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A woman's trip to Alaska : being an account of a voyage through the inland seas of the Sitkan archipelago… Collis, Septima M. (Septima Maria), 1842-1917 1890

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(from the Author.)   
Copyright, 1890, by Septima M. Collis. A WOMAN'S TRIP TO
(Mrs. General C. H. T. Collis)
Illustrated by American Bank Note  Co.  New York.
104 & 106 Fourth Avenue PREFACE.
In the following pages I have not made even a pretence of writing a scientific or historical work. It is
not of special interest to those for whom I write to
know the exact pressure to the square inch which propels the seas of ice as they furrow their way from the
Arctic regions through the mountain gorges down to
the softening influences of the Japanese stream, nor to
trace the vicissitudes of Alaska from the voyages of
Captain Cook down to the purchase by Mr. Seward in
1867, nor yet to familiarize themselves with the ethnology of the various tribes of Indians who inhabit
the Aleutian Islands. All this has been better done
than I could ever hope to do it. My sole object is to
put on paper, for the benefit of others, the impressions
made upon me by the voyage, and to explain how this
delightful excursion can be enjoyed without the slightest fatigue or discomfort, and at a trifling expense. I
want them to know, as I know, that the ship is a yacht,
of which the Captain is the host, the passengers his
guests, and the object of the cruise the pursuit of
pleasure; and if I succeed in inducing my countrywomen to follow my example and postpone Paris and
London, Rome and Vienna, the Rhine and the Alps, to
some future day, they will always have reason to be
grateful to me, and I shall always have reason to be
satisfied with my effort.
Septevta M. Collis. No. 75 "West 71st Street,
New York, Nov. 7th, 1890.
Mrs. General Collis,
New York City.
Dear Madam :
It was a handsome compliment for you to
submit to me the proofs of your forth-coming book
■ A Woman's Trip to Alaska," every word of which I
have read with profit and pleasure, and I am sure it
will influence thousands of tourists to visit our own
sublime regions in America before going to Europe.
I profess to be somewhat familiar with every route
of travel between New York, Puget Sound and British
Columbia, and can verify your faithful description as
far as Queen Charlotte Sound. Thence to Sitka, Muir
Glacier and Juneau, your trip went beyond my personal experience; although I have conversed with many
officers who have been there and beyond, all of whom
will bear testimony to your faithful descriptions.
In reading your text I was impressed by your appreciation of the heroic achievements of our American
pioneers who have brought the Pacific States within
easy reach of the most delicate and refined of our
Eastern people;  that you describe the comfort  and real luxury of travel in that new region; the excellent
hotels and steamers equal, if not superior, to those of
the Atlantic Coast, and the charities of our wealthy to
save what is possible of the natives of our newly
acquired territory, especially that of Mrs. Elliott F.
Shepard, grand-daughter of Commodore Vanderbilt, at
I am sure this book will have a large circulation, that
it will do much good, and will remain to you and your
children a monument more lasting than marble or
Affectionately your friend,
General. CONTENTS.
How to Dress and What to Take.—Checking Baggage.—Trip over the
Pennsylvania Railroad.—A Halt and a Dinner in Chicago.—
Minneapolis: its Flour-Mills, and its Beautiful Buildings, Lakes,
and Parks       ...........      1-9
West from Minneapolis.—Comforts of the Dining-Car.—Bismarck.—
Previous Visit in 1883.—Grant, Villard, and Evarts.—Sitting Bull's
Unpopularity.—The Bad Lands.—Marquis de Mores's Unsuccessful
Venture.—The Yellowstone River.—Indians, Cowboys, and Ever-
changing Scenery.—The Wonders of the Yellowstone Park.—A
Trip through it with President Arthur, General Sheridan, and Others,
All Now Deceased.—Helena, Montana.—A Sunday Dinner on Board
the Train.—Wonderful Trestles and Engineering.—Clark's Fork.—
Lake Pend d'Oreille.—The Sportsman's Paradise.—Spokane Falls.
—Miles of Uninteresting Sage Grass.—Moxie Farm.—An Amusing
Visitor.—The Cascade Mountains.—Stampede Tunnel.—The Puy-
allup Valley.—Arrival at Tacoma   ....... 10-33
Tacoma of Seven Years Ago.—Tacoma of To-Day.—Its Prosperous
Population.—Culture and Refinement.—Lumber Mills and Shipping.—Rapid Building.—" The Tacoma" Hotel.—Mount Tacoma, 34-44
The Steamship Queen.—Her Admirable Appointments.—Obliging Officers and Servants.—Captain Carroll and One of his Jokes.—Seattle.
—Its Wonderful Growth since the Great Fire.—An Indian's Floating
Residence.—Puget Sound.—Its Beautiful Islands.—Wonderful
Young Cities.—Anacortes and Fairhaven.—Port Townsend.—Fresh
Arrivals from San Francisco   ........ 45~56 CONTENTS.
Arrival at Victoria, B. C.—An Eden of Flowers.—The English Mayflower.—Exquisite Landscape.—Superb View of the Bay and Mountain Ranges.—Grand Sunset.—Civility of the Residents.—Dinner at
the | Poodle Dog."—A Moonlight Tramp to the Ship    .
Up Early and on Deck.—Who Are the Early Risers ?—The Gulf of
Georgia and Johnstone Straits.—Vancouver and San Juan Islands.
—Snow-Clad Mountains.—More Picturesque Islands.—Breakfast.—
Whales, Water-falls, Seals, and Porpoises.—A Most Enjoyable Day.
—Wonderfully Transparent Water.......
Arrival at Fort Wrangell.—Its History.—Meeting the Governor of
Alaska.—The Totem Poles.—Their Meaning.—Curious Carvings
by the Natives.—The Wretched Indian Homes.—Poverty, Filth, and
Disease.—An Indian Woman's Life of Toil and Shame.—Infanticide.—Polygamy.—Indian Graves.—An Amphibious Hotel.—The
Trip from Fort Wrangell to Sitka.—The Delta of the Stickeen River
—Exquisite Scenery and Long-Continued Daylight.—Arrival at
Sitka.—So Much like Naples.—Mt. Edgecombe.—The Dilapidated Store-
Houses.—Baranoff Castle: its History and Reminiscences.—Lady
Franklin and William H. Seward.—The Ceremony of Handing
over Alaska by Russia to the United States.—The Journey of
Civilization Westward around the Globe.—Indians and their Knick-
Knacks.—Superstition against Photography.—Indian Adornments.
—The Rancherie and its Horrors.—Princess Thom.—The American
Shops.—The Russo-Greek Church.—Service by Archbishop Vladimir.—Wonderful Interior Decorations.—American Ladies at
Sitka and How They Live.—The Indian River Walk.—The Blarney
Stone.—Presbyterian Missions and Mrs. Elliott F. Shepard's
Schools and Hospitals.—Wonderful Work of the Missionaries and
Progress of the Pupils.—The Narrow Gulf between Barbarism and
Civilization    ......
89-124 CONTENTS.
Departure from Sitka.—Everybody Happy.—Thoroughly Satisfied with
the Day's Experience.—Suggestions for Improvement of Condition
of the Sitkans.—The Thousand Islands and their Foliage.—Mt.
Edgecombe Again.—The Fairweather Mountains by Twilight.—A
Night of Continuous Day.—Amazing Effect of Sunset and Sunrise.
—The Dawn of the Morning Finds Everybody on Deck.—Fields of
Ice and Icebergs in Glacier Bay.—The Captain's Anxiety and Skill.
—"Coffee?" "No, Thanks."—Description of Muir Glacier     .    125-143
My First Sight of Muir Glacier.—The Spell-Bound Passengers.—What it
Looks like.—Its Colossal Grandeur and Exquisite Coloring.—Breaking off of the Front with Loud Detonations.—Impressions Made
upon Previous Writers.—Ascent to the Top of the Glacier.—Its
Dangers and Fatigues    ........        144-158
Taking Ice Aboard.—The Lake of the Gods and Scidmore Island.—
The Fairweathers by Daylight : Fairweather, Crillon, and La
Perouse.—Divine Service on the Queen.—Meeting the Pinta and
Handing the Sailors their Mail.—Douglass Island and its Gold
Mines.—History of the Treadwell Mine.—Cheap and Profitable
Mining.—A Quarry of Gold.—Juneau.—Prettily Located.—Its History.—Great Depot for Furs.—Methods of the Indian Trader.—A
Treasure Lost and Regained.—The Native Dances Given by an Alaskan Showman.—Weird and Unique Performance.—Remarkable Costumes of the Dancers.—The Shaman Dance  ....        159-174
Taku Inlet.—Up the Lynn Canal to Chilcat, above the 59th Degree of
Latitude.—Auk and Eagle Glaciers.—The Davidson Glacier.—Kil-
lisnoo and its Fisheries.—Wrangell Narrows and Clarence Straits.
—The American Eagle.—Whale Food.—The Oulikon or Candle-
Fish.—Schools of Whales in Search of Food.—-Bute Inlet.—Fort
Simpson, B. C.—A Post of the Hudson Bay Company.—Methodist
Church.—Ravages of La Grippe.—Mourning and Tombstones.—
"Muck a muck."—The Man-Eaters and Dog-Eaters.—Horrible Barbarism before the Arrival of Mr. William Duncan and the Missionaries.—Death in a Hut, and the Anguish of an Old Squaw    .        175-185 CONTENTS.
Metlahkatlah, B. C.—An Indian Village with a Good Government.—
Their Written Constitution.—Their Industries and Mechanical Education.—Nanaimo.—A Game of Base-Ball.—Celebrated Coal Mines.
—Recent Sad Calamity in One of Them.—Great Resort for Sportsmen.—Splendid Fishing and Hunting.—Victoria Again, and the %
'' Poodle Dog" Once More.—'Squimault and the Boating-Grounds.—•
Election-Day.—The Australian Ballot.—A Cause Ce"llbre.—Arrival
Once More at Tacoma.—Off for the Yosemite        .        .        .        186-194 1
By the American Bank Note Company, of New  York.
The Muir Glacier—Frontispiece.
Portrait of the Author—Guttekunst, Phila.
Home of Hon. W. D. Washburn, Minneapolis,        -          - 7
Indian of the Plains—Photo, by "Notman & Son, 9
Gen'l Grant at Bismarck,          -           -           -           -           - 13
A Brief Halt, ..---..14
Home of the Marquis de Mores,         - 17
Indians and Cowboys,            -          -          -          -          - -18
Old Faithful—Photo, by Haynes,         - 19
Yellowstone Falls—Photo, by Haynes,      ... 20
President Arthur and Companions,    - 21
Marent Trestle—Photo, hy Haynes,           -                       - -        24
Near Clark's Fork—Photo, by Haynes,           - 25
Spokane Falls—Photo, by Haynes,              -          -           - -        27
"Ah, There!"        _.----- 30
Cutting Timber in Washington—Photo, by Davidson,    - -        32
The Wharves at Tacoma—Photo, by Davidson,         -          - 33
Tacoma—Photo, by Rutter,     ------        35
Pacific Avenue, Tacoma—Photo, by Haynes,              -          - 38
Mount Tacoma—Photo, by Rutter,               -           -           - -        42
puyallup hop-plckers,                            .... 44
"Give Her a Coat of Paint,"        ...          - -        48
Seattle—Photo, by Haynes,                     ...           - 50
Bishop Vladimir,         -------        55
A Bit of Scenery from the Deck,      - 5°
Victoria—Photo, by Maynard,             -----       59
\ Victoria Hospjtality,
All Hands on Deck, -
Scenery in the Gulf of Georgia,
Johnstone Straits, -
Fort Wrangell, ------
Totem Poles at Fort Wrangell—Photo, by Taber, -
A Street in Fort Wrangell—Photo, by Taber,   -
Totem Poles at Fort Wrangell—Photo, by Taber, -
Indian Squaws at Fort Wrangell, -
Indian Grave at Fort Wrangell—from Photo, by Taber,
The Stickeen Delta, ------
The Kodak Fiends, -
Sitka (from the Wharf),     -
Sitka (from the Bay)—Photo, by Taber,
Portrait of William H. Seward,   -
Lincoln Street, Sitka—Photo, by Taber,
Group of Indians at Sitka, -
The Rancherie at Sitka—Photo, by Taber,
Group of Indians at Sitka,       -
The Rancherie at Sitka,     - .       -
Princess Thom,      ------
Group of Indians at Sitka, -
Interior of Indian's House at Sitka—Photo, by Partridge,
Greek Church at Sitka,      -
Interior of Greek Church—Photo, by Albertstone,   -
The Indian River at Sitka—Photo, by Winter,    -
Group of Indian Boys—Photo, by Winter,
Mrs. Shepard's Training School,    -
The Mission Children,    -
The Museum at Sitka, -
Mission Children and Band,      -
125 On Deck ; leaving Sitka,     - - -
A Night of Continual Day,     -
Icebergs Ahead, -
In a Sea of Ice,    -
Immense Floating Ice, -
Muir Glacier at a Distance,    -
A Bit of the Muir Glacier, ...
The Climb, ------
The Top of Muir Glacier—Photo, by Partridge, -
On Top,        -	
Canoe Race by Alaska Indians,     ...
Hoisting Ice on Board,  -
The Treadwell Gold Mines, -
A Whole Quarry of Gold,       ...
Juneau—Photo, by Taber,       -
Alaska Curios,      -
Indian Dances, ------
Indian Canoe,        -
Indian with Thlinkit Blanket,     -
Davidson Glacier—Photo, by Winter,   -
Killisnoo—Photo, by Winter, -
The Mt. St. Elias Range, -
A Picture of Despair, -
Educated Alaska Indians at Home,    -
The Boating Grounds at Victoria—Photo, by May
Map showing Route of the Steamer " Queen,"
3d page
VH lit
To visit Alaska!    This,
as you
had been a dream of man}'
years. I had listened enviously to
those who had been there; I had
read every thing within reach which
had been written about it; the more I heard
and the more I read, the more I hoped.
At last, most unexpectedly, just as I had completed
my arrangements to spend my summer as usual at Saratoga, the welcome words came from your father: 11 will
have to start for Tacoma in a few days; come along, and
run up to Alaska." I don't think I slept any more
quietly or soundly that night than did your little one
when he hung up his stocking on Christmas eve. Oh,
no! Womanlike, I was mentally packing my trunk
for the next few hours with the many things which
I felt sure would be indispensable to my comfort, and f"
having, filled one in the usual style to such an extent
that the horrid thing wouldn't shut, I began to ask
myself how little would be needed by your father,, and
whether he could n't find room for a dress or two in his.
I am not going to tell you what a blunder I made
when I really did lay out my stores for the campaign,
but I am going to do my best to prevent you following
so bad an example, if I can induce you to make the trip.
Dress yourself at the start in a sensible, inexpensive
cloth travelling suit, of ordinary warmth; let it fit
comfortably and not fashionably (you know what I
mean). In addition, carry one, and only one, costume
which will serve for church, dinner, theatre, or occasion
of ceremony, for I assure you there are two or three
places en route where the refinements and conventionalities of life are strictly observed, and as you are a fair
specimen of your sex, you will want to look up to the
standard; otherwise you will feel ill at ease. Of course
you will take a proper supply of warm under-garments,
and then be sure to add, if they are not already in
your portmanteau, the following indispensables: A
long fur-lined cloak and an ulster (not a heavy
one), which can be put on in a hurry and made to
counterfeit an entire costume; otherwise you will be
very apt to miss exquisite bits of the ever-changing
scenery, because you | are just lying down for a nap
and are really not fit to be seen" when some kind
friend calls you to run across to the starboard side to see
a thousand feet of cascade, visible only for a few minutes, as the boat speeds past it.    A warm muff: you »—
will find lots of muffs on the ship, no doubt, but they
all keep their hands in their trousers' pockets, and you
will sometimes wish you had pockets, too, unless you
wrap your little fingers as I suggest. I would several
times have given half the money your father had in his
purse if I had not left my little seal-skin muff in the
camphor closet at home. A pair of broad-soled, low-
heeled shoes that have been already worn, with a few
nails in sole and heel protruding just enough to impress
the smooth surface of the glacial ice. A light-weight
mackintosh, with hood. A pair of smoked glasses. A
pair of powerful field-glasses. Do all this and you are
fully equipped for the journey. Any thing else you
take is simply impedimenta. As my journey from the
Atlantic to the Pacific was so thoroughly enjoyable and
restful that I was really loth to leave the train when I
reached Tacoma, I cannot better guide you than by
telling the story of my own journey.
Having procured our tickets over the Pennsylvania
Railroad to Chicago, and thence over the Northern
Pacific to Tacoma, we next secured a drawing-room on
the Pullman car to Chicago, and telegraphed to that
city to secure one to Minneapolis (where we intended
to remain over one day). We next had our two trunks
taken from our house at Eighty-sixth Street and Fifth
Avenue the day before we started and checked through
to Minneapolis by the Pennsylvania Railroad Company
for fifty cents each; which, I think, was the greatest
amount of comfort and relief from anxiety that I ever
purchased for a dollar in my life, especially when I
t   11 4 •   A   WOMAN'S TRIP TO ALASKA.
found them safely awaiting our coming in that city,
ready to be checked through to Tacoma at no additional cost. (In fact I subsequently learned that
they could have been checked through the whole distance from my residence to Puget Sound for half a
dollar each, if I had so desired.)
At 2 p.m., May 13, 1890, I find myself in the train
at Jersey City, westward bound for our destination—
Alaska. At Philadelphia we wait five minutes, where
you meet me for good-bye and bon voyage, to say
nothing about a delicious box of bon-bons, and then I
settle down to make myself comfortable for the first
day's journey. We have a charming little compartment, one of those Pullman multum-in-parvo's which
American ingenuity and good taste have contrived to
make a long journey a hope instead of a fear; a parlor and dressing-room, where we lounge peacefully and
enjoy ably with our books and our newspapers. I am,*
of course, immensely absorbed in reading "up the latest
authorities on Alaska, my land of years of promise and
hope, and, now that my dream is being realized, I proceed to delve into the most recent literature upon the
subject. Though darkness came much quicker than it
was welcome, still we had an opportunity by daylight
of admiring the beautiful valleys and hill-sides of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, all dressed in their spring
attire, and although we lost a view of poor Johnstown
and the "Horseshoe" on the Alleghanies, yet next day
until five o'clock, when we reached Chicago, there was a
constant variety of interesting landscape, which was most
enjoyable, though there was little of it which lingered in
my memory in the august presence of nature's wonders
in Alaska. A five-hours' break at Chicago afforded us
an opportunity to freshen up and get a good dinner at
the Richelieu, a capital hotel, nicely situate on Lake
Michigan, where, during my meal, a couple of my
nouveaux-riohes countrymen, who in England would
be called 1 cads," unintentionally afforded me a great
deal of fun. One of them who wore a dress-suit, a
diamond shirt-stud, and a watch-chain of most attractive proportions, insisted that he must have a gargon
who spoke French, and this article being supplied,
he commenced discussing the menu in the very worst
French I ever heard, and in so loud a voice that he
impressed those who did not know better, that he was
some remarkable personage; when, however, he selected the vintage and brand of his rouge vin as he
called it, I am afraid my outbreak of merriment was
observed; it certainly was by the waiter, who felt at
once relieved of the high strain of dignified reserve to
which he had nerved himself, and fairly guffawed.
But the climax came when, in the midst of the meal,
another waiter entered and grasped our distingue
stranger by the hand, with a " Say, when did you get
back ?" from which I presumed that our Franco-
maniac had just returned from a European " tower."
I regret to say that from that moment the dialogue of
les deux amis was continued in home-spun English of
a quality as inferior as the French, but the criticism
of the viands, and the elevation of the bordeaux to the A  WOMAN'S TRIP TO ALASKA.
electric light to test its color, were maintained to the
end of the feast; yet I think my broiled chicken and
Milwaukee beer (vintage of 1890) were fully as well
appreciated. The whole thing brought vividly to my
mind Mrs. William Florence in one of those inimitable
characters in which she constantly apologizes for her
inability to suppress the impulse to frenchify, as, for
instance, 1 Now, my dear, s'asseoir right here; excuse
my French, but you know I've lived so long abroad."
Perhaps I ought not to refer to such trifles ; yet they
are the incidents which will be met with on a trip of
this character, and serve to illustrate the different
phases of American life.
Leaving Chicago at 10 p.m., May 14th, we arrived in
Minneapolis at four next afternoon, and stopped at the
West House, a really superb hotel, unexcelled anywhere I have ever been: I don't know whether to
commend most the amiable and painstaking host, the
excellent, spacious, and well-furnished rooms, capital
laundry, or the admirable arrangement of the rotunda, with its beautiful galleries, where the women
walk or sit after dinner, gazing down at their liege
lords below, swopping wheat and stocks and yarns.
The wealth and growth of this inland city are due
chiefly to the establishment and maintenance of the
immense flour mills, located on the banks of the
Mississippi River, which receive their motive power
from the Falls of St. Anthony, and their supply of
grain from the fertile fields of spring wheat in the
States of Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Dakota.    There
are twenty-three of these mills, several of them built of
granite, of a dozen or more stories in height, and of
imposing architectural design; having a capacity, I am
told, to manufacture thirty-seven thousand barrels of
flour each day, and actually producing annually between six and seven millions of barrels, of which two
millions are shipped away to provide the staff of life
in foreign lands. Visitors are welcome at all times, and
are treated with the utmost courtesy by proprietors
and employes.    I recognized my favorite brand, and
followed the
processes of
its manufacture with extreme interest, from the
emptying of
the freight
car contain-
ma TFFilim
ing the freshly threshed wheat, through all the details
of grinding, cleansing, and. sifting, until it finally,
reached the muslin bag, and was sewed up and
Minneapolis is still in her "■ teens," but as beautiful as
she is youthful, and, I am told, has determined to make
her debut this year as a rival to her elder sister, the enterprising St. Paul. While here we were the guest of
our friend, Mr. T. L., who played the host en vrai
prince, placing us in his phaeton, behind a pair of very
rapid jet blacks, thus giving us an opportunity of seeing in a few hours what it would have taken us days
to discover for ourselves. I was fairly amazed at the
palatial residences; with the exception of perhaps half
a dozen houses, New York has nothing comparable in
the way of bold and tasteful architecture, combined
with great solidity; the variety and combinations of
colored stone particularly struck me, especially a remarkable blending of green and cream colors in one
o o
house yet unfinished, the unfortunate owner having
come to grief during its construction. Its architecture
was of the highest art, and I hope yet to see it in its
completed magnificence. Perhaps the effect of these
grand edifices, each built upon its own separate acre
with its carpet of lawn and flower-beds, upon an eye
accustomed to, rows of brick and brown stone, is
exaggerated as to the beauty of design and structure,
nevertheless the Minneapolis homes impressed me with
their splendor, and I cannot help feeling it is the most
charming city I have ever visited. MTNNEAPOLIS.
Next daj' we made the tour of the chain of lakes
which, with the surrounding land, constitute the people's pleasure-ground, or public park. Lakes Harriet
and Calhoun are exquisite sheets of water bordered by
wide and well-made boulevards and groves of trees; in
fact, only just a sufficient contribution of art to preserve
the beautiful gifts of nature, which is a great comfort
in a world so given to strained efforts to compete with
the Creator; yet where the handicraft and taste of man
are essential, as in the construction of their massive
public buildings, the people of Minneapolis are unsurpassed. The churches, libraries, banks, city buildings,
office buildings, and newspaper offices have a most
assured fire-proof and age-proof effect. The building of
the Guarantee Company is wonderful: I was amazed
when told that it had been commenced only a year ago,
yet it has eleven stories, and is constructed upon the
highest principles of architecture as to light, air
and strength; there seemed to be
nothing about it that had not its
raison d'etre. The view of the
surrounding country, from the
top of it is simply superb, reaching to
" Where the Falls of Minnehaha
Flash and gleam among the oak
Laugh and leap into the valley." I
T five in the afternoon, May 16th,
we once more find ourselves in a
Pullman drawing-room, and as we
have now to settle down for a
three days' journey, it seems to us that
the  apartment has been  made   even
more cosey than the one which brought
us from New York ; at all events, it has
every thing that the most fastidious
person could wish for, and when I compared it with the chilly, comfortless
coaches in which I have been doomed
to spend hours in Italy and Eastern
Europe, I felt that those who grumble at the little con-
tre-temps that sometimes happen even in the wonderful
Pullman system are a most unreasonable set: our compartment is a cute little salon by day, where we are
happy in the dolce far niente, with our books, or in
Meriting to- those at home.   We have every convenience,
a cheerful and obliging porter, and when the white-
jacketed waiter announces | supper is now ready in the
dining-car," we simply walk through  the vestibuled
passage-way to the next car and are politely ushered to
a tea which would have done credit to any home in the
land. Just think of a broiled salmon steak, excellent
and well-cooked chops, delicious waffles, strawberries,
capital tea, and lots of other good things, if you preferred
them, all for seventy-five cents; add to this, if you
wish, a pint of Zinfandel (a California claret), and one
dollar pays the bill. I really become so content and
restful that I feel I could live here a month. Perhaps
the men on the train miss their clubs in the evening,
their billiards, or their rubber; but, as far as I am concerned, I am happy that there are no shops, no dinner
parties, theatres, or balls. I live to confess that I do
not miss them. Think of it, I retire at nine o'clock,
and  sleep  peacefully until eight.     I  have  but  one
arrtere pensee,
one nightmare : will I grow fat on this
calm, heart-full, and stomach-full life ? Yes, I have
another: will the ubiquitous ten-months-old baby
(there is always one to each car) yell in the night between the intervals of paregoric ?
