's Island, —
priceless in value to England, and proportionally detrimental to American interests, as time
is only too fast demonstrating.
We had a visit from our worthy consul, Mr.
Francis, who is largely respected in Victoria;
and we were pleasantly entertained by the consul and Mrs. Francis. They gave us some excellent port direct from Portugal. Mrs. Francis
brought down, with pardonable womanly pride,
an old dressing-gown which Secretary Seward,
when on a visit, had left behind, and written
them to keep.
Chinamen are very numerous in Victoria, as
elsewhere on the Pacific Coast. At the Driard
House, where we staid, Chinamen were the
chambermaids, the laundresses, the porters, etc.
We learned their character from many people;
and the statements were uniform, — that they
are industrious, patient, and enduring; not
able to do nearly so much hard work as a white
man; excellent house-servants; never drink,
but smoke opium; are cunning, secretive, and
treacherous at times; will not steal silver or
large articles, but will pilfer many little things;
will file the coin, and melt the filings; have
strange whims, and will without any imaginable
reason leave the house, even while you have a THROUGH PUGET SOUND   TO   VICTORIA.     139
party to dinner, and will leave a secret mark in
the house which every other Chinaman will
understand, but never explain; attentive and
faithful enough to each other generally, but
utterly neglectful to any one whose illness or
accident seemed likely to prove fatal, — thus
confirming all that we had heard in Oregon of
this strange people, who never look happy nor
very unhappy.
At Nanimo, the port of entry at Vancouver's
Island, we met Mr. Johnson, who is largely engaged in the manufacture of iron in Washing-
ton Territory. He complained that the new
tariff tended to destroy a great industry of the
North-west; that it imposed a duty of seventy-
five cents a ton upon the magnetic ores mined
in Vancouver's, which were necessary to mingle
with the ores of Washington Territory, in order
to produce a good iron; and he thought this
an illustration of the mischief which § a protective tariff" may sometimes produce. He mentioned an accidental discovery of a valuable
mass of bog-ore, which he made in wading into
a river to unloose a fish-hook that had caught
in the roots: in going in with bare feet, he
stepped upon something which felt unlike any
thing of which he had knowledge, and it turned
out to be a piece of an excellent and extremely
valuable ore. 140
On our journey we found it necessary to sail
to the east of Vancouver's Island, through British waters, towards Cape Fox, the first land we
make in Alaska.
Alaska commences at 540 40', on the north
shore of Dixon Inlet.
If, in the boundary settlement above mentioned, we had secured the line of 540 40', the
purchase of Alaska from Russia, made in 1867,
would have given us uninterrupted dominion
on the Pacific Ocean, from the lower line of
California to the Arctic Ocean; and neither
Great Britain nor any other power save the
United States could have a seaport on the
Pacific north of South California. The American statesmen who believed in the justice of
our claim to 540 40', and insisted- upon our
maintenance of it, were wise; and the English
statesmen who foresaw the effect of yielding to
our demand were equally sagacious, and they
excelled us in diplomacy.
The boundary-line between British Columbia
and the United States, and also between British
Columbia and the Territory of Alaska, appears
on the accompanying map. VICTORIA   TO ALASKA.
On the 19th of July the steamer arrived
which was to take us to Alaska, — the ill-fated
I Eureka; " being so called from the fact of her
having been wrecked last voyage while passing
through Peril Straits, latitude 570 24', longitude
1350 29'. Her tonnage is 454; foremast and
mizzen rakish build, and modelled like a yacht,
speed eleven and a half knots, flush deck, keel
two and a half feet, lies five feet by her stern,
length one hundred and eighty-six feet nine
inches, brigantine rigged.
With an exceptionally favorable trip, a good
wind' astern, every hope of soon having her
bow pointed homeward, the ship " Eureka," the
26th of May, 1883, at 11.50 a.m., while passing
through this dangerous channel of struggling
waters, struck an unknown rock: she speedily
listed on her port side, and rapidly began to fill.
The captain was on the bridge at the moment
of striking: all hands went to their posts, and
every order was  obeyed with  despatch.    The 142
passengers soon came on deck, having encircled
themselves with life-preservers; and the fat cook
came rushing out of the companion stairs.
Every eye was on Capt. Hunter.
The water, which had to pass through the
coal ballast, at first filtered through slowly, and
then gurgled in with a rush. Word came from
the engine-room, that the coal-heavers had been
■driven from their posts. Three minutes later
engineers were working up to their waists.
Twelve minutes passed by: she began to settle
-at the bow. Every possible degree of speed
was given her. The captain strained his eyes
in vain for a spot to beach her. Both sides,
narrow and treacherous, frowned upon him, repelling all search for aid. The cry came, " Cove
ahead, sir!" and just as the swelling water
reached under the arms of the second engineer,
she was run aground.
All possible provisions were landed, boats
lowered from the davits, papers and documents
saved, every possible thing of most value hurried from the wrecked vessel.
Beached at low tide, the water slowly rose,
until, inch by inch, the ship slowly vanished;
and when the sun set, and the cool night air
came rushing through the gorges, only the top
of her bowsprit and the tip of her foremast
were visible. VICTORIA   TO ALASKA.
Here alone, in» this far north latitude of
Alaska, stranded on an isolated shore, these
few men began their weary sojourn, which
lasted forty-two days before the necessary divers arrived from San Francisco.
The United-States man-of-war "Adams," under Capt. Merriman, was eighty miles off. Several of the crew took a small boat and a despatch
from Capt. Hunter to the "Adams," which
Commander Merriman conveyed to San Francisco. Four days later the little steam-tug
arrived from Juneau, some eighty-five miles
distant, and took off twenty-three miners and
traders to their northern destinations.
For these many weeks Capt. Hunter and his
crew camped on this wild shore. Indians came
and pitched their tents; wild beasts prowled
round the fires; and during the twilight, eagles
and crows wheeled above them as if they expected, at no distant time, a goodly feast. All
worked hard. The wreck was visited frequently, cables fastened to the trees, and every
expedient used to prevent her drifting off, or
grinding herself to pieces. So through the
long nightless days they waited, building themselves rough huts, and telling their same old
jokes and tales around the fire, fishing for halibut and cod, and occasionally bringing down an
eagle, until the divers arrived with all necessaries and a good supply of food. 144
The damage was found to»be six feet on her
stern, and forty feet off her keel, from which
one can judge the immense force of the collision. The usual charge for divers is some forty
dollars an hour, but the whole labor had been
contracted for at four thousand dollars. The
work needed two divers, and lasted just one
The life of an experienced diver, even with
all precaution, is full of danger; and when the
wreck or treasure to be recovered is a great
distance under the sea, should the air-pump be
unworked for even a moment, the diver's life
would be extinguished like the flame of a
After being raised, the " Eureka" was taken
to San Francisco, and at the end of nine days
her damages were repaired, and by using all
haste connection was made; and to-night, the
19th of July, 1883, we are sitting in her little
cabin, a dim oil-lamp lighting up the face of
the purser as he slowly tells us the preceding
narrative of our ship's mishap.
Whether or not the accident had dissuaded
tourists from taking this voyage to Northern
Alaska, I am unable to say. Be that as it may,
we had the choice of any or all the staterooms.
But as the smell of the new paint met us on all
sides, the fear of sickness, combined with the VICTORIA   TO ALASKA.
solitary feeling that we should be afloat all by
ourselves for several weeks, without change or
intercourse with the civilized world, was not
agreeable; and had it not been for the hope of
viewing the inland seas, aurora borealis, vast
glaciers, —grander and larger than any in Norway or Switzerland, — the sun at night, and
majestic mountains rising precipitately from the
water's edge, we might have been dissuaded
from starting. However, casting off the cables,
we steamed away from Victoria toward nightfall,
and left this pleasant little city in our wake.
Before going to sleep, I paced the deck with
the chief officer, Mr. Burr. Noticing that he
walked lame, I found that only a few days before he had been on the " Mississippi," which
burned to the water's edge at Seattle on Puget
Sound. Being chief officer, and having to give
orders, he remained on deck until the last
moment, shivering in a shirt and pair of stockings ;. not one of the crowd on the wharf offering the use of a coat. Just before leaving, he
remembered that a sick sailor lay asleep; and
while carrying him out of the forecastle a piece
of timber fell, and struck him on the ankle, and
so disabled him.
20th. — This morning we reached Departure
Bay, the coal-station, and took on board one
hundred and fifty tons. 146
The coal-mines are very extensive. In mining the coal, in many places, they are obliged to
dig through sulphur formations, which so injure the eyes that the men cannot work longer
than one or two hours a day. But they made
the singular discovery that the Chinese miners
are not affected at all by the sulphur fumes, —
no more singular, however, than is the fact that
the poison-oak of California and the poison-
ivy of the North are harmless to some, and
exceedingly poisonous to others. The subtile
differences in human constitutions, which render some liable to diseases from influences
which do not affect others, and to be harmed
by fruits and other food which may benefit
many, is a mystery which no science has yet
solved. ALASKA
We are now in latitude 490 ; expect to reach
Pyramid Harbor in Northern Alaska, latitude
590 12', longitude 1350 20', which, compared
with New York, will give some idea of our
northern course.
The Indians, in loading or unloading here
(the whites being scarce), require just as much
pay as white men, while the Chinamen receive
less; the Indians being" found much better
workers from the fact of their greater strength.
We find the climate fine, sun hot, appetites
good, table excellent. Expect soon to be able
to read or write during the greater part of the
so-called night.
The chief officer, concerning whom I have
lately spoken, this morning was seized with the
painter's colic, arising from the ship having
been lately painted: he was seized with convulsions, and it required three men to hold
him down. Later he began to recover, and
we hope now he is out of danger. 15°
We took a little paddle-wheel a few feet
long, called the 1 Hyack " (the Indian term for
" quick "), and found that she belied her name,
making the distance of four miles to the town>
of Nanaimo in an hour and a half. Passed
numerous Indian canoes, pulled by their dusky
owners, the bows ornamented with red fresco-
work, and carved with strange figures of birds
and animals ; the prow being sometimes protected with skins firmly fastened.
The Indians here, as at Victoria, troll for
salmon with a spoon, also using the spear. Nc*
one here has ever heard of their rising to a fly..
Our captain, a Swede, we found throughout
the trip an excellent man and most careful
officer. His companions in loneliness, while absent from his wife, were two dogs,— one a small
brown retriever, the other a little liver-colored
water-spaniel pup. They both now are lying
near me, watching the coal sliding into the hold I
and the pup feebly wags the short stump of a
tail, the last portion of which he has just lost.
Telling the captain how most spaniels have their
tails docked, he, without waiting for an explanation as to the modus operandi, before I realized
the situation, had a chisel on the tail, and the
ship's carpenter was driving it home. Half of
a tail went over the deck one wav, and a veiling
pup the other.    Calling him down, the captain, ALASKA.
having no caustic, wound the tail in a tarred
rag. Puppy soon recovered, and when working
some day in rough brush after birds will thank
me for saving him many an hour's agony from
a future sore tail, arising from beating it against
the undergrowth.
We now coasted back along Vancouver's
Island, steering a southerly course, heading
toward Port Townsend on Puget Sound, in order
to take on board an Alaska pilot.
July 21. — At Port Townsend, the purser
took some lemons on board, which are always
so greatly prized in northern latitudes.
22d. — The steamship "Mexico" arrived in
the night, and gave us our pilot, Capt. Hicks
by name, who, like most of the old-school pilots,
navigated throughout our course by certain
natural landmarks, in preference to keeping a
log and steering by minutes of distance ; the
former method, in case of fog, being totally
Skirting along Vancouver's Island, the sun
glancing on the water, with occasionally a canoe
shooting forth from the shore, we began our
thousand-mile course through this wonderful
passage made up of inlets, bays, sounds, channels, and fiords, filled with innumerable islands,
where the waters are very narrow, with high
mountains on either side, where a vessel may FROM FIFTH AVENUE  TO ALASKA.
sail some twelve hundred miles over deep seas,
and no passenger suffer in the least from seasickness.
Considering that the distance, even in a
direct line, from Puget Sound to the head of
Lynn Canal, is some seven hundred and eighty
miles, where can such another sheet of water
be found?
Through this north-west passage for days we
sailed, through visions of unbroken grandeur;
the scene enhanced in beauty by the boldness
of the shores, the precipitous and abrupt rise
of the snow mountains from the water's edge,
and the narrowness of the channels, some being
not more than two thousand feet, the lead even
then striking no bottom at fifteen fathoms.
This fairy-land of moving extravaganzas of
scenery was an amalgamation of Switzerland,
Norway, the St. Lawrence with her rapids and
islands, the picturesque loveliness of Loch
Katrine, added to the arctic wonders of the
high latitude of 6o°.
The lack of intense cold in Alaska arises
from the reversal of the Japan current; and
the large "amount of moisture and rain is derived from the vast ranges of snow-clad mountains continually meeting the warmer air from
the waters by which they are encompassed.
This afternoon a sailor swung a small empty ALASKA.
mucilage-bottle from the yard-arm; and we
practised on it with our Winchesters, my rifle
being the lucky one to reach it at the second
22>d. — Still in English waters, British Columbia being on our right. When foggy the foghorn is frequently sounded, the echo from the
shores giving warning of our closeness. During the night'we were forced to stop, waiting
for a turn in the tide, the opposing current being too strong.
Passed several Indian burial-grounds; little
white flags on poles denoting the mounds where
their medicine-men and chiefs, " tigees," are
On Queen Charlotte's Sound we experienced
a slight swell.
A dozen whales are spouting a few hundred
yards off: there are also several Gona-birds,
somewhat resembling the Cape - albatross in
flight and color; although I have not heard of
its bones being as yet put to a similar use, —
viz., pipe-stems, — I think it practicable. The
bird measures often eight feet from tip to tip.
Numbers of bald eagles pass over the vessel,,
with occasionally a black one. Porpoises,,
shags, — a kind of black water-fowl, — black-
fish, grampuses, and ducks innumerable, enliven
the waters. 154
24-th. — I began to realize the eulogy which
Lord Dufferin pronounced on British Columbia
and Alaska, extolling its scenery as being the
most superb in the world. The advantage of
travelling in this lazy manner, passing one's
time in luxurious idleness, is very great. Each
morning our eyes feast on ne*w wonders; for,
while we are spending the nights in sleep, one
•hundred and eighty miles farther north in this
strange country makes a change of scene.
As we first looked from the ship's side this
morning, the channel had greatly narrowed during the night, and a stone might almost be
slung against either shore. Waterfalls tore
down in headlong career, foaming, roaring, and
finally breaking into the salt water, — meltings
from the snowy peaks, or the outlets of lakes
secreted far up in the hills. As we meandered
in our snake-like course, each new turn seemingly being the end of our journey, the opposing mountains on our approach slowly yielded
the hitherto hidden gorge, which they appeared
loath to disclose. Landslides often streaked
the mountain sides, caused by the avalanches
of the snow above: the track made by the
slide soon fills up by a new undergrowth of a
low, tough, elastic bush, from which the Indians
make their ropes and baskets.
The vegetation   grows  so  thickly on  these
grows ALASKA.
mountains, down to the very last morsel of
earth untouched by the lapping of the waters,
that nearly every pine after reaching a certain
height dies from starvation, then falls and de-
cays, returns to earth, and in turn supplies to
others the very nourishment which he himself
had in life struggled for in vain.
Thick over the mountain sides, all the taller
trees were dead; and we found, by observing
the thinness of soil which the slides revealed,
that all the larger trees were starved to death.
Occasionally we attempted revolver-shots at
a passing gull or floating limb, and so the
hours wore on.
Later the sun became obscured by clouds :
the air soon turned cold and exhilarating.
As I sit here in the captain's room, back of
the wheel-house, a little forward of midships,
only a slight tremor from the throbbing screw
is perceptible; and on we float, gliding by untrodden woods, and inland lakes without a
doubt filled with trout whose fastidious tastes
have never yet been tempted by a carefully
constructed fly.
The dogs are on the deck, playing tag around
the windlass, or chasing their ever-escaping
tails. Last night, having left several pages of
my journal on the sofa, through the inborn love
of a young dog for tearing' paper, I was forced 156
to attempt a little mosaic-work before re-copying; although, owing to the spaniel pup's generosity, I found that he had kindly refrained from
swallowing any of the fragments.
We hope to reach the lower portion of
Alaska by midnight, our course for the last two
days having been through British waters.
Alaska is a vast country, more than twice
larger than the thirteen original States. Its
breadth from east to west in direct line is two
thousand two hundred miles, and from north to
south one thousand four hundred miles; and
its most western island is farther west of San
Francisco than San Francisco is west of the
coast of Maine. The mainland lies between
540 40' and 710 north latitude, and between
1300 and 1700 west longitude. But the island
of Attu, the more western of the Aleutian chain,
is 1874° west longitude ; and the western boundary of Alaska, according to the Russian treaty,
is 1930 west of Greenwich, — very near to Asia.
Quoddy Light on the east coast of Maine is in
latitude 440 47', longitude 66° 58' west. San
Francisco is latitude 370 48', longitude 122*
26'. Attu is 530 north latitude, 187^° west
longitude: hence Attu is just about as far west
of San Francisco as San Francisco is west of
the east coast of Maine.
From the maps you will  see  how we  are ALASKA.
severed from Alaska by" the British Possessions.
No part of Alaska comes anywhere near the
United States. One of the chief boundary-lines
between Alaska and the British Possessions is a.
line drawn due north from the top of Mount
St. Elias to the Polar Sea.
Alaska, with certain improvements, was purchased by treaty with Russia made March 30,
1867 ; and it was delivered in due form Oct.
18, in that year, upon payment of $7,200,000.
Secretary Seward regarded this acquisition as
quite the crowning act of his official life.
At the time of the transfer, Russia claimed
a population ' of sixty-six thousand : possibly
there were forty-five thousand, Indians and all.
The estimate made by Gen. Halleck in 1869,
while secretary of war, makes the number of
Indians sixty thousand. Mr. Dall makes the
population far less. Estimates from the best
sources which we could obtain lead us to
believe that there are now in Alaska some forty-
thousand Indians and about five hundred white
These Indians seem ' o have the same general
appearance and characteristics, — the tribes differing no more than families differ in England
or America. They are everywhere about the
same color, — much the same shade as the
Chinese.    They  are   as  low  in  the  scale  of 158
humanity as North-American Indians generally
are ; that is, ignorant, ungrateful, treacherous,
cruel savages.
Sentimental people who read Cooper's novels
for history, and overflow with " telescopic benevolence," fancy that the I noble Indian " has
contracted his chief vices from the white man.
But the red men of Alaska have been so isolated
that here we can see them in the pure state of
unadulterated savagery. It cannot be said,
with the smallest degree of truth, that these
red Pagans have I been corrupted by white
The Rev. Sheldon Jackson, missionary to the
Indians, in his valuable work upon Alaska,
shows the utter degradation of these savages;
citing in proof of their inhuman cruelties, diabolical superstitions, and revolting customs, his
own experience, the published statements of
the Rev. W. W. Kirby, Mr. Brady, Mr. Dall, Mr.
Young, Mrs. McFarland, Mr. Duncan, and
The Rev. W. W. Kirby, a missionary, says, —
I In common with all savage people, the Indians
regard their women as slaves, and compel them to do
the hardest work, while they look lazily on, enjoying
the luxury of a pipe, and often requite their services
with harsh words and cruel blows. They are inferior
in looks, and fewer in number than the men.    The ALASKA.
former probably arises from the cruel and harsh
treatment they receive, and the latter is caused in
a great measure by the too-prevalent custom of
female infanticide. Spared in infancy, the lesson
of inferiority is early burned into the lives of the
girls. While mere babes they are sometimes given
away or betrothed to their future husbands. And
when they arrive at the age of twelve or fourteen
years, among the Tinneh, the Thlinkets, and others,
they are often offered for sale. For a few blankets
a mother will sell her own daughter for base purposes,
for a week, a month, or for life. All through that
vast land, wretched woman is systematically oppressed, — made prematurely old in bearing man's
burdens as well as her own. In some sections, all
the work but hunting and fighting falls upon her,
— even the boys transferring their loads and work
to their sisters.
I Said a great chief, \ Women are made to labor.
One of them can haul as much as two men can do.
They pitch our tents, make and mend pur clothing,'
" And, as if their ordinary condition were not bad
enough, the majority of the slaves are women. The
men captured in war are usually killed, or reserved
for torture; but the women are kept as beasts of
burden, and often treated with great inhumanity.
The master's power over them is unlimited. He can
torture or put them to death at will. Sometimes,
upon the death of the master, one or more of them
are put to death, that he may have some one to wait
upon him in the next world.
" Polygamy, with all its attendant evils, is common k I   i
among many tribes. Those wives are often sisters.
Sometimes a man's own mother or daughter are
among his wives. If a man's wife bears him only
daughters, he continues to take other wives until he
has sons. One of the Nasse chiefs is said to have
had forty wives.
I On the Upper Yukon, the man multiplies his
wives as the farmer his oxen. The more wives, the
more meat he can have hauled, the more wood cut,
and more goods carried.
"After marriage they are practically slaves of
their husbands. Among some tribes, their persons
are at the disposal of visitors or travellers, guests of
their husbands. They are sometimes, in Southern
Alaska, sent to the mines, while their husbands live
in idleness at home on the wages of their immorality.
. . . During'our visit to Fort Wrangell in 1879, an
Indian killed his wife, and brought her body into the
village for a funeral. No one could interfere. According to their customs, he had bought her as he
would buy a dog, and if he chose he could kill her
as he would kill a dog."
Mr. W. H. Dall of the Smithsonian Institute
in his work on Alaska says, —
"Polygamy is common among the rich. Upon
arriving at a marriageable age, the lower lip of the
girl is pierced, and a silver pin inserted; the flat head
of the pin being in the mouth, and the pin projecting through the lip over the chin. Many of them,
men as well as women, wear a silver ring in the nose as well as in the ears. After marriage the silver pin
is removed from the woman's lip, and a spool-shaped
plug, called a labret, about three-quarters of an inch
long, is substituted in its place. As she grows older,
larger ones are inserted, so that an old woman may
have one two inches in diameter..
I Their method of war is an ambush or surprise.
The prisoners are made slaves, and the dead are
scalped. The scalps are woven into a kind of garter
by the victor.    Dead slaves are cast into the sea.
" They believe in the transmigration of souls from
one body to another, but not to an animal; and the
wish is often expressed, that in the next change they
may be born into this or that powerful family.
Those whose bodies are burned are supposed to be
warm in the next world, and the others cold. If
slaves are sacrificed at their burial, it relieves their
owners from work in the next world."
We saw many Indian women with these
plugs and flat silver pins in their lips.
The Indian record of the creation of the
world differs from that of Moses. Mr. Dall
"Their religion is a feeble polytheism. Yehl is
the maker of wood and waters. He put the sun,
moon, and stars in their places. He lives in the
east, near the head-waters of the Naass River. He
makes himself known in the east wind, ssankheth,
and his abode is Naasshak-yehl.
" There was a time when men groped in the dark 162
in search of the world. At that time a Thlinket
lived, who had a wife and sister. He loved the
former so much that he did not permit her to work.
Eight little red birds, called kun, were always around
her. One day she spoke to a stranger. The little
birds flew, and told the jealous husband, who prepared
to make a box to shut his wife up. He killed all his
sister's children because they looked at his wife.
Weeping, the mother went to the seashore. A
whale saw her, and asked the cause of her grief, and,
when informed, told her to swallow a small stone
from the beach, and drink some sea-water. In eight
months she had a son, whom she hid from her
brother.    This son was Yehl.
1 At that time the sun, moon, and stars were kept
by a rich chief in separate boxes, which he allowed
no one to touch. Yehl by strategy secured and
opened these boxes, so that the moon and stars shone
in the sky. When the sun-box was opened, the people, astonished at the unwonted glare, ran off into
the mountains, woods, and even into the water, becoming animals or fish. He also provided fire and
water. Having arranged every thing for the comfort
of the Thlinkets, he disappeared where neither man
nor spirit can penetrate.
"There are an immense number of minor spirits,
called yekh. Each shaman has his own familiar that
does his bidding, and others on whom he may call in
certain emergencies. These spirits are divided into
three classes,—Khi-yekh (the upper ones), Takhi-
yekh (land-spirits), and Tekhi-yekh (sea-spirits). The
first are the spirits of the brave killed in war, and
dwelling in  the  North:  hence a  great  display of ALASKA.
northern lights is looked upon as an omen of war.
The second and third are the spirits of those who
died in the common way, and who dwell in Takhan-
khov. The ease with which these latter reach their
appointed place is dependent on the conduct of their
relations in mourning for them."