'It is Saturday morning, May 17th, and I have slept
deliciously ; if the baby cried I was too unconscious to
observe it, but about four in the morning I was awak-
ened by a change in the temperature; it had become
intensely cold, and I made good use of the extra
blanket. Upon arising I find we are out on the treeless prairie, coated with a light fall of snow. For I
should think two hundred miles we travel on in a
straight line across this vast expanse of plain with no
speck of foliage excepting here and there where the g~
m ){
si ji
settler is making a fruitless effort to raise a few
striplings; yet I am told that in a month these
thousands of acres will be fresh and green with the
young spring wheat, and what now is an uninteresting
barren waste will then be a veritable cornucopia.
What care I if the eye does tire of the monotony of
the plain, the horizon, and the occasional farm-house ?
it can turn to the little dressing-rooin with its every
convenience, its finely bevelled mirrors, tank of ice-
water, marble basin with hot and cold water, and
silver spigots, little shelves and trays in carved
mahogany, adaptable to all the many necessities of a
woman's toilet; a little bijou, which surely no man
ever designed, unless he was a very, very much married man. Breakfast at nine—strawberries and cream,
brook trout, broiled spring chicken, first-rate coffee.
Think of it, and remember the old days, when we had
to be elbowed and trod upon by rude men in the rush
to get to the counter of the wayside station and choke
or scald ourselves in the effort to bring on an attack
of dyspepsia before the conductor should shout 1 All
aboard ! " Think of doing this on hot days, on cold
days, on rainy days, and on slippery days, and then compare it with the decent, respectable, healthful method
of to-day: a table for two, take your own time,
rational meal, and the train carrying you on to your
destination at thirty miles an hour; is n't it grand ?
Breakfast finished, we find ourselves at Bismarck at
10 a.m., where the train stops long enough to. permit us
to take a stroll upon the platform and look at a busy
town built up on the trade incident to the great wheat
country of which it is the centre. Here we lose the
society of two sisters of charity, who have been
passengers from Minneapolis, bound on an errand of
mercy. I am sorry they leave us, for I feel better
always for the influence of their presence; much as
our faiths differ I have reason to have an immense
regard, respect, and admiration for these dear good
women, whose lives are full of sacrifice, immolation of
self, and purity of heart. Bismarck is full of proud
and tender memories for me. Seven years ago I leaned
upon the arm of our great hero General Grant there
as we walked together to the
ceremony of dedicating the
State House, followed by a
column of distinguished men,
among whom were Mr. Vil-
lard, Mr. Evarts, members of <
the Diplomatic Corps, and
others who were en route to
the laying of the last rail to
complete the great highway
from -St. Paul to the Pacific.
Then, I rode over the Rocky
Mountains in stages, ate terrible meals with all sorts and
conditions of men, slept in the woods, got wet and dusty,
frozen and broiled, according to the altitude to which
from which we descended, and was
we cnmoea,
more fatigued
than I would
be in a P
le expiration 01 my lour days  j<
ullman car in a month.    It was 14
on this occasion at Bismarck that I was witness to an
episode which is worth recording. Sitting Bull and
his chiefs, but recently stained with the blood of poor
Custer and his intrepid band of followers, were ostentatiously and indecorously paraded upon the platform
erected for the speakers, and Sitting Bull commenced
a harangue in his native tongue, which was being in-
terpreted, when the crowd below, now assembling and
realizing what was taking place, drove him with yells
and hisses to the rear and called Grant to the front. I
was in entire sympathy with the crowd. The picture
of the handsome Custer with his red scarf, as he dashed
along Pennsylvania Avenue on his runaway horse at
the grand review in Washington in 1865, was before
me, and so was his murderer.    There was but one side
to such a question. At all
events I cannot work myself up to any
sympathy for
the Indian. I
have seen the
noble red man
at home, with
his filth and
his vice, his
dishonesty, his
cunning,    and
A BRIEF halt.    {Kodak'dby Author.) his general Un- MAND AN AND THE BAD LANDS.
reliability, and I am among those who believe he should
be coerced into good behavior and not tolerated as he is.
Leaving Bismarck we cross the muddy Missouri on a
new iron bridge, and in twenty minutes are at Mandan,
where a change of locomotives and conductors necessitates a halt of a quarter of an hour, giving us a chance
to visit a curiosity shop of stuffed birds and beasts at
stuffed prices, but as I have no use for these dust- and
moth-catchers in my household, they tempt me not.
Shortly we reach the | bad lands." I think the name
belies them, for in addition to their being weird, picturesque, and puzzling, they are good grazing lands, as
I myself can testify, if good fat herds of cattle afford
any proof. The topography is of the most marvellous
formation, and the colors are equally wonderful: here
you see an ashy-gray hill of elephantine form, there a
red cone as perfect as though just from the moulder's
hands, again a pyramid, and then dozens of cones and
pyramids, and this continues for a hundred, nay, two
hundred miles. Often these quaint forms recall to
mind scenes in other lands: once from the car-window
I recognized on this arid desert the tomb of Cecilia
Metella on the Appian Way, with its beehive formation
and its battlements. Now and then you recognize
what you believe to be an extinct volcano with lumps
of scoria at its base, yet this may be only the slag or
refuse of the burning lignite, which is frequently
found and sometimes mined among these hills. What
struck me as the most remarkable feature of this wonderful and enigmatic formation, was a series of well
|: IS i6
defined horizontal lines, a foot or two apart, which
invariably marked the mounds or buttes, very much
resembling the lines made upon the shore of a river by
the rise and fall of the tide. Now I am not a geologist,
nor gifted with much antediluvian or prehistoric lore,
nor have I read any scientist's ideas of what I am
describing, but to me it looks as if at some very
remote period this entire region was the bottom
of one or more fresh-water lakes as large as Lakes
Michigan and Erie, or as small as those which cover
acres of Wisconsin and Minnesota, and that by some
process of evaporation, or by leakage or failure of
supply, they gradually dried up, leaving these watermarks upon the hill-sides to denote the periods of
transition. At all events fossilized fish and shells are
found here in abundance, and it is said that irrigation
will make the soil productive. While I am thinking
of it, however, and perhaps wasting my time in conjecture, we stop at Medora. Here is the wTeck of a once
thriving plant and settlement founded by Marquis de
Mores, the husband of one of New York's rich belles,
who conceived the idea that he could establish and successfully carry on at this place the business of raising
and slaughtering cattle and sending the meat in refrigera-
tor-cars to Eastern markets. He built a neat home,
which can be plainly seen from the train, but after a
serious altercation with some of the cowboys, resulting
in a tragedy, in which the Marquis bore himself with
considerable gallantry and nerve, he ultimately abandoned the scheme and left the country.    Yet I am told
I* r
by the people who should know best, that his plan was
an excellent one, and will yet be carried out successfully
but lack of business experience and tact was the real
cause of his failure. He established the fact, however,
that cattle would fatten here, and that they could
readily be prepared for safe shipment to the Atlantic
seaboard, or "from ranch to table," as the Marquis
epigrammatically styled it. He was a pioneer, and,
like many others, perhaps a little ahead of his time.
Looking at his house and the dismal surroundings, you
cannot help congratulating the Marchioness that the
scheme was a failure. No wealth would compensate
for such a life to one accustomed to the whirl of the
metropolis; cela va de soi it was a terrible sacrifice.
Another night of comfortable sleep and Sunday,
May 18th, dawns upon us just as a spring day ought
to—sunshiny, pleasantly warm, and a clear sky. This
is to be a day of land- and water-scape, so we take our
camp-stools and our Kodak to the rear platform and
feast our better nature with a repast of the sublime
and beautiful approach to the foot-hills of the Rocky
Mountains. Here we have dashes of scenery to delight the most exacting artistic taste—mountain and
ravine, valley and stream ; in fact, for the next twenty-
four hours the track follows the meandering course of
the great Yellowstone River, with its rapids and waterfalls, its. precipitous banks and rock-bound canyons,
its Indians and its cowboys,—an ever-changing whirl
ot panorama, through which we pass so rapidly that
before the oft-repeated echo of our shrill whistle has THE YELLOWSTONE PARK.
died away upon a scene of enchantment, another still
more beautiful surrounds us, effacing all recollection
of its predecessor, till the admiring eye and hungry
soul become satiated with a kaleidoscopic confusion of
the sublime. Asked now to select some gem for an
artist from among it all, I should fail; I could not particularize any special locality. If I had taken photographs one upon top of the other every five minutes of
that delightful day, and then made one composite picture of the whole, it might faintly convey an idea of
nature decked with her purple robes and
sceptre as it lingers in my memory while
I write.
At nine in the morning we reach Livings-
ton, and here I experience the first and only
disappointment of my trip.     This is the
entrance to the Yellowstone Park.    Seven
years ago I left the train at this point and
went off on the little branch road to Cinnabar, and thence seven or eight miles in a
stage to the Mammoth Hot Springs.    Oh,
ye geysers, and you lovely canyon, with
your marvellous waterfall, must I pass you
all by as I hurry on to Alaska ?    Alas, the
ship will be waiting for me at Tacoma, and
I have  promised to be there.
Dear old Yellowstone Park, I
see   plainly   your    snow-clad
mountains, I almost hear the
roar of   your   hot  fountains;
I Old Faithful's " punctual coming and going is entitled to better treatment than I am giving him, yet I
cannot tarry. Gladly would I walk there to feast upon
those bright colors unseen and unheard of elsewhere.
Oh, for one look from the summit into the deep abyss
where soars the eagle, and for
an hour beside those fathomless
lakes of emerald mirrors and
morning glories. But it must
not be. I am exploring new
fields. Au revoir, my old friend
—so near and yet so far; if my
life is spared I have not seen you
for the last time; and yet we are
such creatures of circumstances
and conditions that I feel like
exclaiming | Lasciate ogni spe-
ranza voi die isroisr entrate." 0 nly
a few years ago I rode with
President Arthur, and Gen-,
eral Sheridan, and Anson Stager, and Captain Clarke,
through the lanes and across the rivers of this wonder
land. All gone ! Yes, this hour is one of sad memories
and disappointments ; let me get back to the train and
leave the past behind. From Livingston and through
the Bozeman tunnel we arrive at Helena, the most
thriving and populous city of Montana, located in the
centre of one of the richest mining regions in the
country. I spent some days there upon my previous
visit, and spent them very uncomfortably ; the accom- 22
* Ik
modations were not fit for man or beast, much less for
woman. All this, however, has changed since the completion of the railroad, and it now boasts of an admirable hotel (the Broadwater) and a luxurious and mammoth bathing-house. Leaving Helena we enter upon
that wonderful system of railroad engineering which, I
am told, is almost unequalled; here we commence the
real ascent of the Rockies, circling around the sides of
the snow-capped hills and leaping from crag to crag,
over trestle bridges of dizzy heights and wonderful
construction, culminating in the Mullen tunnel, which
marks the summit, and emerging upon a beautiful valley
just at sunset; abandoning the extra locomotive and rattling along at a lively pace on a down grade to Garrison,
where there is a branch road to Deer Lodge, a beautiful little town with a nice, clean, well kept hotel,
which gave me shelter and rest after my stage ride
over the mountains in 1883, and thence to Butte and
Anaconda, famous for their rich copper and silver
mines. At this point (Garrison's), therefore, we lost
many of our compagnons de voyage, who were destined
for some of these places, and several of them to Salt
Lake City.
To-day, in the dining-car, we were treated to a dinner which would have done credit to any first-class
hotel in America, and which surpassed a great many
dinners I have eaten in such so-called hostelries. I
preserved the menu and here it is in full: "Hi
New Beets,
Potage a la Crecy, Consomme Macaroni,
Filet of Trout Princesse,
Potatoes, Dauphine,
Cucumbers, Radishes,
Boiled Ox Tongue,
Grenadins of Veal,
Kromeskies of Lobster, a, la Russe,
Peach Fritters, wine sauce,
Roast Beef, browned potatoes,
Roast Chicken, stuffed,
Curacoa Punch,
Roast English Snipe,
Boiled Potatoes, Lima Beans,
Mashed Potatoes, Stewed Tomatoes,
Lettuce Salad,
Fruit Pudding, Sauce Labayon,
Rhubarb Pie, Whortleberry Pie,
Vanilla Ice Cream, Fruit, Assorted Cakes,
Edam Cheese, French Coffee, Nuts.
If passengers are not served to their satisfaction, the fact should
be reported to the dining-car conductor.
All meals 75 cents.
I assure you it tasted just as good as it reads, and I enjoyed it thoroughly, epicure as I am. The country we
are now passing through—that is, between Livingston
and Missoula, is a | dry section." It seldom rains here,
and though the rivers and creeks run full, they are chiefly
dependent upon the melting snows in the mountains
for their supply of water. This gave us an opportunity
to see the method of irrigation adopted by the farmer to
water his crops ; it consists, as far as I could discover, in
damming up the streams and carrying the water from the
pools thus formed in little ditches to the grain fields;
but the pools are only tapped at intervals whenever the
ground needs moisture, and I was told by an irreverent
passenger that this is a far more reliable system than
that provided by nature in the shape of rain. Unfortunately the run west from Missoula was made at
1 If!
night, and I was deprived of the satisfaction of once
more enjoying a sight of the wonderful trestles which
cross the ravines over which our train passes in its
descent to the western side of the Rocky Mountains;
one of them, the Marent trestle, which bridges the
mountains across the Coriaca defile, being two hundred
and twenty-six feet high; which is best realized by looking at the houses and occupants of the ranch immediately beneath it, who present very tiny specimens of
architecture and humanity. I am glad that all these
structures are now built of substantial iron; for on my
previous visit the creaking of the timbers under the
weight of our heavy train was any thing but pleasant.
u M
O 26
On the morning of May 19th, looking out of the
window at my bedside, I found myself emerging from
the rocky scenery of Clark's Fork, and afterward
traversing the edge of a beautiful sheet of water; so
hurrying with my toilet, I was soon out on the rear
platform absorbed in the charms of a panorama entirely unlike the wild rugged mountain scenery of the
day before. We were now on the banks of Lake Pend
d'Oreille. Whether it gets its name from the French
missionaries, who found the Indians indulging in the
harmless fashion of wearing earrings, or whether the
Indians named it themselves after acquiring a smattering of French, I know not, but I do know that, though
not I margined with fruits of gold," it was, when I
saw it, a clear lake, | glassing softest skies," and altogether lovely; and it must be very large too, for we
were running alongside of it for fully two hours. It is
said to be the paradise of the sportsman, abounding in
bear, elk, deer, pheasants, wild fowl, and trout, and
I am told that in the months of September and
October the season is at its best. Some of this big
game, of course, I was not permitted to see, but I
can vouch for the trout, which I have eaten, and
for the thousands of wild ducks, which I have seen
there. The town of Hope, where we again set our
watches back one hour for the third time on our trip,
is said to be the head-quarters for the devotees of
gun and rod; it possesses a good hotel, experienced
guides, dogs, and all the other mannish things required
on such occasions. SPOKANE FALLS.
The next point of interest reached is Spokane Falls, and
it is indeed a point of very great interest. We have now
left Montana and are in the young, thriving State of
Washington, and this town—pardon me, I should have
said city—will give the Easterner an idea of wThat can
be accomplished by an industrious colony of American
citizens where nature lends them a helping hand.
Seven years ago, at the request of Messrs. Cannon and
" ~*m
.... ^ ......
Brown, two leading citizens of the place, I stopped
over here a few hours (for we had a special train and
loitered as we liked) to look at the magnificent waterfall. I do not think there were a dozen houses there
at that time, yet to-day it boasts a population of over
twenty thousand, all the result of utilizing the tremendous water-power of the "falls."    I remember with 28
regret that upon that occasion these two gentlemen,
then in need of money, though now millionaires, offered
to sell their one-half interest in the water and the surrounding land to your father for $32,000, but he did not
avail himself of the opportunity; and yet five years
later a friend of mine gave more than this amount for
less than half an acre of this same land, and sold it at
an immense profit. Last year it was supposed to have
suffered from an extensive conflagration which swept
away the business part of the town, but to-day, as
magnificent edifices of solid masonry are replacing the
shanties of the past, the fire is conceded to have been
a blessing. I believe the day is near at hand when
Spokane will be a second Minneapolis, for it possesses
both the water-power and the crops which have made
the latter great. Up to this point, for three whole days
the eye has seen so much that is new and startling, that
it becomes weary just when the scenery grows flat and
uninteresting; in fact the millions of acres of sage-
grass and sand through which we now pass affords us
just the rest we need. I never fully realized until
now how true is the saying that we may have "too
much of a good thing," and if I took a nap from
Spokane Falls to Pasco, it was because I needed it
and was not missing any thing. When this desert is
irrigated and becomes a garden of orchards and flowerbeds, as is prognosticated by those who have the
hardihood and self-denial to live there, I am willing to
stay awake ; but really I saw nothing worth describing
until passing through the promising towns of North AMUSING INCIDENTS.
Yakima and Ellensburg we commenced the ascent of
the Cascade Mountains. It is worthy of mention, how-
ever, that near Yakima is a very flourishing irrigated
ranch, called the Moxie Farm, managed by Mr. Ker,
which produces grapes and other fruit in great abundance and of the highest quality, and has proved so
successful in the culture of tobacco that a manufactory
has been established there, which is turning out what
the men call " a high grade of cigar."
Monotonous as was this day's trip, there were many incidents which amusingly broke in upon it—for instance,
at supper Ave found a stranger, who had come aboard at
Pasco, looking indigenous to the soil, a good deal of which
he carried upon his person ; he was evidently dazed by
the society in which he found himself, and did his best
to adapt himself to the manners and customs of his
fellow-passengers. Being handed a napkin, he carefully surveyed the company, and finding that some of
the men had tucked their bits of napery in under their
chins (a vulgar habit, by-the-by), he promptly did the
same, and then, entirely unconscious of the object of
so placing it, buttoned his coat over it, much to our
delight and edification. Then he ate literally of every
thing on the bill of fare, and when thoroughly gorged
stretched himself out and picked his teeth with a
resounding smack, the proud possesser of a lordly appetite and a digestion which would make countless
thousands happy. And just here is a good place to
say that sometimes coming late to our meals we find
the colored porters seated at the tables taking theirs. A   WOMAN'S TRIP TO ALASKA.
It seemed strange at first to me, but I must do them
the justice to say that they behaved in the most
decorous manner, neither eating with their knives, nor
by any breach of etiquette or table manners doing the
slightest thing to excite criticism; on the contrary,
they could give lessons to many of the boisterous
gentlemen (?) travellers who constantly jostled us.
Illustrating the straits to which the settlers are put
upon their arrival out here, I cannot  help   speaking
of   a   queer   little
temporary structure
which I saw  built
over a pile of firewood  alongside of
a tool-house
lllpl       on the railroad at Bad-
ger.   It con-
__ sistedof the
~~ show-bill of
a circus and
some pieces of old matting propped up upon half
a dozen sticks, and perhaps would not have attracted
my attention, but I thought I saw it move. True
enough, just as the train moved on, a bright face
emerged from beneath the show-bill,
merry laugh, exclaimed " Ah, there !"
adieus to the occupant of the improvised bed-tent,
we wondered how long it would take him, in a country
like this wonderful State of Washington, to pass through
md,   with   a
Waving our
the stages which should bring him to the otium cum
dignitate of a Queen Anne cottage and a porch.
Leaving Ellensburg we realize that we are coming
to the end of our feast, and as night closes in on us we
begin to look up shawl-straps and grip-sacks, as we
have to debark early on the morrow. Unfortunately
the Cascade Mountains were crossed during the night,
and we missed the wonderful feats of engineering
which have made it possible for a train of cars to
ascend and descend the Stampede Pass. I have seen it
however, on another occasion. It is simply marvellous,
and with the exception of bits of the Denver and Rio
Grande route there is no spot on the continent where
the majestic work of the Creator is so skilfully supplemented by the ingenuity of man. For miles and miles
you travel back and forth on the sides of these immense mountains to accomplish in the end a progress of
only a mile or so in a straight line, looking down from
the car window on the right at the track you have just
passed over, and looking up from the window on the
left to that which you have yet to surmount, while the
wild torrent of a river rushes and plunges under you
and over you and all around you, as though in angry
indignation at your invasion, and a million stalwart
firs, immense in height and thickness, stand as they
have stood for centuries awaiting the doom which the
little saw-mill in the valley is preparing for them.
At the summit we enter the famous Stampede tunnel, almost two miles in length, lit up by incandescent
lights, in which we are imprisoned f<
eleven long,
1 32
very long minutes, and emerge to get a good view of
the switchback road, which for the two years preceding the completion of the tunnel carried thousands of
passengers to and fro over its perilous timbers without
the loss of a single life. Here again we get a still
better view of the intricate and difficult feats of engineering than on the eastern side of the mountain, and
here we find the picturesque Green River,
hich stays by us un-
we reach the level,
oad  Puyallup   Val-
y, renowned for its
onderful    yield    of
ops. Early in the fall
e hop-fields of this
olific  valley   are   a
arming  sight ;—the
fty vines being laden
ith the beautiful pale-
een flower, which is
ucked   by    Indians
ho   come   long   distances in their canoes   or   on  their
ponies in their picturesque costumes
with their squaws, papooses and dogs, and camp like
gypsies by the roadside, living on dried game and fish
which they bring with them, and returning with
enough coin to provide blankets and other necessaries
for an entire year.
We arrived, on Tuesday morning, May 21st, at the
city of Tacoma. And just here let me say that, much
as I wanted to arrive at the port from which sailed the
vessel that was to carry me to Alaska, it was with sincere regret that I left the comforts and luxuries of
travel which I had experienced in that train from the
Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean.
THE WHARVES AT TACOMA. ^^^^^^^^^^^^^SS3SSSg??SS3?Sg^8K«%S8»»Sftfi»5a
fej^        !    j
N the summer of 1883 you will
remember I was one of a party
who visited Tacoma as the guest
of Mr. Charles B. Wright, of Phil-
- adelphia, to whose sagacity I be-
- lieve the Northern Pacific Railroad
Company is indebted for the selection of this spot as the western
terminus of this great highway.
It was then a settlement (I cannot
bring myself to dignify it with
the name of town) of about 1,700
U S^_'; people. We reached it by rail along the
- \ grandly picturesque bank of the Columbia
River from Pasco to Portland and thence,
partly by boat and partly by rail, to Puget Sound.
Though I was not rude enough to confess it to my
host, I do not now hesitate to say that it did not
favorably impress me, and my three or four days'
experience of its accommodations and food were any
thing but satisfactory. Its streets were unpaved and
dusty, and as we drove through its principal thoroughfare our horses were compelled to meander around the  36
tree-stumps, still marking the recent existence of the
primeval forest. There were then but three buildings
of any pretensions in the place—a pretty Episcopalian
church, a young ladies' seminary, and a three-story
brick store. The only object of interest was the Old
Tacoma saw-mill, about two miles distant, and the
little town surrounding it, excepting when the clouds
lifted now and then to give a view of Mount Tacoma,
which process of lifting, by-the-by, never took place
while I was there at that time, so that I began to believe
its beautiful lines and its snowy hood were all a myth.
Seven years have come and gone, and seven times
five thousand people have come and stayed here since
then ; not only stayed here, but they have prospered
and grown rich, and their wealth is now invested in
banks, manufactories, storehouses, handsome shops,
one charming hotel and many others of less pretensions, a university, two or three colleges, a dozen
school-houses and as many churches, a. beautiful theatre, and every thing that goes to make up urban life.
Its society is simply delightful, composed of people
from the larger Eastern cities, many of them young
married folks, starting life and " growing up with the
country," but carrying with them to their far Western
homes such of the conventionalities and refinements of
city life as best secure the amenities which are indispensable to well regulated society, omitting only those
formalities which chill hospitality and dwarf courtesy
and good breeding into mechanism. " Come and dine
with us to-morrow at seven " sounds so much better
and heartier than "Mr. and Mrs. Status request the TACOMA.
pleasure," etc., etc., and yet when you sit down in one
of those charmingly furnished homes your reception
and your dinner are just the same as you have experienced in Beacon Street, Fifth Avenue, or Walnut
Street. The china, the glass, the flowers, the napery,
the cooking, and the wines would do credit to an
embassy at Washington, and the guests you are apt to
meet will generally have a store of knowledge quite as
gratifying to the reason as the viands are to the palate.
And what has brought about so wonderful a trans-
formation in seven short years ? is the question which
naturally suggests itself as I marvel at the busy throngs
«/ OO v o
moving to and fro, and listen to the clatter of the
mason and the carpenter, and the whistle of locomotive
and steamboat. Let us see: standing upon the promenade of " The Tacoma " and looking out over Commence-
ment Bay, the first object to attract my eye is the
immense lumber mill of the St. Paul and Tacoma
Lumber Company, completely covering a piece of land
half a mile long at the mouth of the Puyallup River,
and giving employment in all its ramifications to five
or six hundred men. Beneath the bluff upon which
this promenade is built, I hear the rumbling and
shunting of the hundreds of freight cars laden with
stores from the East, which are here distributed over
the vast area of country known as "Puget Sound."
Far out in the deep water are a dozen or more large
ships waiting, I am told, for their turn to receive
cargoes of lumber or coal or wheat for England, Aus-
tralia, China, Japan, San Francisco, and South America;
some of them have brought cargoes of tea from the
u   I ?8
Orient, others have iust discharged iron rails and mer-
chandise after a four months' voyage, around Cape
Horn. To the right I see the dense- smoke and distinctly hear the noises which come from machine-shops
and foundries, and all around me I am sensible of a
restless activity pervading the people, whose lives
seem to be devoted to indefatigable toil. To a dweller
in the East who has been tortured by the slow process
of blasting and digging, of masonry and carpentry, of
plumbing and glazing and roofing, of papering and
frescoing, which postpone one's occupancy of his new
home until it becomes a question whether he will live
long enough to get into it, it is a sensation to watch
the evolution of a few loads of plank and boards into
a pretty Queen Anne cottage, as happens every week
in Tacoma; in fact, I know of one case (that of Mr.
and Mrs. C. P., a newly married couple) where the
enterprising young housekeepers were residing in
their home in less than a fortnight after they had
selected a site for it. I cannot say they built it
from cellar to garret in ten days, for it had neither
one nor the other, but it had six rooms and a porch
and a shingle roof, and was not only habitable but
quite " stylish." 1 The Tacoma " hotel is well located,
and well kept in all those respects which are independent of the vicissitudes and vagaries of labor. The
rooms are well furnished and so is the larder, but
whenever  any  thing   went  wrong,   either  with   the
%/ O O'
cuisine or the service, I found it attributable to the
difficulty of securing competent servants; in fact, this
trouble applies to all housekeeping, public or private,
in these new cities. The man who is intelligent enough
to make a first-rate waiter can do better in some other
capacity, and the women, I suppose, get married.
When I suggested trying the experiment of girls to
wait at table, as I have seen in my travels done very
successfully elsewhere, I was informed that they would
have to be both very old and very ugly, for there wras
a great scarcity of brides.
Decoration Day came along while Ave were at
Tacoma, and I Avas agreeably surprised at the large
number of the A^eterans of the Avar who participated
in the parade, and the eAndent prosperity of all of
them. Near the head of the column rode my old
friend, General J. W. Sprague, Avho, General Sherman
tells me, Avas one of the very best commanders in his
II 40
army; and in the evening it was quite flattering to
hear my little book, " A Woman's War Record,"
spoken well of by the orator of the day. It is not
worth while pausing to think what would have been
the condition of this great Northwest country if these
brave men had failed, nor Avhether the Russian eagles
would not still be flying at Sitka; but I never look
upon their ranks and tattered flags without a patriotic
sentiment of gratitude for all they accomplished for us
and for posterity.
A few days may be well spent in Tacoma; there
are many interesting and pretty things to see, and the
distances are easily overcome by a system of electric
railways carrying you in every direction ; and let me
say just here that the Western people from Chicago to
San Francisco are far ahead of us in their street railways. One avouM imagine that the object of these
conveyances is to carry you to your destination as fast
as is consistent with comfort and safety, and this does
seem to be the principle out West; but in the East,
for instance on the Madison Avenue Railway, which I
am compelled to use daily, the speed, if speed it can
be called, seems to be regulated to fatten the horses
and afford each passenger an opportunity to read a
novel or take a nap. The Annie Wright Seminary
. for Young Ladies stands upon an eminence overlooking
the Sound, and has the reputation of being an excellent
institution. There is a similar school for young men,
and one or two colleges, perhaps universities, maintained by religious denominations.   To those who have tacoma.
a fancy for machinery and such things, a visit to the
Old Tacoma lumber mill and the one facing the hotel
will repay them. At the former 1 have seen huge logs
five, six, and seven feet thick, hauled up by immense
chains from the water, sliced into boards in a very few
minutes, and then rolled into ships through square
holes cut in their sides expressly for the purpose. A
street car runs to this mill from near the hotel, and
what I have described can be seen every day, and
ought not to be missed. By referring to my notes
I could tell you exactly how many millions of feet of
wood are cut here eA^ery year, but you would forget it,
as I have done; so I will run on and say that American Lake and Lake Steilacoom, Avhich are both on the
same drive, and about twelve miles from the city, are
well Avorth a visit, not only because of their intrinsic
merit, but on account of the driAre over the prairie
through the pine groves and along the level roads.
But the grandest sight of all, and certainly the most
fascinating north of San Francisco or south of Alaska,
is Mount Tacoma. I shall never forget the sensation
of its first dawning upon me—about the third day I was
in Tacoma. We Avere walking along G Street, near
the park, when my escort exclaimed, "Look at Mount
Tacoma," pointing in the direction to which I had
looked in vain from sunrise till dark in the hope that
the lowering clouds would dissolve or disperse and
open it up to view. Looking in the direction indicated,
my first impression was one of disappointment. To
my eye it was nothing but a very ordinary eminence, 42
still eclipsed by a \Tery impolite Avhite cloud which
>mpletely masked its outlines.   "Isn't it superb?" I
was asked. "Well, really, to be frank with you," I
replied, "I am terribly disappointed." "Then you
surely don't see it as I see it," was the response ; and
as I began to follow the finger of my companion while
he traced out the mountain and separated it from the
clouds Avhich still hovered around it, I realized that the
supposed Avhite cloud Avas really the mountain itself;
and as the atmosphere cleared and the rays of the setting sun covered its pure white slopes with a roseate
glow, I became transfixed to the spot, gazing Avith all
the Avonderment of a child looking for the first time at
some neAV creation he does not comprehend. "If I
never see any thing else but that," I almost breathlessly exclaimed, " I am more than repaid for my two
trips across the continent." Beautiful ! grand ! majestic ! never-changing mountain f There you haA^e stood,
and there will you stand for all time, regardless of the
mutations going on around you. Civilization may ad-
vance, barbarism may come again, sceptres may be
shattered, governments may fall and neAV ones rise,
calamity of war and flood may SAveep pigmy humanity
from the earth, but you will remain unchanged, immovable, to survive it all. It is not your curves, nor
your creA^asses, your glaciers, your tints, nor your deep
unmelting snoAv, Avhich fill me with awe and admira-
tion. It is your eternal stability, typical of all that is
steadfast in faith, in love, in hope. Oh, Avhat a comfort to feel that you Avill still be here when I return
from my visit to your sisters in Alaska, and that your
face will be just as fresh, as glad, and as honest as it is
to-day ! Thanks, beautiful "Tacoma," for remaining out
in the sunlight and the moonlight during the remain-
der of my stay Avithin sight of you. Hoav I envy the
clouds, which have you so often exclusively to them-
'<vti 44
selves! I heed not the whisper Avhich tells me you
tower nearly 15,000 feet above the sea, any more than
I would listen to the cynic avIio analyzed the features
or the figure of an ideal Avoman. I can look at you
with the raptures of Shasta, and Washington, Mount
Blanc, and the Jungfrau still tingling in my nature,
but I yield to you the palm; I care not hoAV tall or
how broad you are, or whether your deep shadows
and high lights are forests, or rocks, or glaciers; to me
you are peerless and unrivalled, like the Venus de
Milo, without prototype or antitype, absolutely unique.
HE steamship Queen Avas advertised
to sail on the morning of Monday,
June 2d, at four o'clock, so the passengers embarked on Sunday evening.
o Jo
We had already informed ourselves
that she was a fine vessel, but were
not  prepared  for  the  treat   which
presented itself as we diwe down to
the wharf to find a large ocean ship,
splendidly illuminated from stem to stern
with electric  lights, awaiting us.     Of course
our  curiosity   was  excited  to   visit  all  parts
of the  floating  home  that  was to  furnish  us  with
all   the   comforts   which   exacting tourists   demand,
and naturally we first of all paid our respects to the
saloon.     Here   we found  every  thing   in  apple-pie
order—clean, neat, spacious, and thoroughly comfortable ; in fact it was the counterpart of the saloon and
social hall in the best of our transatlantic steamers.
There were three tiers of state-rooms, all of them overlooking the water and none of them being what are
known as inside rooms; a promenade extending oA^er the
whole length of the ship around the upper and lower 46
tiers, and a seat or bench in front of every door, the
whole being roofed in in such a manner that even in
inclement weather you could live out-of-doors without
the risk of getting wet. This being her first voyage for
the season she was fresh, sweet, and clean, entirely free
from the detestable ship odors that make some voyages
sickening; and the china gloss of her new white paint
as it mirrored the numberless incandescent lights, gave
her a fete-champetre effect which set us all to fraternizing at the very start and congratulating each other
on the bright prospects ahead. I confess that I was
not a little disappointed when I found that ours was
one of the very tiniest rooms on the ship, contrasting
so unfavorably with my spacious drawing-room in the
Pullman car; but what was my surprise when I was
politely told by the purser that as soon as the ship
reached Port Townsend and took on the last batch of
passengers, he would rearrange the rooms so that
all should be perfectly satisfied, " for," he added " our
insti'uctions are to make everybody as comfortable as
is possible." True enough, next afternoon we were
changed to a very large and well located room, and
given the use of the adjoining one for our baggage: and
this incident serves to illustrate the uniform consideration and kindness Avhich every one aboard experienced
at the hands of both officers and servants, from the hour
we left Tacoma until our return; and to those of
us Avho are fond of travel and adventure this is a very
important matter, for unless we find ourselves in a contented frame of mind, we are in no mood to appreciate
the surroundings. OUR CAPTAIN.
Of course you will want to know about the Captain.
Well, I 'm going to say what I think, regardless
of the effect. The phrase may not be exactly what
some women would care to set down in print, but
it is expressive, and you will know exactly what I
mean, Avhen I tell you that Capt. James Carroll, of
the Queen, is just as nice and lovely as he can be. It
must be remembered that during the whole of the
two weeks' voyage (with the exception of a couple
of hours) we are Avithin sight of land, more than
half the time within a few hundred feet of it on each
side of us, and as this is considered more difficult
navigation than when out on the broad ocean, the Captain spent most of his time on | the bridge " ; but when
he did come to meals it Avas my good fortune to sit near
him and to discover that he was still full of enthusiasm
about the trip, though he had been making it for the
best part of his life, and that nothing gratified him
more than to feel that those around him were enjoying
it, excepting perhaps the opportunity sometimes afforded
him of giving them a good deal of useful information.
I have often thought that a sailor may be none the less
a sailor because he is courteous to his passengers;
brusqueness is not essential to establish a reputation
for discipline, any more than bad temper should go
hand in hand with courage. I have known mild-man-
nered men who were the best of soldiers, and I have
seen sailors who were as much at home in a drawing-
room as in a gale. The story of the young man crossing the Banks of  NeAvfoundland who innocently in- 48
quired : " Captain, is it always foggy here ?" and got
for an answer, " How do I know, I don't live here," may
serve to lessen the number of absurd questions Avhich
would no doubt test the temper of the most amiable of
sea-dogs, but it also serves to bring out in strong contrast those officers who have the tact, if not the natural
inclination, to tolerate the curiosity of those of us who
are really and sincerely in search of knowledge. When
Captain Carroll did give us a specimen of that repartee
Avhich is a born trait of his countrymen, it Avas done to
produce a laugh and not to humiliate. For instance,
very thoughtfully, these ships are provided Avith a steam
launch, which is carried on the lower deck ready for use
if the vessel should become disabled, in Avhich case the
nearest assistance might
be two or three hundred
miles distant. The passengers, however, got the
idea that this Avas a pleasure-boat to be used for
little excursion parties in
Alaskan waters, and one j^Jj
of the ladies, who was as ?i
much a favorite as she was
a tease, and Avho delight-
ed in having a little fun
at the Captain's expense,
asked him what he Avas
going   to   do   Avith   the ^
steam  launch   when   we Kodakd by Author, SEA TTLE.
got to Alaska ? § Give her a coat of paint " Avas the quick
response, and our fair friend enjoyed it as much as the
rest of us.
Punctually at four o'clock, I am told, we left the
wharf at Tacoma and headed up Puget Sound. Of
course I Avas asleep, but upon reaching Seattle at
six I Avas up and dressed, had taken a cup of hot
coffee and eaten a biscuit brought to me by our
room steAvard, who gloried in the soubriquet of
" McGinty" (so called, doubtless, because he AAras
very small and his hair Avas very red), and was
ashore as soon as the plank was ready for us. Here
we remained two or three hours, affording a too brief
opportunity for a hurried visit through the streets
of this phoenix city, which in a year has risen from the
ashes of a fire which almost blotted it from the map.
And what a city! Here was the same quick-step movement of the people which I observed in Tacoma as
they hustled intelligently about, each one bent upon
some errand of business—no idlers, no beggars—everybody doing something, and not enough to do it. Seven
years before, as I remembered it, it Avas a town of some
pretension as to size, but none Avhatever as to architecture. Now, the track of the great conflagration that in
an hour had mowed down every business block in the
place Avas recognizable only by the substitution of
massive stone and brick buildings of the most modern
type ; the streets were newly and well paved; electric
and cable railways Avere jingling their bells in all
directions; the wharves and docks Avere dotted with ^o
crowds of Avorkmen and piles of goods; and a kind of
Mark Tapley temperament of being jolly under the
most adverse circumstances evidently pervaded the
I should have liked to remain here at least a day
to have run out to Lake Washington, of which I
have heard so much; but all I could do in the little
time  allotted  me  was  to  look  with   wonder   upon
what has been accomplished since the fire, and to drop
into one or two of the shops, where a Avoman can generally get a fair idea of the inhabitants of a toAvn by a
glance at the character and style of the things offered
for sale. If this is a reasonably reliable test, and I
think it is, I have formed a very faA^orable opinion of
the tastes and habits of the people of Seattle.    All I SEA TTLE.
saAV here was typical of American go-aheadism. In
another year it will be known as a city of magnificent
buildings, and, like at Spokane Falls, the people will
realize that the recent calamity was after all a blessing.
The only thing that puzzles me is Avhere the people are
to come from who will occupy the rooms of these lofty
structures. I see the supply, but ponder OA^er the
question of demand, and am ansAvered that it exists
already, and if it did not, the growth of this region is
so phenomenal that the supply of any thing and every
thing does not keep pace with the demand. It is certainly the paradise of builders, mechanics, and laborers
at present.    Not the least interesting sight here was a
x O        O
group of canoes, or " dugouts," occupied by Indians as
roving habitations. It was curious and instructive to
see the Avonderful economy of space practised by these
people; a whole family, including cats and dogs, being
housed in a single boat. In one of them I saw two cats
and a dog, Avho had risen before the rest of the family,
eating their meal from a round tin vessel, Avhich had
probably done similar service for the others at the
evening repast; while thus entertained I noticed a
movement giving evidence of life beneath one of the
blankets, and presently a member of the household
poked a pair of trousers under it, which so stimulated the
contortions going on within this open-air. sleeping and
dressing room, that by-and-by a A^ery sorry specimen of
the red man emerged, occupying the aforesaid pantaloons, and demonstrating that the blanket had performed a very respectable and important function. The
111 52
rest of the family by degrees arose from their boudoirs
after going through similar movements, and when they
were entirely unmasked consisted of: a maiden very
much underdressed, in fact, not enough dressed for an
opera, who at once resumed her sewing where she had
probably left off the night before, the old man who
had acted as valet in distributing the wearing apparel
to the sleepers, an old crone in a scarlet and pea-green
dress, two little ugly children who had better never
been born, two cats, and a dog. There were a dozen of
these canoes, and this was a specimen of life upon each
of them. I don't know where they were going, as the
hop-picking does not take place until fall, but probably they had come down to trade their fish or their
furs for flour and groceries. At all events that is what
I was told, and if it is not exactly true it does not make
much matter.    " Si non e vero, e ben trovatoP
A long blow of the whistle; an interval of fifteen
minutes and then another short blow; a shout from
the Captain instructing the men on the wharf to cast
off the ropes; a signal to the engine-room; a turn of
the engine, and Ave were sailing up the picturesque
waters of Puget Sound. The day was beautiful; it
could not have been better adapted to the use we were
making of it if it had been provided specially for us;
in fact during the whole fortnight that we lived on the
Queen we had the most charming Aveather—bright sun-
light and cloudless skies—excepting the day of our
arrival in Glacier Bay, where it rained for a few hours.
In all this Ave were rarely fortunate, it seldom happen-
ing, I am told, that Alaska tourists are blessed with
two whole weeks of what I call sceneiy weather. It
is often foggy, frequently wet, and sometimes very
cloudy; in addition to which the forests are periodically on fire, the atmosphere becoming so smoky
that every object remains obscured until the fires are
quenched by rain. Next to being born blind and
doomed to listen to descriptions of what is going on
around you, it must be the greatest torture to know
that you are in the presence of the most beautiful works
of the creation, hidden from you by a fog, and that you
are speeding past them perhaps forever, never to return. I therefore hope the day is near at hand when
it will not be necessary to remain on board the steamer
and make the complete circuit of the coast Avhether it
be fair or foul, but that you will be enabled to do it
by easy stages, resting where you will at pleasant inns,
and resuming your journey when the elements are
favorable. Of course this kind of thing Avill come
when the rush of sight-seers will not only warrant it,
but make it necessary, yet I am well pleased that I
have seen it all in its original and undisturbed grandeur,
as I saw the Yellowstone Park before the introduction
of hotels and stages.
Puget Sound is a grand sheet of water, several miles
wide and I should think nearly two hundred in
length; of course it is simply an arm of the Pacific
Ocean, but so completely land-locked upon all sides
excepting at its entrance, that it may be considered
one  vast  lake  affording  absolute  protection to the A  WOMAN'S TRIP TO ALASKA.
ships Avhich come here from all parts of the world.
It is full of beautiful islands, some of them rising
so precipitously from the sea that there is no foothold on them for man; others sloping down so gracefully to the water and dressed in such gorgeous colors
that you want immediately to buy one, and build a
house on it at the crest of the lawn. If you look at
them as links of a continuous chain, you perceive that
they are simply spurs of the Olympic Mountains
partially submerged by the ocean, and that if by some
convulsion of nature the water receded, the steamer
would find itself stranded at the base of a deep canyon
and surrounded on all sides by a range of mountains.
What most impresses you is the vast amount of timber
on all sides—trees of enormous height and thickness,
and such millions of them that you wonder Iioav many
generations it will take to consume them. In my
school-days I kneAV nothing of Puget Sound excepting
that it was a speck of blue on the map somewhere up
by the North Pole ; in fact no one else knew much about
it then (for that was over a quarter of a century ago)
yet to-day I am really afraid to Avrite the names of the
many cities and towns which dot its shores, lest somebody should accuse me a year or two hence of having
overlooked many of them, for these cities grow up in a
spasmodic, startling kind of a fashion that takes your
breath aAvay. Anacortes on Fidalgo Island has two
hotels, electric lights, a raihvay, and about three thousand people, all of which have come since last NeAV
Year's Day.    Fairhaven on Bellingham Bay is perhaps PUGET SOUND.
tAvice as large as Anacortes, and is just one year old.
Doubtless others are being born* while I Avrite, and
may be ready for a place in my letter before I have
it completed, if I don't make haste; and to-day I
haA^e a letter from yowx brother, noAV surveying a neAV
line of railroad near 01
ympia, Avho say
ns place
is growing so rapidly that I belie\re money inArested
prudently in real estate can be doubled in two months."
The fact is, everybody has the fever to do something,
and the Avonderful development which this produces is
attracting so much attention that capital
and   labor  are   both  emigrating   there
from the East in such abundance that
before  the  echo of   the  axe has  died
aAvay in the forest, towns and raihvays,
churches and schools, mills and factories,
shops  and homes, have taken the
place of the stately firs, and a busy
community is  brought together to
increase and multiply,  and, I hope, to
prosper.    The number of steamboats one
meets is also a great  surprise;  so   are
the  croAvds  of   passengers they  carry.
Among the former I noticed the Citu
of Kingston, and the surroundings bein^
not   unlike   the   Hudson,   I   naturally
thought of  home, not with regret that.
I was not there again, but rather Avith
pity for those who could and who did
not come out to look at this Avonderful
and charming country.
At Port Townsend Ave stopped only long enough to
afford Captain Carroll time to settle his business with
the custom-house, this being the port of entry (whatever that may mean) for Puget Sound, and to take on
the passengers who had come from San Francisco on
the steamer City of Topeha to join us. And I am
right glad they came, for their society was so enjoyable?
and. the narratives of their recent trips—some of them
extending as far as the city of Mexico—so entertaining,
that I am almost tempted to set their names down in
print, even at the risk of being personal. I will simply
mention, howeA^er, that among them were Bishop Vladimir, Archimandrite Innocent, and ReAr. John A. Sobo-
leff, of the Greek Church, Avho were on an Episcopal
mission to Sitka.
(Kodak'd by Author,) w&w^®<ih\
| five in the afternoon, after a very smooth
run across the Straits of Fuca, Avith the
horizon of the Pacific Ocean on our left
and innumerable picturesque islands on
our right, Ave reached Victoria in British
Columbia, situate at the extreme southern end of Vancouver's Island. When
we were notified that we would remain
here several hours, there Avas an immediate rush for the town, which was some
three miles distant, our ship having
stopped at the outer wharf in preference to entering the harbor ; however, we found awaiting us
several electric street cars, Avhich rattled us off at
a lively pace, and in a very few minutes set us down
in the heart of the town. My previous visit to Victoria having impressed an indelible memory of a
delicious dinner at the Driard House, I resolved to
repeat the experience, and would haA^e carried out my
resolve, but was told that a visit to the "Poodle
Dog " AAras quite the proper thing. Now the | Poodle
Dog " is the name of a restaurant, but why, I am sure
I cannot tell, and the proprietor was once, I believe, 58
the chef'of the Driard House. It is not an ostentatious
looking place, yet it may be recognized by a very appetizing display in its windows of the good things in
season with Avhich it can supply you. On this occasion
there were shrimps on show—beautiful, bright pink
shrimps. As I Avas debating whether we would dine
here or at the other place, the shrimps carried the day,
so Ave entered the establishment, ordered dinner for
eight o'clock, and then jumped into a victoria of
another sort, and placed ourselves under the guidance
of a not over-intelligent hackman. Fortunately (so
thought the men), the shops were nearly all closed (in
fact, I Avas told they open late and close early), so we
started right off to do the town and its suburbs.
Oh, how smooth the roads were, and how nicely trimmed the hedges, and hoAV neatly painted the garden
gates—all so English, you know ! and what an Eden of
flowers ! If you have never seen the English " May "
in full blossom, you have a pleasure in store for you if
you ever visit Victoria in June. How can I describe
it! Its blossoms are either white or old-rose color, but
the flowering is so luxuriant and compact, in* fact so
completely covers every tAvig of the tree, that they
resemble a mass of Avhite or pink carnations made into
one huge bouquet as large as a cherry-tree. The air
was full of floral perfume wherever we went, and the
eye almost tired of the gardens of roses, laburnum,
virgilia, and the most gorgeous blood-red peonies I
have ever seen. All this seemed to belong to Victoria
as a matter of course. There was no effort at cultiva-  6o
tion, no mechanical gardening; these flowers seemed to
thrive and to blossom because they could n't help it.
To us in the East who have to take our plants in of
nights and put them in the nursery, even to sustain a
Ox *f
consumptive existence of a few brief days, it is quite
refreshing to plunge into the midst of a sea of flowers
O x O
as hardy and tenacious of life as they are delicate of
fragrance and of color. If I have ever looked at a
Claude Lorraine and doubted Avhether his pencil had
followed nature or his imagination the most, I shall do
so no more. Here was a theme of land and waterscape, incredible on cauA^as,—beautiful!oh, so beautiful I—beyond the reproduction of pen or brush,or eAren
Nature has been so prodigal of her bounty here
that it is difficult to turn even momentarily from
the green pastures and brilliant gardens to look at
some of the fine residences, yet we cannot help halting
for a moment at the one erected by the late Mr. Duns-
muir, with its castellated turrets and red roof surmounting a magnificent structure of light granite, built on an
eminence which overlooks the city and producing a
grand architectural effect. Through the embryo park,
and past the barracks, Ave next drove up Beacon Hill
to the point de vue, and here our driver for the first
time stopped of his own volition ; perhaps it was his
custom, perhaps he was himself a little dazed at
the picture which burst upon us all, perhaps his
horses Avere tired. At all events Ave find ourselves
upon a treeless laAvn, furnished only Avith a flag-staff VICTORIA, B. C
and a rustic bench. The bench Avas partly occupied
by two gentlemen, who Avere so absorbed by the scene
before them that they hardly observed our coining,
or they would haATe made l'oom for us ; so Ave remain in our carriage and gaze in quiet, speechless
wonder at the exquisite picture before us. The land
slopes away at our feet, making green SAvard, then
come a few of those exquisitely colored gardens of
which I have spoken, then a piece of Avoods, and
finally the rock-bound coast with its splashing and mur-
muring waters; beyond this the placid lake-like landlocked sea, studded with innumerable islands and
dotted with boats and sails and steamers meandering
and tacking their way here and there through the
intricate channels; beyond these the deep blue foothills of the Olympic range fringed at their base by the
royal and stately fir, and beyond all, towering through
the clouds skyward, the snow-topped giants of the
North Pacific coast. It was now nearing eight o'clock,
which in this latitude and at this season is the time
that the sun disappears, though for two hours more he
illuminates the atmosphere with a pleasant tAvilight
and tinges all nature Avith " rare and roseate shadows."