A shaman is a wizard, or sorcerer, a priest
of shamanism. Shamanism is a religion of
awful superstition which prevails in Northern
Asia, consisting in a belief in evil spirits, and
in the necessity of averting their malign influence by magic spells and horrid rites. The
prevalence of this religion among the Alaska
Indians is one of the many evidences of their
Asiatic origin.
"In addition to these spirits, every one has his
yekh, who is always with him, except in cases when
a man becomes exceedingly bad, when the yekk
leaves him. These spirits only permit themselves
to be conjured by the sound of a drum or rattle.
The last is usually made in the shape of a bird, hollow, and filled with small stones. These are used at
all festivities, and whenever the spirits are wanted.
" As the good spirits, from the very nature of the
case, will not harm them, the Indians pay but little
attention to them. They give their chief attention
to propitiating the evil spirits : so that their religion
practically resolves itself into devil-worship, or de-
monolatry. This is called shamanism, or the giving
of offerings to evil spirits to  prevent  their doing 164
mischief to the offender. It is said to have been
the old religion of the Tartar race, before the intro-
duction of Buddhism, and is still that of the Siberians. Indeed, long ago Paul declared, ' The things
which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils,
and not to God' (1 Cor. x. 20). The shaman is
the priest, who performs these rites, and is the
sorcerer, or medicine-man, of the tribes : he has control not only of the spirits, but, through the spirits,
of diseases, of the elements, and of nature; he
holds in,his power success or misfortune, blessing
I' The honor and respect,' says Dall, ' with which
a shaman is regarded, depends on the number of
spirits under his control, who, properly employed,
contribute largely to his wealth. For every one of
them, he has a name and certain songs. Sometimes
the spirits of his ancestors come to his assistance,
and increase his power, so that it is believed he can
throw his spirits 'into other people who do not believe in his arts. Those unfortunate wretches to
whom this happens suffer from horrible fits and paroxysms."
Bancroft, in his "Native Races on the Pacific
Coast," thus speaks of shamanism: —
"Thick black clouds, portentous of evil, hang
threateningly over the savage during his entire life.
Genii murmur in the flowing river; in the rustling
branches of the trees is heard the breathing of the
gods; goblins dance in the vapory twilight, and
demons howl in the darkness.    All these beings are ALASKA.
hostile to man, and must be propitiated by gifts and
prayers and sacrifices; and the religious worship of
some of the tribes includes practices which are
frightful in their atrocity. Here, for example, is a rite
of sorcery as practised among the Haidahs, one of
the Northern nations : —
"When the salmon season is over, and the provision of winter has been stored away, feasting
and conjuring begin. The chief, who seems to be
principal sorcerer, and, indeed, to possess little authority save for his connection with the preterhuman
powers, goes off to the loneliest and wildest retreat he
knows of or can discover in the mountains or forests,
and half starves himself there for some weeks till
he is worked up to a frenzy of religious insanity,
and the nawloks — fearful beings of some kinds not
human — consent to communicate with him by voices
or otherwise. During all this observance, the chief
is called taamish; and woe to the unlucky Haidah
who happens by chance so much as to look on him
during its continuance ! Even if the taamish do not
instantly slay the intruder, his neighbors are certain
to do so when the thing comes to their knowledge;
and if the victim attempts to conceal the affair, or
do not himself confess it, the most cruel tortures are
added to his fate. At last the inspired demoniac
returns to his village, naked, save a bearskin or a
ragged blanket, with a chaplet on his head and a red
band of elder-bark about his neck. He springs on
the first person he meets, bites out and swallows one
or more mouthfuls of the man's living flesh where-
ever he can fix his teeth, then rushes to another and
another, repeating his revolting meal till he falls into i66
a torpor from his sudden and half-masticated surfeit
of flesh."
All the Alaska Indians are held in abject fear
by the sorcerers, or medicine-men. Witchcraft,
with all its awful consequences, is of universal
"The medicine-man, or sorcerer, or shaman, as
he is often called, demands large reward before he
begins his incantations to heal the sick; and, if he
fails, he always declares that the failure is due to
witchcraft. He then commences to find the witch,
and he never fails. Hand over hand, as if following
an invisible cord, he traces the witch, who is then
tortured to death. He or she — as the case may be
— is bound, with the head drawn between the knees,
and then usually placed under the floor of some uninhabited hut until the victim is dead."
One of the officers of our government at
Sitka told us of having rescued a young man
whom he knew, from that horrid torture; but
he died very soon. Every Indian man and
woman tried to conceal where the victim of
their horrid superstition was concealed.
We derived much valuable information at
Sitka, about the Indians, from the Rev. John
G. Brady, who was educated at Yale College,
and came to Alaska as a Presbyterian missionary under the patronage of the late William E.
Dodge of New York, about six years ago.    His ALASKA.
views about Indian character, and the chances
of Indian civilization, agree with those of every
intelligent man whom we met: they are not
very encouraging.
In the autumn of 1857 Mr. William Duncan
was sent out from England to Alaska by the
Church Missionary Society. On arrival at Fort
Simpson, he gives the following account of what
he found: —
"I found located here nine tribes of Tsimpsean
Indians, numbering by actual count two thousand
three hundred souls. To attempt to describe their
condition would be but to produce a dark and revolting picture of human depravity. The dark mantle
of degrading superstition enveloped them all; and
their savage spirits, swayed by pride, jealousy, and
revenge, were ever hurrying them on to deeds of
blood. Their history was little else than a chapter
of crime and misery. But worse was to come. The
following year, the discovery of gold brought in a
rush of miners. Fire-water now began its reign of
terror, and debauchery its work of desolation. On
every hand were raving drunkards and groaning victims. The medicine-man's rattle and the voice of
wailing seldom ceased. . . .
" The other day we were called upon to witness
a terrible scene. An old chief in cold blood ordered
a slave to be dragged to the beach, murdered, and
thrown into the water. His orders were quickly
obeyed. The victim was a poor woman. Two or
three reasons are assigned for this foul act.    One is, i68
that it is to take away the disgrace attached to his
daughter, who had been suffering for some time with
a ball-wound in the arm. Another report is, that he
does not expect his daughter to recover, so he has
killed this slave in order that she may prepare for
the coming of his daughter into the unseen world.
I did not see the murder, but immediately after saw
crowds of people running out of the houses near to
where the corpse was thrown, and forming themselves into groups at a good distance away, from fear
of what was to follow. Presently two bands of furious wretches appeared, each headed by a man in a
state of nudity. They gave vent to the most unearthly sounds; and the naked men made themselves
look as unearthly as possible, proceeding in a creeping kind of stoop, and stepping like two proud
horses, at the same time shooting forward each arm
alternately, which they held out at full length for a
little time in the most defiant manner. Besides this,
the continual jerking of their heads back, causing
their long black hair to twist about, added much to
their savage appearance. For some time they pretended to be seeking for the body; and the instant
they came where it lay, they commenced screaming
and rushing around it like so many angry wolves.
Finally they seized it, dragged it out of the water,
and laid it on the beach, where they commenced tearing it to pieces with their teeth. The two bands of
men immediately surrounded them, and so hid their
horrid work. In a few minutes the crowd broke
again, when each of the naked cannibals appeared
with half of the body in his hands. Separating a.
few yards, they commenced, amid horrid yells, their ALASKA.
still more horrid feast of eating the raw dead body.
The two bands of men belonged to that class called
" I may mention that each party has some characteristics peculiar to itself; but in a more general
sense their divisions are but three, — viz., those
who eat human bodies, the dog-eaters, and those who
have no custom of the kind. Early in the morning
the pupils would be out on the beach, or on the
rocks, in a state of nudity. Each had a place in the
front of his own tribe; nor did intense cold interfere
in the slightest degree. After the poor creature had
crept about, jerking his head and screaming, for some
time, a party of men would rush out, and after surrounding him would commence singing. The dog-
eating party occasionally carried a dead dog to their
pupil, who forthwith commenced ,to tear it in the
most dog-like manner. The party of attendants
kept up a low, growling noise, or a whoop, which was
seconded by a screeching noise made from an instrument which they believe to be the abode of a spirit.
In a little time the naked youth would start up again,
and proceed a few more yards in a crouching posture,
with his arms pushed out behind him, and tossing
his flowing black hair. All the while he is earnestly
watched by the group about him; and when he
pleases to sit dovra, they again surround him, and
commence singing. This kind of thing goes on,
with several different additions, for some time. Before the prodigy finally retires, he takes a run into
every house belonging to his tribe, and is followed
by his train. When this is done, in some cases he
has a ramble on the tops of the same houses, during 17°
which he is anxiously watched by his attendants, as
if they expected his flight. By and by he condescends to come down; and they then follow him to
his den, which is marked by a rope made of red bark
being hung over the doorway so as to prevent any
person from ignorantly violating its precincts. None
are allowed to enter that house but those connected
with the art: all I know, therefore, of their further
proceedings, is that they keep up a furious hammering, singing, and screeching, for hours during the
I Of all these parties, none are so much dreaded
as the cannibals. One morning I was called to witness a stir in the camp which had been caused by
this set. When I reached the gallery I saw hundreds of Tsimpseans sitting in their canoes, which
they had just pushed away from the beach. I was
told that the cannibal party were in search of a body
to devour: and, if they failed to find a dead one, it
was probable they would seize the first living one
that came in their way; so that all the people living
near the cannibals' house had taken to their canoes
to escape being torn to pieces. It is the custom
among these Indians to burn their dead; but I suppose, for these occasions, they take care to deposit a
corpse somewhere in 'order to satisfy these inhuman
I These, then, are some of the things and scenes
which occur in the day during the winter months;
while the nights are taken up with amusements,
singing, and dancing. Occasionally the medicine-
parties invite people to their several houses, and exhibit tricks before them of several kinds.    Some of ALASKA.
the actors appear as bears; while others wear masks,
the parts of which are moved by strings. The great
feature of their proceedings is to pretend to murder
and then restore to life. The cannibal, on such
occasions, is generally supplied with two, three, or
four human bodies, which he tears to pieces before
his audience. Several persons, either from bravado
or as a charm, present their arms for him to bite.
I have seen several whom he had thus bitten, and I
hear two have died from the effects."
Mr. Duncan is said to have met with considerable success in taming many of these inhuman creatures.
In 1878 a meeting was held, called a convention, which lasted for two days, and over which
Mrs. N. R. McFarland presided. We learn that
she is a woman of great Christian energy and
ability, and that she has had much success in
teaching Indian girls. She gives the following
account: —
"The schoolhouse was packed full. We had a
great many long speeches, until it began to grow
dark. I had written out some laws, with which they
seemed to be pleased. But as it was now five o'clock
in the afternoon, I proposed that they should adjourn
until the next morning, and that I would take the
rules home, and copy them off ready for their signatures. The next morning at daybreak, Shus-taks,
a chief, came out on the end of the point, as he
always does when he has any thing to say to the 172
people. He then made a great speech, telling them
that he knew all about what we had been doing the
day before, and that I was trying to make war
between him and the other people.
I When we met at the schoolhouse, that morning;,
we concluded to send an invitation to Shus-taks to
come over, and hear the laws read, and, if possible,
conciliate him. We also invited Mr. Dennis, the
deputy collector of customs, to be present.
II had the first talk with Shus-taks. He was very
hostile, and made bitter remarks. I tried to convince
him that I had come up there to do him and his people good, and then read him the laws we had adopted.
§ He replied that he would like to know what I
had to do with the laws, — that I had been sent there
to teach school, and nothing more. . . .
I Mr. Dennis then had a talk with him, but I do
not think it made the least impression.
"Then Toy-a-att made a talk to Shus-taks, indeed,
preached him a solemn sermon. He told him that
he was now an old man, and could not live long; that
he wanted him to give his heart to the Saviour who
had died for him; that if he did not, but died as he
was living, he must be forever lost.
I Shus-taks replied that he did not care if he did
go to hell-fire, — that his people were all there. He
then left the meeting."
I believe there is a general opinion that the
chief told the truth about his people.
On the ioth of July, 1878, Mrs. McFarland
writes, — ALASKA.
" We have had more witchcraft here, and the effect
has been very bad on the minds of the young people.
Some of my brightest and best scholars have been
led away by it. As we have no kind of law, none of
the whites felt that they had any right to interfere."
On the 5th of December, 1878, Rev. Mr.
Young, a missionary, writes from Fort Wran-
gell: —
I We have gained a victory over witchcraft. Shus-
taks and his wife were both sick, and of course must
blame some one with having worked ! bad medicine'
against them. Young Shaaks, successor of the head
chief, and nephew to Shus-taks, gathered up his
friends, and caught an old man, one of our church-
attendants, and accused him of being 'bad medicine.'
They carried him to Shustaks' house, stripped him
naked, tied him most cruelly, hand, foot, and head,
and put him into a dark hole under the floor.
" This happened at night. The next morning the
clerk of the custom-house and myself went over to
the house where all Shus-taks' and Shaaks' friends
were assembled. They were very determined to resist any encroachment on their ancient customs; but
we were equally firm and persistent that they should
release him, and tie up nobody else without first
consulting us."
Slaves are held in Alaska. Rev. Mr. Brady
says, —
"These natives are very saving of every thing to
which the least value is  attached.    Some of the 174
chiefs are worth six or eight thousand dollars in
blankets, houses, skins, and the like. Some are
wealthy on account of their slaves."
We saw, at Pyramid Harbor, an old man and
"his wife and son, who were the slaves of a young
son of a chief, who sold their services, and could
sell them or kill them at will.
We speak of the Indians as wards of the
nation. What hypocrisy, sham, and arrant
humbug it all is! Wards of the nation ! Great
"Christian guardians! who make no law, and
■exercise no restraint over their wards against
their enslaving, maiming, and murdering one
a,nother, or against their diabolical practices of
selling their women for debauchery, or torturing
on charges of witchcraft, for revenge or gain.
At the recent excursion on the Northern
Pacific Road, a Crow Indian appeared with three
bloody scalps of another tribe strung around
his neck, — trophies of his recent murders, —
strutting in vainglory to see Christian men and
women stare at the evidence of his atrocities.
Was he arrested, and his crime inquired into ?
was he punished or even restrained ? Not a bit
of it.    He made boasting of his crimes.
The great Crow Indian Reservation, containing a vast quantity of some of the best lands
in Montana, lies along the Northern Pacific
road, partly between  it  and  the Yellowstone ALASKA.
Park: here travellers can witness slavery,
polygamy, the sale of women for debauchery,
torture, and murder, without punishment or
restraint. But it seems that these atrocities
are not unlawful for Indians.
The absurdity of our laws relating to the
Indians will appear by the following decision
pronounced by our highest tribunal on the 14th
of December, 1883 : —
Washington, Dec. 14.
"A decision was rendered by the Supreme Court
of the United States to-day, in the original habeas
corpus case of the Sioux Indian Crow Dog, who was
tried in the District Court for the First Judicial
District of Dakota for the murder of another Sioux
Indian named Spotted Tail, and, upon being found
guilty, was sentenced to suffer death. Counsel for
the prisoner maintained here that the crime charged
was not an offence under the laws of the United
States; that the District Court of Dakota had no
jurisdiction to try him, and that its judgment and
sentence were void. The question presented, therefore, in this court, is, whether the express letter of
section 2,146 of the Revised Statutes, which excludes
from the jurisdiction of the United States the case
of a crime committed in the Indian country by one
Indian against the person or property of another
Indian, has been repealed. This court holds that
it has not; that, in such a case as the present one, 176
the Indians have a right to try and punish the criminal according to their own laws and customs, with-
out interference by the United States; that the
First District Court of Dakota had no jurisdiction,
and that the imprisonment of Crow Dog is therefore illegal. The writ of habeas corpus and certiorari
prayed for will accordingly be issued. Opinion by
Justice Matthews."
I am told that no other decision could have
been made under our preposterous system of
Indian polity. It is to be hoped that the
government proposed for Alaska will be an
improved one.
Extend the laws over our entire domain.
Abolish slavery, polygamy, the sale of women
for vile use, and punish the Indian for the same
crimes and in the same way as we punish white
men. Until this is done, what can a handful of
feeble missionaries do to civilize these savages ?
It was the testimony of all witnesses whom
we met, that the Indian convert generally used
the certificate of conversion to obtain gratuities
or higher pay for what work he might do ; that,
with very rare exceptions, they had no other
idea of the value of Christianity. At Sitka a
gentleman in the service of our government
told us that a young Indian woman showed him
the certificate of her baptism and conversion,
to enhance the price of her vicious attractions. ALASKA. 17 j
Never a man did we interrogate, whether a missionary or trader, who did not assure us, that,
as a rule, the Indian was destitute of grati-
tude; that he appreciated no kindness; that
he was always treacherous and cruel, and was
influenced by no motive but revenge, fear, and
the greed for others' property; and nearly all
said that no Indian wife, whether of white man
or red, was ever true to her husband if tempted
by a trinket. And yet we were assured that
occasionally a young Indian girl married a white
man, over whom her fascinations were amazing.
In a large salmon-cannery at Pyramid Harbor, we saw nineteen Chinamen and some
twenty Indians working at the same long table.
But for the dress and pigtail, we could not tell
the Chinese from the Alaska Indians, so close
was the resemblance of features, and the color
was exactly the same. Upon inquiry we found
that several Chinamen had intermarried with
squaws, that they seemed to have a ready understanding of each other, and could communicate through their language with greater facility
than the whites. I imagine that they must
have sprung from the same original stock.
But almost conclusive evidence of the Asiatic
origin of the Alaska Indians is the prevalence
of shamanism, — that terrible religion, whose
priests are called shamans, wizards, or sorcer- 178
ers, practising the same horrid rites in Alaska
as in Northern Asia. A sorcerer's mantle, inwrought with strange devices, was presented to
my father in Alaska.
• The Aleutian chain of islands, belonging to
Alaska and running near to Asia, may have
formed the bridge of emigration in the earlier
ages, or Behrings Straits may have been easily
The climate of the north-west coast proves
to be much milder than was supposed: it is
found that the temperature of the Aleutian
Islands is quite as moderate as that of Virginia or Kentucky.
The Alaska Indians are said to be less ferocious than some of the more southern tribes
of North America, but they are bad enough.
By the official report of Gen. Halleck, made
in 1869, it appears that the Haidas are hostile
to the whites, " and a few years ago captured
a trading-vessel, and murdered the crew," and
that the " Stickeens also a few years ago captured another trading-vessel, and murdered the
hands; " that the " Kakes have long been hostile, making distant warlike incursions in their
canoes; " that " they several times visited Puget
Sound, and in 1857 murdered the collector of
customs at Port Townsend in the territory of
the United States." ALASKA.
At the salmon-cannery at Cape Fox, we
stopped to unload some freight. Then we
sailed through miles of whale-feed, a kind of
oily substance composed of a species of jellyfish, floating on the surface, forming food for
the whale. Its color is yellow ochre, tinged
with orange ; and it resembles the potage bisque
which one would order in a cabinet particulier
at Bignon's. The Indians, after drying, use it
as an article of food. The Indians cure no food
with salt. ■
On the 25th of July we reached Fort Wran-
gell. As we entered Wrangell Harbor, the view
presented was transcendent in its grandeur.
The little village was spread along the shore at
the base of a woody hill; mountains of snow
rising up in graduated heights, tier upon tier,
gallery upon gallery, backed by icy pinnacles,
curiously chiselled lance-tipped spires, gables
and obelisks : it seemed like a mighty coliseum
with its huge granite benches towering to the
skies; while we were sailing over the liquid
arena which reflected this exalted scene.
The vast semicircle of snow-mountains was
in our front: below the snow-line, the dense forests of deep-green firs made a striking contrast
with the snow. The sun was shining in our
rear. The waters were clear and smooth as a
polished mirror, and so reflected this marvellous i8o
show of green and white and glittering sheen,
that we seemed sailing in liquid air, over these
stupendous mountains, into the heavens above.
Neither the Andes nor the Alps could present
such a scene of entrancing wonder. All were
still as" we slowly, and with scarce a sound,
moved through the silent waters, and seemed
to look down upon the mirrored mountain tops
as though we were sailing through the skies.
The position of the bright sun, the stillness,
and the hour of the day, combined to present
a vision which did not seem of earth, and which
will never fade from memory.
Fort Wrangel was formerly much more populous, by reason of the gold-mines, which no
longer seem as rich as formerly; white men
for that reason leaving their old quarters, seeking new claims farther north, or returning to
■civilization.    Only a few dozen whites live here.
The greater part of the buildings along the
shore belong to the Indians, and are made of
rough hewn wood, the floor being covered with
skins. Huge poles, some reaching as high as
sixty feet, with carved figures up the whole
length, stand in front of the graves and chiefs'
houses; the proportionate height of the wooden
column marking the dignity and grandeur of
its respective owner, the carvings signifying
the genealogy of the family. Over one of the
bouses I read the following inscription : — ALASKA.
Anatlash [Owner's name].
| Let all who read know that I am a friend of the whites.
" Let no one molest this house.
" In case of my death, it belongs to my wife."
Large numbers of dug-out canoes lined the
beach ; and yelping Indian dogs, called cayotes,
— half fox, half wolf, — scuttled away from
behind the logs and stumps at our approach.
Alaska contains many volcanoes. Grewingk
mentions sixty-one, of which number only ten
remain active.
This remarkable country contains hot and
mineral springs, the former in many districts
being used by the natives for cooking their
food. The crater of Goreloi is said to hold a
huge boiling mineral spring eighteen miles in
circumference. The island of Unalashka has
thermal springs containing sulphur in solution.
Copper River, above Juneau, contains large
deposits of the metal. A pipe was presented
to me, carved by an Indian out of some tough
black wood, in the form of a dolphin, forming
a complete circle; the aperture in the centre
meant for the hand; the entire inside of the
bowl being heavily lined with copper from this
river. I pity the unfortunate white man who
shall be the first to break it in for smoking:
an Indian can appreciate and relish that which
no civilized man's digestion could endure. 182
Most of the deep chasms and ravines among
the snow-mountains contain glaciers. Alaska
has more and far larger glaciers than any other
part of the known world. In Lynn Channel,
near to Pyramid Harbor, latitude 590 12', we
saw a glacier twelve hundred feet thick at the
lower end. Mount Fairweather is said to have
one extending near fifty miles to the sea, being
three miles wide and three hundred feet thick.
The great glacier on the Stickeen River is forty
miles long, over four miles wide, and five hundred feet thick. The Eagle Glacier, on the right
as we go up Lynn Channel, is laid down on the
government chart as 1 fully twelve hundred feet
high." The glaciers and formation of icebergs
at Takou Inlet are particularly described later
In no portion of the Alps have I .encountered gigantic frozen rivers equal to those of
Alaska. The ones which I have crossed, I can
personally speak of; viz., the world-known Mer
de Glace, Glacier des Bossus, and the Gorner
Grat with its six tributary frozen rivers.
The aurora borealis, far excelling any firework display at the Crystal Palace, is seen to
full advantage in the northern districts of
Alaska lying within the arctic circle. Bancroft
describes it "as flashing out in prismatic coruscations, throwing a brilliant arch from east ALASKA.
to west, — now in variegated oscillations, graduating through all the various tints of blue and
green and violet and crimson, darting, flashing,
or streaming in yellow columns upward, downward ; now blazing steadily, now in wavy undulations, sometimes up to the very zenith;
momentarily lighting up the surrounding scenery, but only to fall back into darkness."
Whymper, in describing one display that he
personally witnessed on the Yukon, represents
it as a vast undulating snake crossing the
"Singularly enough," says Dall, "they call
the constellation of Ursa Major by the name of
Okil-Ok'puk, and consider him to be ever on
the watch while the other spirits carry on their
festivities. None of the spirits are regarded
as supreme; nor have the Innuit tribes any
idea of a deity, a state of future reward or punishment, or any system of morality."
Alaska possesses one of the largest rivers in
the world, — the Yukon, navigable for eighteen
hundred miles: its full length is estimated to
be two thousand miles.
Fish and lumber seem the only inexhaustible
wealth which Alaska produces. Fur-bearing
animals will likely disappear with the approach
of civilization; and even the seal-fisheries on
the little island of St. Paul and St. George will 184
at the present rate of destruction vanish in
time, I fear, as have the buffalo from the plains,
whose herds in former years were considered
so vast as to be incapable of final extermination.
The Pribyloff group of islands in Behring
Sea, leased from the United States by the
Alaska Commercial Company, pays the government an annual rental of $55,000, and a royalty
of $262,500 on the hundred thousand seals
allowed by law to be killed. The two small
islands before mentioned paid into the United-
States Treasury, between 1871 and 1880, two
and a half million dollars.
With regard to the fisheries, having visited
all the most important canneries in Alaska, I
should say that the catching of salmon, cod,
halibut, and herring would remain a profitable
industry for ages to come ; for, though thousands of men are laying their seines yearly in
the Columbia, the salmon "runs" are just as
large, and the fish just as good, as ever.
I quote the following, told by a missionary
on the Naass River: —
II went up to their fishing-ground on the Naass
River, where some five thousand Indians had assembled. It was what is called their [ small fishing:' the
salmon-catch is at another time. These small fish
form a valuable  article for food, and  also  for oil. ALASKA.
They come up for six weeks only, and with great
regularity. The Naass, where I visited, was about a.
mile and a half wide, and the fish had come up in
great quantities, —so great that with three nails upon
a stick an Indian could rake in a canoe-full in a short
time. Five thousand Indians were gathered together
from British Columbia and Alaska, decked out in
their strange and fanciful costumes. Their faces
were painted red and black, feathers on their heads,
and imitations of wild beasts on their dresses.
" Over the fish was an immense cloud of sea-gulls
— so many and so thick, that, as they hovered about
looking for fish, the sight resembled a heavy fall of
snow. Over the gulls were eagles soaring about,
watching their chance. After the small fish had
come larger fish from the ocean. There was the
halibut, the cod, and the porpoise, and the fin-back
whale,—man-life, fish-life, and bird-life, all under
intense excitement. And all that animated life was,
to the heathen people, a life of spirits. They paid
court to, and worshipped, the fish that they were to
assist in destroying; greeting them, ' You fish ! you
fish !    You are all chiefs, you are !' "
26th.—Three months ago this very hour,—
11.30 a.m., — our little steamer, the " Eureka,'"
struck her fatal rock in Peril Straits.
As we left Wrangell at twilight, the day scene
was soon transformed into revelries of moonlight, its gleams flooding the ice summits, and
lighting up the dark gorges.
The  rain  begins  to  descend, and we  now 186
realize the humidity of Alaska south of the
.arctic circle. Nearing Sitka I fully appreciated
the superb character of the adjacent regions;
and though a drizzling mist is perpetually descending, and the sun no longer adds coloring
to the picture, enough of beauty is present to
■create enthusiasm.
The town, encompassed by mountains, overlooks the Pacific towards the west. Mount
Edgecombe, the barometer of the village,
protects it from the sea. Whenever rain is
imminent, as a precursor of its advent, misty
clouds envelop the extinct crater of this once
active volcano. Its inward rumblings and deadly
out-throw of lava are no longer felt; and this
Vesuvius, standing guard over a bay beautiful
as Naples, bears tidings of the coming storm.
As a natural bulwark for the town, innumerable little islands lie dotted throughout the har-
bor, against whose rugged opposition the waves
lose their force.
Sitka contains some three hundred whites,
one hundred being Americans, two hundred
Russians or Creoles.
Through the courtesy of Major Gouverneur
Morris, United-States treasury-agent, collector
of the port at Sitka, with whom and his wife
we passed a pleasant evening, I obtained some
trout-fishing on a little stream near by;   and, ALASKA.
though raining hard, in about one hour his
secretary and I caught a dozen. The trout
here, as elsewhere in Alaska, seem to prefer
bright warm days, and seem the opposite in
every respect to the Eastern species. In this
small stream are four varieties: ist, whitish
ground, with dark-brown spots, up to two
pounds in weight; 2d, dark, whitish - green
body, with a black strip along the sides meeting, at right angles, other lines less clearly
defined crossing over the back, — run very
small, eight going to the pound; 3d, same
ground as last, with pointed black spots, also
very diminutive; 4th, similar in ground and
markings as last, with hammer-no^e, also small
sized. All these species take salmon-roe or
a trout's eye; and, in fact, throughout Alaska
I met no one who could vouch to having seen
a trout rise to an artificial fly. Whether this
arises from lack of insects in these regions, I
am unable to state. They bite vigorously, but
are not gamey when once hooked. Those we
caught were a couple of half-pounders, including one big fellow, considered the biggest
brook-trout of that season, weighing one
Afterwards the Russian priest, in company
with his sister, a bright young girl, speaking
English   fluently,   took  us   over the   Russian i88
church, built in the form of a Greek cross,
with an emerald-green dome surmounted by a
tower containing a clock and five chimes. One
wing, besides a curious font (the form of baptism being immersion), contains a picture of
the Madonna and Child copied from the original at Moscow. The painting shows nothing
but the faces ; the background and the drapery
being made of solid silver, the halo being executed in gold.
The church contains a large picture of the
Last Supper, the crowns and vestments covered with silver. Immense candlesticks, candelabra, and a picture supposed to contain
eleven pounds of wrought silver, and huge gilt
frames, lend the inside a very rich appearance.
Three broad steps and four doors lead us into
the " holy of holies," across the threshold of
which women are forbidden passage. Within
stands the altar, little shrines, and closets containing magnificent robes of gold and silver
brocade (together with handsome specimens
of needle-work), from which most of the original jewels have been stolen or removed, and
replaced by others less in value. One robe
made of rich green velvet was particularly
attractive, the bishop's crown being profusely
adorned with pearls and amethysts. The dim
religious light was wanting, the windows not
even having been frosted. ALASKA.
The Rev. John G. Brady thus narrates the
tradition concerning Mount Edgecombe : —
I This is a Mount Olympus for the natives. They
say that the first Indian pair lived peaceably for a
long time, and were blessed with children. But one
day a family jar occurred. The husband and wife
grew very angry at each other. For this the man
was changed into a wolf, and the woman into a raven.
The metamorphosed woman flew down into the open
crater of Mount Edgecombe, lit on a stump, and is
now holding the earth on her wings. Whenever
there is thunder and lightning around the summit,
it is only the wolf giving vent to his rage while he
is trying to pull her off the stump. It would be a
great calamity if she should lose her grip; for r*hen
the earth would be upset, and all who live upon it
perish. So, whenever it thunders, the Indians take
stones, and pound on the floors of their houses, to
encourage the raven to hold to the stump."
We now ascend the hill to the old castle.
The castle was twice destroyed by Mount Edgecombe when in active operation,— once by fire,
and once by an earthquake.
Within this ruined remnant of the days when
Baron Romanoff ruled with savage hand, —
its walls made of vast hewn logs, riveted with
copper fastenings, — hardly any thing but faded
signs of the grandeur and decay of this once
proud fortress remains as a landmark of the
terrorism of those days.    The old castle stands ill:
high up on the rocks overlooking  the  lovely
bay, and is used as a signal-station.
Old legends still haunt the spacious rooms;
and when the wind howls through the doorways and rushes down the spacious chimneys,
they tell many tales, of which I here quote
two : —
"The legend runs, that, when Baron Romanoff
was governor, he fad living with him an orphan
niece and ward, who was very beautiful. But when
he commanded her to marry a powerful prince, who
was a guest at the castle, she refused, having bestowed her heart on a handsome young lieutenant
of the household. The old baron, who, like the rest
of his race, was an accomplished diplomate, feigning
an interest in the young lieutenant which he did not
feel, sent him away on a short expedition, and in the
mean time hurried on the preparations for the marriage of the poor countess to the prince. She, de- •
prived of the support of her lover's counsels and
presence, yielded to the threats of her uncle; and
the ceremony was solemnized. Half an hour after
the marriage, while the rejoicing and gayety was
at its height, the young lieutenant strode into the
ball-room, his travel-stained dress and haggard appearance contrasting strongly with the glittering
costumes and gay faces of the revellers; and, during
the silence that followed his ominous appearance,
he stepped up to the hapless girl, and took her hand.
After gazing for a few moments on the ring the
prince had placed there, without a word, before any ALASKA.
one could interfere, he drew a dagger from his belt,
and stabbed her to the heart. In the wild confusion
that followed, he escaped from the castle; and overcome with grief, unable to live without the one he
so fondly loved yet ruthlessly murdered, he threw
himself into the sea. And now her spirit is seen,
always on the anniversary of her wedding-night, her
slender form robed in heavy silver brocade, pressing
her hands on the wound in her heart, the tears
streaming from her eyes; and sometimes before a
severe storm, when she makes her appearance in the
little tower at the top of the building once used as
a light-house. There she burns a light until dawn,
for the spirit of her lover at sea."
There are also numerous Indian traditions,
one running as follows : —
"There was once but one man and woman on the
earth. The man had a large box or chest that he
guarded jealously, never opening it. One day, being
obliged to make a long journey in company with his
sons, and fearing that he might lose the key if he
took it with him, for the way was long and rough,
he left it with his wife ; charging her on no account
to open the box, or permit her daughters to do so,
for the result to them all would be fatal. She having promised, he set off with a light heart. Having
the key in her possession, curiosity gradually overcame the woman's fears; and after a few days she
hesitated no longer, but, turning the key in the lock,
opened the chest. Immediately out sprang the sun,
moon, and stars, and began to circle around in their
orbits; so day and night began." 192
«    1
27th.—Went on board the American man-
of-war I Adams," under the command of Capt.
Merriman. His action with reference to the
bombardment of the Indian village near Kiles-
noo was criticised as hasty, especially by those
ignorant of the Indian character. We inquired
into the actual facts.
The old method of harpooning having retreated before the present explosive bomb,
seven fishermen near Kilesnoo were carrying
on the killing of whales by means of this latest
improvement. One day, at the critical moment
just as the bomb left the thrower's hand, it
accidentally burst, killing.an Indian medicine-
chief who was rowing ; and the Indians, holding
council, took two white men prisoners, demanding two hundred blankets as their ransom: the
remaining fishermen managed to carry the news
of the affair to the man-of-war, being then at
Sitka. Capt. Merriman instantly hove anchor,
and steamed up; upon which the frightened Indians immediately returned the captives, having
refrained from killing them, as they happened
to be imperfect, or "cultus," one lacking an eye,
and the other being lame; the Indians determining that two perfect men must die as an
atonement for the unfortunate chieftain. Capt.
Merriman, in order to prevent any such future
outbreak, and  as a reprimand   for taking  the ALASKA.
law into their own hands, in turn demanded
four hundred blankets from the tribe, with the
alternative, that, in case of the refusal to comply within twenty-four hours, he should open
fire on the village. The day wore on, still no
sign of compliance. Exactly at the appointed
expiration of the time, the guns boomed forth.
At the first fire, all the Indians, seizing their
possessions, ran into the woods ; and after plenty
of time had been allowed for their safe departure, the artillery once more raked the shore,
ploughing up the banks, and, probably for the
first time in their history, these old mountains
re-echoed the sound of cannon. Several boats
having been run upon the beach, the crew set
fire to a few hovels, and then they sailed away.
At first glance, the bombardment and burn-
ing of an Indian village by an American man-
of-war, when reported East, sounds harsh; but
not so to a settler in this far-off possession.
The whites have no protection from the United
States, — no judges, no marshals, or government,
to adjust their claims. Miners' rights have
sometimes to be contested with the rifle : murderers and desperadoes have to be hanged by
lynch-law. It is impossible for one ship to be
at every point along twelve hundred miles of
coast at the same time.
From all sources we learned that fear was the FROM FIFTH AVENUE   TO ALASKA.
great force that controlled the Indians. Capt.
Merriman is respected by both Indians and
white men throughout Alaska. The appearance of his ship-of-war at any station is quite
sufficient to produce quiet, and the occasional
firing- of a gun at some mark on the shore re-
calls to mind the bombardment. The damaged
village soon sprang up again, better houses
taking the place of the former wretched shanties.
The Alaska Indians are very penurious, and
even miserly. They can live on a little dried
salmon the year round.
Marked instances occasionally are met with
among the missionaries of British Columbia
and Alaska, who have had great success among
the Indians by honest dealing, understanding
the language thoroughly, and then entering
upon their Christian labor by first teaching them
how to provide for their physical wants.
The collectors try to restrain the sale of rum,
whiskey, and other alcoholic drinks ; but through
smuggling and other means their introduction
is effected. In fact, saloon-keeping at Sitka is
by no means the least profitable source of income. Considerable molasses is imported, out
of which the Indian makes hochenoo, a very
intoxicating drink, the receipt having been
brought them by a government marine.    They ALASKA.
distil the molasses in a coal-oil can, a dash of
petroleum being added; and a little flour causes
the fermentation.
Every silver half-dollar and dollar given to
the Indians at Wrangell or Sitka, they soon beat
into bracelets, cleverly finishing their work by
skilful carvings.
tm 196
We now approached Kilesnoo, the codfish-
cannery under Mr. Vanderbilt, to whom, as well
as to many others in Alaska, we had letters
from the president of the North-west Trading
An Indian, christened Saginaw Jack by Commander Glass, was strutting about the wharf,
upon whom various uniforms and letters of introduction had been bestowed by various navy-
men. In twelve hours he appeared in three
uniforms, — middy's, then captain's, and lastly,
as the vessel casts off, he swaggers and rolls
round in all the splendor and glittering tinsel
of a general in the United-States army. At
his request we visited his wife, "who, lying on
the bed, was groaning from pain caused by
inflammation of the feet.
Mr. Vanderbilt told us an amusing incident
of the result, in one case, of the effect of attempts to educate the Indians: one fellow no ALASKA.
sootier had received the rudiments of arithmetic
than he raised a note of twenty-five cents to
two hundred and fifty dollars.
Col. Crittenden, formerly collector of the port
at Wrangell, told us an anecdote about the
sagacity of some crows, which adds another
argument in favor of the reasoning faculties of
dumb animals. A quantity of crows having
torn in pieces some of his chickens, which he
was attempting to raise, he prepared for battle,
and on the first charge shot four; on their
retiring, flying rather low over his head at
intervals, he managed to bring down six more.
Then all of them, cawing at their best, held a
•consultation on a neighboring slope, and flew
next time some hundred yards high. Nothing
more happened ; but next morning every one
of his turnips, before unmolested, had been uprooted and picked to pieces, though not eaten.
Whether this was accident, I am unable to
judge; but I give it as told.
The Vanderbilt cottage was tastefully and
picturesquely arranged, a woman's touch being
evidently near ; while the glowing fire throwing
its light over the floor covered with bear-skins,
together with the bright cheerful face of our
hostess, made us feel nearer civilization than
this high latitude would justify.
To give some idea of the lack of fruit, Mrs. FROM FIFTH AVENUE   TO ALASKA.
Vanderbilt had not tasted strawberries for six
The Indians here, as elsewhere, owned quantities of mongrel dogs, a species of cayote,,
half wolf and half fox, sharp-snouted, wire-
haired, having " a lean and hungry look,"'
though differing from Cassius probably in thinking I too much." The Indians put tin tags
round the necks of those dogs they wish unharmed ; for many, even on seeing one come
near the house, shoot him at sight.
Like the Indians of the plain, these savages
enjoy as dainties filthy things too disgusting to
People thought, when Secretary Seward made
his purchase of Alaska, that the region would
never be more than a land of ice-bound rivers;
little realizing that the seal-fisheries alone would
pay a six-per-cent interest on the cost.
The Indian women throughout Alaska gen-
erally paint their faces black, giving them a
hideous aspect, for which many reasons were
assigned, but no one in particular above the
rest: ist, on hot days, when fishing on the
water, as a preventive against glare, flies, and
mosquitoes; 2d, when oil, as a polish, is added,
young women adopt it merely for show or ornament ; 3d, sign of mourning; 4th, a sign of
anger, a caution to their enemies that they had ALASKA.
better take themselves off; 5th, old women
adopt it as a concealment of old age.
As these topics of interest were being discussed, supper was announced: when it was
finished, and the table cleared, we enjoyed
whist until late.
Just before leaving, Mr. Vanderbilt presented
us with some pretty specimens of Indian work.
Finally the ship cast off at three a.m. in
search of Bartlett's Cove, — as yet not down
on the chart, — a newly established salmon-
•cannery to which we were bringing a cargo of
nets, staves, and other commodities.
July 28. —As we reached the deck, our speed
being about four or five knots an hour, on our
port side lay shoals, reaching far out into the
straits. The undulating sands were covered
with sea-birds. Gliding on through unknown
waters (neither captain nor pilot ever having
been there before), the scene was all the more
attractive : icebergs, glaciers, whales, porpoises,
sea-lions, all gave novelty to the scene. Indians occasionally shot out from the shore in
their little canoes; but all attempts at conversation in the Hudson-bay dialect—Chinook —
were a failure, none of the dusky islanders
•understanding a word.
On, on, we sailed ; rounding headlands, hugging shores, and casting the lead at frequent 200
intervals. Once when the leadsman had
shouted, I Fourteen fathoms, no bottom! " almost directly we heard the cry, 1 Four fathoms,
bottom ! " Immediately the engines were reversed, and we crept on at a slow pace until
the dangerous shoal was passed.
Twenty miles having been wandered over,
towards afternoon we reached suddenly a cul-
de-sac, and inquired of an Indian there, who
by gestures gave us the information that we
were some thirty miles off our course. We
then re-sailed our course.
Finally toward evening, after rounding a.
point, we saw a few white specks in the distance, which the sunlight brought out distinctly;
and our glass revealed the longed-for tent.
There we found a man, living with an Indian,
woman, who in this wild land was striking out
in the hope of making money by canning salmon. Canoes took off the cargo, shooting to
and fro ; the colored blankets and barbaric attire
of the Indians giving to the scene a wild charm.
I bought a very fine skin of a large black,
bear which the Indians had killed but a few
days before: this, I thought, would make a good,
The first run of salmon was over; and as the:
meshes of their nets had been too large, being-
intended for the Columbia River, the fishermen ALASKA.
waited our arrival for new nets, although the
second run has smaller fish.
July 29. — At about three a.m. father awoke
me to see the grand glacier which we just then
passed: and by the weird light of a nightless
day we watched this wonderful frozen river ;
waterfalls at intervals dashing down the opposite bank, demanding in their turn our admiration.
We reached Pyramid Harbor, — latitude 590
12', — where one of the chief canneries of the
North-west Trading Company was established
under Mr. Karl Spuhn,' to whom we had letters.
The ship having to lie over all that day and
night, the captain and I shouldered our rifles,
and with two dogs, under the guidance of two
Indians, — one being a chief of some note, —
started up the mountain directly behind the
cannery. We had been warned concerning the
difficulties to be encountered: the white men
telling us that none but Indians had ever
reached the top ; that they themselves had all
tried, but the extreme steepness — the grade
being nearly forty-five degrees for four thousand feet — had finally proved too difficult.
The experience gained in parts of Canada,
California, and Switzerland, led me to suppose
that a mountain only four thousand feet high
could hardly be inacessible.    To be sure, the 202
ascent was from the water's edge, and not as
at Zermatt, Chamonix, and the Engadine, from
a base itself already several thousands of feet
above the sea-level. There was no evidence
of ice, and we could not see any rock ahead
above us; and I thought all would go well.
From our start we thrust our hands in the
soil, or clutched at the brush ; most of our way
being over low hanging boughs, through springy
branches of a small bush from which the Indians make their baskets. Of course our guns
added to the difficulty, as they could hardly
be used as alpenstocks with any safety.
We had started early in the morning, and all
went well for four or five hours. Finally the
young spaniel gave up; and our kind-hearted
captain made him lie on his back, and cross his
fore-paws like a monkey round his neck. This
extra weight added to the slipperiness of the
ascent, which was so abrupt and arduous that
after five hours the captain gave up, turned
about, and began a rather hasty descent: in
fact, for several hundred yards I could hear him
as he went downwards, occasionally more suddenly than he intended.
Upward, still upward, went the Indians, with
that slow, enduring saunter of theirs, which
seemed never to tire; occasionally they would
look round, with a sort of pitying expression, ALASKA.
to see how the poor white was progressing.
At last we reached snow, over which we passed
to the summit. And there spread out before
me was a panoramic view of lake and mountain
scenery on a scale far surpassing in grandeur any
thing I had ever seen. The sudden outburst
of splendor was all the more striking from the
fact of our course having been through brush.
I was hardly prepared for the sudden change.
In the foreground, that which I before considered the mainland now changed to islands;
beyond lay rivers, snow-mountains, glaciers,
waterfalls, the ensemble forming a wilderness of
solitude which I had not before imagined. We
then made a detour, shot some grouse and a
few ground-hogs, and began our return. It
had taken some eight hours to mount: the
descent only took two and a half. Reaching
the snowbanks, we tobogganed down; and in
some places, on account of the grade, we had
no difficulty in sliding down over the soil and
stones, merely placing our feet together, half
sitting down. A root or badly parried limb
occasionally sent us sprawling; but I soon got
used to it, and became quite an adept at avoiding obstacles. The rain unfortunately fell just
as we began to descend, and I reached the ship
wet to the skin.
So much for an Alaska mountain.    May I be 204
pardoned for not attempting another, for a
Swiss Alp is pleasure compared to the toil of
even one of these: to be sure, those in Switzerland are more dangerous.
After inspecting the process of canning
salmon, from the time when they are freshly
landed from the net, to when they are hermetically sealed in tins, and boiled ready for
shipment, we cast off, turned our bow southward, and began our return trip.
Passing down Lynn Channel, we had on our
left the colossal " Eagle Glacier," which is laid
down upon the government chart as " fully
twelve hundred feet high."
In the early morning of the 30th of July we
entered Takou Inlet, which the captain kindly
went far out of his way to show us. Here
are two immense glaciers not far apart. They
looked like enormous rivers, whose waters were
piled up as in a freshet, congealed into solid
ice, and rising several hundred feet above our
heads, and running back, as we were assured,
some forty miles. The bay was filled with
more than a thousand icebergs, making the
navigation dangerous, and requiring the steamer
to move slowly and cautiously.
Here, for the first time, we saw how icebergs
are formed. The great ice-river is in perpetual
flow towards the inlet, but imperceptibly to the ALASKA.
As it protrudes over the water, the ice
splits off in every imaginable size and form:
some of it breaks into small fragments, and a
part floats off in huge ice-cliffs on their slow
way to the ocean. The varied beauty of their
colors is inconceivably charming. Some of
them are of uniform deep azure; but more are
of purest white, striped in their fretwork with
silver and the most delicate cerulean blue : their
shapes assume every fantastic appearance, from
a camel to a cathedral, from a ship to a fairy
palace, and a mountain peak of snow.
I took delight in taking passing shots at some
of the more slender tapering minarets of ice,
and seeing them reel and come shivering down
the side.
Seals timidly came up occasionally, and suspiciously stared at us in wonderment, and then
dived under.
Here I could but inwardly exclaim, that any
American who wished to sail over the deep and
waveless sea, where no sickness from the motion could ever disturb him, where the air was
pure and bracing, and the appetite voracious,
where the glaciers and the mountains and the
lake scenes surpass any thing in Switzerland,,
and where the midnight sun can be seen at a
higher latitude than in Norway, should come
to Alaska. 206
As we moved nearer the north shore, I was
startled from my revery by the leadsman's cry,
I Four fathoms bottom ! " Instantly reversing
our engines, we stopped just in time, the screw
stirring up the mud as we turned.
After leaving this wonderful inlet, we approached Juneau, the great mining-camp of
Alaska. Juneau is also known as Harrisburg
of late. Even as we touched the wharf, we
noticed something unusual in the scene, — no
bustle, no merriment, no noise; all quiet, men
pale ; even the men who helped tie up refrained
from the usual profane small-talk generally
adopted on those occasions. A few Indians of
both sexes squatted here and there, surly,
gloomy, and lowering in aspect. As our eyes
wandered along the shore, searching for a
cause, there, standing out plainly defined against
the dark background, we saw a newly erected
gallows under which an Indian's body slowly
swayed to and fro.
Col. Barry, officer of the port, and Mr.
Koehler, manager of the North-west Trading-
store, placed us in possession of the general
facts which necessitated the execution of lynch-
Dr. McLean, who was present, gave us the
following details of the transactions which preceded our arrival: — ALASKA.
" The principal mining-camp is at the basin,
about a mile from the town. The two points
are connected by a trail which is much frequented by whites and Indians. On the trail
are two whiskey-houses, one kept by Richard
Rennie, a native of Jersey Island, Eng. ; and
the other, by a Frenchman named Martin.
These saloons are ostensibly to furnish liquors
to the miners, but in reality to the Indians.
" About three weeks ago Rennie and Martin
got drunk, and during the evening exchanged
cabins by mistake; i.e., Rennie going into
Martin's cabin, and Martin taking possession
of Rennie's cabin.
" During the night an Indian broke into
Martin's cabin where Rennie was sleeping, and
stole a bottle of whiskey. Rennie got up, and
struck the Indian, who then ran away. Early
next morning Martin went to the camp with a
demijohn of whiskey, and, after giving the Indians a drink, asked them to keep the demijohn
for him. He then returned to his own cabin,
and found Rennie there. Rennie told him
about the Indian stealing the whiskey, and that
he had chastised him. Martin told him he had
no right to do that, as the whiskey was his
1 Rennie then took a bung-starter, and went
after the Indians at the carrip.    While on the 208
way to the camp, he met two Indians, who assaulted him with a club, breaking his skull.