We saw these tints and quickly changing colors in all
their phantasmal mystery: now prussian blue fading
into ultramarine, then being lit up by a ray of yellow
from the horizon suddenly changing to a pale green,
while the snoAvy summit lines of the Olympic range
were tipped with opal, and finally, as the outline of
the mountains grew faint, a single streak of liquid fire 62
marking the line where the ocean seemed to melt away.
It was a veritable scene of enchantment, and Ave left it
with such reluctance that our eyes and our souls faced
backwards and lingered with it until our carriage had
turned abruptly towards town and it was lost to view.
On our Avay back your
father could not resist
the desire to alight and
ask the names of the
many plants and blossoms Avhich decorated
the pretty homes Ave
passed; and this he did
of a party of young people indulging  in  lawn
r So
tennis,   Avho   not   only
gave him the  informa-
tion  Avith bright  intel-
ligence    and    welcome
phrases, but insisted upon loading him Avith both arms
so full of exquisite flowers that when he returned to
us we hardly could find room for them in our carriage.
I shall not soon forget the gentle and suave courtesy
with Avhich our simple request for information was
responded to by the gentlewomen and youths, whose
meny-making Ave broke in upon, and I was glad after-
Avard to learn the name of the head of the household,
whose surroundings and refinements Avere in accord
with such good breeding. If this page ever comes to
the eyes of any members of Mr. R. C.'s family, and DINNER A T THE 1 POODLE DOG."
they should happen to remember the Yankee invasion I refer to, I hope they will believe that my little
group was thoroughly impressed by their kindness
in this episode.
" All human history attests
That happiness of man (the hungry sinner),
Since Eve ate apples, much depends on dinner ! "
You are right, Lord Byron ! but when you wrote
I the mountains look on Marathon, and Marathon looks
on the sea," I doubt very much Avhile
musing there
awhile," you Avould haAre tolerated an invitation to a
dinner even at the 1 Poodle Dog "; yet let me assure
you that if you had sent a regret you would have
made the mistake of your life.
The I Poodle Dog " is presided over by M. Marbceuf,
who is a cook of excellent merit, as I can testify, being
quite a cordon-bleu myself. We were shown to a little
apartment in rear of the store, which seemed deA^oted
principally to the ice-cream eaters, and found a table
with coArers for three, prettily decorated with radishes,
olives, and shrimps, and a few bright roses. I need
not confess to you my daughter that much as I delight
in exquisite scenery and admire works of art, I take a
great deal of pleasure in gratifying my taste for good
living: a drive in the Bois is none the less enjoyable
because you know that a lunch is ready for you at the
Cascades; the deep blue of Murillo in the gallery of
the Louvre is perhaps appreciated with more enthusiasm if you expect by and by to season your fatigue
with a dinner at the Cafe Anglais, or Vibert's, or the 64
Riche; and the labor of the ascent of some Alpine
pass is compensated for not exclusively by the gorgeous surroundings of the hour, for without the cold
chicken and flask of native wine, wrapped so neatly in
the white napkin and packed snugly away in a cute
lunch-basket, there would be an element of self-sacrifice about it that would make you feel you had
performed some deed of martyrdom. I have, therefore, made it a rule of my travels that my palate
and my gastronomy should be well cared for, if possible, in order that I may keep on such good terms
with myself as to receive the various impressions
of my journey in an amiable and contented mood.
So much for the philosophy of my dinner at the
I Poodle Dog," and now for the realistic part of it.
The maitre d''hotel served it in propria persona,
and the meal was opened with the shrimps as an
incentive to appetite, I presume; if so, they well performed their mission, for we were all seized with an
appetite for—more shrimps ; following these came
Olympia oysters, in the shell, not one of which was
larger than a nickel, with only just a delicate suggestion of the coppery flavor which, to my uncultivated
taste, spoils the English "native "; and now, while we
were busy Avith a broiled spring chicken,—and such a
chicken, so Avhite and so tender,—our good host informed us that he had forgotten when we inquired for
game that he had a squab pheasant in the refrigerator,
and he would cook it at once, if we desired. " Roast
it before the fire, and serve with bread sauce," was the
prompt response of one of us ; " and bring a bottle of
this Chateau Margaux 1864," said another, handing
the Avine list to the Avaiter ; and Avhile the pheasant is
being trussed and roasted Ave linger OA^er our chicken
and delicious California asparagus and soufflet potatoes.
It Avas perhaps half an hour before our piece de resistance Avas ready, but it Avas well Avorth Avaiting for : it
v   ' CD
seemed to me that the untimely demise of that youthful bird was fully atoned for by the manner of his
presentation in the form of food, as he appeared impaled through the breast by a silver skewer, surmounted by the lion and the unicorn entwined with a
cordon of alternate mushrooms and truffles ; and with
him came a lettuce salad with a soupgon of onion and
estragon, fit " to set before a king " ; the strawberries
Avhich folloAved had just been picked from M. Mar-
bceuf's garden, the cherries I haA7e neArer seen exe
excepting in Germany, and the coffee Avas made by a
Frenchman, Avhich is all that is necessary to say about
it. This ended the feast, saAre the ceremony of settling
for it, and I deem it my duty to those who folloAv me
hereafter to say that though the dinner was as well
served and cooked as it could have been at Del-
monico's, and in some respects perhaps a little better,
yet the prices Avere not only exorbitant but extortionate. I Avould therefore advise that a full understanding be had with the proprietor in advance, lest you
O xx «/
find yourself charged four dollars for a bottle of claret
marked three on the list, and about fiVe cents apiece
for shrimps, of Avhich you Avill probably eat tAVo dozen 66
if you are fond of them. However, we did not permit
the bill to disturb our equanimity. The moon being
at her full, and several of our shipmates being in the
same condition (I refer to the eatables only), we
resolved to get back to the steamer on foot, and thus
perhaps avoid the nightmarial attack which we had
been inviting. It was a jolly tramp, along a le\xel
board walk of three good miles.  The young men sang,
O J o o*
as did some of • the old ones too, while the women
laughed as they listened to the misfortunes, set to
music, of an Irish gentleman who had a mania for
tumbling into horrid places, | dressed in his best suit
of clothes." When we reached our bright, beautiful
ship, she lay like a luminous palace beckoning us on to
sweet dreams and the dolcefar niente of her life.
■!! IE
AYLIGHT was tinting the land-
scape Avhen we resumed our
Aroyage, and, as I had resolved
at the start that I would only
sleep Avhen I could not see, I
was up and walking the deck
before six o'clock, filled Avith a
sense of pity and regret, to use no
harsher term, for those who still remained in bed. Your cup of coffee and
biscuit are always ready for you at the tap of your
electric bell, so that no excuse about " not liking to
get up early because you have to Avait so long for
breakfast" aArails you one particle. If you do not
prefer Avhat I am looking and wondering at to the
comfort of sleep (which is an excellent thing in its
way), by all means remain in bed, so that the few Avho
are enjoying the effect of the sunrise may haAre plenty
of elbow-room. Let us see who are those Avho are
around our little group of three, sharing with us the
pleasant breeze and balmy sun-rays of this exquisite
June morning.    I see Miss Margaret W., from Illinois,
O CD ' *
and Miss Marian B., from NeAV Jersey, each Avith their
\ IbM
Kodaks, waiting for a chance to snap something—bright,
good girls both of them, and I wish them both good
snaps. There, too, the ever-smiling features of Mrs.
H., from San Francisco, her graceful form hurriedly
throAvn into an ulster, and a little scarf carelessly encircling her throat. On the upper deck is the Rev. C.
C. Tiffany, of NeAV York, and his cousin, Miss J., with
their field-glasses,
probably talking of
Japan, the Yosemite
and the Norwegian
midnight sun; near them, Mr. Drake and Mr. Sherman,
from St. Louis—great travellers, and both fond of it;
Mr. and Mrs Meinertzhagen, from London, who have
spent the first two years of their married life travelling
around the globe, and tell us they have yet one more
year to devote to it, who are now doing Alaska
for the second time ; Mr. Duhring, of Philadelphia ;   Bishop Vladimir and his  associates, speaking VANCOUVER.
Russian; Miss D., also a great tourist and always wideawake when any thing of interest is to be seen; Mr.
John Bernhardt, a German gentleman in charge of a
gold mine in Alaska, who wishes he wasn't; and three
or four others whose names I do not know. The young
men who were playing whist until midnight of course
would be in no condition to resume the game after
lunch if they lost their rest, so they are not with us,
nor are those who take two hours at their toilets ; but
those of us who travel with our eyes and ears Avide
open are here, and we have no regrets. This is the
Gulf of Georgia, the land on the left is the Island of
Vancouver, that on the east is British Columbia, and
both shores remain distinctly visible for two hundred
and fifty miles of our journey, though the Gulf of
Georgia narrows into Johnstone Straits after we have
sailed half that distance. It may be interesting to
mention, though it is no part of my intention to write
either history, geography, or ethnology, that Vancouver gets its name from an officer of the ship of the
great navigator Captain Cook, who took peaceable
possession of the island in the name of the English
government just one hundred years ago, and rendered
inestimable service to mariners in surveying and publishing charts of the coast; also that the oAvnership of
the island of San Juan, on our right, was the subject of
dispute between England and ourselves as late as 1872,
when, during General Grant's presidency, the question
was referred to the German Kaiser as arbitrator, and
decided in our favor. A  WOMAN'S TRIP TO ALASKA.
We are sailing on a
perfectly smooth sea,
without a ripple save
the foamy furroAV of
our ploughing through
it at the rate of fifteen
miles an hour, and the
long line of agitation
Avith Avhich our propeller   marks   our  wake.
Standing at  the   bow
(Kodakd by Author.) f or | qllarter of an hour
Ave penetrate, either Avith the naked eye or our glasses,
a A'ista of superb tranquillity; passing to the starboard
side Ave find ourselves _
over-looking a placid bay \
encircled by forested ,
mountains of prodigious
size and snoAv-capped in HJ
the   distance ;    crossing
through  the  social  hall
to    the    j)ort    side   Ave '
are  in the midst of  an
archipelago   of   a   thou- 'm-.
sand  islands of emerald fe-
green and crimson, looming up in the most fan- j
tastic forms, some round,
some oblong, all clothed
with   a   rich    carpeting
(Kodakd by Author.) EXQUISITE SCENERY.
of verdure, or wrapped in the thick foliage and Avarmth
of the ever-present fir; and then to get one fond last
look as we hurry along
so fast, so horribly fast,
we walk briskly to the
stern, where, overlooking the frothy water,
lashed into foam by our
wheel, Ave find that these
beautiful mountains, islands, and forests have
closed in upon us like
one vast frame, leaving
no trace of the course
we have taken since we
left Victoria.
It is a shame to be disturbed at such a moment
and in the midst of such
an eArer-changing pano-
O       O      x
rama by the sound of the
breakfast bell, but the
meals on the good ship Queen are ahvays so excellent, so
hot, and of such variety that I must go down. I sometimes
wished they were quite bad, that I might feel it no hardship to skip a feAV of them, but, like every thing else on
this glorious trip, they are above criticism. Moreover,
this morning I had the pleasure of meeting, at breakfast, Mrs. G., the wife of the Mayor of Victoria, who
had joined us for the cruise at that city.   We had been
(Kodakdby Author.) 72
informed that our first stopping-place after leaving
Victoria, would be Nanaimo, but at breakfast we were
told by the captain that that would be reserved for our
return, as he would have to stop there twelve hours for
coal, so we pushed on through these wonderful islands,
twisting and turning as the necessities of navigation
required, I suppose, each change of our course opening
up some new scene of enchantment and the next one
closing it to view, leaving nothing behind but the hope
that another turn would bring it back, and then quite
suddenly experiencing a realization of our wish. Making myself comfortable on the very uppermost deck,
clad in an ordinary cloth
walking-dress, with a little
astrakhan jacket over my
shoulders, I just sat and
revelled in this monotony
of constant change, and let
my fancy Avander through a
score of delicious flights of
imagery.    Looming  up  be-
CD        v O X
hind these immense woods,
which, I am told, are themselves growing on hill-sides
one thousand feet above the
water, I see miles and miles
of mountain and table-land
covered Avith snow, the
depth of which can be appreciated with the naked eye;
(Kodakd by Author.)
there they stand like the palace abodes of some giant
race with their facades of purest marble, their turrets,
their windows, and their towers; my imagination
takes me to Greece, and I stand below the steps of the
Acropolis; I am once more in Rome, entranced by the
silent magnificence of the Coliseum, and as we pass
around the point of another island and I get a glimpse
of what looks to me like an avalanche of snoAv curving
over a shelving rock into the abyss below, I think of
CD J 7
home and our own Niagara. I am told that exciting
scenes produce different effects upon our natures
according to the character of what is transpiring ;
for instance, that soldiers never speak to each other
during battle, the only voice heard being that of
command; I myself in a panic at sea have seen a
whole crowd paralyzed into speechlessness; at a
railroad accident or a fire Avhere loss of life is threatened, they say men run aimlessly about shouting to
each other, but none of them doing much that is useful ; and I observed on my Alaska excursion a nervous
impulse produced by the excitement of the voyage
Avhich took the form of running around the ship and
calling your fellow-passenger's attention to something
that could only be seen at some particular spot.
"There's a whale," says somebody, as a spout of
water is suddenly thrown ten feet in the air and is
repeated at regular intervals; and instantly the little
crowd disperses itself Avildly all over the ship shouting
" Come and see the Avhale," which in five or ten minutes
becomes " Have you seen the whale ? " and then in half
I 74
an hour, 1 Did you see the whale ? " And thus you are
kept informed of water-falls, seals, porpoises, salmon,
eagles, and Indian canoes, till the day slips by Avith
nothing specially to mark it, but with the mind saturated with the wonders of nature just as it is with those
of art after a day spent at Versailles or the Vatican.
And yet as I retire I am told by Mr. B., the German
gentleman, who has left at home a jewel of a wife and
a cluster of little ones whose pictures he has shown me,
and has spent a winter in Alaska (it makes me smwer
to hear of it), that to-morrow will be a much more
interesting day.
June 4th.—Can it be possible that it has been only
two days since I left Tacoma? and I have done Seattle,
Port Townsend, Puget Sound, Victoria, the Gulf of
Georgia, and all those beautiful things which, for your
O        ' CD J */
sake, I wish with all my heart I could describe, but
which you must see for yourself to realize how poorly
the very choicest language would paint them. This is
another lovely day, Avhich I confess is a complete
surprise and a most agreeable one, for we had been
cautioned against making the trip so early, as we would
undoubtedly strike Avhat the sailors call "dirty weather."
But no, there is not a speck of cloud, not a puff of
wind, just the same balmy atmosphere as that of yesterday, and nothing to indicate that there ever is any
weather in this region save the streaks of cobAvebby
mist that here and there lace themselves in among the
trees or around the rocks for a feAv minutes and then
dissolving into moisture under the warm sun, disappear;
and we would not be without these for the world, for
they are exquisitely picturesque, as delicate and ephemeral as   the  smoke of a cigar
o        1
and so shy that at the blowing
*/ CD
of the whistle they seem to
weep themselves to death. We
have passed through Johnstone
Straits in the darkness, which
I much regret, for I am told
the channel is very narrow and
the sides very high and precipitous, but it is some comfort to
learn that there is little or no
difference between that and the
scenery   we  are  now   passim
through; yet, why cannot it
be so arranged that, the ship
should anchor at bedtime and
start again at sunrise? It is too bad that the least
bit of it should be missed, and we only hope that the
captain will so time our movements that we may see
it coming back. The feature of to-day's experience
is the wonderful transparency of the water; as we
peer over the bow of the ship it seems as though we
could see down into the ocean fathoms deep; in fact it
is not like Avater at all, there is nothing I can compare
it to but the clearest plate glass of immense thickness
and unsullied purity. CHAPTER Vll.
HE fourth day out from Tacoma (June
5th)   Ave found ourselves, Avhen  we
came from our state-rooms lying at the
Avharf at Fort Wrangell, the United
States war vessel, Pinta, being very
near us, and the small boats of both
ships plying to and fro exchanging  civilities. This place gets its name from
Baron Wrangell, who was the Russian governor of
Alaska when the few fishermen Avho had settled
here grew numerous enough,
about the year 1834, to
dignify their local habitation   Avith   a  name;
subsequently   it  greAv |^
up into a place of considerable consequence
and population by reason of the discovery of
gold in the vicinity,
but when these mines
ceased to be profitable,
,,   ,,    . T    • j> FORT  WRANGELL.
tell into a Condition Of (Kodakdby Miss Margaret Watson.) FORT WRANGELL.
decay which seems to possess it still. More recently
it has been a United States military post, but even
the glamour of the few bayonets has departed, and
Fort Wrangell is perhaps to-day as uninvitin
spot as any in the world, save for the few curiosities in the way of Indian graves and totem poles,
and the very excellent Avork being done by the missionaries in the Indian schools. As I landed, I met and
Avas presented to the Governor of Alaska (General
Knapp), who was making a tour of the coast on the
P/'nta, and who Avas dressed in the uniform of a major- 72
.general, minus the shoulder-straps. The morning was
cloudy and chilly, with occasional showers, very much
in keeping with the few dreary streets and abandoned
huts which go to make up this old western fortress of
the Czar. The fort itself or stockade was an utter
Avreck:  in fact I would not have known of its ex-
istence if left to discover it for myself, so I hurried on,
picking my way as best I could through the muddy
thoroughfares to get a view of my first totem pole. I
assure you my initial experience of a promenade in an
Alaskan city was far from agreeable, and several times
I wished myself back in our good ship, where I could
Adew the rocks and the trees from afar off, rather than
be bruising my poor feet upon the one, and crawling
over the prostrate forms of the other. It was evident
that the place was entirely without horses and vehicles
of any kind, for the principal street—if street it may
be called—was grown a foot high with grass, and was
chiefly used as a place to store canoes and firewood; there
evidently had existed at some distant period a plank sidewalk, which ran along the entire front of the Arillage,
but time had played such havoc with it that the people now walked in the street to avoid it.    It seemed to
me as though there was not . —.	
energy enough in the whole
place to light a fire on a
cold day.
But I saw the totem
poles; and since that
time at various other
places have seen them,
and pictures of them
by the score, and although I confess there
is little about these
totem poles which is
at all attractive from
a physical point of
view, they are interesting in so far as they
illustrate the fact that
all humanity, even in
its aboriginal and its 8o
i!   I'
barbarous state, adopts for its own protection certain
rules and laws of government. The totem pole of the
Alaskan Indian is his crest, his family name. He is
a "bear," or an "eagle," or a "salmon," or a "crow,"or
a " whale," and being so he owes certain duties to his
/ CD
kin, the chief of- which is that he may not marry a
member of it; and another, that any crime he commits
attaches a responsibility to his entire class, even as an
injury to him is an injury to his Avhole stock. In the
one case all may expect to suffer, in the other all must
be ready to avenge. And this totem-pole custom leads
to extravagant display of family pride among those
who are well off. It is as much an evidence of prosperity for Mr. Bear to erect a high pole surmounted by
a poor imitation of his god-father and carved on all
sides with rude effigies of his ancestors, as it is Avith us
to live in a palace; and I wondered as I looked at some
of these horrid sculpturings whether they did not beget the same neighborly jealousy and vulgar rivalry
which possess those who esteem themselves more civilized. The people must devote a great deal of their
time to carvings of this character; it seems a mania to
be shaping a piece of soft pine into their family name,
just as it is with other people to scribble theirs all over
the world, from the pyramids of Egypt to Independence Hall. For the information of our Darwinian
friends, I may as well say that I Avas unable to detect
the monkey among any of the ancestral specimens.
Since the Indian has come into contact with the paleface he has adopted those of our traits and customs THE TOTEM POLE.
which he approves, among them being exchanging any
thing he has for money; and another, drinking as
much Avhiskey as he can get; and although there is no
case on record, perhaps, of one of these people selling
his family tree, yet he makes miniature representations
of it all winter and sells them to the tourists in the
summer. One of these I haA^e, Avhich Avas purchased
under peculiar circumstances at Juneau and will be
told of hereafter, and I procured at Wrangell a very
grotesquely carved effigy of an Indian Shaman (medicine man or doctor), of whose calling I may have occasion to speak by and by. I visited some of the huts
in which these families, whose creed so carefully guards
their ties of consanguinity, reside, and there can be
nothing worse in the slums of London than what I saw
here. In the centre of each was a space of about a
yard wide in the floor, upon which Avere the fires for
warmth and for cooking,
the only escape for the
smoke being  through
the roof, where an aperture was left  for  that
purpose.   Two or three
families Avere  squatted
in a circle around this
fire, the men appearing
to be clothed in the cast-
>ff wearing apparel of the white man,
ana the Avomen tightly Avrapped in
(Kodakd by Mis 1   skirt and blanket, lying full length WSr
a -
upon the floor, the shoulders slightly elevated, their
coppery faces and straight long hair protruding from
the blanket and lit up by the whites of two staring
eyes, for all the world like seals in a menagerie—
but with a heart-rending expression of misery. The
Siwash Avoman is a beast of burden. If captured in
war, she becomes a slave and a drudge to her captors
for the rest of her life; if living Avith her own tribe,
she is none the less a serf to the man whom she calls
her husband, and who leads a life of indolence and Adce.
It is therefore a common habit of these poor wretches
to murder their female offspring at their birth, and
thus save them the inheritance of a life of toil, shame,
and misery. But if a girl escapes being the victim of
infanticide, a much Avorse fate awaits her on her arrival
at Avomanhood; she is often then sold for a few blankets
to the highest bidder, and here commences a life which
would seem to justify, if any thing could, the murderous act of the mother.    Polygamy is practised among
*/ O */ X CD
all the tribes, and in some localities a man increases his
wives just as he would purchase oxen or horses, to till
the fields; the greater the number of his wives, the
greater amount of work he.can accomplish. The odors
in these huts were stifling, and the filth so alarmingly
dangerous that I had little opportunity to investigate
the board or the lodging ; but in one of them I saAV an
old man dying, | Avoman lying ill with a feA^er, a whole.
brood of children some of Avhom were crying, and a
couple of shaggy dogs ; all this life and sickness and
death being the state of existence of a single family— INDIAN GRA VES.
a horrible picture of squalid misery and misfortune,
Avhich made me feel like asking with Dante :    " E che
genVe, che par nel duol si vinta?v    But the missionaries are at work—in fact, they are doing splendid
service here and elsewhere, and although I did not
visit the school at Wrangell, owing to the indisposition
f one of our party, I had a grand opportunity to see
ne next day at Sitka, and shall give you a full account
>f my experience when I come to it.    There are some
remarkable typical Indian graves in the vicinity of
Wrangell, which  are well  worth  visiting;  had the
CD ' CD '
weather been brighter I should have made an effort
to see them, and I certainly should have gone anyhow
if there had been any mode of conveyance, but there
was absolutely none. The totem pole, however, is the
chief feature of them, serving the purpose of headstone and inscription. Longfellow, you will remember,
has it thus :
'' And they painted on the
grave posts
Of the graves yet unforgot-
Each his own ancestral
Each the symbol of his
Figure of the bear and reindeer,
Of the turtle, crane, and
Pei'haps the most curious thing
to be seen in the village is the
WW 84
m.   i'
Hi 1
hull of an old steamboat, high and dry in the main
street, whose decks are boarded and roofed in
and divided off into apartments for use as a hotel,
and although there was little vestige of human life
about it upon my visit, I was told that during the
mining boom up the Stickeen River it had been a very
popular hostelry. I was glad to get back to the Queen,
her clean decks and the ablutions which the comforts of my stateroom afforded, and gladder still to see
the clouds break away and give presage of a bright
afternoon and morrow'.
It is the custom of the ships, after leaving Fort
Wrangell, to proceed next to Juneau, then to Chilcat,
Glacier Bay, and Sitka, but we did not follow this
course. Captain Carroll, finding that the night was
going to be clear and the sea smooth, took a westerly
course through Sumner Strait (formerly called Duke
of Clarence Strait), around the south of Baranoff
Island, and thence north to Sitka, keeping the island
on our right and the broad Pacific Ocean on our left.
HaAdng announced this programme to his passengers,
we went to lunch to chat it over, where the captain
was voted a most accommodating host; and we natu-
rally fell into a conversation touching our first visit to
an Alaskan town, during which I became indebted
both to Captain Carroll and many of the intelligent
people I met at his table for a good deal of valuable
information touching the manners, habits, and customs
of these Indians, much of which was subsequently
verified at Sitka.    As you depart from Wrangell you THE STIC KEEN RIVER.
get a superb view of the mouth or delta of the Stickeen
River. It was far up this stream that the Cassiar gold
mines Avere discovered, Avhich promised so much for
the prosperity of Wrangell, and great faith still exists
among the people as to the future mineral wealth of
the far back country.