When found he was insensible, and remained
in that condition for twenty-four hours, when he
expired. From an autopsy made by me, it was
clearly shown that he had been struck from
behind with a heavy blunt instrument, and the
skull badly fractured.
I The two suspected Sitka Indians were arrested ; and they confessed to having knocked
Rennie down, but accused Rennie of first striking them. I examined the Indians, and found
no mark except one several days old. The Indians in their confession admitted that Martin
and a Russian named Zackaloff were looking
on at the time, but did not attempt to interfere.
"In arresting the two Indians, a third Sitka
Indian resisted the arrest; and all three were
marched to jail, and ironed, to await the arrival
of the mail-steamer. Guards were placed at
the jail both day and night.
I One of the day guards, named Dennis, was
very careless, and allowed the Indians to roam
around the jail-building without having handcuffs on. During his temporary absence outside the building, the Indians took a pistol out
of the cupboard. On the return of the guard,
and while he was looking out of the window, he
was shot in the left hip; the ball coming out ALASKA.
near the floating rib on the right side. Dennis
then fired his pistol several times, and alarmed
the town. The Indians then ran to the camp,
taking the pistol with them.
" The first man to reach the jail was an old
American soldier, named Major Givens ; and, as
soon as he saw the condition of Dennis, he
rushed down the hill, and found the Indians in
a house, trying to get the shackles off with an
axe,. He forced open the door, when he was
shot through the right lung, and fell to the
ground. Another Indian took the axe, and cut
his head and face in a terrible manner. Two
of the Indians then put for the woods, the one
shackled remaining in the house.
I One of the retreating Indians was shot
dead by some infuriate citizens, and the other
got away. The one remaining in the house
was arrested, tried by a jury of citizens, found
guilty, and hung this morning as you were
entering the harbor."
The corpse was soon cut down. As we
stood on the deck, a little funeral-procession
wound up the hill, carrying the body of Major
Givens, whom the Indians had murdered. A
mournful sight it was, to see a funeral in this
far-away land, the sadness and dreariness being
heightened by the dull gray sky, drizzling rain,
and discordant tolling of the little church-bell. 2IO
Slowly the procession passed out of sight, and
soon was lost behind the great crags.
Father and I entered the house where they
were mourning over the body of the young
Indian who had been hung that morning. All
the women were wailing and weeping, while
the sister of the dead man fixedly gazed on her
brother's body laid out in white ; the long sheet
being pulled up close round his neck to hide
the scar of the rope, and a pink silk handkerchief covering his head. On uncovering, the
face seemed peaceful, the only expression of
pain being the tight compression of the lips.
The scene was full of sorrow; and I shall not
soon forget the sad, wan look of that sister
keeping vigil at the head of the dead.
Passing on, we glanced at the room where
the guard Dennis lay dying ; and we were both
right glad to leave this scene of lamentation,
and return to the ship.
Finding we could not sail for three hours, I
went again to the North-west Store, where
Mr. Koehler gave me a pretty specimen of
Indian basket-work.
Mr. Spuhn had the day before presented to
my father an enchanter's mantle, lavishly woven
by hand, curiously wrought in devices; each
sign or mark representing some monster or
spirit which the sorcerer's power was supposed
to conjure up. ALASKA.
While we were watching the Indians making*
their crafty bargains, — exchanging their little
heaps of gold-dust or hides, for cotton and
wool goods, trinkets, ribbons, tobacco, or powder, — suddenly there arose cries and yells of
I Indians are coming! " Hurried mysterious
mutterings were heard from the red men, and
as if by magic the store was empty. Drawing
my revolver, I rushed out; and from every direction the miners were coming, each little log
hut yielding up its owner armed with an old
Hudson - bay gun or Winchester. In a few
moments all the men who possessed guns were
mustered in the little open street, numbering
all told some twenty-six; while others who possessed revolvers also joined in with the rest.
On the side of the hill towards the mining-camp
we could see a mass of men advancing in straggling lines, and from the numbers we concluded
that the fight would be a bloody one.
The camp happened just then to be short of
ammunition, and for the Hudson-bay guns only
sixty rounds remained: bayonets had been
served out with the rifles, which when at close
quarters would probably prove useful. The
hostile band were supposed to be the Sitka
tribe coming to avenge the death of their two
members, and as they drew near the flash of
guns could distinctly be seen.    Knowing that
1 212
the trading-store would probably be the greatest resort for plunder, we began to barricade;
and rushing up-stairs, I secured an old Winchester with twenty-four rounds. This, added
to the six bullets in my revolver, was all we
three possessed ; but, as the staircase was very
narrow, we made up our minds to shoot from
the window until the barricades had been
forced, and then fight on the staircase until
help arrived, either from the ship half a mile
off, or from those who would fight, guerrillalike, from behind the huts.
Just as we were expecting to hear the ping
of a bullet, an Indian came forward, and explained that they had captured the third
murderer, and were bringing him to justice.
Instead of being hostile to us, they were
friendly, and at enmity with the Sitkas.
A great load of anxiety was lifted from all,
although I confess that the prospect of an Indian fight had been exhilarating.
And now came out those traits which stig-
matize lynch-law so forcibly. " Run him out! "
I Let's have a shot at him!" and other such
exclamations, seemed for an instant to be
gaining favor. But finally soberer sentiments
prevailed; and he was taken off to the meetinghouse, while several went down to the ship to
prevail on my father to come up and see if he ALASKA.
-could not prevent an execution in mad haste,
without proper investigation. Father, the captain, and I then hurried up to the scene; not a
moment too soon, for already the Indian had
been adjudged guilty, and the procession to
the scaffold was on its way with the prisoner.
My father interrupted the march, and demanded an interview with the leader of the
band of armed men. The leader, a resolute
man with an honest face, came forward; and
my father told him that he had interrupted the
execution lest the miners should do a rash
act, under excitement, which they might forever regret, and claimed to know upon what
-evidence they were about to take a human life.
The man replied that this Indian had killed
Major Givens with an axe while in the performance of his duty.
I Who saw him strike Major Givens with the
axe ?" said my father.
" The doctor," was the reply.
" Where is the doctor ? "
" He has gone to the camp to attend a
" Who else saw the blow struck ? "
" The chief," was the reply.
"Where is the chief?"
" There," pointing to an Indian not far away.
" Bring -him  here with an interpreter," said 214
my father, who then carefully examined him;
and the chief admitted all that was charged
against the prisoner, and said that he saw the
blow struck which killed Major Givens. Other
witnesses testified to the same.
Mr. Fuller (I think that was the leader's
name) then said, " We have no court, no judge,
no marshal, here. The government gives us
no protection, and we are obliged to protect
ourselves. We are daily exposed on our way
to and return from the mining-camp; and we
must punish the murderers of our comrades, or
be ourselves murdered." He seemed a sober,
serious, brave man, and said he was from Massachusetts.
Then the white men who were armed with
rifles, about twenty-seven in all, formed around
the gallows to prevent a rescue by the hostile
Indians who were near.
The prisoner mounted the scaffold with undaunted air, and stood under the cross-beam
from which hung the fatal rope. His hands
were tied, and the noose placed around his
neck. He repeated the Lord's Prayer in pretty
good English. It seemed a strange coincidence,
that the three murderers were all Christians,
converted by the faithful missionaries, as we
were told. After saying, " Good-by Indians,
good-by white men," a red silk  handkerchief, ALASKA.
presented by an Indian woman, was passed up
on the point of a bayonet, and tied over his
A long rope ran from the stud which supported the plank upon which the Indian stood ;
and the leader of the band of miners, amid the
most impressive silence, said in a loud, clear
voice of stern command, " Let every miner in
this camp bear a hand to the rope, and take his
share in the responsibilities of this hour!"
The order was obeyed. A jerk of the rope
— the plank fell, and the murderer's neck was
instantly broken by his fall.
We moved away in silence, and went sadly
back to the steamer; and, as we left this place
of violence and lawless death, we felt that our
government had neglected its duty in failing
to organize a Christian rule over this wild ter-
ritory which we had purchased.
As we slowly steamed away in the dusky
afternoon, we looked back from the deck; and
on the gallows of new wood, standing out
against the dark background, we saw the
swinging body of the dead, and heard only
the lapping of the wavelets on the beach,
and the requiem-dirge of the moaning winds
along the mountains.
July 3I# — On our way back to Fort Wronger!, where we intended to take the mails on 2l6
board, we went outside, and experienced quite a
swell. Passing through a channel, we touched
bottom : the ship reeled, but recovered herself,
the speed of eleven knots carrying her over
the shoal in safety. There was no sign on the
chart accounting for it.
At Wrangell we took on board an interesting
fur-trader, named Sylvester, on his way to Victoria, where he hoped to dispose of his annual
supply of two thousand pelts.
Aug. i. — About noon we changed salutes,
with the English man-of-war the " Murine," on
its way to Sitka, having Admiral and Mrs..
Lyons on board.
Aug. 2.—Weather not quite so propitious..
Somewhat rough on Queen Charlotte's Sound.
Mr. Sylvester, the fur-trader, on my father's,
remarking that the scenery we were just then
passing was very grand, replied, I Yes; but I
guess I'd rather see a haycock."
Mr. Sylvester was bred in Maine, and had
long been an express-carrier in Washington
Territory, and slept night after night on the
snow upon evergreen boughs, and endured.
countless dangers from wild beasts and wild
men, and was rather tired of mountain scenery.
Parting with the fur-trader, he presented to me-.
a fine specimen of red-fox skin. ALASKA.
We reached Victoria, on our return voyage,
the 4th of August. Capt. Carroll courteously
took us from Nanaimo in the steamer " Idaho,"
and thus facilitated our homeward journey. At
Nanaimo we parted with the steamer " Eureka,"
in which we had passed so many interesting
and happy days. To Capt. Hunter, from whom
we received every possible kindness and delicate attention, we are deeply indebted. A more
watchful and careful officer never commanded
a ship in the dangerous and almost unknown
waters of Alaska. I gave him my revolver at
parting, and hope that any of my friends who
hereafter visit that far-off country may sail
under the care of Capt. Hunter.
The second engineer presented  me with  a
huge walrus-tusk, of solid ivory, which I much
value.    The first engineer was a man of rare
- In  a  country so vast  in extent as Alaska, 218
there is great diversity of climate, soil, and
temperature. The south line of the mainland
is 540 40' north latitude, and the north cape of
the territory runs into the Polar Sea, 710 13',—
beyond the farthest land of Norway. No one
has need to cross the Atlantic to reach a land
of the I midnight sun.'
The climate of the Aleutian Islands is tempered by the Pacific Ocean, and the Japan
currents modify the cold in many parts of
Alaska. At Sitka (lat. 570 3') the mean temperature is 440 Fahrenheit. The climate of
Southern Alaska is about the same as that
of Kentucky.
The Alaskan range contains the highest
peaks in the United States, — Mount St. Elias
19,500 feet, Mount Cook 16,000, Mount Cril-
lon 15,900, Mount Fairweather 15,500. These
measurements from the government surveys
are supposed to be thoroughly reliable. And
the Yukon River is one of the largest in the
At Fort Wrangell, Sitka, and many other
places, we saw the Kentucky blue-grass, red-
top, white clover, timothy, and other grasses
of rankest growth. We saw currants, cranberries, raspberries, dewberries, and salmonberries
in large abundance. The salmonberries were
like the blackberry in form and size, but of a m
bright salmon-color. We purchased a quantity of the various berries from the squaws for
a trifle, but found them all watery and destitute
of any richness of flavor; and even after we
had them made into a pie at the steamer, we
could not eat them with any relish. Potatoes
grow well; but in South-eastern Alaska there
, is but little arable land, and such a thing as a
plough we did not see, and no evidence that
one had ever been there.
We passed marble mountains much larger
than those of Carrara.
The wealth of Alaska is chiefly in its furs,
timber, mines, and fisheries, which latter are far
beyond any thing on the globe. The chain of
Pacific islands, which run almost to Asia, are
said to  be  excellent  for raising cattle.
The valuable timber of Alaska is inexhaustible. The red and yellow fir abound; and the
Alaska cedar, of a bright amber yellow, capable of a very high polish, beautiful to the eye
and exceedingly fragrant, is one of the most
useful of woods.
A report upon " Ship-building on the Pacific
Coast," made to the Board of Marine Underwriters of San Francisco in 1867, by the surveyor of the Board, says, —
I The yellow cedar is undoubtedly the most valuable of all our trees for ship-building.    It is found in FROM FIFTH A VENUE  TO ALASKA.
great quantities at Coos Bay, thence along the coast
of Oregon to Port Orford'; also on the islands and
mainland of Alaska. The Indians of Alaska have
for ages used its trunk for their canoes. A vessel
built of it at Sitka thirty years ago was recently
examined, five years after she was wrecked, by the
officers of the revenue steamer 'Lincoln.' The
timbers appeared as sound and perfect as on the day
she was launched. This cedar is much finer-grained,
handsomer, more dense, and a better timber in all
respects, than any other cedar known. It grows to
a height of one hundred and seventy-five feet, with
a diameter of four feet. It is probably the finest
material for docks in the world. At Coos Bay, Mr.
A. M. Simpson informs us, there are inexhaustible
quantities of this cedar, which has been used to some
extent in the construction of the bark ' Melancthon.'
After fifteen years' use in the frame of his saw-mill,
it shows no signs of decay. Mr. Simpson expresses
the confident opinion, that heart cedar, cut from the
lower part of this tree, will outlast teak in any part
of a ship's frame."
When a government shall have been established over Alaska, under which civilized men
can be protected in their rights, the resources
will rapidly develop, and Alaska will become
one of the richest jewels in the crown of our
empire, and bring to Mr. Seward all the renown
which he anticipated, and cause lasting vexation
to our people that James Buchanan did not
insist upon 540 40' as our northern boundary. ALASKA.
Returning from Alaska, we stopped again at
Victoria, and there met a sea-captain who had
formerly commanded a vessel sailing between
San Francisco and China. He pointed out the
superior advantages which Great Britain will
have in commerce with the Orient so soon as
the Canada Pacific Railway reaches Port Moody
on the Pacific waters which separate Vancouver's Island from the mainland.    He said, —
I The route for steamers from San Francisco to
Japan and China is up the Pacific coast as far as
the north end of Vancouver's Island, and thence
westward, in order to avail of the short degrees of
longitude. The northing thus made is nearly nine
hundred miles. Vessels coming to our coast from
Asia make the entrance into Puget Sound from
three to seven days before they get off the Gate into
San Francisco Bay."
Maury, whose authority will not be questioned, writes: —
"The trade-winds place Vancouver's Island on
the wayside of the road from China and Japan to
San Francisco so completely that a trading-vessel
under canvas to the latter place would take the same
route as if she were bound for Vancouver's Island.
So that all return cargoes would naturally come
there, in order to save two or three weeks, besides
risk and expense."
• The temperature of this island is nearly that FROM FIFTH AVENUE  TO ALASKA.
of Virginia; and Victoria, which is in latitude
480 25^ (Paris being in latitude 480 50'), is
quite as mild as the city of New York.
A few years ago it was 1 proved " that Canada could not build a railroad to the Pacific,
just as Dr. Lardner " demonstrated " that steamships could never navigate the ocean with success. But the day is near when the Canada
railway will bring passengers from Quebec to
Port Moody, and when British ships will take
away our chiefest trade with the two great
•empires across the Pacific. Then will the
American people begin to realize the stupendous folly of the Buchanan-Pakenham treaty
of 1846, by which we gave away an empire,
and perilled the richest commerce of the world. FROM VICTORIA   TO PORTLAND.
On the 6th of August we left Victoria, on
our way back through the beautiful waters of
Puget Sound.
In the evening we reached Tacoma, where
at the hotel we saw a little black-bear cub, lately
caught, only five months old, have a fight with
a large pointer; and, contrary to my expectations, the dog turned tail.
The next day we reached Portland at 5.30
p.m., where we were delighted by the comfortable house and hospitable kindness of Mr. and
Mrs. Schultze. Smoke from the forest fires
still overhangs the city. 224
On Thursday, Aug. 9, we left Portland by
the Oregon Railway and Navigation Company
line, in company with Mr. Paul Schultze, for the
Yellowstone Park by the way of the Northern
Pacific road.
Wallula, where the Oregon Railway and
Navigation Company's road joins the Northern
Pacific, is three hundred and fourteen miles
from Portland. The road runs along the south-
ern bank of the great Columbia River, through
some of the grandest scenery of the globe.
The mountains look like towers, fortresses,
cathedrals, made by giant hands, — weird, fantastic structures, resembling Dore's baseless
castles. These begin about forty-two miles
from Portland.
The cascades are a few miles farther on ; and
the rapids, called the Dalles, are some forty
miles east of the cascades.    Here the shores ALONG   THE  COLUMBIA  RIVER.
of the great river are treeless and barren ; and
the banks are heaped with fine sea-sand like
the ocean, and present a very singular appearance.
The difference between high and low water
caused by the freshets at the Dalles is eighty
feet. Here the vast river, which in many places
near its mouth is more than five miles wide,
rushes through a gorge only one hundred and
twenty feet in width, while the depth is enormous.
We pass the salmon-wheels and Chinese
camps of the road-workers. At the Dalles,
Indians were catching salmon by dipping them
out with hand-nets.
Now we are passing through miles of scoriae,
a black volcanic composition, and not a single
tree in sight.
The engineer told me that the hewn ties
lasted much longer than the sawn ones, as the
jarring of the wood fibres of the hewn was less.
Along  the   Snake   River  were   fine   lands.
Went through Flathead reservations.
Passing through Idaho and Montana, we met
forest fires on all sides. Crossed over the
highest trestle-bridge in America, two hundred
and twenty-six feet, and I believe the highest
in the world next to the noted Freibourg bridge.
All along the road we found a company of. 226
United-States troops encamped, who had been
called in to quell a slight rising of the Indians,
who had robbed a man.
Seeing a new grave with a crutch planted
over it in place of a tombstone, inquired the
cause, and found that a lame man who had repeatedly robbed the Wells Fargo coach was
finally captured and lynched; and this was
placed over to mark the spot where Lame Joe
met his death.
At Ainsworth, fourteen miles above Wallula,
the great Snake River enters the Columbia.
There the railroad leaves the river, and runs
north-east to the Spokane Falls, which are 374
miles from Portland ; thence to Clark's Fork of
the Columbia, 471 miles from Portland, to Lake
Pend d'Oreille; thence along Clark's Fork
south-east to Missoula, from Portland 633
miles, which we reached Aug. 10, in the afternoon, where we remained all night in the cars.
E ©
We went to the hotel for supper, and there
took breakfast the next morning.
We found at the hotel a peculiar style of
conversation, as we waited for supper on the
piazza of the house. A good many were
standing around, waiting for the meal, who
seemed to be residents. One comes up to
another, and says, —
I What do you know ?" ALONG   THE  COLUMBIA  RIVER.
The one addressed replies, 1 Know that you
are a damned fool," which is taken in  good-
After supper one comes out of the dining-
room, picking his teeth with his fingers, and
another says to him, —
1 Been filling up, hain't you ?    What did you
" Fried grubs," was the reply.
" Any rotten eggs ?" says the other.
" Yes, and a dead chicken," was the retort.
" Wouldn't eat a live one, would you ? " was-
the rejoinder.
The road being unfinished, at this point we
took carriages, and began our sixty-five-mile
drive over the rolling country of Montana. At
Hawk's Ranch we changed horses, and continued our journey to Kean's.
Our driver was totally ignorant of the way;:
which, added to the startling news that a stage-
J © ©
robbery had occurred on this same road but a
week before, quite kept us alive to the beauty
and novelty of the situation. Mr. Schultze's
endeavor to make the drive of ninety-five miles
in a day and a half instead of two days and a
half, by making a short cut, placed the driver
in the predicament of handling four horses
over ground with which he was. totally unfamiliar.    Wading rivers, ploughing our way through :228
bogs, crossing the unfinished track many times,
compelled us, in order to avoid an upset, to
attach a rope to the top of the coach, and
required all to hold on while going down a
bad grade; I generally also standing on the
brake. The brake finally broke, and it had
to be mended with ropes. At last we saw
through the darkness some twinkling lights,
which proved to be from the camp-fires of the
track-workers, one of whom kindly guided us
until we reached Kean's, an eating-house where
the stages going the regular route usually halt
for lunch. The little tavern was full; and we
slept on the floor, there being but one bed,
and that was given to my father.
In the early morning the landlord came into
the room, and asked us for " bitters," which
meant whiskey. Mr. Moore, a fellow-traveller,
had a flask, and supplied the pressing wants of
our host.
At eight a.m. we started to go across the
§ Rockies," a distance of some thirty miles, to
Helena, the capital of Montana. Fearful roads,
rocks, jolts, bogs, ruts, upheavals, and crashes
of every thing; to say nothing of one hill, the
descent of which was actually so steep that we
all had to get off in order to lessen the momentum. We saw on this day's drive no game,
and but few birds. Soil seemed poorer east of
the Rockies than west.   • ALONG   THE  COLUMBIA  RIVER.
On the morning of the 7th the mine was
sprung which broke apart the remaining partition of earth and clay and rock, one hundred
and twelve feet thick, in the famed Mullen
Tunnel. The Atlantic and Pacific met, and the
workers from the East hailed their Western
friends. This reminded me of the St. Gothard
tunnel, which so closely binds France, Switzerland, and Italy, making a direct communication.
We reached Helena on Sunday, the 12th of
August, at mid-day, and learned that the mail-
coach had been stopped by robbers (or by road-
agents, as the phrase is), and the mail and
every passenger robbed.
Helena is a great mining-town. To-day being Sunday, all things are in uproar. Every
other house on the main street is a gambling-
house, saloon, or house of ill-fame. All places
are open, and faro is at its height. In one den
I saw a very exciting game of poker, the " pile "
in the centre of the table sometimes amounting
to a thousand dollars. The saloons in full sway
were rendered attractive and alluring in every
conceivable manner; resembling in this respect,
though from a much lower standpoint, Horn-
burg, Baden-Baden, and Weisbaden, in the bygone days of the Golden Coursal or the present
Monte Carlo.
Returning  up  the  main  street  later  on, I FROM FIFTH AVENUE   TO ALASKA.
witnessed  a pretty good stand-up  fight over
some cards.
I saw rather a curious way of covering the
sale of whiskey under the garb of religion.
Observing   a   saloon   from   which   numerous
miners were issuing, more or less in a state of
inebriation, I entered, and found a large organ
placed in one corner, and the miners fast getting drunk to the strains of I Onward, Christian
We met Col. Saunders, leader of the old
Montana Vigilants, who took us to the First
National Bank, where we saw some large nug-
gets of native gold, one assayed and stamped
$420, another $250, also one at $325 ; the last
one shown weighing 47.70 ounces, being valued at $945. BOZEMAN.
Aug. 13. — Started by rail, at five a.m., for
"Bozeman. Met Mr. Eldridge on the train,
•engineer of the Northern Pacific Railroad for
the Rocky-Mountain District. He was most
kind in his attentions, and his care in helping
us to arrange our outfit will always be remembered.
Through a letter of Gen. Sherman to Major
Gordon at Fort Ellis, we were provided with an
ambulance and four mules, and an "A" tent,
which, added to a light Studebaker escort-
wagon for provisions, three ponies, and the
other necessaries for a camping-tour, completed
our outfit. A driver from the fort for the
ambulance, a sergeant, my own man Murray for
the escort-wagon, and Wyatt, an old hunter,
who afterwards joined me with his three ponies,
made up the party.
On the way to Fort Ellis, we drove through
thousands of gopher-holes. These little animals, resembling  rats with  the  addition of a 232 FROM FIFTH AVENUE   TO ALASKA.
bushy tail, sat on the edge of their subterranean
passages, very much like the prairie-dog; their
movements when startled being marvellously
quick. In Florida the gopher is a kind of land-
turtle, the holes caused by them being much
more dangerous for horses.
Ladies' society was quite limited at the fort |
and yet those we found, like true Americans,
made the best of every thing, and even attempted to speak cheerfully of the long, cold,,
dreary winters, which must be very tedious.
The ladies, officers, Mr. Eldridge, and my
father all went to hear Henry Ward Beecher
lecture in the evening. His subject was " The
Reign of the Common People." Men in every
kind of dress, and women with crying babies
in their arms, crowded to hear him; and all
were eager listeners except the babies, who-
were eager squallers: When Mr. Beecher attacked with sarcastic ridicule the old theology,
he was loudly applauded. The stillness of the
crowded room was frequently interrupted by
great outbursts of yelling, proceeding from one
or more animate objects held in the arms, called
babies. The nightly revelry of cats was slight,
compared with the vociferous powers of these
funny embryo specimens of humanity. Finally,
as a mother rose to go out with her infant, Mr..
Beecher paused, and, as the  precious  charge BOZEMAN.
was   rapidly  disappearing,   remarked,   "There
lies the basis for a future public speaker."
Aug. 15. — Provisions, buffalo-robes, guns,
fishing-rods, cooking-utensils, blankets, all being packed, we bade good-by to Mr. Eldridge,
exchanged farewells with our kind friends at
Fort Ellis, and started.
My little sorrel pony went grandly. I had'
put a double Mexican cinche on him, snaffle-
bit, and single saddle-blanket, and began to feel
that I had made a good purchase. He was a
three-quarters-bred Oregon horse, and, though
not quite broken, I felt his speed and endurance
were good; a look at his deep chest, small ears,
slim, tapering limbs, and muscular shoulders,
showing good running-blood. He was the only
Western pony, among the dozens that I have
ridden, which came up to my boyhood ideal
"wild mustang; " for, as a rule, for ugliness in
shape, size, color, and temper, give me the
broncho, though for roping cattle, endurance,
and ability to stand exposure, they are unequalled.
To-day we travelled twenty-one miles, and
pitched camp at Trail Creek in the pleasant,
society of Dr. Bushnell, his wife and baby,.
Mrs. Bushnell's sister, and Miss Bingham, all
from Fort Ellis.
Let me devote a line to the baby.    I am not FROM FIFTH A VENUE   TO ALASKA.
generally favorably disposed toward babies ; but
to my certain knowledge, during the fourteen
days that we camped out in the party, I can at
present remember no instance of that child
yelling, — a feat which I can safely dismiss with
the refrain " Extraordinary ! " Whether this remarkable phenomenon arose from knowing
when the exact moment had arrived for placing
the rubber tube connecting with the well-known
bottle between its lips, I am unable to judge;
but, be it as it may, that baby never bawled
•once, although this was its first experience in
" roughing it."
© ©
I unfortunately found to-day that my sorrel
understood the art  called I bucking."    I   had
been warned, before starting, concerning this
peculiarity, but never dreamed of its actually
•ever taking place. To those accustomed to
their park nags or beatifully trained hunters,
the I buck" is naturally unknown, as it is a vice
peculiar to the western broncho or cayuse. If
any of my readers can imagine the sensation
of suddenly (when his thoughts are far away)
feeling his horse curl its head and tail under its
legs, bow its back, shoot up in the air like a
catapult, and come down stiff-legged, let him
condole with me. I had had it tried on me
to some slight extent in California, but never
in the " thoroughbred " manner.    It is all well BOZEMAN.
enough for the Mexican " buckquero riders,"
the professional Western horse-breakers, to say,
"Throw your feet forward, sit way back, and
give yourself up to the recoil." I tried: the
pony saved me all trouble in the way of giving
up to the recoil, for at the fourth buck no
dynamite ever sent up a corporeal body more
swiftly than mine went from that saddle. Somewhat dazed, I recaught the brute, got on, and
for the rest of the day got off without his
Catching a few fish while the men built a
fire, pitched a tent, ground the coffee, and
baked the bread, we soon gathered round for
supper; and, after writing as long as the dying
light would permit, we all turned in, and our
first night's camp-life began in earnest.
My three ponies broke their picket-ropes
this morning, and were found by the driver,
who gave chase on mule-back three miles to
the northward.
The nights grew cold very soon after sundown, quite an extreme after the fierce heat of
Monday. We made a thirty-five-mile drive
to-day, and before sundown enjoyed some fair
trout-fishing in the Yellowstone River.
I was twice bucked off this afternoon; the
last time coming very near being killed, hurled
as I was clear over the pony's head, and landing '■36
a few inches from a huge bowlder. I found, on
remounting, that the last jolt had quite disabled
me, my hip and left shoulder being very lame ;
so that after riding a little farther I was obliged
to get into the ambulance. The next day I
tried him once more : but, as he could not stand
a gun on his back, we used him as a pack-horse
for the rest of the trip; and, during my hunt
in the Hoodoo Mountains, I rode two well-
broken old cayuses, which would stand any thing,
from the firing of a gun to an avalanche.
We saw a large number of hawks near the
encampment, and at night the full moon
brought out clearly several owls seeking for
prey.  .110 "
—: ---X..,—
Pilot' Kkoi--.
Hoo4oo Mtf.
Aug. 17. — Hard day's drive, steep hills.
Arrived at Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel, which
was still in a very unfinished state. Eatables
of the house were nearly all consumed, not
enough allowance having been made for the
large concourse of transient visitors. Senators
Cameron, Logan, and Dawes were there, having just returned from a flying trip through the
We were prevailed upon to sleep at the hotel
instead of our tent, and were given a large
room called the Tower Chamber, finding a bed
quite a luxury after the hard ground. This
hotel, which we reached in the afternoon of the
17th, is at the north end of the Yellowstone
We camped out in the government enclosure, near the hotel, intending to start the next
morning for the tour of the park.
We had ten horses in camp, but the next
morning my fine saddle-horse was gone.    We 218
supposed that he had been stolen. Search was
made by three of our men in every direction,
but without success. Towards evening I was
told by Mr. Hobart of the hotel that he thought
we had been I cashed ; " that meant, as he told
us, that the horse had been secreted for the
purpose of theft or reward. A German at the
hotel told my father that he thought the horse
could be found. My father replied, " Bring
me the horse before dark, and I will give you
ten dollars." The man mounted a mustang,
and in thirty minutes the horse was delivered.
We had no more trouble about our horses;
but towards the end of the season horse-thieves
made a raid upon the park, and several tourists
had their horses stolen when far away from any
assistance, and suffered much in consequence.
These  difficulties will  cease, under the   good
management of the Park Improvement Company, by another season.
This land of natural wonders lies in the
Rocky Mountains, at the north-west corner of
Wyoming, embracing a.- narrow strip of Idaho
and Montana on the west, and a small portion
from the territory of Montana on the north.
Its boundaries are rectangular, and by the Act
of Congress passed in 1872 are thus defined : — YELLOWSTONE PARK.
"Commencing at the junction of Gardiner River
with the Yellowstone River, and running east to
the meridian passing ten miles to the eastward of
the most eastern point of Yellowstone Lake; thence
south along the said meridian to the parallel of latitude passing ten miles south of the most southern
point of Yellowstone Lake; thence west along said
parallel to the meridian passing fifteen miles west of
the most western point of Madison Lake; thence
north along said meridian to the latitude of the junction of the Yellowstone and Gardiner Rivers; thence
east to the place of beginning."
Since no accurate survey has yet been made,
neither the exact size, nor the latitude or
longitude, is known. It is supposed to be at
least sixty-five miles from north to south, and
fifty-five miles from east to west; but the. superintendent told us that he was quite sure that
this was an under-estimate. The south line is
believed to be about 440 north latitude, and the
east line about 1 io° west longitude.    New-York
City is  400 42'  north  latitude,   and   740 west
It is worthy of note, that the Yellowstone
Lake itself is at an elevation of 7,780 feet, and
that the park contains two mountains each
near eleven thousand feet, and three more are
each about ten thousand feet, besides twenty-
five others which are quite high. Many of
these   mountains  bear   personal names:   thus i' • v
Mount Washburn was named after Gen. Washburn ; Dunraven, after Lord Dunraven ; Mount
Everts, after Mr. Everts, a member of a party
under the leadership of Gen. Washburn in
1870, formed to explore the Yellowstone River.
While near the head of the lake, Mr. Everts became lost; and, suffering untold hardships from
hunger and cold, he became insane, and was
© I
found wandering near the Mammoth Springs.
So early as the expedition of Lewis and
Clark across the continent in 1803 or 1804, a
trapper named Colter, who accompanied that
celebrated exploration, having left the companyr
was captured by Blackfeet Indians, from whom
he escaped. In his wanderings he saw the
boiling, springs and some of the geysers; and
as early as 1810 he was in Missouri, relating
marvellous tales of lakes burning with brim-
stone, of pits of fire, and spouting hot water.
His stories were treated as the inventions of a
brain driven to lunacy by suffering; but a party
under Capt. Lacy visited the Lower Geyser
Basin in 1863, and gave the first credited information of its marvels. In 1871 Professor Hay-
den made an extended tour through this region,
o ©
and in 1872 presented a proposition to Congress to reserve a section of the territory as a
national park. YELLOWSTONE PARK.
I found it difficult to obtain trustworthy information as to distances in the park. Between the same points, one driver, familiar with
the road, would give the distance as thirty
miles, while another equally well acquainted
would call the distance forty-five miles; and
not infrequently, the nearer we drew towards
our point of destination, the greater the distance would be, according to the information
given by those we met. I attribute this partly
to the execrable condition of the roads. I give
the distances from the most reliable sources
within my reach : they will be found proximately
The great Northern Pacific road runs parallel
with the north line of the park, fifty-eight
miles distant. A branch of that road runs from
Livingston, fifty-six miles, to within two miles
of the park; whence stages carry passengers
six miles to the National Mammoth Springs
Hotel, which is four miles south of the north
line of the park.
From Livingston the road runs south along
the valley of the Yellowstone, through mountain
scenery, and canons of the river, magnificent
and wild.
At the  north  line of the  park, where  the 242
Gardiner River enters the Yellowstone, the
course of the Gardiner is from south to north.
The Yellowstone, rising in the Yellowstone
Lake near the south side of the park, runs
with many windings northerly until near Livingston, when it turns east. Through its valley
the Northern Pacific is for many miles built.
Entering the park from the north, the first
thing which surprises the visitor on reaching
the National Hotel is the great terrace of
The terrace rises a thousand feet above the
Gardiner River, which runs near, and two hundred feet above the plateau of the valley in
which it is built by the ceaseless flow of the
hot springs, which leave a calcareous deposit.
This deposit covers an area of three square
miles, and the recent deposits on which the hot
springs are now boiling occupy about a hundred and seventy acres. Terrace after terrace,
mostly white as chalk, composed chiefly of lime,
soda, silica, and magnesia, rise from the level
upon which the great hotel stands, to the height
of two hundred feet.
Considering the superb mountain views seen
from this place, taken in connection with the
strange appearances of the cones and terraces
constructed by the flow of the smoking springs, YELLOWSTONE PARK.
there is no one place in the park more interesting and wonderful than the Mammoth Springs.
They are seldom seen as they ought to be.
When people arrive here, they are tired; and
when they return from the tour of the park,
they are more tired. The great boiling springs
on the terraces can be seen only through a
somewhat difficult walk, as no horse can pass
over them. Their vastness and variety cannot
be appreciated at all without walking over and
around them.
The wonderful formations are in strange artistic shapes, made by magnesia, soda, lime, sulphur, and probably silica, held in solution by
the hot water, which, flowing over, slowly hardens much as water congeals when passing over
a surface in an atmosphere below the freezing
point. Indeed, no one can walk around any
of the geysers or hot springs in the park without being reminded of ice-formations which he
has seen at waterfalls in winter.
The  bewildering  views   from  the  hills, the
canons of the Gardiner River, — appearing to
be only a few rods from the hotel, but when
reached are found to be nearly two miles away,
and the return seems more than two miles; the
boiling springs by the river-side in which the
fishermen boil trout on the hook, which they
have caught in the cold stream within  reach \
tr' 244
the deep caves on the hotel plateau, left entirely open (about which I heard an Irishman,
last Sunday, mournfully say to his companion,
■ What a shame that these holes are not covered up! A man cannot get tight without
falling in, and that would be the last of him;"
and he reeled indignantly away), — these all
combined gave this section of the park many
varied attractions.
To make a tour of the park as it should be
made, and return to the hotel at the Hot
Springs, requires a journey of two hundred
miles, over the roughest, hilliest, steepest, stoniest, stumpiest, joltiest, dustiest roads that
wheels drawn by horses ever passed; many
parts of the roads being built of round logs,
which give variety to the violence of jolting.
Except for the Grand Hotel at the Hot
Springs, there are no hotels in the park, unless
the small building near the Firehole River,
called I Marshall's," can be called a hotel.
There are tents stationed in various places
where tourists are supposed to be able to sleep
(but they tell me that they can't).
Three persons, making a tour of the park,
need a covered wagon with driver and four
mules, an escort-wagon with driver and two
horses, an extra horse and saddle, and a third
man to cook, and aid in pitching and striking YELLOWSTONE PARK.
the tents. As all the bedding, food, and cooking-utensils must be carried along, the loads-
are heavy; and the roads are such that you
cannot drive many miles in a day, and ten days
are needed for the trip. Of course this is ex-.
pensive; but it is the only way, at present, to
see the park with any satisfaction. To see it
with any degree of comfort, in the present state
of the roads, is impossible, unless you ride on
horseback in a hot sun, and have an escort of
many pack-mules; but it is worth seeing at
almost any cost or discomfort.
I made the tour on horseback, and rather
.enjoyed it. But my father and companions
were in a government-wagon; and the complaints of each and all who were driven in any
kind of vehicle were universal. The excessive
alkaline dust, so irritating to the eyes and
throat, and parching to the lips and face, was
exceedingly uncomfortable ; and tenting out is,
at best, a nuisance. The sun was intensely
hot, and the atmosphere as arid as an African
desert. So soon as the sun sets, it grows cool;
and nearly every night the water in the buckets
at the door of our tents was frozen from an
eighth to a quarter of an inch in thickness.
Next year, I dare say, there will be large improvements. Mr. Rufus Hatch of New York,
president of the Park Improvement Company, 246
has excellent plans, which he will be likely to
carry out, and which if carried out will make a
visit to the park more easy and agreeable.
Mr. Hatch has been at the park this season, in
charge of a party of some eighty persons of
different sexes, ages, nations, and tongues; and
his consummate tact and quiet diplomacy have
kept them all in apparent good-humor. We
are greatly indebted to Mr. Hatch for many
valuable courtesies.
This reservation is called a 1 park," which
conveys the idea of a pleasure-ground, and no
railroad is permitted within it; but it is a wild
region of lofty mountains, dense forests, large.
lakes and rivers, with falls both grand and beautiful, besides canons of vast depth, innumerable geysers, and boiling pools of wondrous
size and startling power, and these spread over
an area larger than that of the States of Rhode
Island and Delaware combined. It is safe to
say, that, of the thousands who have visited
this amazing region, not one can be found who
will not say that a railroad in the park is a
necessity, and that, the sooner it is permitted,
the sooner will the object be attained for which
the government set apart this domain. It is
impossible to construct a comfortable carriage-
road through the park, upon any appropriations
which the government will make.    The uneven- YELLOWSTONE PARK.
ness of the country, and the thick pine and
spruce forests, render the construction of roads
very expensive ; and the peculiarity of the soil
and climate forbid the construction of any excellent carriage-road at any reasonable cost.
The soil is generally a fine calcareous alkaline powder, of geyser formation, light as calcined magnesia. During July, August, and
September, it scarcely rains ; and the dust of
the roads, travelled by horses' feet and many
wheels, rises during the heated day in clouds
from which there is no escape, and from which
the eyes, ears, nose and lips, throat and lungs,
must needs suffer. It is no exaggeration to say,
that often, when we were all compelled to get
out on account of being obliged to lift the carriage aside so that those meeting us could pass,
the dust was literally ankle-deep.
Many accidents occur, and many horses break
down ; some stray at night, and others were
supposed to be stolen. The inconvenience
and dangers arising from bad roads and slow
transit are large indeed; and we do not think
that these will ever be remedied until a railroad
is made to the principal points, from which at
moderate distances roads and bridle-paths could
If railroad transit and hotel accommodations
•at different points are not introduced, much of 248
the value of the park is sure to be destroyed.
Now scores of camp-fires are of necessity
lighted every night, and in this dry region the
fires are sure to spread. The forests are very
thick; and the wood is pine, fir, and black
spruce. When on fire, nothing but heavy rains
can stay the devastation; and no one can ride
over the park without seeing the ruins which
have already been wrought. We have seen
many camp-fires which have been left burning
after the tents were struckjl When at the Upper
Basin, a camp-fire spread into a forest towards
the west; and the flames, rushing to the high,
tops of a thousand resinous trees, made the
night grander than all the geysers combined. TOUR OF THE PARK.
After coming about fifty-six miles by rail
directly south from Livingston, coaches convey
passengers to the Great Mammoth Springs
Hotel. The building is very spacious, the
rooms large, and the ceilings high. It is quite
unfinished, and hastily constructed; but it is
very comfortable, and the table is good. The
wood of which it is built was growing in the
forest last March, as Mr. Hatch tells us. The
hotel is four miles south of the north line of
the park, and six miles from the terminus of the
Northern Pacific branch road.
Starting from the hotel to make the tour of
the park, for more than two miles, driving to
the right of the terrace, you slowly climb a
steep hill, difficult to go up, and dangerous to
come down. This hill is a foot-terrace of Terrace Mountain, which is of geyser origin. The
wonderful cone of the Lone Star Geyser can
be seen on the left of the road. At the left
you will see Swan Lake, distant from the hotel FROM FIFTH AVENUE  TO ALASKA.
five miles. You will next cross the Gardiner
Fork (seven miles and a half from the hotel),
to the upper end of Willow Park (eleven
miles), and the obsidian cliffs and Beaver Lake
(twelve miles).
These cliffs are of volcanic glass. They rise
like basalt in vertical columns : they are a thousand feet long, and from a hundred and fifty
to two hundred and fifty feet high. The glass
is nearly black, like that of which cheap bottles
are made. The glass carriage-road at the base
— a quarter of a mile long — was made by
building great fires upon the mass, and then
pouring cold water on the heated glass, in
which laborious way it was subdued to a roadbed.
The Lake of the Woods is fourteen miles
from the hotel. A short distance beyond are
Hot Springs, sixteen miles from the hotel.
You cross the Norris Fork (twenty miles), and
then reach the Norris Geyser basin (twenty
miles and a half).
No one can adequately describe these powerful geysers of every variety, from crystal streams
to thick mud thrown high in the air, the smoke,
the sulphur odors, the various colors, the rumbling  roar, the  eternal violent boiling  of so
© ©
many pools, as though fiends were below, vying
with each other in heating high the bubbling
© © ©
caldrons. TOUR  OF THE PARK.
On the verge of the road is a • hole which
sends out with incessant roar and terrific force
a blast of superheated steam. On the left of
the road is the wonderful Emerald Pool, brim
full of clearest water.
Just beyond is the Minute Geyser; and
farther to the left is the Monarch, which once
in twenty-four hours spouts a stream from a
hundred to a hundred and twenty-five feet, and
the flow of boiling water is immense. The
Fearless is near by, with a crater from which
is spouted dark-green water.
There are numerous other pools and boiling
springs and smoking basins. These must be
seen to be appreciated: no words can fairly
convey the impression which they make.
Next comes the Gibbon Paint-pot Basin;
from the hotel twenty-five miles. This beautiful place is several acres in extent, and is half
a mile north-easterly from the bluff at the head
of Gibbon Canon. It is not very easy of access,
as there is no road, and the trail is indistinct.
These "paint-pots," as they are called, are immense pools of boiling water, of every variety
of color, and grand in their vastness. They
should not be passed by. They cannot be seen
from the road; but long before you reach them,
their smoke, their smell, and their noise will
tell you where they are. 252
As you turn to your left, and enter the
Gibbon Canon, on the right is a foot-bridge over
the river. A trail leads from the bridge, up the
rough slope of the mountain, a thousand feet
above the river. You then reach the Monument Geyser Basin. This basin contains five
acres. The geysers are nearly extinct; and the
twelve monumental cones have a strange appearance, and give the name to the basin. The
belching steam is almost deafening as you
stand near, and is heard for miles : it is superheated, and will shrivel a stout young pine in a
minute. We are now from the Mammoth Hotel
over twenty-five miles.
Next come the falls of the Gibbon River,,
from the hotel twenty-nine miles. These are
on the right, and are not seen from the road :
it requires considerable exertion to reach them.
They are very fine.
Half a mile farther we come to Canon
Brook, a beautiful crooked stream.
We next reach the fork of the Firehole River,
from the hotel thirty-six miles. On the right
and west side of the river, some distance from
the main road, is a little hotel called Marshall's:
to reach this, you must ford the river.
A little more than a mile from Marshall's,
following the road, you come to the blacksmith's shop  of Graham  Henderson, who  is TOUR  OF THE PARK.
employed by the government. His log house
is at the forks of the road; the right leading to
the Upper Geyser Basin, and the left leading
to the falls and the Yellowstone Lake. This is
from the Mammoth Hotel thirty-seven miles.
Next we reach the Lower Geyser Basin, from
the Mammoth Hotel thirty-nine miles. This
basin is of large area, and in it are known to
be seventeen geysers and many hot springs.
In one of these the whitened skeleton of a
buffalo was discovered. The Fountain Gevser
is the most remarkable in this basin. West of
the geyser is a group of springs where the deposit is such that the ground appears deluged
in blood.
We next reach the Midway Basin, from the
Mammoth Hotel forty-one miles. This basin
is on the right across the Firehole River, high
above the stream. A foot-bridge leads to it:
its ever-ascending smoke will point it out. It
runs a mile along the river-bank.
The Sheridan Geyser, named after the illustrious general, is, without doubt, the largest
in the known world. Gen. Sheridan, while at
the Mammoth Springs on the 31st of August
last (1883), told my father that he was present
at an eruption of this geyser; and he subsequently wrote an account of it as follows: — 254 FROM FIFTH AVENUE   TO ALASKA.
Headquarters Military Division of the Missouri,
Chicago, Oct. 23,1883.
Hon. Edwards Pierrepont,
No. 103 Fifth Avenue, New-York City.
My dear Sir, — In reply to your note of Sept.
14, inquiring how the "Sheridan Geyser" in the
Yellowstone Park came to receive its name, I would
say that in 1881 I visited the park with Mr. Baronett
as my guide. He was the first person to tell me of
this geyser, had seen it when it first erupted, and
had named it after me from that time The crater
•of the geyser was about seventy feet in diameter,
and threw up a column of water of about that diameter and about four hundred and twenty-five feet high,
•as estimated by Mr. Baronett,* who has had great
•experience with geysers. Its period, at that time,
was* about four days. In moving out from the Geyser Basin, about four days after a previous eruption,
I stopped some time in order to see the display: but
my time would not permit me to wait longer, and I
had to move on; when I reached the Lower Geyser
Basin, the eruption took place, and I was distant from
it some three or four miles. It seemed to be of
unusual height, but I did not see it while immediately
in its vicinity.
In 1882 I revisited the Geyser Basin. I discovered
that, during the interval, the action had been very
violent: the crater had increased, and eruptions had
torn away the surface of the crater in the direction
of Firehole River, making a slight depression in the
general surface. Large blocks of stone had been
thrown out, and carried by the current through this
depression into Firehole River, while smaller rocks ! li
were scattered for some distance around the crater.
I was so unfortunate as not to see it in action a°;ain •
though after I had passed it, and was examining the
geysers of the Lower Geyser Basin, there were two
eruptions from it, separated by intervals of about
two hours, but they did not seem to be so high as
the first one I saw.
In 1883 I again visited this geyser: I did not
have an opportunity of seeing it in active condition,
but the appearance of the crater indicated that there
had been very violent action.
I enclose a letter of Surgeon W. H. Forwood,
U. S. A., who accompanied me upon each of my visits
to the Yellowstone Park, and who examined the geyser more carefully.
Very truly yours,
Lieutena?it General.
Chicago, III., Sept. 24, 1883.
Gen. Sheridan, Chicago, III.
Dear General, — In reply to your inquiry regarding my observation of the Sheridan Geyser, I have
to say that I was present, and saw an eruption of
the geyser, Aug. 21, 1882. It was early in the morning : the air was chilly, and the steam condensed
with great rapidity. The water rose at first in a
great body, perhaps twenty or thirty feet in diameter; but before it had reached fifty feet in height,
the whole place was enveloped in such a dense cloud
of steam, that I could only judge of what was going
on by the tremendous rushing noise, and the vibrations of the surrounding surface. 256
The column of steam was two hundred feet in
diameter, and shot up several hundred feet into the
air. The eruption lasted about five or six minutes,
accompanied by the throwing-out of small rocks,
fragments of the geyserite; and when it had subsided, a brisk shower, from the condensing vapor,
fell in a circuit around the crater.
The group of hot springs at this point was first
described by Dr. A. C. Peale, in United-States Geological Report for 1871, and named by him the
"Wayside Springs." The one now known as the
Sheridan Geyser was called the Caldron. Its eruptions are believed to have begun some time in 1881.
These were first discovered and pointed out by
Mr. Baronett, owner of Baronett's Bridge. Passing
from the state of a hot spring to that of a geyser,
it was entitled to a new name; and Mr. Baronett, as
the discoverer, was entitled to name it, which he did,
calling it the | Sheridan Geyser." I recognized his
priority, and adopted it in my report of 1882.