The sun Avas now beginning to make himself felt
in real earnest, and the atmosphere changed to that
mild, balmy sort which all who ha\*e written about
Alaska seem to agree exists in this vicinity, but'which
I had despaired of experiencing. The clouds had
dried their tears and departed, but the beautiful fleecy
vapor in straight, trans-
x O        /
parent, cob-Avebby lines
still hovered amidst the
tree—tops, just as a bit
of fog will cling to the
masts of a ship for many
miles; in some places it
looked so like the linger-
ing-steam from a quick-
moving locomotive that
I began to ask myself
how soon the shrill
whistle and the rushing
racket of the steam
engine Avould resound
along the banks of yonder river, freighted with
the    precious    nuggets
now lying hidden in the mountains, which, unfortunately, I have not the clairvoyant power to find.
The Stickeen Delta is a beautiful picture, of which I
was unable to get a Kodak copy, as the atmosphere
did not clear until we were too far removed from it,
and the one I give you on page 85, which I obtained
elsewhere, does meagre justice to it. This afternoon
Avas spent chiefly in walking the upper deck; the
thermometer was 70 degrees in the shade, and the
Kodak' fiends Avere at Avork everywhere
preserving as best they' could the counterfeit presentments of each other—my party
among the rest; and although it Avas our
O 7 CD
first experience, and we had little faith in
our ability to accomplish much, we
have been most
agreeably disappointed by the result, many of our
photographs of the
scenery and groups
being perfect gems
in their way. Dinner came and went,
and Ave were again on
deck. The scenery continued
to be superb—in fact, it grew even more sublime the
farther north we went, the snow-hoods of the mountains became thicker and hung lower, the blue of the
(Kodakdby Author.) ARRIVAL AT SITKA.
foot-hills became more intensely blue, and the crimson
and yellow of the ferns and grasses grew luxuriantly
picturesque. It was still daylight, but the outlines were
growing fainter and the air chilly, so that some of us
were arranging to spend the remainder of the evening
in the saloon, when, to our surprise, we discovered that
it Avas already ten o'clock—bedtime, in fact—but the
novelty of daylight at such an hour Avas so agreeable
that few of us retired. We did a much more sensible
thing in procuring an additional wrap and standing on
the bridge until midnight, interesting ourselves with
the beautiful steering of the ship through the thousand
islands which are sprinkled all OArer the ocean in front
of Sitka, Avhere we arrived just at twelve o'clock, and
dropped the anchor a little distance from the city.
The Sitkans, it appears, had seen us for several hours,
but of course did not recognize our ship, as this Avas
her first trip to Alaska, and, moreover, Ave should not
have been due there for several days if Ave had followed
the beaten track of the excursion boats. We were the
first lot of tourists to arrive that season, and when at
last the truth was heralded from house to house, there
was intense excitement: first, among the American
residents, to whom the faces of their countrymen are
as Avelcome as the life-boat to the shipwrecked sailor ;
and second, to the Indians, who realized that "tomorrow will be market-day." We were soon surrounded
by all sorts of canoes, dug-outs, row-boats, and sailboats ; and midnight though it was, the natives had
brought with them their wares, and the white people
1 I 88
were willing to sit up the rest of the night if they
could only get a newspaper even a month old. There
was among this remarkable fleet a little steamer which
afforded us a world of fun ; it was smaller than any of
the row-boats, and had a veritable piece of common
stove-pipe for a smoke-stack, which emitted a pyrotechnic column of sparks at every puff, very much like
a Fourth-of-July squib. The poor man who Avas captain, engineer, and stoker, all combined, was really so
ridiculed and laughed at from our deck that he faced
about and disappeared in sheer disgust at our barbarous treatment. One day only is allowed to us at
Sitka, and Ave are told there is a great deal to see, so
an end to this midnight dissipation; we must to bed,
that we may be early equipped for to-morrow.
(Kodakd by Author.)
■       u limn after
F| RID AY, June 6th. — Bright and
early we were up and ready to disembark. The ship, at the proper
condition of the tide, had moved
along to the city in the night-time,
and Ave found oursel\Tes, shortly
sunrise, lying  at  the wharf,
/        «/ CD *
of intense and welcome
curiosity to the inhabitants. From
my point of AdeAV, as Sitka first
dawned upon me, I Avas instantly reminded of Naples
(though of course in miniature), as I saAv a group of
houses nestled in the lap of the mountains on the
brink of the ocean, while across the bay Mount Edgecombe bore a strong resemblance to Vesuvius.    This
thought I found was common to all of my fellow-
passengers who had visited the.Mediterranean. Mount
Edgecombe is a grand specimen of an extinct volcano ;
and being always considerably enveloped in snow, the
deep seams in its sides, f urroAved by the streams of lava,
which, in past years— perhaps ages—have poured from
its crater, are all the more distinct and traceable.
Having seen Vesuvius in full eruption, hurling high in go
1   II
Ki- H
its convulsive throes huge red-hot boulders and pouring molten lava from its lips, I could form some vague
idea of the superb illumination of these hundreds of
islands, their tints and lights and shadows, when the
fires of this grand old mountain lit up the scene. Perhaps they Avill come again; and if they do I envy those
who happen to be within view. Stepping ashore, the
first objects to interest us were the dilapidated ware^
houses at the end of the wharf, which indicated that in
the olden time of Russian domination these were the
busy depots where the precious cargoes of coming and
going vessels were stored. (As early as 1810, the JBhv-
terprise, one of John Jacob Astor's ships, lay in the
harbor, trading for furs with the Indians.) Just beyond
these, standing upon an eminence which commands an
excellent view of the town and harbor, is the' Baranoff
Castle, which in my opinion should be first visited in
order that a clearer idea may be presently obtained of
the place while you are walking through its streets.
In no respect does it resemble a castle; on the contrary, its exterior is that of a very homely country
hotel. It is approached by a staircase, somewhat
fatiguing in its ascent, but returning a superb view as
a handsome reward for the effort. Besides, you will
then be standing upon historic ground, around which
cluster the scenes and incidents of the past century,
with which you should make yourself familiar if you -
hope to appreciate what you will see when you mingle
Avith the inhabitants. Like the island upon which it
is located, the castle takes its name from that old mar-
l.LMU.  K
tinet, the Russian Governor Baranoff, who, in the early
part of the century, fresh from his familiarity with
the horrors of Siberian life, ruled the people Avith a
tyranny that began with the knout and ended Avith the
axe. Although it had been Aasited by the Russians as
early as 1741, not one of the intrepid Muscovites who
landed were left to tell the tale of capture and execution by the native Indian Sitkans. Again, in 1799 or
1800, a party, believing themselves strong enough to
maintain their foothold, settled near here with a view of
remaining, and having placed themselves under the protection of the Archangel Gabriel, instead of stockades
and gunpowder, were in their turn also massacred and
their houses destroyed by fire. This brought Baranoff
to the spot, Avho at once erected either the present or
another castle, Avithdrew the town from the protecting
care of Gabriel and turned it over to the Archangel
Michael. During the latter's protectorate, it has done
better, yet it may not be out of place to mention
the fact that the spiritual guardianship has been continually supplemented by Russian bayonets and the
moral and financial, to say nothing of the physical,
* «/ CD X.        J '
power of the Shelikoff monopoly and the Hudson Bay
Company, who were the lessees of the Russian Government and controlled not only the trade but the
officials of the Archipelago. It Avill be difficult to
woi'k the imagination up to ' the point of believing
that this now desolate old palace was once the home
of the nobility and the scene of festivities given with
Imperial   sanction  and  ceremony;   but  such is   the HISTORIC BARANOFF CASTLE.
fact—here princes and princesses of the blood royal
have eaten their caviare, quaffed their vodhka, and
measured a minuet, surrounded by a court fresh from
the palaces of St. Petersburg and Moscow.    The gov-
ernorship of this extreme western portion of 1 all the
Russias " AA^as a reward of high value, and succeeding
Baranoff came a number of the nobility, each in turn provided with the revenue and retinue necessary to a proper
maintenance of the dignity of his office, which appears
to have chiefly consisted in luxurious and extravagant
entertainment upon any pretext that should warrant
it, notably the arrival of a foreign war vessel, or even
a merchantman. I have had opportunity to observe
how devoted these Russian nobles are to the convivial
side of life, for I have been led to the banquet-room
by one of the most renoAvned of her jolly Admirals,
and haAre sat at table near one of her Grand Dukes
Avhose manner indicated that for him there Avas but one
hour in life, and that the present one; so that it was-
not difficult for me to picture the avidity with which
in dreary Sitka they accepted any incident which
would warrant them in throwing open the doors of the
castle ball-room.
It was in this very house that Lady Franklin,
twenty years ago spent three weeks of her aged life,
(for she was then eighty years of age,) in the hope
that she still might find some trace, dead or alive,
of her adventurous husband, Sir John. It was here
that Mr. William H. Seward, after retiring from office
as Secretary of State, resided for several days, on his 94
l i
trip to see with his own eyes the immense territory
which had been peaceably acquired for his countrymen through the sagacity of himself
and Senator Charles Sumner, and
paid for at the rate of two cents
per acre through the personal exertions of my old friend, General
N. P. Banks, Avho was then (1867),
as he is now, a member of Congress.
It Avas from these very windows
that was witnessed in the fall of
1867 a pageant of great significance
to civilization, though perhaps not
as splendid as others of much less
consequence. In the bay on the afternoon of October
the 18th lay at anchor three American war ships : the
Ossipee, the liesaca, and the Jamestown, commanded
respectively by Captains Emmons, Bradford, and
McDougall, each \Tessel dressed in the national colors,
while the Russian soldiers, citizens, and Indians of
Sitka, AArhich Avas then, as it is now, the capital of
Alaska, had assembled upon the open space at our
feet, carrying aloft the eagles of the Czar. At a given
signal, the United States navy fired a national salute
in honor of the Russian flag, which was then lowered
from the staff upon the castle, and this salvo being
responded to by the Russian garrison in compliment
to ours, the stars and stripes were hoisted to the peak
amidst the wild huzzas of the assembled people. Thus,
fiye hundred and eighty thousand square miles of the STORY OF PRINCESS MAKSOUTOFF.
earth's surface passed from the control of the most
despotic monarch on the globe into the hands of the
most liberal of modern governments; thus the boast
of the Englishman, that the sun never sets on her
Majesty's dominions, ceased to be without parallel;
and thus the peaceable surrender and peaceable acquisition of A'ast territory without resort to arms furnished
an illustration which should not only commend itself
to all mankind, but help to inaugurate with the coming century a universal acceptance of the neAV religion, that killing is murder and war is barbarism: for
if statesmen here and abroad have no better occupation, for instance, than fanning a flame of irritability
concerning the ownership of the unfortunate seal, who
is born only to be clubbed to death, let it be left to
the women, the graves of whose soldier husbands,
brothers, and sons, they periodically decorate with
flowers, and let it be seen whether they are not brave
enough to yield a little Quixotic dignity and all the
CD J *> O J  '
sealskin costumes they ever had or hope for, rather
than again to hear the wail of woful Avar. We are
no less patriotic than our liege lords, quite as combative I think, and just as little given to surrendering
when we believe we are in the right; but we feel like
the beautiful Princess Maksoutoff, who sat here at this
window weeping bitter tears as the ensign of her regal
master was lowered for the last time; those tears did
eternal credit to her patriotism, and were doubtless a
proud satisfaction and a comfort to her; but what of
the tears she would have shed if, instead of seeing her
li 96
husband formally yield up his authority to a friendly
nation, he had been brought home to her the dead victim of a bloody strife to attain the same object.
As I looked out over this placid bay across to Mt.
Edgecombe, and thence far off to the western horizon.
where the Pacific Ocean dips doAvn to the coast of
Eastern Asia, the thought came to me that over there
was the birthplace, the cradle, the youth, and the manhood of civilization, and that it had journeyed and travelled westward and westward, Avearied at times almost
to despair, but springing up again and striking vigorous
blows, sometimes in the name of religion, but oftener THE PICTURESQUE INDIANS.
for conquest only, until after ages had elapsed it found
its way to the western hemisphere, and in the course of
time encjrcled the globe; and that it was uoav here on
the confines of earth looking towards the home of its
creation. I could not but contrast the joyous, healthful hour, Avhich Avas ours here at the ending, with the
dungeon-life of serfdom over there where it all began.
"Yes, Madame," said Judge Calkins, when with some
enthusiasm I gave him the benefit of this idea one
eA^ening at Tacoma, " the tail is noAv wagging the dog."
O j OO        CD O
Descending from the Baranoff Castle and Avalking
up the main street of the toAvn, Avhich was really clean
and nice-looking—such a contrast to Fort Wrangell,—
Ave next became intensely interested in the SiAArash In-
dians, who Avere most picturesquely grouped upon the
porch  of the gOA^ernment
building, offering for sale
their stock of baskets
spoons, bracelets, rings,
miniature totem poles, and
(Kodakd by Miss M. D. Beach.) 9*
all kinds of knick-knacks. The prices asked were
exorbitant in the extreme, and they seemed to ha\Te
a kind of trades-union understanding among themselves that, having once fixed a price they would
adhere to it to the last. They know only tAVO divisions
of money : a " bit," Avhich is twelve and a half cents,
but payable with a dime; and a " dolla," dollar.
Whether they base the price upon the amount of
labor expended on each article, or whether upon the
attractiveness of it I could not tell, but it certainly was
not regulated by the supply and demand ; for instance,
you would see a dozen baskets offered by a dozen
Indians, each asking three dollars as the price, whereas
you could buy for a dollar some prettier one of which
J */ x
there was only a single specimen.
The Indian squaAvs appeared much superior to those
at Wrangell, and much better dressed, though this I discovered Avas owing in a great measure to the holiday
which they take upon the arrival of a ship, their attire
consisting of a full supply of female costume, fitting of
course quite loosely, of the most gaudy colors that could
be selected, bright red, green, and blue predominating,
while their ears and wrists were ornamented Avith a
great profusion of home-made, and in fact very Avell
made, gold and silver jewelry; the feet of some Avere
bare, others wore coarse blue worsted stockings, while
a few luxuriated in chamois-leather moccasins; the
hair was invariably brushed or oiled smoothly to the
head and plaited in the back; and each figure, young
or old, male or female, was the OAvher of a blanket,
which seemed as indi
man, or the umbrella
to do the service o
hood,   jacket,    skir
cushion, or lap-rug,
just as the occasion
required; generally it
hung down from the
top of the head, often
was throAvn over the
shoulders, the head
being turbaned in a
highly - colored handkerchief; but in the
sunshine,- as they sat
selling their wares, it
Avas mostly brought
around the hips and
folded  acrOSS the lap. (Kodakd by Miss M. D. Beach.)
It is wonderful what a superstitious aversion they
have to the camera. When Ave tried our Kodaks
on them they instantly enATeloped themselves in their
blankets, and would not uncover until some old crone
who had an eye through a hole of her hood gave the
signal. This was in fact so mysterious that we tried
to reason with them, showed them pictures of ourselves, offered to send them their likenesses by the
next boat, but all to no purpose, and we were about
to give it up, when at the suggestion of one of
i the oldest inhabitants " we held aloft a silver dollar.
t j^^C*^^W^WR^^(^x
Instantly there was a change.    The superstition simply
consisted in the belief that it was not healthy to do
any thing without   being
paid for it, a superstition
Avhich   seems  to  pervade
waiters,   and porters, and
chambermaids,   and   that
class of people all over the
\ world.    Indeed American
civilization is doing a great
deal for the   Siwash.    It
reminded me of the story
told me by an officer who
accompanied   Commodore
Perry's    expedition     to
Japan, to the   effect that
when   they   first   arrived
they could drop a five-dollar gold piece in the street and find it there the- next
day, because no man but the owner would dare to lift it;
but in a month or two the growth of American civiliza-
tion had been so rapid that, at the sound of the fall of
a quarter, a dozen Japs would madly rush at it to put
foot upon it, each roundly protesting that it Avas his.^
All along the main street of Sitka the Indian women
were assembled in little groups of four and five squatted
in the shadows of the houses, admirably counterfeiting
with their olive skins, bright black eyes, and showy
colors the Italian peasants on the steps of the churches
in Rome.    Some of these women indulge in the horrid"
(Kodakd by Miss M. D. Beach.) THE SITKA INDIANS.
custom, now fading into disuse I am glad to learn, of
wearing a wooden or bone or ivory button under the
lower   lip,   called    the
labret,   the    shank   of
Avhich passes through a lA„.-   -i^
slit made in the flesh for
this purpose ; it means
nothing but adornment,
and assumes different
shapes and sizes, according to the taste of the
Avearer.   Of this custom
I saw a  good  deal at
Wrangell, though I did
not see there Avhat was
A-ery     conspicuous    in
Sitka, namely, the use of the powder embellishment, in Avhich the Sitkan maidens
fi^_       ji' ii       u*,   t. (Kodakdby Miss M. D. Beach!)
cient, handling the subject \ y '
with a delicacy of touch which Avas quite remarkable,
save  that the brown-berry tones of the throat, neck,
arms, and hands   remained in  strong contrast to the
pearly features.
Leaving these Indian men and Avomen, who were
out  in their   best clothes and prettiest   adornments
for   the   special   benefit   of   the   tourists,  we   now
cross   the   parade   ground   in   company   with    Mr.
Bernhart and the commanding officer of the station,
for a visit to the rancherie, the home of these same
Siwash.    Walk slowly, tread carefully, talk loudly so 1 1
as to give notice of your coming, or send one of your
party ahead to give notice, for you are about to experience a most reA^olt-
ing,   almost    sickening
sight, and their normal 1
condition    in    costume
being bad enough, you
don't care about being
met by any surprises Avhich may
prcwe embarrassing.   E/n passant
I   may say that
although in  our
case   every   precaution Avas taken      t>
to avoid any shock to our sense of the conventional
proprieties, Ave ultimately found ourselves in conArersa-
tion with an Indian patriarch on the threshold of his
own wigwam, dressed in a night-gown, and, to tell you
the truth, not much of a night-gown, after all.    The
7 O CD 7
rancherie is a row of detached one-story houses with
gable roofs, built along the Avater's rocky edge at an
O O v CD
elevation of four or five feet aboA^e the ground, each
one approached by its separate flight of board steps.
The shore in their front is strewn confusedly with
canoes, old barrels, tin cans, clothes-lines, strings of fish
in all stages of the drying process, broken utensils, bedding set out to air, dead dogs, decaying fish and Arege-
tables, and such other things  as tend  to  excite the io4
olfactories (oil-factories, one of our party suggested) ;
—the exterior of the houses is not so bad, in fact I
doubt Avhether the fishermen on the North Atlantic
coast haA'e any better, yet this makes the filth of the
inhabitants and their miserable methods the more observable. Each family seems to have as many dogs as
children ; the former are a mangy, mongrel breed of
Esquimaux, and the latter, poor things, are, for the
most part, blind, deformed in limb, crippled, and nearly
all tainted Avith marks of scrofula. The able-bodied
men were off on their fishing expeditions, or employed
at the salmon canneries along the coast;  the young
squaws ran around bare-footed and bare-legged, and the
older people of both sexes seemed to have nothing to
do but sit around the fire.
We went first to the house of the far-famed and very
rich Princess Thorn, who is said to be worth $100,000 PRINCESS THOM.
(though Ave saw little evidence of any such luxurious
wealth), Avhich she has acquired through shrewd trading with her OAvn race and the white folk. Her adopted
name is Emaline Baker, and she resides at house number 6,700 of the rancherie. During the adminstration of
Captain Beardslee, of the U. S. Navy, in 1879 all the
houses of the Indians were numbered; and for some very
good reason no doubt, which was not explained to me, to
each number are added tAvo cyphers, so that the home of
the Princess was in reality No. 67, though the four figures o\rer the door read 6,700. Her Royal Highness Avas
hardly ready to receive at this early hour of the morning,
as was evidenced by her bare feet, Avhich we afterwards
saw daintily shod as she sat with her subjects on the steps
of the Government House, but they were as clean as
though just from the Russian bath around the corner,
and she Avelcomed us with the same
obsequious politeness Avith
which the Chatham Street
clothier AArould ask " Don't
you want to buy a nice
coat ?" She is very
; fat, of course not
very fair, and much
over foi'ty, and
when we entered
the palace offered
us chairs while she
went for the arti-
princess thom. cies   0f   Ujouterie
(Kodakd by Miss M. D. Beach.) * loo
and vertu, which she desired to exchange for coin (they
do not take greenbacks, are not predisposed towards gold,
but are all in favor of unlimited silver). These consisted
f bracelets, bangles, ear-rings, baskets, and Avood carvings, very beautifully made by her people, upon Avhich
she had advanced money during the winter, from her sur-
\J CD '
plus in the treasury. The palace itself, like all the houses
in the row, had one large room and a small annex in
the rear, the customary fire in the centre, and her regal
couch was not only quite a comfortable bedstead, but
the bedding, blankets, and sheets were all neat and
clean. Her " man of
equal lights" was also
present; whether he was
a prince I really cannot
say—he didn't look it;
he was much younger
than the Princess, but as
he was her seventeenth
husband it is fair to
f presume that the stock
of marriageable older
ones had run out. Two
doors beyond the home
of the Princess (at No.
6,900) is that of a religious fanatic over whose door is
a sign upon which are painted the words, "Elisha
Ltahin—head of a large family of orthodox Christians."
If all the homes had been as orderly and well kept
as the Princess Thorn's there would have been little
(Kodakd by Miss M. D. Beach.)  io8
to excite disgust, but they were far from it. I entered
one or two others which I was told were fair samples
of all, and was horrified at what I Avas compelled to see.
In the corner of one sat an old man totally blind and
idiotic, a young woman squatted at the fire cooking
some horrid greasy stuff that looked like tallow, a
middle-aged stupid-looking squaw and her child both
wrapped in their blankets sitting on the floor AAraiting
for the morning meal, a squalid unwashed baby screaming from another corner, and two or three stalwart, lazy
men lounging around with their hands in their pockets ;
encircling the room was an elevated platform upon
Avhich were thrown, not Avith the artistic indifference
to arrangement recommended by Oscar Wilde, but in a
confused mass, Avithout any other rule than to find a
place for them, every imaginable thing that these people had been able to procure by buying or begging,
from a broken clock to a bandbox. Here was a rude
bedstead, made of plank and covered with a mass of hay
or sea-weed, or something of that sort; alongside of it
a clothes-line, from which the sleeper inhaled the
moisture from the half-washed clothes ; on the wall at
the bedside, wearing apparel in all stages of decay,
covered with dust and splashed Avith mud ; cans of oil
and paint, baskets of potatoes, nets and ropes reeking
Avith the odor of decomposed fish, pots and kettles,
Avardrobes, flour-barrels and soap-boxes ; and from the
rafters hung smoked salmon and bits of bacon and
fresh meat. The odors were simply frightful, and
though I did not count how many distinct smells I
perceived, I shall ever feel grateful to the giddy, bejewelled squaw who entered as I was taking my leave,
and gave me the benefit of an aroma of musk Avhich
for the first time in my life I found most useful and
Passing along and edging our way nervously through
the pack of half-starved dogs Avhich infest the neighborhood as they do the slums of Constantinople and
Amsterdam, we came to the old man in his robe
de nuit. If we had any inclination to laugh it was
soon dispelled. Poor creature! he was emaciated
paralyzed, and, I think, demented; and in the midst
of his jabbering and solicitations that Ave would
enter his cabin, Ave dropped a coin into his claw-like
hand and passed on. And just here I saw a dog which
I shall remember all my life ; he Avas a weird and
phantom dog, large, and originally white, but his coat
was falling off, exposing spots of bright pink skin; in
canine language he had the mange, and he sat on his
O O CD    7
hind legs a shivering, pitiful, miserable thing that it
would have been a mercy to shoot, though this doubtless would have brought down upon us the rage of the
entire rancherie. The South American poet intended
to describe that creature when he said, " No era una
perra sarnosa, era una sarna perrosaT I had seen
enough, more than I care to tell, and I retraced my
steps through the throng of men, women, children, and
dogs, all dirty, infected, diseased, and most miserable.
Dante's famous line best expresses our feelings : " Non
ragionam di lai, ma guarda e passaP no
uatf   ft /
We next visited the shops kept by Americans, who
had a much larger and choicer assortment of curios
than the Indians, among them a quaint, unique Russian samovar, some totems carved on walrus ivoiy
handsomely inlaid with pebbles, many remarkable bits
of Indian carving, and hundreds of prettily shaped and
brilliantly decorated baskets. Next we found ourselves
with a crowd of our felloAv-passengers in another shop,
buying photographic views of Alaska from the cameras
of Tabor, of San Francisco, and Partridge, of Portland;
they were quite cheap, and much better than I saw
anywhere else; so I recommend you, if you desire to
make a collection, to do it here, as you will not have
such another opportunity.
At the head of the main street of Sitka and at right
angles  to  it  is   the   Russo-Greek   Church   of   Saint
Michael, laid out, of course,
in the form of the Greek
cross, and following in every
particular the architectural
design of similar edifices in
the mother country. It seems
incongruous and out of place
in a little toAvh like Sitka,
though in the courtly days
of Baranoff, and Kupreanoff,
-and Maksoutoff, and all the
other I offs," it was an in-
greek church at sitka. dispensable  adjunct to  the
state   pageantry   of  the pe-
(Kodakd by Author.) THE GREEK CHURCH.
riod. The porch or entrance is surmounted by a
square tower of two stories, upon which is a belfry
containing a chime of several bells, and above, a very
symmetrical radish-shaped spire (excuse the simile),
topped by a cross of four distinct crosses ; over the
nave is a Byzantine dome, and above this a cupola
again surmounted by the compound Greek cross. The
dome and spire were once painted green, and the crosses
gilded, but the rains and fogs of the Alaskan coast
have destroyed the brilliancy of these colors, and today, like all else that is ancient and historical in
Sitka, they are " sicklied o'er Avith the pale cast" of
The arrival of Archbishop Vladimir was quite an
event at Sitka. He is the prelate of his Church in America, and it soon became known that at eleven o'clock
he would hold a special service. At that hour there
was assembled beneath the dome a very remarkable
congregation—a melange of Indians, Russians, Americans, and sailors and tourists from our ship. We stood up
during the entire service, there being no seats.    Arch-
bishop Vladimir and his four assistants wore the sacerdotal ornaments of their respective offices, which were
really superb ; the garments were of exquisite texture
of gold, silver, and silk embroidery, and the mitres
studded Avith rare jewels of, I should think, immense
value. The liturgy, in the Slavonic language, Avas
chanted by one of the priests, who had the most musical bass A>-oice I ever heard (though aboard ship he
smoked cigarettes from morning until night), and by a .
choir of Indian boys. Taking it all in all, the service
was most impressive ; the native children, Russian and
Indian, well dressed and genteel-looking, seeming to
thoroughly comprehend what was going on, were continually bowing the head and making the sign of
the cross; they were scholars in the church school.
At the conclusion of the ritual the Archbishop delivered an address, and as he turned his face towards us I
realized the truth of what I had someAvhere read about
the Greek Church and its priesthood, to the effect that
the prelates are selected from among the bishops, who
are all celibates, and that the preference falls upon
those whose features most resemble the traditional
Christ. Archbishop Vladimir, as a passenger on the
good ship Queen, was a very tall, rather thin man, clad
in a long cloak to his ankles and a cape to his elbows,
and wearing a very broad-brimmed, low-crowned felt
hat, his hair being plaited and tied in a little bunch at
his neck. At the altar, dressed in the purple and gold
robes of his Church, he had a face of amiable bene\ro-
lence, a soft, flossy moustache and beard, his hair parted
in the centre and flowing gracefully over his shoulders.
The carefully studied imitation was apparent on the
instant; there you saw the ideal picture in the centre
of Leonardo da Vinci's fresco of " The Last Supper."
I wish Avith all my heart I could have comprehended
his words, for I could see by his gestures that they
were earnest, simple, instructive, and loving. The
service being over, he came doAvn among his people,
laying hands upon them and blessing them with a THE GREEK CHURCH.
smile so full of tenderness that I am sure every lowly,
ragged Indian Avho kissed his hand Avas a little better
for the contact, though I should have been
to have submitted mine to the same experience.
A7ery so
While this Avas going on I availed myself of the con-
<D CD %}
fusion incident to the crowding around the Archbishop
to take a look at the interior treasures and decorations
of the church, Avhich are a great surprise measured by
the impression made by the fading colors and apparent
neglect of the exterior.    There are two altars in the
transepts, the larger one being shut off excepting during the service by two golden bronze doors, each exquisitely ornamented by solid silver images of the
patron saints, the doors themselves being of fretted
and open Avork and most effective pattern. All the
panels are decorated by oil paintings, the details of
which are executed Avith the care of the miniature
ft]   fl
[  ■
m •'IF I
painter, and bear the very closest scrutiny. Many of
these are framed, as it were, with silver, the drapery
and ornaments of the body being of that metal, Avhile
the features, hands, and feet are in colors,—a quaint
combination, yet very effective. They gave the impression of being the work of a master-hand, and I much
regretted that there appeared to be no means of ascertaining the artist's name. An hour can be very well
spent here by the art student.
Among those present during the entire service I
observed two very charming young Avomen, Avho were
evidently as little a part of what was going on as I was
myself, and with them a lovely blue-eyed child of
about three years of age, whose pure white skin and
pretty dress made him a beautiful pearl among the
tawny skins of the unwashed natives. After a little
hesitation, I approached and introduced myself, only to
discover that they were just as anxious to speak with
me as I was to talk with them. Of course it resulted
in our becoming fast friends for the remainder of the
day, as they proved to be the wives of officers of the
Pinta, which vessel, you will remember, we left at
Fort Wrangell. One of them, Mrs. F., Avas from Philadelphia, the city of | homes" ; the other, Mrs. K.,
from Washington, the cityT of " social life " ; and here
they Avere out on the far-off coast of Alaska, and had
been for ever so long, without either home or society.
One of them resided in apartments at a restaurant or
tavern near the church, Avhich her own taste and familiarity Avith refinement  had made habitable,  and the AMERICAN LADIES IN SITKA.
other (whose husband happened to be with her) lived
over a shop across the street in a couple of rooms approached over a creaky, tumble-down staircase, but
rather cosey when you got into them and experienced
the hospitality of the pleasant hostess. Nevertheless
they seemed happy, at least they would not confess
that they were not so; still, I made a vow, on the
spot, that if I am ever a widow, naval officers need not
apply. Said one of them : " I expect to leave this
place in September, but have no idea where we will be
ordered." Said the other: " I have been here three
years—my boy is a Sitkan." Now Sitka is very
beautiful, A^ery romantic, is getting to be a good deal
talked of all over the world, and will probably grow
and prosper, but it is no place for charming young
women to spend three or four of the best years of
their young lives, separated from their husbands most
of that time, and left almost entirely to the uncongenial society of a population seven eighths of whom belong to the race who tAvice in the history of the city
have massacred the whites. These ladies confessed to
me that there was no diversion or amusement whatever at this post, excepting " just a little scandal and a
good deal of poker," and that even this grew monotonous and had to be varied Avith fishing and hunting,
and there the excitement ended, excepting on steamer
days, which was really the only event which dispelled
their ennui. They depend entirely upon the Russians
for domestic servants, and these are not only very independent, but troublesome in many other ways. IK
We learned here that every thing American, which the
Indians think well of, they call " Boston " ; those Avho
are Americanized call themselves " Boston Si washes " ;
the missionaries are known as " Boston men," and the
steamers as " Boston ships " ; and this brought from a
fellow-passenger a capital story which may be old, but
was not so to me, and would be given here even though
I were a Boston woman myself. It is of a patriotic
young girl from the " Hub " who, being asked to account for there being so much larger a proportion of
Unitarians in Boston than in any other city in the
world, replied: 11 suppose it is because we cannot
bring ourselves to subscribe to the doctrine of regeneration, for who, being born in Boston, would have
any desire or occasion to be born again."
Hearing that the Indian River in the suburbs of the
town is Avorthy of a visit, we accepted the escort of our
two young friends, and after a walk of half a mile (I
believe I have already said that there are few horses
in Alaska, and no carriages) we came to a really very
quaint and romantic lane, leading to a clear and rapid
stream over which is thrown a pretty rustic suspension bridge. It is a very charming spot, rich with
ferns of most delicate texture and brightest green and
velvet mosses, such as those which border the footpaths through the woods in England, a bower of wild
foliage in fact, of exquisite color. By all means stroll
through it, if for no other purpose than to inhale the
pure air that has never come in contact Avith the
rancherie.    On your way back, you Avill discover, per-  n8
haps, that Alaska, like Ireland, has her "blarney-
stone," but Avhy, I really cannot tell, for, excepting
the little group of my own countryAVomen, who
might be counted on the fingers, there is not another
face in Sitka which Avould reflect a responsive smile to
the sweetest thing that fell from lips that had kissed
the blarney-stone a hundred times. The stone may be
recognized, should you haA7e any difficulty7 in finding
it, by the names of tourists and inscriptions cut all
over it in all the tongues of the Tower of Babel.
And noAv, quite by accident, I had perhaps the most
interesting experience of nrv whole trip,—certainly one
that has made an everlasting impression upon my mind ;
an object lesson which often and often will set me thinking, a subject which would require a A7olume to do it
approximate justice. The joyous shouting of half a
hundred boys, some of them dashing across the road in
v       7 cD
pursuit of a foot-ball; well-clothed, well-fed boys; healthy,
vigorous, intelligent boys ; Indians, half-breeds, Muscovites, and a few Americans. What did it mean ? From
where  had  they so suddenly come ?     From  school. THE PRESB YTERIAN MISSION SCHOOLS.   119
These were the beneficiaries of the "Presbyterian
Boai'd of Home Missions," and the large building on
the right of the road is the school-house. Of course I
had read about this Mission; all the books on Alaska
refer to it more or less ; yet the knowledge of its ex-
istence had brought no special desire to visit the place.
To me Sitka was the vestige of a departed empire;
the home of a decaying race of aborigines ; a depot for
the sale of Russo-Indian relics and curios; a pretty
little town timidly hiding away in among the mount-
*l CD t/ O
ains ; and for that I had come to see it and had been
amply repaid. But the " Mission " I had never thought
of; perhaps the book-writers had failed to attract me to
it; perhaps my faith in missions generally was not very
confirmed; perhaps I did not believe what I read about
them. Be that as it may, hereafter no man, nor Avoman
either, shall outdo me in words of praise and thanks
for the glorious Godlike Avork which is being performed
by the good people who are rescuing the lives, the
bodies, and the souls of these poor creatures from the
physical and moral deaths they are dying. I am not a
Christian woman ; my faith is that of the chosen people who were led out of Egyptian tyranny and darkness by the pillar of fire and the pillar of cloud ; but
my whole nature is in accord Avith these Christian men
and women, whose immolation and sacrifices to regenerate their fellow-creatures will surely meet Avith
heavenly reward, no matter what their creed. I wish
I had had more time at my disposal to spend with the
teachers and the scholars so that I might now give
I 120
even a skeleton outline of their daily life ; but I may
say to those who desire to know more than my brief
acquaintance with the subject enables me to tell them,
that these Mission schools of Alaska are in charge of
the Rev. Sheldon Jackson, whose address is Sitka, and
although I had not the pleasure of meeting him (as he
was absent), I am sure he Avill most cheerfully give
any information asked for. The Rev. A. E. Austin and
Mrs. Austin, having observed our party entering the
school-house grounds, received us at the door, and from
that moment until the blowing of the ship's whistle
admonished us that we must leave them, were exceedingly kind and polite, facilitating our inspection of the
school in such a systematic way that we were really
able to gather much information in addition to experiencing a most novel and enjoyable visit.
There are about one hundred boys and fifty girls in
the institution, some of them being only three years of
age and others as old as
twenty-two. The scholastic
education is very properly
confined entirely to the English branches ; but this is sup-
| plemented by the training-
schools, founded and maintained by Mrs. Elliott F.
Shepard,of New York, where
the boys are instructed in
carpentry, shoemaking, and
black-smithing, and the girls
MRS. shepard's training-school.
are taught dress-making and the use of the sewing-machine. I Avent first into one of the class-rooms of the
males^Avhere I saw perhaps twenty dark-skinned Siwash
Indian boys, whose Mongolian faces and almond-shaped
eyes had assumed an expression of intelligence, so different from the stupid, blear-eyed appearance of the same
age and race whom I had seen in the rancherie, that it
was difficult to realize that they could possibly be twigs
of the same tree. Two of the boys were at the blackboard Avorking out a sum in Algebra (a thing I couldn't
do myrself for the life of me); and here we lingered
for a few minutes while Mrs. John H. DeVore, of Cony,
Pennsylvania, the teacher of the class, gave us a fair
sample of the progress being made by her pupils.
Next we went to the Primary Department over which
Miss Delph of Crestline, Ohio, presided, who, with
great patience and kindly forbearance, was performing
the difficult operation of extracting the guttural sounds
from two Indian maidens' throats and adapting them
to the pronunciation of English words. Up-stairs we
found the dormitories,
like every thing else
about the establishment,
orderly, neat, and clean,
due regard being paid to
the number allotted to
each room, and to the
subject of heating and
ventilation. In the sewing   department    were
(Kodakd by Author.) 122
several girls operating skilfully upon the sewing-machine, others cutting from the piece, and younger ones
basting for the sewing girls. The colors of the material were all bright, in fact quite gaudy, giving jjroof
that these children are encouraged to gratify the harmless tastes of their race, which is eminently proper.
Next we Avere taken to Mrs. Shepard's shops, and
although the work was over for the day, we could
plainly see by the specimens of handiwork all around
us Avhat a noble charity her philanthropy and bounty
had created.     Every thing Avithin  sight   of us   had
*/ CD CD
been built by the Indian boys who Avere the pupils
of the Presbyterian Mission and of Mrs. Shepard's
training-school, including the school-houses themselves,
CD 7 CD /
(for they had recently been destroyed by fire,) and the
group of little cottages in the distance which Mrs.
Austin begs us to visit, that we may have an opportunity of seeing " how our pupils live when they marry
and go to housekeeping." | Joseph i was at home
when we knocked at the door, but his wife and little
ones had gone down to the landing to see the new ship
(the Queen). Joseph was a man of about twenty-five
years of age I should say ; when we disturbed him he
was sitting at a table in his little parlor Avriting a letter
which I saw commenced " My dearest and best friend."
It Avas being Avritten to a Mr. Miller in the East, who
had been his benefactor and to whom he chiefly owed
his rescue from a life of idleness or Avorse. Joseph was
living in a house Avhich he had built himself, every
inch  of it, doors,  windows,   staircases, tables,  every MRS. E. F. SHEPARD'S HOSPITALS
thing in fact that a carpenter could make, was the work
of his own hands. His parlor was a perfect gem of
taste, order and cleanliness, and as for his two bedrooms on the second story, which we all visited (a
dozen or more of us) they couldn't have been sweeter
or neater if they had been placed there purposely for
exhibition.    My only regret was that I had not the
*/ v CD
opportunity of seeing the woman whose innate and
once latent sense of refinement had been developed by
the instruction she had received in the Mission school,
for no other kind of woman could have spread those
little comforts of the toilet so daintily on the bureau, or
decorated the walls so picturesquely and tastefully
Avith photographs and prints.
Attached to the school are two hospitals also endowed by Mrs. Shepard, but neither of them having
many patients. In one was a little consumptive child,
doomed no doubt to an early death; one of those unfortunates who suffer " for the sins of the fathers to
the third and fourth generation"; another was a
rheumatic, whose neglected infancy had destroyed a
life that could now, through the beneficence of education, be made happy and useful had not her health
been undermined in the damp pits of the rancherie.
A third was a sufferer from ophthalmia, produced
perhaps by lack of cleanliness and living in an atmosphere of smoke.
It is said somewhere that it is only a single step
from civilization to barbarism,—perhaps so. If all
wrongdoing is barbaric, the saying is not only trite
! 1
1 124
I A\
but true, for a false civilization often begets the Arery
Avorst of crimes. But I and those ladies and gentlemen who accompanied me through the rancherie and
the schools at Sitka can vouch for the fact that it
is only half a mile from savage, uncivilized ignorance,
superstition, filth, and immorality, to education, deportment, thrift, domestic felicity, and all human
happiness. Thank God I had seen "le revers de la
medaille.v To have gone back to my comfortable
home in New York and to the embraces of my bright,
healthy, intelligent children, feeling that these poor
little wretches at Sitka were to remain outcasts during
the brief time that disease and degradation should permit
them to exist on earth, would have been a great sorrow.
Thanks to the Presbyterian Board of Home Missions
and to Mrs. Elliott F. Shepard, the reverse is a great joy.
(Kodakd by Author.) CHAPTER IX.
j|§S   the  time   arrived  for our departure
from Sitka a great portion of the population came down to the landing, and
just before Ave started we were surprised
to see approaching the ship a long
procession headed by a brass band
which played quite good music. These
were some of the pupils from the
Mission school, and the musicians were
Indian boys from the school also.
Arrived at the landing they formed an interesting
group, at which we all levelled our Kodaks, much
to the amusement of the youngsters, who, no doubt,
thought some of us a
little crazy; the hat
was passed around, and
the band added about
thirty dollars to its
fund for new instruments. When we finally
began to  move away,
We    received   as    affeC- (Kodakd by Author.)
tionate and regretful an adieu from the crowded wharf
as though the spectators were parting with their nearest
in. The young American women waved their handkerchiefs, the men shouted their cheers, and the little
Si wash tots kissed their hands till Ave were too far
away to distinguish their forms as they took a last
fond lingering look at the dissolving view of the ship.
And, oh, what a charming picture was ours as we
steamed out of the harbor of Sitka at six o'clock that
lovely summer evening !   The sky could not haAre been
%} CD «7
a more cloudless azure blue; it Avas just cool enough
to provoke a walk to and
fro upon the   deck;  there
wras   so   little   air   stirring
that   the   smoke   ascended
in a perpendicular column
from   the   stack,   and   the
sheen upon the water made
the ocean a sea of silver.     We   all  felt  so
jolly;   eA7erybody   delighted Avith the day's
experience,   and   each
person having some little episode to relate of
the day spent in Sitka.
Not a grumbler; not a
single soul disappointed   about   the  slight-
est   thing;   in fact  it THE ISLANDS AROUND SITKA.
was my first experience in my many voyages of
pleasure, where universal satisfaction, was the result of
the day's experience. Yet I could not help thinking
of the desolation to which our departure condemned
those who had been so kind to us; nor of those poor
souls whose darkness may never be dispelled by the
enlightenment of education and civilization; and it
occurred to me that if I owned the steamship line I
would build a little hotel there, that the passengers
might have an opportunity of occupying a week in
excursions to points of interest, which it is impossible
to reach in a large ship, and then life at Sitka would
not be so intolerable; and that if I was the govern-
ment of the United States, I would put the Indians
under such discipline that their quarters should be
subject to inspection, and their children compelled to
go to school.    What two great boons these would be
to Sitka, and how easy to accomplish both. But the
scenery is so beautifully grand that I must keep my
moralizing for some future time.
This is the Sitkan Archipelago, and we are in the midst'
of so many islands that I don't know whether to speak
of them by hundreds or thousands; they are exquisite
emerald, pink, yellow, and crimson islands all of them, so
close to each other that the deer swim to and fro as the
canary leaps from perch to perch, and the shadows of
their tall forests fall from one to the other just as the
housetop throws its shade across the street; yet the
channel is so deep between them that we circle and
Avind in and out of them at a rate of speed which 128
throws the water high up upon their banks, frightening the wild ducks and geese, who in flocks and
couples dart across our bow continually. Mount
Edgecombe, five miles right  ahead   of   us, becomes
CD ' CD '
the centre of observation and the subject of conversation. Every field-glass on the ship is levelled
at it, and we distinctly see the gaping mouth of the
crater and the deep ravines cut by the rivers of
lava which have rolled to its base. We again take
the outer channel, keeping Mount Edgecombe on our
right for several hours, it appeared to me,—each view
of it being more and more confirmatory of its volcanic
character. We are now passing around Kruzof Island,
and when well out to sea, steer due north along the
7 CD
western coast of Tchitchagoff Island toAvards Cross
Sound, which is the outlet of Glacier Bay. It is half-
past ten o'clock Avhen Ave approach Cape Cross, yet it
is daylight, real daylight, by which you can read a
newspaper just as well as at tea-time. What is that
white streak above the horizon right ahead of us ? Is
it a cloud, or some optical illusion ? " Nothing of the
kind; it is the Fairweather range, the most beautiful
snow mountains in the world," says Captain Carroll.
"Sorry it will be a little dark when Ave get there, but
you shall see them by daylight if the Aveather holds
up." Fortunately, as we were out of reach of telegraphic communication, the Weather Bureau had no
chance to dash our hopes with prognostications of
"cloudy, folloAved by local rains," or any nonsense of
that kind, and as the sun had   gone  doAvn full of A NIGHT OF CONTINUAL DA Y
promise, Ave had every reason to feel hopeful that the
Captain would be able to keep his word, and well did
he keep it two days later.
But, to return to Cross Sound; by reference to
the maps you will find that here AA*e change our
course abruptly to the right, and you will also remark,
probably, that this water is called on some of them
Icy Strait. It is eleven o'clock; hardly a passenger
has retired for the night—night, did I say?    Night
CD CD        7 «/ O
it may have been by the clock, but by the heaA7ens
it Avas a night of continual day. Some of us had
determined not to go to bed at all, and the Captain,
overhearing this heroic resolve, promptly placed both
kitchen and pantry at our disposal, and joined our
party, amiably giving us the names of the mountains, 13°
i f
capes, and islands as we approached them- I knew
not how often, if ever, the scene before me had
been viewed to such advantage by others, but, for
myself, I felt the inspiration of the hour so profoundly
that I could scarce believe it was part of that same
earth which I had left behind me but a few brief days.
In a group of a dozen or twenty people among whom
I stood there were periods of several minutes, I
should think, when not a word was uttered, except,
perhaps, a half-suppressed exclamation of awe and
admiration. For my part, I leaned upon the rail of
the ship, peering into the twilight, every now and then
catching a glimpse of some new Avonder in the distance
and trying to mould it into form; filled with an ecstasy
of amazement and surprise which I had never before
experienced in a somewhat adventurous life. Along
the horizon, in a complete semicircle from left to right,
was a streak of golden fire—that kind of molten, liquid
fire which pours from the blast-furnace in the nighttime and courses its way through the gutters made to
receive it in the clay,—and where the snow mountains
broke in upon its lines, it lit them up with tints of the
most delicate pink, just soft enough to mark their outlines against the gray-green twilight beyond. And
the shades of this twilight, how beautiful and delicate
in color were they! from the deep blue which bordered
the golden horizon, through all the color varieties of
the aurora borealis to the faintest touch of amber and
almost invisible green, yet all lit up Avith the still
lingering beams of  the now  far-distant sun;   while "LA MAG IE DU COLORIS.
away off in the northAvest, suspended, as it were, like
a bright electric light, over the coast of Asia Avas a
single planet (I know not Avhich) struggling in her
silvery purity for a place in this superb panorama where
none of her lesser sisters dared to venture. In this
surprising effect of light and shade, nature gave us a
wonderful example of what is called in art la magie
du coloris. And thus for three or four hours did one
day resolve itself into another, Avithout the intermediate night.     Those who went  to   bed left  word
Avith friends to call them when there Avas any change
of scene or incident; others dozed in the social hall,
fearing to trust themselves to sounder sleep; while
many had their chairs and blankets brought on deck,
Avhere at intervals they refreshed themselves with hot
coffee abundantly supplied by the obliging stewards.
It was the "dawn
of the morning" on
Saturday, June 7th,
Avhen we first saw
floating ice ; a piece
about the size of a
row-boat and about
the same shape, but
it was large enough
to serve as a signal
to aAvaken the sleepers, so that in a few minutes the
deck was peopled with a motley croAvd, in all kinds
of incomplete costume, from a shawl and skirt to
a water proof and a pair of rubbers; we hurriedly
(Kodakd by Miss Margaret Watson^) 132
got down to our normal condition hoAvever, and in a
little while, everybody was on deck attired for the
day, and before the sun rose we had passed within view
a glacier on our left, which in the distance resembled a
river suddenly frozen and held in solidity by the vise-
grip of two lofty mountains. Rounding the cape and
parting company Avith the beautiful Fairweather Mountains, we are noAv in Glacier Bay steering directly north,
with the Beardslee cluster of picturesque islands on
our right and straggling icebergs all around us. Ahead
of us, in the distance, is Willoughby Island, and our
straiphtest course to the Muir Glacier would leave this
island on the left, but there are two or three very interesting glaciers on the west coast of Glacier Bay
Avhich Captain Carroll, with characteristic courtesy,- is
anxious we should see, so he makes for the narrow
channel between the island and the western shore. It
was seven o'clock in the morning when we entered this
passage, which I should judge was perhaps half a mile
wide and four miles in length,  but we found it so
densely packed with icebergs
and floating ice, that we did
not extricate ourselves from
it until noon; in other words,
our progress was at the rate of
about one mile an hour. Those
five hours were full of intense
interest and excitement and
sometimes of anxiety. I do
no injustice to Captain Carroll
(Kodakd by Author.) AMIDST THE ICEBERGS.
when I venture the belief that if he had known the
real condition of the channel he would have taken the
easterly course; at all events it was patent to every
one on board, from the prudence with Avhich the ship
was handled and the precautions which were taken to
avert any too violent collision with the huge floating
masses which confronted us, that the occasion was
an extraordinary one.    These  icebergs  were curious
«7 CD
studies ; I did not fail to realize that each one of them
outranked in age any other moving thing I had ever
seen, save perhaps the moon. For hundreds of years
these tons and tons of solid ice have been slowly
forcing their way down to the temperate waters of
the North Pacific Ocean, bearing upon their begrimed
sides and edges the e\7idence of fierce struggles for
o So
freedom with the rock-bound passes in the mountains,
and  carrying victoriously aloft  the  massiAre granite
«/ CD t/ CD
slabs and boulders crunched in the conflict. Thicker
and  thicker  grew  the   sea  of  ice, larger and more
O 7 CD
threatening the bergs, many of them rising to the level
of our upper deck and grazing the ship's side as we
sloAA7ly forged ahead. The atmosphere too grew thick
and threatening, and I overheard the Captain mutter,
"Pretty place to be caught in a fog," as he peered
anxiously ahead through his glasses. Fortunately I had
unlimited and not misplaced confidence in his seamanship, otherwise I should have missed the exhilarating
sensation Avith which the novel surroundings filled me.