Very respectfully your obedient servant,
W.  H.  FORWOOD, Surgeon U.S.A.
An attempt has been made to call this the
Excelsior Geyser. This heated pit is three
hundred and thirty by two hundred feet. The
water is of a deep clear blue, more beautiful in
tint than any blue of the sky : it is wonderfully
transparent, and you can look down more than
twenty feet below the surface. It is intensely
agitated, and dense clouds of steam incessantly
arise: it is only when the wind sweeps the vapor TOUR OF THE PARK.
aside, that you can look deeply down. It was
not known to be a geyser until a few years ago,
when the eruption was so great that the Firehole River was so swollen as to carry away the
bridges below. Col. Norris, then the superintendent of the park, reported that in the summer of 1880 the power of the eruption was
almost incredible ; § elevating sufficient water
to heights of from a hundred to three hundred
feet, to render the Firehole River nearly a hundred yards wide, a foaming torrent of steaming hot water, and hurling rocks of from one
to a hundred pounds in weight, like those from
an exploded mine, over surrounding acres."
When in action it causes  rumbling vibrations
like an earthquake, and throws out stones like a
volcano. We did not see it in eruptive action.
It is popularly known as " Hell's Half-Acre."
The intervals of eruption are as yet unknown.
Next we reach Old Faithful in the Upper
Gevser Basin, ten miles above the forks of the
road, and from the Mammoth Springs forty-
seven miles. This basin is some four miles
long; but the principal geysers are situated on
both sides of the Firehole River, and within
the space of about half a mile. Excepting the
Sheridan Geyser, which far surpasses any other,
the chief geysers are in this basin. There are
more than twenty.
1 258
There are numerous other geysers and boiling springs in the park, but I have mentioned
the most noted. There are several on the Yellowstone Lake. They often injure the waters
of the lakes and rivers into which their overflow runs, rendering them warm and disagreeable to the taste, and often unhealthy.
We now return to Henderson's (the blacksmith's) at the road-forks, some ten miles north
of Old Faithful. Taking the easterly and left
fork of the road, we advance towards the Yellowstone Lake; and going twenty-two miles
we come to the other forks, the right leading
to the lake (ten miles), and the left going to
the falls (eight miles) : hence from forks of
road at the blacksmith's shop to the lake is
thirty-two miles, and to the falls thirty miles.
The distance from the Mammoth Springs
Hotel to Old Faithful in the Upper Geyser
Basin, thence to the Yellowstone Lake, and
thence back to the Mammoth Springs, is' by
the carriage-road a hundred and seventy-five
miles; and the collateral distance travelled over
in bridle-paths to see the Yellowstone Canons
and various other curiosities is twenty-five
miles, making in all two hundred miles.
The lake has no considerable attractions. It
has no snow mountains. Geysers and hot
springs flow in some places; and with a little TOUR OF THE PARK.
wind the waters are made t;urbid, and unfit to
drink. The trout are large and sickly, full of
white worms, which make them very thin and
unfit for food, and no more gamey than a bullhead or a codfish. The lake is said to be
twenty miles by fifteen, and very deep. It may
be "crystal clear" in some places, but we saw
no such. In and around the lake and river, we
saw innumerable swans, geese, pelicans, ducks,
and many snipe and woodcock.
In the river we caught many healthy trout,
which were gamey enough, and took the fly
quite eagerly.
Camped on the road to the lake. Went out
with Wyatt in the hope of seeing some game j
found plenty of old " sign," but nothing else.
We came across one curiosity which all the
men said had never been seen in the whole of
their hunting experiences, — the winter-quarters of a bear, surrounded by mounds of deposit ; and, as it is generally supposed that
bears take no nourishment during their winter
seclusion, this circumstance surprised us all.
To reach the falls, we return from the lake
ten miles by the' road, and following the north
fork some two miles we reach on our right
Sulphur Mountains or Crater Hills.   These hills 260
are about a hundred and fifty feet high, composed of calcareous substances t impregnated
with sulphur and iron. At the foot of the hills
are numerous sulphur-springs. The sulphur-
deposits are very pure, and hundreds of tons
lie in heaps of bright yellow crystals. The
fumes are quite powerful as they rise from the
boiling caldrons, and a serious accident happened to a horseman who rode too near one of
them.    They are very curious and wonderful.
From Sulphur Mountains you proceed about
six miles until you reach the Upper Fall of a
.hundred and twelve feet.
Between the Upper and Lower Falls, the distance is half a mile. Midway on the west side
are the Crystal Cascades, which are the falls of
a small, wild, rocky stream which rises in Mount
Washburn, and runs into the Yellowstone:
these three cascades are very beautiful, and
make a fall of about a hundred and thirty feet.
Here the Yellowstone rushes almost due north
through a very narrow gorge, and the Great
Fall of three hundred feet or more soon appears. The waters are very green. The Lower
Fall is far deeper than the Upper, but in many
respects the Upper is the more attractive.
.But the Grand Canon, twenty-four miles long
and at some points twelve hundred feet deep,
is said to be far the most wonderful mountain TOUR  OF THE PARK.
gorge yet discovered in the world. Its lofty
rugged sides, brilliant with varied colors, are
marvellous indeed. We observed that tourists
loved to linger here above any other place in
the park, and artists from Europe were sketching its unrivalled beauties.
This park, — wonderland as it is called, —
large as a European principality, has been but
partially explored; and new discoveries are
pretty sure to be made. I have the assurance
from competent and trustworthy men, that,
since shooting at game is prohibited, the lakes
will soon be alive with wild geese, ducks, swans,
and other water-fowl, and the meadows and
plains full of buffalo, deer, antelope, elk, and the
wild big-horn sheep, with bears also, unless they
are excepted from the order preventing the
killing of game.
© ©
The present roads are to a large extent unwisely laid out, the engineering very defective,
and the construction atrocious ; but the government has lately put the roads under the charge
of Lieut. Kingman, who is said to be a very
competent engineer. We met him in the park.
He is a young man of agreeable manners,
intelligence, and energy, and much may be
expected from his New-England industry and
ambition for success.
There can be no doubt that increasing num- 262
bers will visit this interesting region as the
facilities of transit and hotel accommodations
increase; and it is to be hoped that scientific
men will be able before long to satisfy themselves and the world as to whether the geysers
and boiling pools come of the chemical action
of water upon lime and other minerals, or from
internal fires kept burning in the earth.
As you drive through the park you will see
miles upon miles of thick tall forest, covering
an area of more than a hundred thousand acres,
in which every tree is dead, not a living branch
or leaf appearing. The trees stand thick and
upright, their limbs firm, and the fine bushy
spray nearly perfect even to the ends of their
branches ; their color is ashy white, and in the
moonlight they seem like forest corpses standing erect where the blast of death struck them
all at once. On many hillsides you will see
forests longer dead, prostrate by the winds,
covering the ground thickly as wheat-straws on
a cradled field.
You need not travel to Yellowstone Lake to
catch trout in a cold stream, and boil them in
a pool, without changing your tracks : you can
do it on the banks of the Gardner River, within two miles of the Mammoth Hotel.
On the 30th of August the President arrived, TOUR OF THE PARK.
■escorted by Gen. Sheridan, and accompanied
by Secretary Lincoln, Senator Vest, Judge
Rollins, the accomplished surrogate of New
York, Gov. Crosby; and others. A cavalcade
of mules and horses, three hundred in number,
attended them. They had made an easy journey on horseback, the horses walking the entire way, and stopping a few minutes for rest
•every hour.
The distinguished party encamped near the
springs; and in the evening the President, with
Gen. Sheridan and the rest, visited the hotel,
where he was entertained with music, etc.
They left early on the 31st for Livingston en
route by the Northern Pacific for St. Paul.
I was hunting in the Hoodoo Mountains at
the time, and did not see the President; but my
father was at the springs, from whom I received
the information about the President's visit.
We noticed, while at the falls, a bird by the
water's edge, picking up his food with great
industry; and on examination we found that he
was extracting from a little stone house a worm,
which for its dwelling had cemented together
small particles of granite in a curious manner:
the mosaic-work was wonderful, and the glue
was not dissolved by the water.
Mr. Brown, an English artist, was here, taking in water-colors some of the more beautiful
views of this marvellous canon. 264
Just here the retriever of Dr. Bushnell rushed
into the camp, with his nose full of porcupine-
quills ; he yelping with pain as most of them
were extracted, while some of them broke off,
too deeply embedded to be pulled out.
Here I had some superb trout-fishing, by
climbing down a very steep cliff, and getting
close to the fall where there were some pools
out of the main current, and which evidently
had not been fished; for, the moment I threw
the small white miller, the rush to seize it was
immense. The sport was so exciting that it
was dark before I was aware; and the dangerous ascent delayed me so long that the camp,
became alarmed for my safety, and commenced
a search. I hardly appreciated the peril until
the next day, when I saw that a misstep would
have sent me down the canon many hundred
feet. However, I had the pleasure of a fine
catch of trout which had never experienced
the sensation of being caught before.
© ©
To those who enjoy trout-fishing and shooting big game, the Yellowstone, its tributaries,
and the Hoodoo Mountains, afford a healthfuL
pleasure of unequalled attraction. LOST IN THE HOO.DOO MOUNTAINS. 26$.
Early on the 26th of August I left the Great
Falls of the Yellowstone with a hunter Mr.
Wyatt, and Mr. Murray to assist us, taking the
three pack-horses, and three saddle-horses to
My father, with the government escort, returned to the National Hotel at the Mammoth
Springs; and I with my party started for a hunt
of three weeks in Wyoming, east of the park,
among the Hoodoo Mountains, a range north
of the Big Horn and Stinking Water.
© ©
This is the region known as the land of petrified forests, or Goblin Mountains; difficult of
access, very wild, of great altitude, and a good
place for " Rocky-Mountain sheep " or 1 bighorn," an animal which I had always longed to
kill. Its cunning is even greater than that of
the chamois or ibis; and it is immeasurably
more difficult to shoot than the noble elk — to
my mind the monarch of the forest. i66
We filed along the canon side, looking down
a thousand, and at times twelve hundred, feet,
to the Yellowstone below. Our six ponies in
line made quite a cavalcade. Wyart led, on a
grand black hunting-pony not afraid of bears,
though apt to shy at any small animal like a
chipmunk running across his path; the suddenness being to him more terrifying than any real
danger. Next came the first " pack," a roan
£ayuse named " Mud Geyser," lazy, sure-footed,
slow, and fat. Next then, your humble servant, riding I White Stockings," a pretty sorrel,
very steady and speedy, and capable of standing any thing. Then followed our second pack,
1 Buckskin," a strong yellow broncho, am infernal bucker, but a splendid pack-horse. Then
in order, my second man Murray, riding " Old
Reify," an aged roan, blind of one eye, ugly,
and apt to stumble : his good qualities we only
found out later on, when we discovered him to
be the best riding-hors'e of the outfit, both as
to his § lope " and walk. Last of all came the
dark sorrel, " Rocketer," — as named by a lady
friend after I had explained his powers of locomotion, — packed lightly, and led by a rope.
The two leaders of the four mules attached
to father's military wagon bore rather comical
names, — one Henry Ward Beecher, and the
Mile after mile in Indian-file we followed the
long trail along the top of the Grand Canon,
now and then pausing for one second to catch
a glimpse of this marvellous gorge when some
particularly imposing point had been reached.
Rocketer occasionally objected to these views,
and acted very nervously, which was not to be
wondered at.
Those of you who have read " Bailie Groh-
man's " interesting account of the unexplored
canons of Colorado — the dizzy depths, rushing
waters, and perpendicular narrow walls rising
thousands of feet — will possibly appreciate our
day's ride northward along the great Yellowstone <Canon. The feeling is as if we were
going into the depths of a Norwegian whirlpool, which Poe so graphically describes in
''The Descent of the Maelstrom."
Soon after this we parted with our canon,
and began to ascend.    Now we encircled the
base of Mount Washburn (height 10,340 feet),
and then climbed on till we were some eight
thousand feet above sea-level; the trail running
over hills, girding mountains, now cutting
through the open for several miles, and then
suddenly striking through the pines.
Thus we travelled on our course ; and for one
moment, in the far distance, we caught sight of
our hunting-ground, the   Hoodoo  Mountains,
©   © a 268
cold, blue, snowy, lying far to the north. In
two more days we hoped to reach them before
getting any sport; for if one in the present
day expects to kill "big-horn" he will have
many a mile to travel, and weeks perhaps of
hard work, before ever seeing the imprint of a
single hoof.
Elk may perhaps be found at any time j
though, as long as " hide "-hunters exist, this
©     ' ©
noble game will continue to decrease, and probably be the more difficult to kill. But " bighorn " are quite another thing. The hide itself
is worthless, and the difficulty of hunting them
so great as to prevent their being much thinned
off for meat; and yet, though a man might be
in a splendid sheep country, see fresh signs
everywhere and " beds" all along the rocks,
still, if he were ignorant how to approach, he
might not even be able to catch a glimpse of
their much-prized horns.
Toward evening, after making twenty miles,,
we camped on Tower Creek, which empties, a
few hundred yards farther down, into the Yellowstone.
Wandering down to the Tower Falls (a hundred and sixty feet), — so called from the curious lofty pinnacles which stand as sentinels on
each side, — I tried to fish just where the
creek  empties into the main river, but found LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.
that the sulphur-springs were so abundant as
to drive every fish away, though a hundred,
yards farther up the trout were very plentiful.
Returned to camp; and after making up the
bed, and rolling myself in the buffalo-robe, I
write these lines by the light of a candle stuck
in the top of a molasses-can used as an extempore candlestick.
Aug. 27.—The night turned out very warm.
After breakfast I found that one of my lead-
pencils had disappeared, — a serious mishap ;
for, as I have but one left, its loss would leave
me with no chances of taking notes.    Met an
Englishman going the opposite direction, and
in the course of conversation found him to be
a Cambridge graduate, which seemed quite a
strange coincidence in this lonely region.
After journeying some fourteen miles northwest we reached the gamekeeper's cabin, so
called from the fact of its having once been inhabited by such an official, though now owned
by "Jump," a curious specimen of indifferent,
kind-hearted humanity, half hunter, half prospector, living in this lonely little hut which
was the last sign of civilization. The proprietor had not yet turned up, he (as we learned)
being off fishing; so, following his example, I
started for the East Fork of the Yellowstone, a
small river but a few yards off.    Finding a deep lyo
hole, I managed to hook four pounds in a short
time, using my favorite rubber grasshopper.
Going back I found i Old Jump," as he is
called, entering the cabin ; a long string of big
trout in one hand, and an enormous pole in the
other. He was booming with profanity, his
gray locks and beard flying in the air, and his
gaunt, bowed, very tall figure swaying about in
a sort of loose, disjointed manner, quite ludicrous to behold. I gave him some rubber
grasshoppers (which in his estimation were
great curiosities), a couple of fish-lines, and
some gaudy salmon-flies. These trifling gifts,
coupled with a good drink of whiskey, made
him most friendly; and he showered upon us
every attention which his modest means could
afford. Unfortunately he begged me to sleep
on the floor of the hut instead of outside, and
spread some of his own bedding down to make
the boards soft. I agreed. Oh, horrors! the
place swarmed with vermin, which, though un-
felt by his own callous hide, made my night
one of perpetual torment. Shakspeare's Clarence may have had an awful dream of dead
men's skulls in the bottom of the sea, but I
had something worse than dreams all night.
At dawn I got a little rest.
When I awoke, a curious scene was being
enacted: Jump was parching some  coffee be- LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS. 2Jl
fore the fire, which by the crackling gave evidence of having just been started. Reclining
in different positions over the boards were
drowsy men awaking to life, who had entered
while we slept, at various hours in the night.
A cat was purring in front of the stove; and
an old hen, followed by three scraggy chickens,
picked their way about, having just entered by
the open door. Among the rafters and in the
huge logs which made up the walls were hung
every imaginable thing, — fishing-rods, colossal
Mexican spurs with rowels like diminutive
water-wheels, a coffee-mill, old Cheyenne saddles, bleached elk-horns, an aged porcupine-
skin, a couple of sheep-hides shrivelled and
only half cured, wet clothes drying by the fire,
pieces of candle, flour, coffee, sugar, green tea,
and a hundred other little odds and ends;
which made up our last look at civilization, before reaching the remote wilderness for which
we headed.
After dropping a line to father, — to be taken
by the mounted mail-carrier, who twice a week
stopped to lasso a fresh horse in the corral
while passing to and fro between Cook's City
(a mining-camp lying to the westward) and
Livingston,—we packed up, said good-by, and
were soon on the " blazed trail " leading southward towards the 1 Goblin Land."
1 1
III 272
Hour after hour we wound along through the
timber, wading streams and climbing hills, until
having reached a fair elevation we camped for
the night by the side of a running brook.
After dining off a couple of pheasants (their
ruffed black necks and fan-like tails and brownish-colored bodies making quite a different bird
from the gay-plumaged English bird of the
same name), and after the horses had enjoyed
the good grass which abounded in the open,
we saddled " White Stocking" and I Old Pard,"
and made a detour along the bottom-land,
hoping perhaps to catch a bear digging roots.
There were plenty of old " signs " of both bear
and elk, but nothing fresh. Here and there
we saw specimens of petrified trees, which
marked the beginning of the Hoodoo region,
© © © '
which we hoped to reach the next day.
Guiding the ponies over several streams and
creeks, we came upon several beaver " slides "
and dams, having masses of large stones for
weights on top, which Wyatt said these little
fellows by their united efforts had managed to
pile up. The limbs of the cotton-wood and
quaking-ash are cut into pieces about a foot
long, which the beavers lay aside for winter
food, making use of the bark.
Returning, I shot a porcupine through the
head; but, as night was drawing on, we had no LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.
time for skinning. Their hides are difficult to
pack; since the quills work their way through
the skin of a horse, mule, or dog, causing intense pain; though the alleged power of the
animal to shoot its quills is a myth, much akin
to the well-known tale that Rocky-mountain
sheep when descending cliffs land on their horns.
I have observed large numbers of "big-horn" in
© ©
order to ascertain whether there was any truth
in these assertions, and have never seen an
instance, nor have I ever met a hunter who
would personally vouch for this absurd statement.
Aug. 29. — Continuing our journey over the
blazed trail, we soon came to a very difficult
ascent, excessively steep and arduous. Saw
some old elk-trails and the fresh track of a
bull elk. After more climbing, we at last
reached snow-banks; and in two hours more
reached the longed-for Hoodoo Basin, an undulating piece of land, made up of parks, the
heads of streams, grassy slopes, little woody
belts, snow-ridges, and recesses, the whole being surrounded, as far as the eye could reach,
by ranges of vast snow-mountains and inaccessible rocky peaks. The altitude was ten thousand feet above the sea, and every thing bore
evidence of being a good Rocky-mountain-
sheep country.
.>. 274
Encamping by a little running stream from
the melting of the  snowbanks, we were  sur-
prised, while sitting around the fire, to be
visited by two old hide-hunters, dressed in
tattered clothes partly made up of skins, their
faces tanned to a mahogany hue, and their
whole appearance being that of another race
from ourselves. For six years they had never
slept in a house; their vocation being one of
merely killing animals for the pelts, and, after
half a year had been spent in getting a load,
taking them to the nearest fur-station, and
receiving in return powder, shot, flour, coffee,
sugar, salt, and money, and then again burying
themselves among the vast rocky ranges of
the hunting-grounds. They both used Sharps,
with the single shot, solid ball, and seventy
to ninety grains of powder. We enlightened
them as to where they were, had a regular
hunters' chat about "trails," "whistles," "signs,"
I ranges," with arguments as to the killing
power of various guns; until finally, as night
was closing, Wyatt and I prospected the country on foot a little in order to map out a plan
of action for the morrow.
We found lots of sheep-tracks along the
precipices, and down in the timber we came
across the half-buried carcass of an elk that our
new acquaintances had killed and skinned only LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.
a few days previous. All around were bear*
tracks: though we could not exactly determine
whether they were made by the straight claws
of a grizzly, or by the curved ones of a cinnamon, the nails not being distinctly defined;
their size was too large for a black bear. Making up our minds to watch next evening, we
sauntered homewards, and soon all five, the
old hunters joining in, sat round the blazing
camp-fire; and for upwards of an hour I listened to hairbreadth escapes and tales of Indian fights among the Black Hills.
Before turning in, I took a look at the beautiful reflection of the moon on the snow-mountains ; and then, as the night was cold, all three
of us got under the tent. But presently Murray began to snore fearfully, and soon rolled
himself up outside, which he always has professed to like much better than the close atmosphere of a tent.
30th. — Started on horseback with Wyatt, at
dawn, for one of the snowy ridges that we saw
towards the westward the evening before; it
having every appearance of being good " sheep-
ground." . After riding a couple of miles, we
dismounted and tethered; and with rifles in
hand we cautiously made a detour, keeping the
wind in our faces, and began to encounter tracks
at every step, some bearing the appearance of ■276 FROM FIFTH AVENUE   TO ALASKA.
"being only an hour old. Soon we came to
some " beds " still warm; and, expecting to see
our game at every step, we carefully crept up
some rocks, and then inch by inch slowly raised
our heads, and looked down. Wyatt was the
first to smell game. Suddenly crouching down,
he beckoned to me to follow: and both running
round, we soon again slowly looked over the
ridge, hardly daring to breathe ; for there in
plain sight, a hundred and twenty yards down
the cliff, was a band of seventeen mountain-
sheep, some lying down, others scratching
themselves against some juniper-bushes, while
one old doe kept watch as sentinel. We knew
they had not scented us; but they evidently were
beginning to get uneasy, so I began to prepare
for a shot.
Wyatt pointed out the only ram of the outfit,
a young two-year-old fellow, — the rest being
old does and fawns, — who seemed, for some
reason, not over-anxious to come from behind
the bushes against which he was polishing his
horns. Finally he made up his mind, and came
in full sight: so quickly raising, I took steady
aim, and fired, letting him have it rather far
back, the ball ranging forward. The whole
herd, for a moment, seemed rather disconcerted;
then wheeling, dashed down the cliff. Wyatt
took a hurried shot; and I had another try at a LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.
fawn who ran broadside, affording me a pretty-
chance behind the shoulders. We then ran
around, and got a couple more shots at four
hundred yards' range; but, owing to want of
calculation, the balls fell short, plainly ploughing up the ground.
We had not waited to observe the effect of
our first fire, all vanishing over the cliffs; so
that now we slowly returned, half in doubt as to
what would be our success.
All fears were soon dispelled ; for, on scaling
down sixty yards from where they had been
standing, we found both the ram and fawn stone
dead, lying but a few feet from one another.
Taking off the head and horns, and cutting a
quarter for camp, we struggled up again, the
rarefied atmosphere making us halt for breath
every few yards. Coming up with the horses,
we packed the meat and horns behind " Old
Pard," and soon reached home, quite well pleased
with our morning's work.
The skinning process was well done by Wyatt,
both the jawbones saved, and the meat picked
out; and soon, after a good salting, the hide
was propped up to dry, — all these precautions
having to be taken to insure a safe delivery into
the taxidermist's hands.
Suddenly black thunder-clouds rolled over us,
followed by rain, sleet, and hail.    Quickly gath-
i'n.l'IU 278
ering the valuables into our tent, huddled together, we waited patiently for the storm to
pass. At this altitude of ten thousand feet,
the old mountain tops resound with peals of
thunder, re-echoed from peak to peak. The
sun burst forth again at four p.m., and one hardly realizes that a raging storm has just passed
Starting off for the elk-carcass, we found a
bear's tracks, showing four different journeys
from his cave somewhere down the ravine.
Finding a screen of spruce boughs, at a distance of some fifty yards, we waited.
As the sun went down, we were occasionally
startled by a warning note of approaching game
in the shape of a chipmonk's squeal, or the
chattering of a red squirrel. Once a large black
eagle wheeled round, alighted, and began to
stalk up to the meat: but, catching sight of us,
quickly soared away. The sun went down,
darkness set in, and we could just see the elk's
outline. At last the air grew very cold; and,
being unable to take sight, we started for camp.
Next morning we discovered that the bear
had come for his evening meal, but, scenting us,
had circled round behind; his huge tracks being
only a few yards distant in our rear. Luckily
he was not famished, or else a " charge " would
have been inevitable.    As it was, he must have LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.
found another carcass, or else this one was too
far gone ; for he never came again.
Aug. 31. — After riding our horses down and
up some deep gulches and canons to a point
some six miles distant, we dismounted, in the
hope of scaling the main peaks of the Hoodoo
Mountains. Drizzling rain set in, which, added
to the hard climbing, made this the hardest day
of all. We started on the trail of three does,
after following which for a mile or so, a young
buck joined the trail; and, on pushing on still
farther, we entirely lost track of the band amidst
the rock-work. Rejoining the cayuses, we soon
reached the tent, both empty handed and well
worn out.