For the first time on the trip, it became quite cold
and   damp-—overcoats   and  Avraps  were  in  demand,
i1 134
and those of us who were fortunate enough to find
room upon the platform in rear of the bridge, Avere
treated to as beautiful a specimen of skilful ship steering as can be imagined. The Captain had been at
his post from the time we left Sitka on the previous
evening, still he showed no sign of fatigue; on the
O' **D O '
contrary, his head and eye must both have been
uncommonly clear to have brought so large an ocean
ship through such a field of obstacles without the
slightest accident. I know, for he told me so, that he
fully expected to lose one, or perhaps two, blades of
the propeller, and I could see by the contortions of
his face as Ave thumped against a hundred tons of
floating ice and topped it over bottom up, that he was
not quite sure of the result when the great ungainly
mass swung back again toward the ship.    Constantly
CD CD x «/
these bergs, as they split in half under the prow of the
steamer, rolled over and exposed the red paint, which
too plainly told of blows of sharp contact with our
keel, much to the chagrin of Captain Carroll, who
avowed he had not come there " to paint Glacier Bay
red"; in fact, he chafed at every chafe. I learned
that it was of great importance to keep the ship constantly moving ahead, even though her advance could
be measured only by inches, so that I continually
turned my eyes to some tree or rock upon the shore to
judge by this fixed object whether we were making
progress, for the current was carrying the ice so
fast past us that it was impossible to judge whether
the apparent headway of the vessel was not after all an A MOMENT OF ANXIETY.
illusion.   Once, and only once, we came to a dead stop;
the surface of the water could be nowhere seen; the
narrow channel was itself a glacier, and the crunching
masses of huge slabs of marble ice which choked it
piled themselves one upon the other, like sheep driven
into a cul-de-sac.    It Avas a moment of some anxiety.
The men seemed to realize the
peril more than the women, for
they had been interviewing the
sailors and had learned that no
such ice-flow had been encountered since Captain Carroll first
explored   these   Avaters   seven
years before.    We women did
not at the moment comprehend
that  the contact  of  the  pre
peller with one of these bergs (Kodakd by Author.)
might render the ship entirely helpless in a place
beyond the reach of succor, and in a sea which would
pulverize our little steam launch if we attempted to
use her, so that we were deprived even of the ability
to search for assistance in case of need. Presently,
however, there was a gentle movement of the machin-
/ CD
ery, a little commotion among the icebergs in our rear,
J 7 O CD 7
a grating and a scraping sound Avhich was echoed over
the entire field by the crackling of the disintegrating
ice, and looking again at my landmark on the shore, I
found we were once more- pushing forward. At one
time the Captain ran half-way up the foremast, glasses
in hand,  and for some minutes, like the picture of 136
Farragut in Mobile Bay, shouted his orders to the
wheel-house. Then again resuming his monotonous
and nervous pacing upon the bridge from port to starboard and starboard to port, he steered his. immense
vessel Avith such dexterity and mathematical precision
that as the cakes of ice were upturned and fell gracefully into our wake, it was easy to see that the course
he selected was the one of least resistance. I took note
of a few of the expressions whose magnetic influence
twisted and turned us around in such beautiful curves,
some of Avhich were: 1 Starboard, sir !" " Slow her!"
I Why don't he slow her when I tell him!" " Stop
her!"   " Go tell that engineer if he don't obey the sig-
nals quicker, the first thing he knows he '11 have one of
these bergs in his engine-room !" " Hard-a-port, sir! |
I Port her!" " Steady now !" " Keep your eye on the
compass there !" " Put an extra man at the wheel!"
and so on, doubtless conveying to the persons for whom
they were intended volumes of instruction, but to me
nothing but the sense of security with which his general
watchfulness inspired me.
In the midst of all this strain, when perhaps the
slightest error of judgment might have been fraught
with disaster, the chief steward (it was his first
voyage with Captain Carroll) was seen ascending the
ladder with a bowl of nice hot, steaming coffee for
our able commander, Avho at that moment was the
cynosure of every eye. I am sure everybody felt proud
f that steward ; wanted to shake him by the hand;
was  grateful to him;   wondered why they    hadn't
0 COFFEE ? "    I NO, THANKS I "
thought of it themselves. j I've brought you a cup
of coffee," mildly whispered the steward, with outstretched hand. " Take it away, sir ! When I want
coffee I'll send for it," shouted the skipper. What
became of the steward I don't know; but I do know
that there were a few disjuncted scraps of sentences
floating around the atmosphere for several minutes,
such as : 1 Nice time for coffee !—Port her !—Steady !
—Pretty time to be drinking coffee !—Starboard a
little !—Coffee, indeed !—Slow her, sir !—Slow her, I
say!—Coffee ! " It is proper to say, however, that
a few hours later the poor affrighted steward was
addressed in language as courtly as : "I'll take
that coffee now, steward, but don't ever bother me
again when I've got my hands full."
Of course it is very difficult to convey by words
any appreciable or intelligent idea of the scene
through which we were passing, nor can I hope
to do so fully by the aid of my camera; for I
find that where the ice was densest the atmosphere
was too thick to secure prints which would bear reproduction ; still, those which I obtained, when the fog
lifted in spots which were less obstructed, may perhaps serve the purpose measurably. I can only say
that, as far as the eye could reach in all directions, the
ocean was covered with masses of ice, varying in size
from that of a large house to that of the morning
supply at the area gate after a mild winter ; and they
were of all imaginable shapes—many containing deep
caverns  with  stalactite  roofs;   many  honey-combed
J m
I 1
through and through like huge white coral; some
assuming the forms of Indian tents, churches, stables,
and ships; not fantastic creations, but so marked as
to attract the attention of the whole ship's company.
But the coloring was even more remarkable, the prevailing tint being that exquisite blue of Avhich the
turquoise is perhaps the only specimen, spotted here
and there and sometimes half clothed with a covering
of sparkling snow.
When at last, after much tribulation, we once
more reached the open sea between Willoughby
Island and the entrance to Muir Inlet, for miles along
the beach of Scidmore Island were stranded a chain
of these exquisite turquoise gems which excited
our admiration to the highest pitch. Far over to the
left were the three glaciers in whose honor we had
passed through this sea of troubles, but so choked
were the approaches to them that a telescopic view
was all we had, yet this of itself Avas worth coming
for; while far off towards the horizon on the rio*ht
were clustered together a squadron of floating pyramids, whose white sides and uniformity of shape
brought vividly to mind the regatta scenes of Newport
and New London, where for hours the fleet remains
at anchor waiting for the wind. We are now at the
mouth of Muir Inlet: the great glacier is in front of
us, but only in faint outline as yet; the lunch bell has
sounded, and we are told that before the meal is finished we will be at anchor within the shadow of this
world's wonder.    So to lunch we go, and while I am
there, you, my daughter, may familiarize yourself as I
did Avith what has already been written of it, which, to
save you much trouble and research, I will epitomize
as follows : The Muir Glacier is situate at the head of
Glacier Bay about eight hundred miles from Tacoma,
our starting point. It is one of many outlets of the
enormous field of glacial ice which stellates from a centre
ahout fifteen miles back of the Muir front, and covers
the valleys of the yet unexplored mountains between
the Pacific Ocean and the head-waters of the great
Yukon River (said to be the largest river on the globe).
The area which the glacier covers is as yet unknown,
though beyond doubt the human eye can follow it for
a distance of forty miles, look across it fifteen miles,
and has located sixteen other lesser glaciers which are
tributary to it. It derives its name very properly
from Prof. John Muir, the State Geologist of California,
who, as far as is known, was the first white man to
visit it; Vancouver and the early navigators and explorers, although familiar with the enormous outflow
of ice, not having had the intrepidity or perhaps the
equipment necessary to penetrate beyond the entrance
to the bay (Captain James Carroll, now of the Queen,
but in 1883 commanding the Idaho, being the first
seaman to approach within reasonable distance and
come to anchor within full view of it). In fact, it is
only eleven years ago (1879) since Professor Muir first
saw it from an Indian canoe, and it is exceedingly
doubtful whether five thousand white people all told
have ever seen it, though I ha\Te little doubt that a Ml I!
Eg      '
i   [1,1
A     '
greater number than that will visit it annually hereafter, the trouble of getting there being reduced to a
luxury, and the result more delightful than that which
J 7 CD
has ever yet rewarded the searcher for the beautiful
and wonderful in nature.
The walls which bound the Muir Glacier on either
side vary in height from three thousand two hundred to five thousand feet above the level of the
ice, and where the slow-mo\dng mass emerges from
the jaws of this vise of rock, the glacier is three
miles in width and five hundred feet above the
level of the bay, but from this point down towards
the water it narrows its width until, at the waterfront, it becomes clogged between the barren moraines
which it itself has created, and finds its passage to the
sea limited to a front of just one mile. Its facade at
this point is in some places three hundred and fifty or
four hundred feet above water, and at others two
hundred feet (Captain Carroll once, in the month of
June, measured it with the sextant and found it to be
in many places four hundred and eighty-five feet high),
and as there are from eighty to one hundred fathoms
of water immediately in its front, and the ice, of course,
does not float, but is sunken deep into the bottom of
the inlet, it may safely be assumed that there is a frontage of ice measuring from base to summit between
eight hundred and one thousand feet. It here breaks
off in immense bodies weighing from one to five hundred tons each, and floats with the tide towards the
open sea,  disintegrating  and  melting  as  it  travels. THE MUIR GLACIER.
Owing perhaps to the fact that the water is deeper at
the centre than at the sides, the glacier protrudes much
farther at this point than in the shallower Avater near
the shores, where there is more resistance, which gives
7 O
the front an irregular formation, somewhat as of two
concaves meeting in the centre. Two interesting
theories, if not abundantly demonstrated by proof, are
at all events accepted as true by scientists, viz.: first,
that the front of the glacier is gradually receding from
the inlet; and second, that the mass of ice itself is just
as surely moving towards the inlet, but the recession
so far exceeds the accession that there can be little
doubt that the ice in some past period extended to the
very mouth of the bay itself, and that Willoughby
Island owes its present barren surface, and its deep
grooves and furroAvs, to the action of this very glacier.
There are as many different explanations of this recession as there are writings upon the subject, and I should
be out of the fashion did I not advance an additional
pet one of my own. It is well known that the salubrity
of the climate in Puget Sound and on the North Pacific
coast generally is due to the warm Japanese current,
producing effects similar to those occasioned by the
Gulf Stream on the Atlantic. This current becomes
charged with the heat of the tropics at the equator,
and retains it in its northerly course through the
Orient and along the coast of Asia, until it sweeps
around and skirts the coast of British Columbia and
the State of Washington on its return home, to become
again surcharged Avith the warmth it has distributed #.
in the colder waters of the North. The sphere of this
warm stream's action may be widening; Avidening for
the Avise purpose of thawing out a wealth of soil and
metal which as yet is not needed. It may7 take centuries, perhaps, to convert the valleys of the mountain
ranges, now ice-clogged, into nourishing rivers, but the
O        7 CDCj ' <~D
process may be going on, and if it is, no power to produce it can be more potent than this great gulf stream
of the Pacific. It Avill probably never be ascertained
how long a time it has taken for the glacier to fall
back from Willoughby Island to its present position,
and it certainly has not yet been determined with any
degree of accuracy at what rate of speed the vast body
of ice is moving towards the point of dissolution ; but
it is generally agreed, and I presume we will have to
accept it, that forty feet a day is the average motion
(by average I mean that it moA^es twice or three times
as fast in the centre as at the sides). Now the glacier
being over five thousand feet wide, and at least eight
hundred feet high, and breaking off at the rate of forty
feet each day, it follows that one hundred and sixty
millions of cubic feet of ice break off from thefagade of
the Muir Glacier every twenty four hours. (Hereafter
the Swiss mer de glace will have to be printed in very
small type.) Prof. G. Frederick Wright and a party of
scientific friends visited the glacier in August, 1886,
for the purpose of making investigations of its glacial
phenomena. His paper, published by the Alaskan
Society of Natural History and Ethnology, is very
interesting, especially upon the subject of the recession THE MUIR GLACIER.
of the ice f ront,-f rom Avhich I conclude that each succeeding year the glory of its immensity somewhat diminishes
After stating his reasons for his faith, he says : 1 Thus
there can be no reasonable doubt that during the earlier
part of this century the ice filled the inlet several
miles further down than now. And there can scarcely
be less doubt  that the  glacier then filled the inlet
1,000 or 1,500 feet aboA7e its present level near the
front."    And  to those for whom figures serve as a
guide, I may add upon the authority of Prof. Wright,
as follows: " The total amount of water which in some
form annually passes into the inlet from the 1,200
square miles of ice which compose the glacier is 267,-
632,640,000 cubic feet; of this amount 77,088,000,000
feet pass in the form of ice, with 335,473,236 feet of
(Kodakd by Author.) CHAPTER X.
•if i i
THE previous chapter has briefly
outlined the main facts within my
knowledge concerning the Muir
Glacier which I had gathered from
my reading, and upon which I had
to create the image of what I expected to see. True, I had seen
photographs of it; yes, and I had
seen photographs of the Canyon
of the Yellowstone, and of the
Nevada Falls, and of Niagara, just as I have seen
paste diamonds; I knew their shapes, and that is
all I ever gathered from their portraits. Neither
the expression nor the complexion, nor the sound of
the voice of nature are to be found upon the dull surface of the photograph; you simply get the general
lines, some of the shadows, very erroneous perspective,
and that is all. We had come to a standstill while we
were at lunch. I had observed the slackening of speed;
next the stoppage of the machinery; then the absolute
stillness of the ship; and finally a darkening of the
saloon. We were evidently at a halt under the shadow
of some immense elevation. A passenger on tiptoe looked THE MUIR GLACIER.
through the port-hole, and uttered an exclamation of
amazement: then we all rushed to similar apertures;
climbed on the chairs, looked over the men's shoulders, in fact, did all kinds of unreasonable things, and
CD    /
at last stampeded up the companion-way, to the deck.
I pray Heaven that neither age nor infirmity may ever
x «/ CD J J
efface from my memory the sight and the sensation of
v 1/ CD
that moment. To say that I was transfixed, speechless, fascinated to intoxication by the spell of this
marvellous development, is no exaggeration. Those
who reached the deck first seemed paralyzed, halted,
and thus blocked the way for those who were to
follow; others kept Avithin the saloon from choice, as
though they dreaded some phenomenal convulsion. I
wedged my way as best I could, after the first shock
of amazement had subsided, up to the very boAv of the
Upon each side of me, half a mile away, rose the
same old mountains which I had seen, everywhere
from Tacoma north; at my feet, the same Pacific Ocean,
but in front of me, apparently so close that I could
almost reach it with my fingers, the perpendicular wall
of a canyon, not of rock, nor clay, nor grass, nor forest,
but of ice—a wall of ice a mile in length ;—and when
I say a mile I mean over eighteen hundred yards of it;
and when I speak of ice, I do not mean the sutty
porous stuff that lodges in the valleys of the Alps; I
mean the veritable, pure, clear, ciystal ice of the ice
pitcher. A Avail a hundred yards high and in some
places towering up an additional fifty ; a wall extend-  THE MUIR GLACIER.
ing down deeper in the ocean than it reaches from the
ocean to the sky,—hard as adamant, sharp and edo-ed
like flint, aqua-marine in color, deepening toAvards
the Avater into indigo, tipped on the summits and projections with a froth of snow. If I did not know that
it Avas ice, I should believe that it Avas glass. If
I did not know that it was the work of the Creator, I should believe that here had assembled a convocation of architects, who in their collective ingenuity
had reproduced a combination of the chefs-d'oeuvre
of their art; for here were the buttresses of the Eng-
lish abbeys and flying buttresses of Notre Dame,
turrets of the Normans, towers of the early English,
spires of the cathedral in Cologne, wonderful unoccupied niches, pilasters of the purest white marble and
green malachite, and decorative carving and high polish
worthy of Cellini. It was a cloudy day, yet the front
glistened with prismatic splendor. What will it be, I
asked myself, if in the afternoon the setting sun shall
light it up? But we are too close to it for our own
safety, we learn, and are slowly moved back half a mile,
where our anchor is dropped and preparations are
made to row us on shore to climb to the top of the
glacier. While we are moving, a sharp detonation
rings out like the firing of a rifle, and one of the beau-
tiful spires on the crest of the very centre of the w7all
is shivered into atoms, and its fragments fall with a
splash four hundred feet. Later, there is a report as of
a cannon, but without result; this we are told is the
parting of the sea of ice somewhere far back in its 14§
I.I li
mountain home; presently two similar explosions,
evidently right close to us, followed by rumbling
echoes, and over topples a huge mass weighing tons,
which sinks so far that several seconds elapse before it
rises to the surface, swaying to and fro until it finds its
equilibrium, and then floats down the current, one more
turquoise gem added to the chain which precedes it.
And this continued all day, sometimes at intervals
of seconds only, sometimes of half an hour, and when
we retired at night the explosion and the splash
became as monotonous and periodical as the tinkling
of the street-car bell, or the footstep of the passer-by,
does at home. There was one tremendous breaking off
towards evening; the sun, as we had hoped, was out
in full glory, and at the" distance from which we now
viewed the glacier it was a mountain of snow-covered
ice, chopped off in f ront. For many miles we could see
over and beyond the facade, as though looking at a
great river of snow ; yet the facade itself was a face of
corrugated emerald reflecting the sun1s rays at every
imaginable angle, and changing and scintillating with
every movement of the ship. Suddenly, near the
centre, the top began to incline forward, and the whole
face of probably twenty yards in width, from the top
of the glacier to the bottom of the bay, fell outAvards
as a ladder would fall, without a break anywhere.
There was a tremendous upheaving of the Avater, of
course, then the report of the invariable explosion
reached us, but no trace remained of the fallen ice,
save the swell in the water, which had almost reached THE MUIR GLACIER.
and rocked the steamer. I do not know how much
time elapsed before the lovely thing rose to the surface,
but it seemed an age, and then it came in a dozen
pieces, each of the same exquisite diaphanous blue,
which as they approached us gradually changed to a
clear transparent sapphire. If it will help to serve the
purpose of giving a just idea of the colossal proportions of the scene I endeavor to describe, let me say
that the Capitol at Washington, the City Hall in
Philadelphia, the Cathedral, Equitable, and the Mills
Buildings in New York, and all the mammoth newspaper offices in the same city, might be floated in front
of the Muir Glacier, and yet its emerald walls would
overtop and engulf them all. As a contrast to all that
is pure and chaste in the scene before us, there rushes
out from the eastern end of the glacier a sub-glacial
stream of thick dirty water, much resembling, as it
boils up from its cavernous outlet, the mud geyser of
the YelloAvstone; this is a perpetually flowing river
charged with sediment and debris, from the scouring
process produced by the friction of the moving ice
along its bed of rock; it gives the water in the inlet a
thick gray color, utterly destroying the charm of its
otherwise transparent character.
If you are amiable enough to say that what I have
written gives a sufficiently correct idea of what you
expect to see, I beg to differ with you. No camera,
no pencil, no vocabulary can do more than produce a
desire to see for one's self. I can only say that it has
been  my fortune to behold much that is grand in 150
nature and in art at home and abroad, but the hours
spent at Muir Glacier made the great event of my life.
If God spares me I hope to see it often. And fearing
I might be accused of exaggerating, which is far from
my desire, for I am searching in vain for superlatives
which would do the subject justice, let me quote from
others who have preceded me, and all of Avhom have
established their reputation as authorities:
Miss Kate Field says : " In Switzerland a glacier is
a vast bed of dirty air-holed ice that has fastened
itself, like a cold porous plaster, to the side of an Alp.
Distance alone lends enchantment to the view. In
Alaska a glacier is a wonderful torrent that seems to
have been suddenly frozen when about to plunge into
the sea. . . . Think of Niagara Falls frozen stiff, add
thirty-six feet to its height, and you have a slight idea
of the terminus of Muir Glacier, in front of which
your steamer anchors; picture a background of mountains fifteen thousand feet high, all snow-clad, and then
CD      '
imagine a gorgeous sun lighting up the ice crystals
with rainbow coloring. The face of the glacier takes
on the hue of aqua-marine, the hue of every bit of
floating ice, big and little, that surround the steamer
and make navigation serious. These dazzling serpents
move at the rate of sixty-four feet a day, tumbling
headlong into the sea, and, as they fall, the ear is
startled by submarine thunder, the echoes of which resound far and near. Down, down, down goes the berg,
and woe to the boat in its way when it rises again to
the surface."
Csaeles Hallock in 1 Our New Alaska," pp. 172-3:
"The glacier Avail overhung us with its mighty majesty,  three times the height of the steamer's mast, or
v CD 7
more, and we seemed none too far away to escape the
constantly cleaving masses which dropped from its
face with deafening detonations. The foam which gathered from the impetus of the plunges surged upward
fully two-thirds of the height of the cliff, and the resulting swell tossed the large steamer like a toy, and rolled
CJ CD */  7
up in breakers of surf upon the beach. . . . The glacier
is by no means smooth, but is seamed and riven in
every part by clefts and Assures. It is hollowed into
caverns and grottoes, hung with massive stalactites,
and fashioned into pinnacles and domes. Every section
and configuration has its heart of translucent blue or
green, interlaced or bordered by fretted frost-work of
intensest white; so that the appearance is at all times
gnome-like and supernatural. ... I cannot conc^A^e
how any one can sit by and contemplate without emotion the stupendous throes which give birth to the icebergs, attended Avith detonations like explosions of
artillery, and reverberations of thunder across the skv,
and the mighty wreckage which follows each convulsion. Nevertheless I have seen a lady loll Avith complaisance in her steamer chair, comfortably Avrapped
for the chilly air, and observe the astounding scene
with the same languid contemplation that she would
discuss her social fixtures and appointments. Zounds !
I believe that such a human negation would calmly
view the wreck of worlds, and hear the crack of doom 15-
at the final rendering, if it did not affect "her set."
She could watch at a suitable distance the agony of
Christian martyrs, the carnage of great battles, the
sweep of cyclones, the diluvial submergence. Dynamite would not appall her, but to me it would be the
acme of satisfaction, ineffably supreme, to startle such
clods of inanition by a cry of mouse, and electrify
them into a momentary emotion. No vinaigrette would
ever mitigate the shock."
Martin M. Ballou in " The New Eldorado—a Summer Journey to Alaska," pp. 276-7: "The roar of
artillery upon a battle-field could hardly be more
deafening or incessant than were the thrilling reports
caused by the falling of vast masses of ice from the
glacier's front. Nothing could be grander or more im-
pressive than this steady bombardment from the ice
mountain in its resistless progress towards the sea.
Neither Norway nor SAvitzerland have any glacial or
Arctic scenery that can approach this bay in its frigid
splendor. . . . The author, in a varied experience of
many parts of the world, recalls but two other occasions which affected him so powerfully as this first
visit to Glacier Bay in Alaska, namely, witnessing the
sun rise over the vast Himalayan range, the roof-tree
of the globe, at Dargelling, in Northern India, and the
view of the midnight sun from the North Cape in
Norway, as it hung over the Polar Sea. Our power of
appreciation is limitless, though that of description
is circumscribed. Here both are challenged to their
utmost capacity.    Words are insufficient, pen and pen-
cil inadequate to convey the grandeur and fascination
of the scene."
Mrs. E. R. Sctdmore in " Journeys in Alaska":
I Avalanches of crumbling ice and great pieces of the
front were continually falling with the roar and crash
of artillery, revealing new caA^erns and rifts of deeper
blue light, while the spray dashed high and the great
waA7es rolled along the icy wall, and widening in their
sweep, washed the blocks of floating ice up on the
beaches on either side. . . . The nearer one approached, the higher the ice walls seemed, and all
along the front there were pinnacles and spires weighing several tons, that seemed on the point of toppling
every moment. The great buttresses of ice that rose
first from the water and touched the moraine, were as
solidly Avhite   as marble,   veined and  streaked  with
*/ 7
rocks and mud, but further on, as the pressure was
greater, the color slowly deepened to turquoise and
sapphire blues."
Alexander Badlam in his " Wonders of Alaska,"
p. 42, quotes Prof. Muir himself as saying, that the
front and broAV of the glacier were 1 dashed and sculptured into a maze of yawning chasms, ravines, canyons,
crevasses  and a  bewildering chaos   of   architectural
forms, beautiful beyond the measure of description,
and so bewildering in their beauty as to almost make
the spectator believe he was revelling in a dream."
"There were," he said, "great clusters of glistening
spires, gables, obelisks, monoliths and castles, standing
out boldly against the sky, with bastion  and mural, iff   i
surmounted by fretted cornice, and every interstice and
chasm reflecting a sheen of scintillating light and deep
blue shadow, making a combination of color, dazzling,
startling, and enchanting."
The next sensation in store for the tourist is the
climb to the top of the glacier. All the row-boats were
lowered, and about a dozen passengers in each, armed
Avith alpenstocks, Avere ferried in successive groups
from the ship to the eastern beach, a distance of perhaps half a mile, instructions being given to each
steersman to keep a sharp look-out for falling icebergs.
And here your trouble commences unless you are well
advised. The ascent is exceedingly difficult; what
looks like a mountain of rock over which you must
wend your way to
the ice-fields, is really
a mountain of ice
covered by a layer
of slimy mud, crusted Avith pieces of
flinty granite, standing up on end like
broken bottle glass
on the top of a wall.