At eleven p.m. one of the most terrific thunder-storms set in that even Wyatt had ever witnessed. Only up at this great height can one
realize the fearful grandeur of the lightning:
peal upon peal of thunder reverberated among
the rugged mountain tops. Sheets of rain fell,
wetting the contents of my tent through and
through; the canvas not being proof against the
drenching storm. Being under a tall pine-tree,
and thus being protected somewhat from the
wind, the tent-pegs remained fast; but I had
•some fears as to lightning, since several streaks
had descended into the ground only a few yards
off, thunder following instantaneously.
■ [ji] lj|l DmI 28o
Sept. i. — Morning found us wet and disconsolate. Fire could hardly be started. Soon the
sun shone out, which quickly dispelled our misery. Starting about ten a.m., we took another
range, and found ourselves following along the
side of a deep canon. Seeing plenty of sheep-
signs, we cautiously moved over the rocks, hardly even whispering.
Thoiigh crawling along with the greatest circumspection, I happened to loosen a little stone.
While watching it roll down, inwardly cursing
my carelessness, as the little supposed mischief-
maker passed a large bowlder, it turned into a
blessing in disguise; for out started, not sixty-
yards away, a fine three-year-old ram with beautifully curved horns, both points being perfect.
Instantly raising my rifle, making allowance for
elevation, I fired; the ball entering, and passing
through rather too far, behind the shoulders-
Rushing forward, for fear of losing sight of
him among the rocks, it took four more balls
to actually bring him down; three passing
through his side, entirely too far back, and the
last one breaking his hind-leg.
The males of the larger animals of Wyoming,,
and throughout the West in general, are very
hard killing, unless hit exactly right. At the
beginning of the rutting season, the bull elk,
covered as he is then with fat, measuring nearly ■MM
everywhere four inches in thickness, will carry
off nearly as much lead as a rhinoceros; and he
is fully as long-lived as a bear.
Both these ram's horns were perfect; and as.
they now cast their shadow over my writing-
desk, many memories of hunting-days are pleasantly recalled, and I can once more fancy myself
scaling some peak in the hope of finding " bighorn."
Returning, we built a roaring fire, and were
soon drinking our coffee by its blaze.
Sept. 2. — To-day, taking another route to
the north-west, we climbed some strangely chis-
©       J
elled peaks, from whose summits we had beautiful distant views. Later we followed an old ram's
track for miles : at every moment the increasing
freshness of the print gave us every hope of
soon coming up with him; but, after several
hours of unsuccessful stalking, we were forced
to return. Feeling quite satisfied with our
two rams in four days, we made up our minds
to strike camp next morning, returning to lower
regions in search of elk.
All the elk-tracks were rather old, most of
them pointing westward ; and the old hunters
assured us that they had left the range where
we were, and without doubt were seeking
winter-quarters below. Our trapper friends
had killed only three elks in one week ;  which, 282
considering the undisturbed condition   of this
region, was but poor luck.
It had not been our custom to fire at small
game when in a hunting-country; but, as we had
decided upon new quarters, we could not resist
potting for supper a couple of young jack-
rabbits and a grouse.
Sept. 3. — "All set" being said, we wended
our way westward ; and, after descending some
eight miles or so, we camped under a clump of
tall firs, on a stream which eventually empties
into the Yellowstone. After a heavy luncheon
•off sheep-steaks, Wyatt and I, after saddling
I Old Reily" and I Old Pard," scrambled up
the hill in order to reach the table-land, the top
of which we had judged must be pretty flat, and
full of springs.
We encountered fresh signs on all sides, —
tracks, beds in the grass where the elks had lain
the night previous, and quantities of young trees
whose tender bark was freshly lacerated by the
bulls while polishing their antlers.
After making a long circle on foot, we rejoined the horses, and were quietly riding
through the timber, giving free rein to the mustangs, which nimbly cleared the many fallen
logs which form the greatest impediment to
hunting game in the " whistling" season. At
this time in the year elks are generally moving, LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.
and keep pretty well concealed amidst the dense
forests of Wyoming. Just at this instant, when
we had given up all hope of hunting any more
before dark, I Old Pard " shied violently to one
side, nearly hurling Wyatt against a tree. The
cause was easily seen; for not thirty yards off
a large bull elk and two does were standing- in
the shade of some trees, looking straight at us.
© ©
as if wondering at the intrusion. This was my
first sight of this noble game, and his imperial
grandeur awakened an admiration that for a
moment made me hesitate to shoot. Quickly
dismounting, however, I sighted as well as the
twilight permitted, and fired, taking aim, as near
as I could judge, behind the shoulder. The
bull quivered, staggered, and for an instant
seemed to hesitate ; then like lightning all three
wheeled, and crashed through the underbrush,
their fierce, mad, headlong retreat over the
fallen timber being audible for several minutes.
Approaching the spot, we saw quite plainly,
both by the cut hair and tracks, that the bullet
had gone home; but as it was too dark to
follow in pursuit, there being much danger in
so doing of our not reaching camp, we abandoned all farther chase.
Sept. 4.—Wyatt and I, mounting our ponies,
took a rather different direction, picketed the
horses, and had a  long  day's  tramp.    About 284
noon we were climbing over a rough piece of
ground, where every other step was across the
fallen trunk of some old fir, while the pines
themselves grew so close that the sun's rays
could but feebly penetrate.
Suddenly a crackling, as of some animal
stealthily moving away, seemed to continue in
front of us; and once, turning sharply around
while we were balancing ourselves on a huge
log, for the first time in my life I saw the
I American mountain lion," or puma. For one
instant we beheld a long, yellow animal on the
point of leaping down from a tree: a spring,
something long and yellow flashed past us ; and,
before we had time to shoulder our guns, the
puma had vanished behind one of the innumerable stumps which everywhere barred our
Hardly had we advanced a hundred yards
before we heard the "whistle" of a bull elk.
Now, those who have never heard the call of
the  male while  running, let  them  imagine  a
©' ©
species of whistling which commences rather
shrilly, then becoming semi-musical, resembling
an aeolian harp, finally ending with a bugle-
note ; the entire sound lasting three or four
The season with wappiti, or elk, is September ; during the early part of which the bulls are LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS. 28'
very fat, their necks increasing in size proppr-
tionate to the length of time the animal has
been running. In from three to four weeks he
loses his flesh, becomes very poor, and remains
so all winter until the following spring.
With the utmost caution we began to draw
near the spot from whence the sound proceeded, and had not crawled more than sixty
yards before we came upon a magnificent old
bull standing close to a cow not more than seventy yards off. Taking good aim, I took two-
shots in rapid succession; one piercing the
lungs, and the other entering the region near
the heart. His mate seemed loath to leave,
and, even after the shooting, trotted once or
twice around him. At last they both broke
away, and I had time to put in a couple more
shots while running.
Hastening up, we soon saw( splashes of lung-
blood ; so, giving him plenty of time to stiffen,
we trailed, and after a few moments came upon
the wappiti lying on the ground, swaying his
splendid horns from side to side in the agonies
of death. As he saw us approach, his eyes
flashed, and he started to his feet once more,
lowered his head, and for one moment we expected a charge: so taking good aim, I put a
bullet through his heart; and he sank to earth,
dead. 286
This was my first elk; and as I looked on
this monarch of the woods as he lay stretched
out'to his full size, all my previous deer-specimens compared with this giant seemed infinitesimal. His horns spread some four feet, which
is unusually wide; the six points of both sides
being perfect.    They now adorn our hall.
The trailing of elk at this time of year, unless
shot through the lungs, is very difficult, owing
to the immense quantity of fat which seems to
•obstruct the flow of blood, and prevent it gushing out.
After skinning the head, and taking off the
horns, we cut off the tenderloin and sirloin and
tongue, packing them up*for safe-keeping; and,
as we were out of bacon, we took the tallow
also, covered as it was with the caul. Returning to camp, we delighted Murray with the prospect of plenty of meat, and got every thing
prepared for packing it next day.
Sept. 5. — Leading all three of the pack-
horses to where we left the antlers, we sawed
the skull and horns in two, salted the head,
skinned and packed sixty pounds of meat, and
again started on a hunt. Once more we caught
a glimpse, for one instant, of a puma: but
their cat-like movements soon enable them to
creep out of sight; and unless hunted with dogs,
and regularly treed, the chance of ever killing LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS. 287
one is very small. Soon after this, in a little
open, we came suddenly upon a cow and calf;
but as we had plenty of fresh meat we let them
go, and returned to camp.
Our luxuries had become pretty low; sugar,
coffee, flour, and salt being nearly all that remained of our store.
Sept. 6.—Went out next day; heard an elk
whistle several times, but we were unable to
get near him. Getting back to camp, we found
our old friends, the hunters, had come down
to lower quarters in the hopes of finding more
By the merest accident I secured the largest
pair of I big-horns " that had been seen. The
old ram was seen towards evening, while butting with another, on the very ridge I had left
the night before; and one of the hunters shot
him. I paid him for his luck, and took the
horns, which I now have, together with those
I shot myself. They measure sixteen inches in
' circumference, and thirty-seven and a half inches
in length of curve.    All the hunters concurred
in the opinion that they were the largest which
they had ever seen.
We decided to start the next morning, in the
hope of finding bear among the berry-patches
around Slough Creek.
Sept. 7. — Murray had such a sick-headache 288 FROM FIFTH A VENUE   TO ALASKA.
this morning, that we concluded to wait one
more day: so, leaving Wyatt to take care of the
camp, I went with one of the hunters in search
of any thing in the shape of game. A thunderstorm coming on, I was surprised to see my
companion always take shelter under a small
tree in preference to a large one; and was
struck by his telling me, that, during his six
years roughing it among the mountains, he had
never seen lightning fall on small trees, the
larger ones nearly always having a tendency to
serve as lightning-rods.
© ©
While walking through a dense growth of
small firs, a cow elk ran full tilt across our path;
and as my companion wanted the meat and hide,
I brought her down in her tracks stone dead,
making a lung shot.
Sept. 8.—At six a.m., the camp was already
bustling with the work of packing up. We had
plenty of fresh meat, including the loin, sirloin,
and plenty of tallow from the caul to take the
place of bacon, which had given out.
As we were riding off, a couple of "prospectors," whose camp-fire we had seen near by the
night before, gave me some fine specimens of
iron-pyrites. Old miners often call these brilliant, though worthless, minerals, "tenderfoot
specimens." These good-hearted fellows having no fresh meat, we left them some ribs of elk. LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS. 289
Riding on ahead with "Old Reily," I got over
the twenty-five miles which separated us from
the Jump cabin quite easily, the others soon
I killed some grouse on the way; and we had
a delicious mess of broiled birds for dinner,
which, out here in the invigorating air, needed
no sauce or silver dishes as an appetizer.
Sept. 9. — After travelling northward for four
hours, we reached Slough Creek. I thought,
that, as the bears had come down from the
mountains after berries, we might try our
chances for a couple of days toward the head
of the stream before returning home. An unforeseen circumstance, however, which happened three days later, blew my plans to the
winds; and the castles which my imagination
had pictured soon vanished. .
While we were passing over the rolling country, we just caught sight of some forty antelope
running up a steep grade, and soon disappearing from view, their white flanks glistening in
the sunlight.
We encamped on Slough Creek, which I shall
always remember as the only stream that I ever
tried in which fish actually were so plentiful that
they rose the instant the cast was made. In
thirty minutes I landed six trout, weighing collectively nine pounds; one, reaching while fresh 290
two and a half pounds, affording play for many
Starting at three p.m., we made a detour of
some two miles, in order to get where we
imagined the antelope must be. As we cautiously mounted the crest of a little hill, we
caught sight of the band, who, at the signal of
danger from an old doe standing sentinel apart
from the rest, galloped off on the run. Casting
our eyes over the herd, we could see no bucks,
though we could not refrain from taking a few
parting shots at their fast-receding heels; our
volley producing no result beyond touching one
slightly on the back, enough to make the hair
Sept. 10. —This morning, after proceeding a
few miles farther, we reached a large basin, containing the heads of streams, bogs, and saw-
grass, surrounded by high hills. After catching
a good mess of trout, we took a good look at
the ground, and found some freshly made black-
tail tracks and some pretty fresh bear-signs.
Sept. 11.—As it was necessary to get a bait
for bears in the shape of the carcass of some
animal, Wyatt started out early on "White
Stocking," leaving us to have a good day's fishing. Going up the stream, and casting my flies
at intervals into the many deep holes which
abounded, I finally succeeded in getting a string LOST IN THE HOODOO  MOUNTAINS.
weighing thirteen pounds. The last was a monster. I had watched him through the clear
water, gliding under a large half-submerged
rock at the base of a riffle, and, seizing my
opportunity, made my cast, using a large bright
scarlet ibis fly. Rising instantly, he made his
rush; and, before I had an opportunity to let
out sufficient line, he snapped in two my dearly
prized ten-ounce rod. Having still hold of the
line, I played with him for a couple of minutes;
and after some difficulty, by placing my thumb
and forefinger under his gills, lifted and landed
him in safety. The scales just showed a weight
of three pounds, which, for a speckled brook-
trout, was the largest catch I have ever made.
That evening, on returning, we saw an outfit
of twenty-three horses winding down the mountain side; on nearer approach, I recognized a
few old acquaintances, who were escorting a
large hunting-party of Eastern men on their
return homewards. In return for some fresh
fish, we received some blacktail-meat, an offering most needed, as our store was nearly gone.
After supper we all exchanged courtesies
round the camp-fire. Their luck had been
quite fair. Five miles to the eastward they ran
upon a heard of buffaloes numbering about a hundred and eighty, out of which they killed seven.
With the exception of one blacktail  and one
ill!   .
iii 1292
-cow elk, this had been their only sport; and
some of them grumbled slightly at the lack of
game, not having even seen a big-horn, of which
they had heard so much. Being on the way
home, they intended to start next morning for
the Mammoth Hot Springs. Two of the men
and four packs were going the next day back to
the carcasses, near which seven quarters were
hanging from the limbs of trees, covered over
with bags to prevent fly-blows.
The packers invited me to accompany them;
-saying that they would point out the location, in
order that we might pitch camp near by and
watch the carcasses, which were baits for the
ibears which we were seeking.
Sept. 12. — About seven o'clock in the morning Wyatt came back, having killed his elk, and,
not being able to return that day,- passed the
night by a log-fire.
Giving orders to strike camp and follow on
the trail up to the baits, I galloped off with the
packers up the trail previously made by the
twenty-three horses. The packers and I intended, when the seven quarters of buffalo-meat
had been placed on the horses, to return the
isame way, and meet my own men coming up,
thus being able to guide them back to where
the remaining meat was lying, and let the
packers return homewards, joining the rest of LOST IN THE HOODOO  MOUNTAINS. 293
their party somewhere near the Mammoth Hot
Springs. As we reached an elevation, I waved
my hand back to the still smoking fire of my
encampment, about which I could see Wyatt
and Murray busily engaged in getting ready to
This was the last we ever saw of one another
during this expedition !
The sun was warm and the day perfect, no
omen warning us of imminent danger. After
climbing and circling several of the mountains,
© © '
the ascent being exceedingly steep, repeated
halts were required to ease the horses; our
course occasionally bringing us through dense
forests of firs, among which the trail was so
faint that I several times anxiously inquired of
the packers whether there was any danger of
my men missing their way, an idea which they
scoffed at as an impossibility for old trappers.
Leading our horses down a little canon, we
arrived at their old encampment on a running
stream; a huge fir near by presenting a curious
appearance with its Christmas-tree load of buffalo horns, quarters, and hides hanging from the
limbs. Riding a few hundred yards farther, we
breasted the crest of a hill; and far off on a
plain, some six miles distant, the men pointed
out the actual spot where the carcasses lay,
showing me certain landmarks as guides to the
lit 294
Returning, and again expressing some fear as
to my men finding the trail, they replied that
there was not the slightest danger: but, if I still
was troubled, there would be no harm in riding
on ahead and meeting them ; saying that> when
they had finished.packing the meat they would
rejoin me, either on my way back with my own
men, or would overtake me before I reached
Going slowly over the back track, I shot a
pheasant, hoping that the report would be an
'additional guide, and kept on.
Only those acquainted with the mountains of
the West can realize what followed.
The sky suddenly became black. Hail, followed by snow, descended in terrific sheets.
The trails almost immediately became obliterated ; and forthwith I found myself alone on a
wild mountain top, forty miles away from the
Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel, with no idea how
to return or proceed; added to the discomfiture,
that, owing to the heat, I had left my leather
hunting-coat at the last camp, it being the only
time that I had neglected to fasten it to my
saddle-bow. In a few minutes my horse, "Old
Reily," and I were enveloped in a mantle of
Being high up, and landmarks in the shape
of mountains being still visible, I recalled the lil
situation of the old camp, and kept on, hoping
that my own men, seeing the state of things, had
also gone back. Hungry, tired, and cold, mounted on a jaded horse which scarcely moved along,
I finally reached the old camp; only to find it
deserted, the fire gone out, not a morsel of food
left, and only the three tent-poles lying on the
ground to mark where my last night's house
had stood.
Turning about, "Old Reify" again began the
dangerous climb; my only hope now consisting in meeting on the hill the packers coming
down ; and if that was unsuccessful, at all events,
getting back to the new camp, which I concluded my men must have reached by some
other route, at which perhaps the packers, seeing the driving snow-storm, would consider it
best to stay for the night, instead of venturing
Aided by the compass in discovering directions, hour after hour I urged "Old Reily" on;
often having to dismount and walk, thereby
keeping up circulation, and aiding the poor
brute up steep places. Once we got out of our
reckoning, only to mire in a bog, and finally
struggle out again.
The snow now began to fall thicker, and even
the hazy outlines of the distant mountains faded
.away.    Being on top of a bald ridge, several 296
times I fruitlessly tried to find the way down
into the ravine where the new camp lay.
At last we drew near; and when only two
hundred yards off from where I knew the place
lay, though the heavily draped firs concealed its.
view, I fired two shots, hoping to instantly hear
an answer. No response: not a sound, save the
rustling   of  the  trees,   the   soft   fall   of  ever-
increasing flakes, the almost noiseless shuffle of
© I
the horse's hoofs over the powdery snow, and
the wind howling among the craggy heights,
which mockingly re-echoed my appeal.
A few seconds passed by; and now I knew
myself to be within fifty yards of where I hoped
to find friends, fire, and wood. Again I fired,
hoping this time to arouse the camp. On the
instant, as the report reverberated amongst the
hills, the fierce growl of a bear startled me to
the full consciousness of my loneliness; and the
crackling and breaking of the brush told that
Bruin, having tracked the fresh meat, and being
discovered on the point of devouring portions
of one of the quarters left for me, was in full
As the camp broke to view, a red fox ran.
across the snow, and a few Fremont-camp birds,
reluctantly fluttered away. And thus, with night
near at hand, I found myself lost among the
mountains of Wyoming, twenty miles from any LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.        297
human habitation, and that a hut, the direction
of which I knew lay somewhere across the ridges,
toward the north-west.
Knowing that my only hope of help lay in
reaching the old camp, where some of the men
might possibly be, I made the effort.
' The old camp was five miles distant. The
way, not easy to follow even when the sun
shone, was now rendered tenfold more difficult
by reason of the falling darkness.
Shaking the snow off my hunting-coat, which
lay almost hidden by the recent fall, I cut a
piece of raw meat from the hanging quarter, and
placed it in my pocket, and wrote these words
on a board, which I placed conspicuously against
the trunk of the tree : —
In case you find this camp, one of you return-
immediately to the old camp, which I shall leave tomorrow in case no help arrives, and strike out for
the Mammoth Hot Springs Hotel, which I believe is
forty miles north-west from this spot. Have only
three matches, which I fear are wet through, and no
food except raw flesh. E. P.
Sept. 12, 5 o'clock.
Just at this crisis, I found a little piece  of
bread which had been left behind, lying in the
snow near a little sapling, — about enough for
three or four bites.    Turning the weighty mat- 298
ter over in my mind, whether I should eat it
now or wait till morning, I concluded to wait.
Poor old one-eyed Reily standing by me, his
saddle already blanketed with snow, and his
head bowed down to the ground, looked the
picture of despair. As I once more began to
lead the poor beast up the side of the canon to
get to the bald crest where I might get the lay
of the land, the poor old fellow plainly showed
that he was on his last legs: his knees shook,
and he seemed at every step on the point of
lying down. Realizing that every thing depended on reaching the old camp, where I supposed that some one of the four men must have
returned, I drew the crust from my pocket, and,
holding it front of his nose, tantalized him until
we reached the top, Arriving there, I had not
the heart to deprive him: so dividing the small
piece with him, once more we attempted the
This bald crest had only two points of descent
possible for a horse, — one the little trail by
which I had just reached the summit, and
secondly a descent on its other slope.
The snowflakes at this moment became thicker
than ever. Round and round we wheeled. My
hands became nearly too numb to guide the
horse, and it seemed as if we should never
jreach the place of descent.    We could hardly LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.
see twenty feet ahead; all sides looked perpendicular ; and, although up at this great altitude,
not a glimpse could I catch of the surrounding
country. The bare ridge was about one mile
in circumference, and my former horse's-tracks
had long ago been obliterated. At last I recognized a curiously twisted fir, and saw that I
had been merely making a circle.
In despair, knowing that at this altitude without fire the morning would find me frozen,
strangely there came to my mind these words of
" More things are wrought by prayer
Than this world dreams of; 1
and I earnestly prayed that for one moment the
storm might abate, and allow me a glimpse of
where I was.
Hardly had I uttered the words, when one of
the most striking incidents of my life took place.
It may have been a mere coincidence; but I was
so impressed with the occurrence, that I could
but feel that the act which the memory of Tennyson's lines prompted had something to do
with the phenomenon which so quickly followed.
Suddenly the wind lulled ; the snow ceased falling; the heavy shrouds of mist which hung over
the valley and mountain tops lifted ; and low in
the west the declining sun, having but brief time 300
of light, shone brightly. The huge lone ranges,
as far as the eye could reach, sparkled in their
new white robes; and the winding stream, near
which I knew the old camp lay, seemed but a
mile distant. Even the tired old horse raised
his head as if encouraged with new life. I soon
found the hitherto hidden descent, and quickly
gained the lower ridge, the gradual slope of
which I knew would bring me back to camp.
For full thirty minutes the sky remained clear,
with the exception of large fleecy clouds driving across its face; then, as suddenly, the wind
swept through the valleys, and all became dark
and threatening as before. Near the old camp,
a few grouse whirred off, started up by the
horse ; and a blacktail trotted across our road.
On arriving, by the remaining glimpses of
light, I found the camp had been unmolested
during my absence, save that a fox hurried away
from a half-eaten stale fish which my men had
left behind.
Perhaps the relation of this incident will be
regarded as evidence of my superstition; but I
state it just as it occurred, and leave my readers to their several judgments.
Finding that I must pass the night as best I
could, I first fired eight shots in the hope of
getting an answer, the result being as fruitless
as before.    Then  unsaddling " Old  Reily,"   I LOST IN  THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.
fastened him by the bridle round the base of a
small quaking-asp, thus giving him a chance to
nibble the little he could by scraping aside the
Now came the important crisis: the matches,
were they wet, or dry ?
The snow had turned to a fine, drizzling rain §
so the greatest caution had to be used. Getting
some small logs, the dryest which I could find,.
I slivered some chips, and tried my first match.
For one instant it flickered, gave one spasmodic
twitch, and then puffed out; number two did
likewise; and now all depended on my third
and last hope. Lighting it, I carefully held it
inside of my hat, and watched its course. It
flickered, burned low, and at last blazed out with
full yellow flame. Approaching close to my
chips, I applied the light; and, as if in spite, at
this very instant came a rush of wind, and nothing remained in my hand but a charred stump,
and all was dark again.
Nothing remained but to wait till morning.
So, taking the little piece of saddle-blanket, I
wrapped it round my head and shoulders, sat
down on the lee side of a bowlder, covered my
feet with the saddle, and shivered.
It was pitch dark. For one instant I caught
sight of the moon, and then all turned to night.
To add to my discomfiture, I had cut my thumb 302
nearly to the bone while attempting to whittle
some chips for kindling; and the blood was perpetually oozing out, appearing reluctant to ever
The length of that night seemed interminable,
© ©
the only sound being the crunching of the
horse. Once I heard a far-off noise like the
howling  of wolves, which, on  coming  nearer
© J ©
and nearer, proved to be a large flock of geese
passing over my head. About midnight the sky
•cleared sufficiently for me to see the ground,
and frighten off a couple of cayutes snarling
at a distance. About two a.m. some jack-rabbits
hopped into camp, rising on their hind-legs, and
vanished on  the  instant.    All   night   I   either
paced round the horse, warming my hands under
his mane, or lay huddled on the ground crouched
up against the rocks.
About four a.m. a few streaks of light appeared
in the east, and I began to get ready to start.
The pheasant killed on the previous day still
hung to my saddle; and I decided, if all else
failed, to eat it raw.
Finding a piece of cardboard, I wrote on it
the following words : —
"Off in  the  hope  of   reaching  Mammoth  Hot
Springs.   Follow immediately.
Horse played out."
No food, no matches. LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS.
Tearing my handkerchief into strips, I tied
them into a line, fastened one end to a branch
and the other to the rolled-up paper; placing
the tent-poles against the tree as indicators.
Mounting, I started off on my forty-mile ride,
which, though not much on a good road with
a fresh horse, is something when alone among
© ©
the mountains, weak from hunger, a hof^e
nearly starved, and with no road to follow save
a game-trail, towards which I should have several miles to travel before reaching.
On we went, wading streams, and crossing,
bog-lands, three times being led astray by fresh
elk-tracks, the extra exertion forcing me to eat
a piece of the raw buffalo-meat which was still
in my pocket. At last, by accident, we came
upon the longed-for trail; and, the snow having
cleared away, I saw the marks of fresh horse-
tracks, which I knew must have been made
the day before.
Still onward we went, fording two streams,
into one of which the old horse fell, wetting me
all over; but what mattered that ? I was safe,
feeling, that, even if the poor cayuse died, I had
strength enough to reach the Cook's City road,
on which there would be a chance of meeting
some one from whom I could buy food.
Finally, after some hours of riding and walking, I reached the cabin near Baronett's Bridge. 3<H
Every thing was deserted, though the iron kettle
showed signs of having lately been on a fire.
Loosing " Old Reily," I watched him for a second, and felt hopeful, on observing him try to
nibble, that he would pull through. Crossing
the open threshold of the hut, a couple of rats
scampered over the floor, frightened away from
some remnants of bread and cheese which the
last diner had left behind on the table. Only
the hungry can really appreciate food; and these
few morsels, to a man who had not eaten for
two days and a night, proved a banquet.
Presently a. young fellow entered, who had
• J ©
charge of the bridge in the absence of the
owner; and we soon had some tea and cooked
beans. A drummer for a whiskey-house came
along, and a glass of Kentucky's wine soon put
me all right. Remembering the pheasant which
still hung to my saddle, I gave it as my sole
little offering; and they soon made a meal of
it, while I, lying on the floor, took a short nap.
Towards evening a man whom I had met
before came over the bridge on a buckboard;
and, my horse being too tired to go the remaining fifteen miles to the springs, my acquaintance
kindly offered to give me a lift, another man
proposing to ride Old Reily" in, the next
morning. After seeing that the old horse had
a good feed of oats, we started on the buck-
board, and reached the hotel that night. TO
After chatting with father, and enjoying a
meal sitting at a real table, I got into a bed, —
a luxury which I had not enjoyed for a whole
month. But my sleep was not dreamless. I
imagined myself lost far away in the snow-
mountains and strange ghostly forests, imploring and encouraging my old starved horse to
go on, and wondering why the ground was so
warm and dry in the cold wet snow; and, hearing the howling winds, —
" Starting, I waked, and for a season after,
Could not believe but that I was " (not in the place of
Clarence, but in the Goblin Mountains).
The next day my horse came in, and looked
gratefully as I gave him plenty of oats, and
enjoyed seeing him eat. Poor old horse! with
whom, when both were exhausted, I divided the
last bit of crust, the warmth of whose body
saved me from freezing to death that awful
night in the mountains.    I now better under-
stand why those who have survived great perils
together become deeply attached. Adieu, a
sorry adieu, to poor " Old Reily" ! I sold him
to a man who promised to treat him kindly.
Two days later my men, with the rest of the
horses, returned, and told their story. As I had
supposed, they lost the trail in attempting to
follow me, as did the  packers  also, and  thus 306 FROM FIFTH AVENUE   TO ALASKA.
separated. They wandered far away, and were
out all night; but as they had food and fire, with
plenty of blankets, and all the comforts of the
camp, they contemplated my hopeless condition
with much fortitude. They had fired signal-
guns, but in that howling tempest a rifle could
not be heard five rods. Early the next morning they found the old camp, and read my notice,
then started for the hotel, which they reached
in two days.
When I parted with my father at the Great
Falls, he gave me a pocket-compass, saying,
I You may need it, my boy." But for that little
instrument, I should never have told this hunting-story.
I Big-horn " ascend to the highest points possible, and when startled never look up, but
expect danger from below. Their color, purplish gray, varies in shade according to the time
of year; but the hair is too brittle and crisp to
be of service, being apt very soon to break and
wear out.
To the inexperienced, the animals so resemble
in color the rocks among which they are to be
found, that much quickness of observation is
necessary to distinguish them from the rocks.
They lie so quietly concealed under crags within
a few feet of the  hunter, never stirring until LOST IN THE HOODOO MOUNTAINS. 307
their pursuer has got by, that we found it a
good expedient to throw pebbles down the declivities, and thus arouse them from their hiding-places. In the early morning, before going-
lower to feed, as they stand like sentinels on
the apex of some huge granite tower, with their
horns cut like Grecian cameos against the sky,
no better instance could be presented to mark
the isolation and  loneliness  of the region  in
which these sturdy animals dwell. Lack of
speed is compensated for by their agility in
climbing; and, knowing this, they generally live
among the most lofty peaks of the mountains.
Their hind-quarters, being white, give them,
when in flight, somewhat the appearance of a
band of antelopes; and I hive seen some mats,
half white, half purple, made from their skins.
In winter "big-horn" occasionally descend to
lower regions in search of food, the snow driving them from their securer retreats.    A field-
glass is absolutely necessary for hunting them,
by the help of which much time is saved in
scaling peaks and stalking. I used, while hunting elk and big game, a .50-calibre Winchester
rifle, pistol grip, carrying six balls, five being
in the reserve barrel, and burning ninety-five
grains of powder. I used both solid and expansive balls, but found the solid much the better, their penetration being much more certain.
w> -^
The elk and sheep horns I had packed and
sent home.
To sum up my month's camping-tour, I may
say, that, with the exception of my lone night's
experience above narrated, hunting in the bracing air among the high mountains of Wyoming
is one of the most enjoyable reminiscences of
my life. One's appetite is splendid, sleep perfect, and general health excellent, — without
which blessings what man can be happy ? and
having which, many luxuries of civilization can
be dispensed with. I should like to hunt again
in the same region. BACK AT MAMMOTH SPRINGS HOTEL.
Sept. 16. — We were at the hotel. Towards
nightfall a little boy came riding up to the hotel,
•on horseback, asking for the doctor; requesting
him to attend a woman who had been shot in
the head by her amant, at a small settlement
called Gardiner, some four miles distant.
It was growing dark, the road was lonely,
and the doctor asked me to go with him. We
dashed off behind a good pair of American
horses, and soon arrived at the scene of the
late tragedy, — a small wooden hut, isolated in
a dreary waste, surrounded by sage-brush.
The utter recklessness with which the West-
Werner regards life was again shown here. Entering the dim-lighted room, we found the woman,
young, pretty, with dark hair and eyes, lying on
the bed. The flame of a candle, thrown full on
the side of her head, revealed two bullet-holes
covered by hair clotted with blood.
The would-be   murderer — a handsome  fel- 3io
low, gambler and saloon-keeper—sat on the
edge of the bed; his face having a sort of
puzzled, dare-devil expression, as if in doubt"
what should be his next move. Occasionally
he swaggered about the room, or wiped his
forehead with a flaming-red pocket bandanna,,
which he stuck in his belt.
After cutting away the hair, and probing the
wound, the ball — that of a thirty-two calibre —
was found to have slightly depressed the skull
three inches behind the ear, coming out at the
back of the head. If the ball had been a forty-
four, death would in all probability have ensued
immediately. The doctor, after giving her some
morphine, and applying an ordinary compress
bandage, and giving directions that she should
take no food beyond tea and toast, left; and we
reached the hotel about nine p.m.
The next morning (Sept. 27) we started for
Livingston. We had to go about six miles to
reach the station; and, passing through the little
village of Gardiner before mentioned, the driver
stopped to water his horses. A remarkably
fine-looking man came to the spring with a
bucket, and my father asked him if the woman
who was shot the day before was dead.
j No," he cheerfully replied. " All the devils
in hell couldn't kill her."
I at once recognized in  him  the very man BACK AT MAMMOTH SPRINGS HOTEL.
who had committed the deed. But the man
was never even arrested, nor his crime inquired
into. In Montana, and all through that region,
if a man steals a horse he is pretty sure to be
hanged: if he kills a man in a brawl, or a
woman for infidelity, he is quite sure to be let
In the same car which we took for Living--
ston, there were two horse-thieves in the sheriff's
At the Yellowstone, and along the route, we
saw a good many Englishmen, several of whom
had known my father when he was Minister to
England. Generally they were pleasant, cultivated men; but some of them, assuming "swell"
manners to which they were not bred, were
ludicrously awkward in their new role. . But they
revealed large capacity for being disagreeable;
wearing at all times (except when they happened to forget) a furtive and defiant look, as
if they suspected that some one would challenge
their pretensions. These found the West " a
hard road to travel." 312
We realized, on seeing Livingston, the rapidity with which a Western town may rise. Here
a town of two hundred houses, well filled, has.
sprung up within ten months, looking very extemporaneous of course.
On the 18th of September we left Livingstoa
in the afternoon, on our way to St. Paul. We
were surprised to find so much fertile land along
the great Northern Pacific road.    When these
lands are settled, as they will be, the business
of the road will be enormous: it is only a question of time. Over this well-made road, from
Livingston to St. Paul, the journey is very easy.
The Pullman cars and the dining accommoda-
tions are excellent.
On the evening of the 20th we reached the
well-built, thriving city of St. Paul, where we:
met Gov. Ramsay, senator of the United States.
For a thousand courtesies, which have made
our Western journeyings so pleasant, we are
largely indebted to Mr. Henry Villard,, the presi- LIVINGSTON TO ST. PAUL.
dent of the Northern Pacific road, and of the
companies with which it is connected.
The Act of Congress, creating the Northern
Pacific Railroad Company, was approved July 2,
The first section of the Act contains the following : —
I And said corporation is hereby authorized and
empowered to lay out, locate, construct, furnish,
maintain, and enjoy a continuous railroad and telegraph line, with the appurtenances, namely, beginning at a point on Lake Superior, in the State of
Minnesota or Wisconsin; thence westerly by the
most eligible railroad route, as shall be determined
by said company, within the territory of the United
States, on a line north of the forty-fifth degree of
latitude, to some point on Puget Sound,1 with a
branch,2 via the valley of the Columbia River, to a
point at or near Portland, in the State of Oregon."
The grant was, —
1 Every alternate section of public land, not mineral, designated by odd numbers, to the amount of
twenty alternate sections per mile, on each side of
said railroad line, as said company may adopt,
through the Territories of the United States, and ten
alternate sections of land per mile on each side of
said railroad, whenever it passes through any State,
1 I Puget Sound," construed to mean all waters connected with
Straits of Fuca by Act of March i, 1869.
2 Portland Branch, extended to Puget Sound, April 13, 1869. 3H
and whenever, on the line thereof, the United States
have full title, not reserved, sold, granted, or otherwise appropriated, and free from pre-emption, or
•other claims or rights, at the time the line of said
road is definitely fixed, and a plat thereof filed in
the office of the Commissioner of the General Land
Office; and whenever, prior to said time, any of
said sections, or parts of sections, shall have been
granted, sold, reserved, occupied by homestead settlers, or pre-empted or otherwise disposed of, other
lands shall be selected by said company in lieu
thereof, under the direction of the Secretary of the
Interior, in alternate sections, and designated by
•odd numbers, not more than ten miles beyond the
limits of said alternate sections."
' This grant of many millions of acres to the
railroad caused the road to be built, and thereby
made the half which remained to the govern-
ment worth a thousand times more than the
whole was before the road was constructed.
The work was completed early in September,
This great railroad, starting from Duluth on
Lake Superior, and from St. Paul on the Mississippi River, makes junction at Brainerd, 114
miles from Duluth and 136 miles from St. Paul.
Portland, Or., is 1,889 miles from Duluth, and
1,911 miles from St. Paul.
At St. Paul we saw a Chinaman who spoke
English pretty well, and we tried to learn from LIVINGSTON TO ST. PAUL.
him why it was that the Chinese left their hopelessly ill to die alone. He would not talk upon
the subject, or give the least information; but
he did not deny the custom, or expressly admit
it. 3i6
On the 24th of September we reached Chicago
again, and met Lord Coleridge, whom my father
had known in England.    He was much inter-
ested in Chicago, as every stranger is. It is
a city of wonderful enterprise, and unparalleled
in the rapidity of its growth. Its hotels, commercial blocks, and public buildings are very
fine. The Hall of Justice is quite as imposing
as Somerset House in London.
We went over the great exhibition of engines,
and viewed the latest railroad contrivances for
facilitating shunting, coupling, and switching, to
say nothing of Mr. Pullman's latest essays for
comfort and convenience in his cars, made at
the Pullman manufacturing village, some few
miles from Chicago. We saw the "Samson,"
in which the Prince of Wales once rode, one of
the oldest engines in existence. It was built in
1838, in England, for a short line in Nova
Scotia. There was also a rickety old contrivance built in 1835 ; tne "John Bull," made in CHICAGO AGAIN.
England in 1831 ; the "Arabian," in 1834.
Nearly side by side was—as is generally the
case in all shows—the great extreme, a Shaw
locomotive, vast in height, built during the last
year, having made a mile in forty-seven seconds.
If from 1783 to 1883 we have seen such
marvels, what, with increased facilities for invention, can we not hope for in the next century 1
Shall we not navigate the air, skim mountains,
and use a means of destruction akin to "vril,"
which Bulwer speaks of in his "Coming Race"?
Went over the Calumet Club, which certainly
is very beautiful.
Chicago, from its geographic position, its
natural advantages for commerce, and from the
marvellous enterprise of its citizens, is destined
to become one of the great cities of the earth.
Its wealth is too rapid, and its extravagance too
great, for its own good.
We found that the people of Chicago take
their fashions from New York (as we take ours
from England), in which they have lately had
eminent success. A young man who had seen
polo at Newport wished to introduce the fashionable game in Chicago; and, selecting nine other
youths, they proclaimed the day when the tournament would take place. The fashion, on
horseback, in victorias, landaus, and with four-
in-hand, repaired to the field.    These handsome 3i8
young men, gorgeous in their tightly fitting
togs, mounted their ten ponies, — each of regulation height,—took their places, and waited
the signal to charge. The spectators looked
on in breathless suspense. The signal was
given—and, as if by preconcerted arrangement
among those mustangs, each bucked his man
into the air and over his head! The mallets
were all dropped; and without a rider every
pony ran away, and some of them were not
•caught for two days after. Even in polo-playing, Chicago can beat the world. HOME AGAIN.
Here, at the end of September, we are back
in New York all safe and well, after an interesting journey, in which we saw every variety of
scenery and life. And now, as I sit on the
veranda of our country-house on the Hudson,
and look across the river to West Point, and
over the Newburgh Bay towards the Catskill
Mountains, I feel that I have seen nothing more
beautiful, and fully realize that "there is no
place like home."
Note. — On our journey, discussions frequently arose
touching the questions of latitude and longitude, distances, the
difference in time, the difference between a geographic and an
English mile, and as to how the length of a nautical mile was
determined, and what was meant by the metric system.
These questions are answered in the next chapter. 320
This dry chapter of dates, distances, differences in time, etc., should be omitted by the
general reader. It contains information quite
elementary; familiar to the well-instructed schoolboy, and mostly forgotten by mature people.
An imaginary line drawn around the earth,
equidistant at every point from the poles, and
dividing the globe into two hemispheres, — the
north and the south, — is called the equator.
This great equatorial circle is divided into
three hundred and sixty degrees; each degree,
into sixty minutes; each minute, into sixty seconds.
A minute of the degree is a geographic or
nautical mile.
The nautical mile differs in length from our
English mile: the nautical mile is the length of
a sixtieth part of a degree of the equator.
The English mile, which came to us by inheritance, has no natural basis whatever. It
is purely arbitrary, — created by statute 35 of CHAPTER NOT TO BE READ.
Queen Elizabeth, making 320 rods, or 5,280
feet, a mile: hence it is often called a j statute
mile." The Roman mile was 438 feet shorter
than the English mile. The German mile is 5I
English miles. The German short mile is about
four times the English mile. The Danish and
Prussian mile each is 4.7 English miles. The
Swedish mile is 6.648 English miles. The
French kilometre is but 0.6213 of an English
mile. Sixty nautical miles are generally stated
to equal 69^ English miles, but this is not strictly accurate. All geographic calculations are
made in nautical miles: hence the circumference of the earth is but 21,600 nautical miles,—
that is, 24,904^ miles English.
Latitude is the distance north or south from
the equator, and is reckoned in degrees. A
parallel of latitude is a line drawn around the
globe, equidistant at every point from the equator. A meridian is a circle drawn around the
globe, passing through the poles, and cutting
the equator at right angles. Latitude is reckoned from the equator, either north or south.
Longitude is reckoned from some meridian east
or west. Any place may be selected as the
meridian from which to depart, and differs in
different countries. In France, Paris is taken;
in England, the Royal Observatory at Green- —I
wich; in America, Greenwich is generally adopted. Both in navigation and geography, the
nautical mile is used, which is a minute of an
equatorial degree. Several astronomers have
measured the degree, but no two make it the
same exact length.    Of course a nautical mile
is the sixtieth part of an equatorial degree; but
how many rods or English feet equal the sixtieth part of the degree ? The English compute
it at 6,087.84 feet; the Americans, at 6,086 feet;
but different authors vary somewhat. It is sufficiently accurate to say that a nautical mile is
807 feet longer than an English mile.
Whenever the sun in his course crosses a
given meridian, it is mid-day along that meridian. The sun passes over one degree in four
minutes of time; it takes sixty minutes of time
to pass over fifteen degrees of space.
New York is 740 west longitude. A place
which is 890 west will be reached just one hour
later. Four minutes of time are required to
pass over each degree, and four seconds of time
to pass each second of a degree.
Having the longitude, to find the time. — Multiply the degrees, minutes, and seconds by 4,
and the product is the time.
New York is 740 west longitude.
74X4=296 minutes, which equals 4 hours
and 56 minutes. CHAPTER  NOT TO  BE READ.
Having the time, to find the longitude. —
Reduce the hours to minutes; and, if there are
seconds also, divide the minutes and seconds
by 4.
San Francisco is 8 hours, 9 minutes, and 44
seconds slow, Greenwich time: that is, 489 minutes 44 seconds; divided by 4= 1220 26'west
A watch, taking the true time at New York,
as every one knows, will be too slow if carried
east, and too fast if carried west; but its gain
or loss does not depend upon the miles travelled, but upon the degrees of longitude reached.
In going towards the east or west, you may
travel a thousand miles, and not gain or lose so
much in time as you would if going due east or
west only fifty miles on a parallel of latitude.
The difference in time depends wholly upon the
difference in meridian. If you travel due west
nine hundred geographic miles, you will gain
one hour in time; but in reaching the same
point you may travel two thousand miles, and
gain no more in time.
The following table contains the length of a.
degree of longitude for each degree of latitude:— 324
d     Miles.
31   51-43
32   50.88
33  5°-32
34  49-74
35  49-15
i   8
41   45-28-
42  44-59
43  43-88
44  43-16
45  42-43
Gerard Mercator was born in the Netherlands
in 1512. He published a chart in 1556, which
some forty years later came into general use
in navigation. In the Mercator charts and
maps, the earth is supposed to be a sphere ;
yet the meridians, instead of converging towards
the poles, as they do on the globe, are drawn
parallel to each other. The distance between
the meridians, therefore, is everywhere too
great, except at the equator. To compensate
for this, the degrees of latitude are proportionally enlarged. On the artificial globe, and on
maps taken therefrom, the parallels of latitude
are drawn at equal distances; but on Mercator's
chart the distances between the parallels increase
from the equator to the poles, so as everywhere CHAPTER NOT TO  BE  READ.
to have the same ratio to the distances between
the meridians which they have on the globe.
For example, in latitude 6o° the distance between the meridians is but half what it is at
the equator: hence a degree of latitude is there
represented as twice as .great as at the equator.
A map constructed upon the principles of
I Mercator's Projection" presents the entire
surface of the earth upon a single plane, which
is a rectangular parallelogram.
The maps and charts in this book are constructed upon Mercator's plan ; and thus Alaska
is shown in its true relation to British Columbia, to the United States, and to Asia.
Places in Europe and America of nearly the same
Paris    .
Naples .
480 50' N.   Victoria .
400 25' New York
. 480 25I' N.
. 400 42'
Montauk Point. 400 04'
Chicago .
4i° 39'
4i° 37'
57° 03'
57° 09'
North    Cape   of
Norway.    .    .71'
(Mexico   .
42° 41'
190 20')
Sitka (Alaska) . 5 7° 30'
Pt. Barrow (Alaska) .    .    .    •
7i° 13'
When it is midnight at Canton, it is midday at New York. 526
Distances from New York to San Francisco and Places
intermediate, by Union and Central Pacific.
New York to Chicago .
Chicago to Omaha
Omaha to Sherman
Omaha to Continental Divide
"     to Thousand-Mile Tree
■     to Ogden
■     to Wadsworth .
■     to California line
|     to Summit
I     to Sacramento.
Sacramento to San Francisco
New York to San Francisco
Distances from New York to Portland and to Astoria by
Northern Pacific.
New York to Chicago
Chicago to St. Paul  .
St. Paul to Minneapolis
■ to Brainard
I      to Fargo
■ to Bismarck
■ to Mandan
to Glendive
I to Billings
I to Livingston
I to Bozeman
I to Helena
I to Portland ij9h
1,322 miles.
Portland to Astoria, by boat
New York to Astoria
3,233 miles.
120     "
3,353 miles. CHAPTER NOT TO BE READ.
The Metric System of lengths, weights, and
measures of capacity, etc., introduced into
France many years ago, and since adopted by
many of the Continental governments, is based
upon the idea of an unchangeable natural standard, the multiples and subdivisions of which
follow in decimal progression.
By measuring an arc of the meridian, the
distance from the equator to the pole — measured as along the surface of still water — was
calculated: this was divided into ten million
parts; and one of these parts was taken for
the unit of length, and called a metre, from the
Greek word perpov (a measure).
The unit of capacity, both dry and liquid, is
called a litre, and is a cubic measure of which
the side is a tenth part of the metre.
The weight of the volume of distilled water
at the greatest density (39°-29 Fah.) which this
cubic measure can contain is called a kilogram 1
a thousandth part of which is made the unit of
weight, and denominated a gram.
The units of length, superficies, solidity, and
weight, are all correlative ; two data only being
used, — the metre, and the weight of the cube
•of water.
The multiples of these measures, proceeding
in decimal progression, are marked by the prefixes, deca, hecta, kilo, myria, taken from the
1 128
Greek numerals; and the subdivisions following the same order, by deci, centi, milli, from
the Latin numerals.
By careful measurement the metre was found
to be 39.3707904 English inches; and standards of the metre and of the kilogram were
constructed, and deposited among the archives
of France, where they remain.
But in American measure the metre is 39.-
36850535 inches: the American standard yard
being longer than the English by 0.00087 inch.
A foot as established by law in the United
States equals ^^ of the length of a seconds-
pendulum in the City Hall of the city of New
The Are is the unit of surface in the metric
system, and contains 100 square metres, which
equal 119.6 square yards.
The Litre is the unit of the measures of capacity, both dry and liquid, and is the volume
of a cubic decimetre containing 1.0567 liquid
The Kilogram equals in weight 2.2046-
The Gram equals in weight 15.432 grains,
It is a decimal system, wonderful in its simplicity, and of unvarying perfection; under it
there is but one kind of weight or measure or CHAPTER NOT TO BE READ.
standard of capacity, and' all  calculations   are
made in the most easy manner.
It was adopted in France in 1801 ; it was.
legalized in England in 1844, and also in the
United States two years later. But neither in
England nor America has its adoption been
made compulsory, nor has its use become general.      MAP   SHOWING   THE   UNION,   CENTRAL,   NORTHERN   AND   CANADA   PACIFIC   RAILROADS   TO   THE
pacific ocean. BAY OF SAN'FEAHOISOO
NO.  2.
Sacramento (
.Wagon Roads.
m    Rail Roads.


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