I wore india-rubber
high boots when I
started, and I needed crutches before I
finished. It may be
chilly as  you leave
(Kodak d by
the ship, according as the sun may be out or in; if chilly,
get your escort to carry an extra shawl for you to wrap
yourself in when you row back to the ship; if the
weather is bright and warm, clothe yourself lightly, for
it grows warmer with the glare from the ice and the
■ CD O
physical exertion. Be A^ery careful where you step, and
if you are Avise, follow in the footsteps of others;
do not undertake to lead, else one foot may be trying
to ascertain the depth of a quagmire and the other
exploring a fissure. After an ascent of perhaps tAvo and
a half miles, which seem more like ten, you will find
yourself on the edge of a frozen sea, frozen, as it were,
while in the throes of a tempest, a bay of storm-tossed
Waves solidified as by a signal; and this extends as far
v CD
as the eye can reach up into the mountains towards the
north, and several miles across to the hills upon the
opposite shore. The ice is by no means clear or brilliant,
on the contrary its color is milky and its formation
honey-combed, plastic, porous, and yielding to the tread;
besides which it is besmeared with sediment from
mountain thaws Avhich have traversed its lifts, and
disfigured by fallen logs and drift-wood.    I confess
that if I visited Muir Glacier a hundred times I should
always remain on deck and watch the pyrotechnics of
the facade rather than undergo the thankless fatigue
of climbing to the top, which is infinitely more labori-
O X   7 «/
ous than the ascent of Vesuvius on foot through the
lava, or any work to be done on the trails of the
Yosemite. To those who are Avilling to undertake it,
however, I suggest that when they haATe ascended the
7 OO v
/ o
ON top.—(Kodakd by Miss Margaret Watson.)
first mile, Avhich will about bring them on a line with
the top of the wall of the glacier, they should look
back at their little tiny ship, floating like the Maid of
the Mist beneath Niagara, to fully realize the immense
proportions of the glacier.
It is said that persons haA7e been missed and never
again found who made this ascent, and I knoAv that
CD 7
at least one case is authentic, that of a young clergy-
man, Avho, straying aAvay from his companions, was
never again seen, though the most diligent search Avas
made for him by his friends and the ship's creAV.
A slip into one of those crevasses, Avhich is covered
by a thin coat of ice, means to be precipitated in an
instant to a depth where no human aid can reach you.
In fact I Avould advise all who Avish to preserve the
impression of Muir Glacier in its pure, idealized,
unsullied grandeur, to stay aboard and gaze on its
beautiful face. It is a Persian custom, after plucking the fruit, to tear it asunder in the middle, hand
i( (I If Fl
the sunny side to the friend and throw the other
half aAvay, the best portion being the only part good
enough for those they love. It is my duty to present
to you the better half of the glacier and to cast away
the other. Tired, footsore, and muddy, we were all
early in bed, and while dozing to sleep I was much
impressed Avith the awful stillness of the hour; everybody had retired, not even the tread of the man on
watch was heard, the very machinery was sleeping, but
every now and then there was a splash and a report
and an echo that brought with them the proof that the
forces of nature were e\rer awake, and that what was,
" is, and ever shall be, world without end." CHAPTER XL
HERE was no hurry to be up and
off on Sunday morning, June 8th.
When I aAvoke Ave were still lying
at anchor in front of the glacier, and
I was told by my felloAV-passengers
that an immense slice of the Avail
had yielded to the pressure and
jumped OArer-board during the night.    And
u x O O
Avhen I came on deck I saAV this must be
so, for a bright, neAV green  surface  to  the
ice front was presented,  entirely free from
the snowdrifts Avhich I  had
seen   there   yesterday,   and
there were many more floating bergs than when I had
retired.     We noAV dropped
doAvn the bay a mile or two
into the field of ice again, and
for two or three hours occupied our time in filling the
hold of the ship Avith beautiful sparkling  blocks   of   it,
about forty tons, Which   AVaS (From Kodak by Miss M. D. Beach.) i6o
% I
to last the ship for all purposes until she returned again
in two weeks. A couple of boats were lowTered and
manned with sailors armed Avith picks, hooks, and
axes; these men first shaped the ice while in the water
and chopped away the crusts of snow, the blocks being
then hauled on board and lowered into the hold.
It Avas near noon when we began to turn our backs
on this lake of the gods and steamed along the shores
CD v—7
of Scidmore Island. A more perfect day never shone
from the heavens; there was not a speck of cloud anywhere; poets and painters, educated in the fogs of
London, Avho Avrite about and paint the sunny skies of
Italy, never saw such an atmosphere as this; the air
was warm and balmy, the breeze invigorating, and the
bosom of the deep blue sea here and there bejeAvelled
with the emeralds, opals, pearls, and turquoises that had
fallen from the great towers of ice which now recei\7ed
our sad farewells and our hopeful promise to return.
On our right, loom up the Avonderful Fairweather
range of White Mountains, which Captain Carroll had
held in reserve for us until this auspicious moment.
The farthest peak is Mt. Fainveather, boasting an
altitude equal to Mt. Blanc, of over 15,000 feet; a little
closer to us is Mt. Crillon, reaching towards heaven
almost 16,000 feet; and nearer still, Mt. LaPerouse,
11,300 feet,—all connected by a long chain of lesser
ones, forming an immense range perpetually covered
with snow of the purest white. On our left is Scidmore
Island clad in midsummer verdure fragrant with strawberries and wild flowers, and musical with feathery LAKE OF THE GODS.
song; in front, the ever placid ocean, whose marve
lous transparency attests its depth; and the Avhole
amphitheatre bounded by a circle of majestic hills
clad in their royal purple. I wish I could remember
the beautiful words with which the Rev. Dr. Tiffany
likened it to the glorious portal of a future life. I do
remember that a gentleman standing near me remarked
11 did not belieA7e God ever made any thing so beauti-
v CD
ful as this," to which I involuntarily7 replied, but I am
sure not irreverently, " I did not believe that He couldT
I shall never again experience such a day as that! The
same sight under the same faA7orable conditions Avould
hardly again impress me as did the startling novelty of
this first vieAv of it. And to think that it has existed
for thousands of years, and the present decade has been
the first to see it. Picture to yourself all that you can
recollect of the Hudson, the Danube, and the Rhine ;
carry your mind away up into the fiords and rocky
coast of Norway; put the little Swiss mer de glace
under a microscope; think of the Matterhorn, the
Jungfrau, Mt. Blanc and the entire Bernese Alps;
make one lake of Maggiore and all her sisters; and
still this Lake of the Gods, as I would have it named,
out-pictures it all a hundred-fold. The day, the scene,
and the mood, were all in harmony for recognition of
the Divine beneficence which had given us life and
health to behold His glorious works, and, accordingly,
Dr. Tiffany was requested to hold Divine service,
which he cheerfully consented to do at three o'clock ;
but just as the hour was arriving we sighted a steamer 162
ahead, Avhich proved to be our old friend the Pinta,
Avhich we had left at Fort Wrangell, and as we had on
board news from the lonely wives and children at
Sitka, both ships slackened speed, boats were lowered,
and the glad   tidings of good health at home were
borne to the anxious mariners. To accomplish this Dr.
Tiffany postponed the service until a later hour, and
1 r
when we at last assembled, I am sure a pure spirit of
sincere thanksgiving pervaded the entire congregation
It was in the night-time that we rounded Dome Peak,
entered the Lynn Canal and headed for Douglas Island,
Avhich we reached on Monday morning, June 9th, just
one week from Tacoma.    We would have passed right ■THE TREADWELL GOLD MINE.
on to Juneau, which is in sight a little farther to the
north, but there is something very interesting which
% CD %j CD
we must go ashore to see, so we are tied up to a long
" x O
wharf, the gang-plank is thrown out, and the same old
procession moves out; this time to visit the Alaska
Company's gold mine (commonly called the Tread well
Mine). John Treadwell, a San Francisco builder,
bought this property in 1881 from a prospector, of
whom a fair estimate may be formed by the fact that
he   A\7as   known
only as "French
Pete." The price
was $400, and for
some time subsequently it Avas
operated as a
placer mine, the
character of ore
visible being, I
am told, what
is     scientifically
known as decomposed quartz. Treadwe
of his interest to others at a large advance
to-day this quarry of gold produces an income of half
a million of dollars every year. From our fellow-
passenger, Mr. Bernhardt, I gathered the information
(for I don't know a thing about mining) that it is
\ O CD J
what is called a loAv-grade ore, and owing to the immense water-power in the vicinity, the proximity of
the ocean, and the fact that there is no expense of
and 164
shafting and tunnelling, it costs less than two dollars
per ton to produce the bullion from the rock, and that
six hundred tons are worked each day, of the value of
from four to six dollars per ton. We went all through
the works, visited the quarry, hunted around for nuggets but did not find any, and were taken into the mill,
where two hundred and forty stamps, as they are
called, are hammering like so many sledge-hammers,
making such a noise that you literally cannot hear
yourself speak, and creating such a vibration that you
dance around like those bits of cork with horse-hair
legs which children play with on the drum of a piano.
One gentleman exclaimed as he emerged: " That is the
first place I have ever been where my wife can talk to
me without making me hear." (Of course he did not
refer to me; if he had I would have made myself felt.^)
Having seen every thing of interest at the mine, excepting the gold ingots, they having all been shipped
away in a previous steamer, we moved on to Juneau, a
couple of miles distant, passing the 1 Bear's Nest" and
one or two other gold mines which are as yet in embryo.
Juneau, like Sitka, is nestled at the foot of a range of
sheltering mountains. As I approached it, I wondered
what Avould become of the adults if the small boys
should take it into their heads to bombard them with
snowballs from the tops of the mountains, which
abruptly rise two thousand feet from the end of every
street. I consider Juneau as prettily located as any
city I have ever seen, and when the rich fields of gold
which surround it are developed, it will very likely  166
attain much commercial prominence. From all I could
gather I have little doubt that the history of California
will be repeated in this vicinity; the place is full of
speculators and prospectors, many of the latter having
good I claims " for sale, but at very high prices. The
owners seem to have unlimited confidence in their
I finds," and are certain that they will get their price
by the exercise of patience; but in the meantime they
lead an improvident, from hand to mouth, idle kind of
a life; yet I am told that if they were content to part
with their OAvnership to capitalists who would agree to
expend money for development, and reserve a share of
profit for the pre-emptor, it is believed this system
would be better for the present owners and much to
the advantage of the locality. From the bay, Juneau
has the appearance of some systematic regularity of
construction, but when you land it has quite the contrary ; in fact, to quote the language of my companion,
it I looked as though it had been built late on a Saturday night and never finished." It is an accidental
toAvn; unlike Tacoma, Seattle, Victoria, and other
thriving cities of Puget Sound, Avhich have been
located and laid out after careful consideration of the
whole subject, Juneau, like Helena in Montana,
"groAved up," as Topsy did. It is really a mining
camp, founded by Joseph Juneau and Richard Harris
just ten years ago this autumn, and yet it is to-day
the most important commercial point upon the entire
coast. This is owing to the existence of the gold placer
mines of the Silver Bow Basin immediately back of the NA TIVE INDIAN DANCES.
shore, many of them having been worked out, but leaving
behind them the best evidences of the precious mineral
awaiting the advent of capital. A serious embarrassment, however, exists as to the real ownership of the
different properties, and these titles, I presume, will have
to be adjusted before the risk is assumed of advancing
the large sums necessary for intelligent exploration and
experiment. The streets of the town seem to follow
the gulches or ravines, and the architecture is exceedingly primitive. There are three or four interesting
shops at which may be purchased every knoAvn Esquimaux curio, and two or three where may be seen an
excellent collection of sable, marten, lynx, silver-fox,
and other furs.    The signs indicate that the traders
are not wedded to specialties, but keep a stock of
varieties always on hand. One of them, of which I took
a note, read as follows: | Whipsaws, potatoes, new
onions, carrots, and wall-tents."
I spent a considerable portion of my time in the
store of Messrs. Kohler <fe James, who, I believe, are
the successors of the NorthAvest Trading Company.
Here I had an opportunity of witnessing the system
of barter and trade carried on between the Indian
hunter and the white trader. Upon arriving in toAvn
with the skins the red man visits every shop and
trader before he parts with his supply, and he who is
finally the highest bidder gets it; when the bargain is
consummated the Indian receives in payment a number of blue or red tickets, Avhich are taken by the
store-keeper in exchange for such commodities as he [68
i  I
may require to carry back to his Innuit home, perhaps somewhere near the head-waters of the Yukon.
From this store I carried off some beautiful furs at most
reasonable -rates, and hoped to be the possessor of a
much-coveted sable rug of thirty skins, but failed to convince the trader that my valuation of it was a just one.
In fact, the only regret I carried with me from Alaska
was that I had not given what was
asked for this rug, but my information then was to the effect that prices
were specially prepared for tourists,
which, I am now convinced, is not
the case, certainly not at the store of
which I speak. Just as the ship was
leaving Juneau I determined to
hurry back and. purchase it, but I
was admonished by the Captain that
I time and tide wait for no man,"
nor woman either, so I simply just
gazed at that shop with a melancholy and rueful countenance, and
the increasing distance, I assure you,
lent the view no enchantment. (I
ought to say here in a parenthetical
whisper that the day I returned home to New York I
Avas surprised to find that dear coveted robe spread out
upon the sofa in my library.) Before leaving Tacoma
we had been handed a printed programme of a " native
dance, by the renowned dancers of the Thlinkit tribe of
Alaska Indians, under the management of D. Martini,
(Kodakd by Author.) NA TIVE INDIAN DANCES.
the Barnum of Alaska, and the celebrated Takou Chief,
Yash Noosh, head chief of one of the most warlike
tribes of Alaska, but have succumbed (sic) to the influences of civilization. Admission $1. Children 50 cts.
The performance will commence immediately after
the arrival of the excursion steamer at Juneau, Alaska."
When we arrived, this Alaska Barnum, wearing a high
7 7 CD CD
stove-pipe hat, in company with Yash Noosh himself,
not in the garb of a warlike Indian chief, but*in that
of a quiet guardian of the public peace, commonly
called a policeman, met us at the dock and begged to
x OO
inform us that the performance had been postponed
until two o'clock, and they did this with an air of
people who seemed to think Ave had come there simply
to see their " greatest shoAv on earth." While this
ceremony was taking place a savage noise of human
voices and beating of drums came from a long tent on
the beach, which, of course, Ave recognized as the place
of performance. Very few of the passengers were
willing to be humbugged by the man with the high
hat and the policeman, yet our little party, Avhich, by
friendships created on the tour, might uoav number
eight or ten persons, resolved to " take it in," as one of
the gentlemen expressed it. We went; we Avere not
" taken in "; those Avho failed to go were the only ones
who were cheated, and they cheated themselves. It
was a remarkable performance — picturesque, barbarous, unexplainable, and unique. The theatre itself
was a long tent, with a platform curtained off by the
CD *■ **
commonest white muslin, rows of  pine benches  for
1 1
! i ;o
seats, and a little dressing-room in the rear. The
audience consisted of twenty-one persons who paid one
dollar each, while the performers numbered about
thirty men, women, and children in every imaginable
garb, from the ultra-aboriginal to that of the present
time. The tent was insufferably warm and smellful,
the glare of sunlight through the thin canvas intense,
so that the use of parasol and lavender salts was
indispensable; the stray Indian squaws and. their offspring sitting around the floors were repulsive; nevertheless, with all its unattractive surroundings, I would
not have missed it. There was no humbug about the
dramatis persona}, the wardrobe, or the implements,
and, therefore, I presume, none about the authenticity
of the dances themselves. Two or three of the men,
clad from neck to feet in skin-fitting wThite kid (much
soiled), were most graceful specimens of perfect
anatomy and agility; one or two of the women were
quite attractive, but others were hideously painted,
horribly shaped, and were either semi-idiotic or under
the influence of hoochinoo (though I saw no evidence
that any of them could procure liquor in the to aw).
Men there were with the torso of a giant and the lower
limbs of a dwarf, giving them a miserably awkward
gait. The women all resembled the loAvest caste of
Chinese, but with coarser and broader faces and larger
features; some of them Avith faces painted entirely
black as a complexion preserver, others colored only
across the upper portion of the face, indicating widowhood, and all looking the saddest specimens of indif- NA TIVE INDIAN DANCES.
ferent wretchedness, so benighted as not to realize the
degradation, misery, and filth of their existence. I was
specially moved to pity by a little girl about nine years
old, evidently a half-breed, a truly pretty child, with
beautiful eyes and fine features, a little gypsy creature,
who sat in a filthy calico dress, her only garment, and
a bright red handkerchief across her black matted
hair; the industry of her little fingers told the story
of the lack of care of which this neglected bit of
humanity was the victim; and in all her squalid loneliness my mother instincts went out to her, and I
wished with all my heart that I could have saved her,
body and soul. The printed " Programme" of the
dances announced the following:
'' Tash-Noosh—An ancient dance participated in by the Indians more than two
hundred years ago.
Ya-Koo-tee—An ancient dance in honor of visiting chieftains from afar.
Ta-Heeri-nah-kla-kee—A wild and weird dance of the interior tribes—very
On-de-koo-soi—A representation of the Shaman, or Indian doctor's dance
when expelling an evil spirit from a patient.
Koiv-whi-ka-klanik—A dance making friends among the tribes—never performed since the days of Baranoff.
Salmon dance—This dance takes place on the occasion of the spring run of
Love dance—Chaste and pure, with its beautiful and soul-inspiring music.
Chichigoff ivaltz—By Hoonyiah Indians."
I was so thoroughly unprepared for the scenes which
the lifting of the curtain developed, and paid so little
attention to the explanations made by the Indian policeman, who was master of the ceremonies, or his
interpreter, that I am unable to individualize the dif- A  WOMAN'S TRIP TO ALASKA.
ferent dances. They all seemed alike, excepting that
one representing the incantations of the Shaman. As
the cotton sheet was draAvn aside by a pair of dusky
hands, Indians of both sexes were discovered seated
around the stage beating drums and singing a most
discordant, monotonous, and dirge-like song; then
from the little annex came a procession of dancers,
male and female, dressed in buckskin and feathers,
Avith horribly painted faces, each wearing on the head
a hollow crown filled to the top with the down of the
eagle's breast. The dance commenced by a A7ery slow
forward movement of the body, the progress made
being not more than an inch at each step, and while
the whole anatomy was kept in constant motion the
principal feature of it was a jerky,
forward mxwenient of the head, a
throAving out and draAV-
ing back of the chin,
as it were, and a corresponding   lifting
of   the   shoulders;
this, of course, agi-
—   tated    the    eagle's
down in the crowns,
and in a f ewminutes
the entire ten t, stage,
and auditorium was
a snow-storm.    As
^ 1 . .       the dancers became
J^rom Kodak by
Miss m. d. Beach.)   Avarmed   to    their 1
work, which was manifested by the feathers completely
covering their perspiring faces, giving them a Santa
Claus expression that was very funny, their legs began to
loosen, and tripped a cadence not unlike the old-fashioned
Virginia break-doAvn, while the totem-sticks, paddles, salmon-hooks, knives, and implements of warfare were flourished aloft in a most careless and hazardous fashion. The
peculiarity of the exhibition was that the dancing Avas
palpably intended to give expression to some thought,
and the looks of disdain, contempt, hate, rage, and
tender love would have been appreciated even by Sal-
vini. Some danced barefooted, others wore red socks;
one or two Avomen Avere robed in exquisite Thlinket
embroidered blankets, robes of fur graced (?) the shoulders of others, and one wore an entire skirt of ermine.
The Shaman dance Avould not have been given but
that we insisted upon the programme being carried out.
It appeared that the Doctor was disgruntled about
something—perhaps the "beggarly array of empty
benches " disappointed him, and no wonder, for when
he did finally play his part, it was so exhausting that
he could hardly arise from the sitting posture which
he assumed from the first. His was a dance of the-
arms, hands, shoulders, mouth, and eyes. It was a
sorcerer's appeal, keeping time to the thumping of
drums on the rear seats—the whites of his eyes were"
rolled upwards during the whole time, his head rocked
from side to side, his fingers clawed the air, and his
teeth fastened themselves in his lips during the fervor
of his invocations.    It was a weird spectacle, and if it
didn't succeed in driving the worst evil spirit that
ever lurked around a sick-chamber out of the window
it's a very great wonder. We did not hesitate to express to the Alaska Barnum our commendation of his
exhibition, and all voluntarily recorded our opinions of
it in a book which, at our suggestion, he procured for
our signatures, so that it might impress the tourists
who followed us, Mr. Policeman Yash Noosh having
informed the spectators that it was to be a permanent
institution, and I hope it may prove so. It was my
good fortune to be able to purchase the totem-pole
which conspicuously figured in the evolutions, but I
suppose it has since been replaced by another.
•***■ --*—-= CHAPTER XII.
HE prevalence of ice in such large
quantities in Glacier Bay made it
prudent that we should not risk the
entrance of Taku Inlet. As Captain
Carroll expressed it, " the people up
here must have had a hard winter."
Besides which, this being the Queerfs
i CD *J
first trip in these waters, it was not an
appropriate time to experiment as to
Avhether she could navigate the nar-
rower channels. In fact, it was predicted before we left Tacoma that she was too big for
the service, an opinion Avhich she has since veiy successfully disproved. At the head of Taku Inlet, after a sail
of fifteen miles, there are to be seen three very superb
glaciers, none of them, of course, equal to the Muir
Glacier, yet, as it sometimes happens that OAving to
fogs and ice the Muir Glacier is inaccessible and may
not be seen at all, the tourist Avill be well repaid by a
visit to Taku, though, from what I learned of it, I
again renew my advice to remain on the ship rather
than wander over the muddy moraines. Leaving
Juneau, we ran due north along the Lynn Canal to If
1    Li
Chilcat, which is the most northerly point of the excursion route, being above the 59 ° of latitude.   The scene
7 O
along the entire route is in keeping with that which
has framed our journey since we left Victoria. Passing
the Auk and Eagle glaciers on our right, we pause for
a while in front of the Davidson Glacier, Avhich meets
the eye on the left like a mighty river rushing through
the mountain gorges to the sea, and madly emptying
itself into the ocean at the foot of a dense forest. This
body of ice is as graceful in form as the Muir is heroic
in colossal stature. It is nearly three miles wide at its
mouth and slopes downwards from an altitude of twelve
hundred feet, opening out toAvards the spectator like the
spreading of a fan. PAjramid Harbor, en 'route, is an
exquisite bit of mountain scenery, not unlike the Hudson near West Point, though few of the peaks are less
than three thousand feet high. It is nearly dark when
we turn around, and, having to retrace our steps over
the same course for several miles, we unanimously
agree to pay to Sleep our debt for the many hours
borrowed from her in the past three nights. Keeping
to the eastern channel around Admiralty Island we, of
course, did not stop at Killisnoo, much to our regret,
but the Captain promised in compensation to give us a
surprise in a day or two if the conditions favored it.
Killisnoo is an interesting station from the fact that
here is a large manufactory of the Northwest Trading
Company for producing fish-oil and drying codfish, the
latter said to far excel the same article caught and preserved by the Newfoundland fishermen.     The natives
"-nSk <
^stmmmsmxxazsxe^fsBxer. 178
of this place a few years ago threatened to massacre
the whites in revenge for the accidental killing of a
Shaman by the premature explosion of a torpedo, and
would have done so but for the timely arrival of a
revenue cutter, which threw a few noisy shells into the
village and naturally produced intense quiet. Our return trip was so arranged as to pass in the daytime
many exquisite marvels of scenery, which we had lost
in the night coming up, among them the Wrangell
NarroAvs and Clarence Straits, Avhose unfathomable,
still Avaters mirrored the rocks, which buttressed the
innumerable fiords upon each side of us into all kinds
of shapes, shades, and angles, presenting a kaleidoscopic
land- and water-scape the whole livelong day7, all of
which, as I think back, comes to me like the fantasy
of a delightful dream. In one deep canyon, where you
could almost shake hands with a friend on shore, there
soared aloft a veritable American eagle, floating from
side to side and encircling us Avith the sweep of his graceful motion for many miles until we reached the open FEEDING THE  WHALES.
bay, and then, as though content that we had escaped
the hazards of our narrow course, alighted on the
highest twig of. the foremost tree of a little island at
our side, and Avith flapping wings seemed to bid us
God-speed. If I had been Captain Carroll I would
have dipped the colors to that loyal bird.
One morning we Avere very much surprised by the
appearance on the surface of the Avater of sheets of
some salmon-colored substance, for which it was not
possible to account. At first we supposed it to be
sawdust floating out from the mouth of some river;
then again it might be salmon-spaAvn, yet the well proportioned egg was not there. The sailors told us it was
whale food, but that was all they knew of it. We
gathered some of it in a pail, and were no wiser; but
we brought some home in a bottle. When uncorked
it had " an ancient and a fishlike smell," and when examined by the microscope it bore all the evidence of
being the spawn of a small fish. There is a little fish
in these Avaters called the oulikon (or candle-fish),
which is all oil. Its head being thrust by the natives
into a split stick and a light applied to its tail, it burns
for a considerable time, the vertebrse, I suppose, answering for a wick. This is the Indian's household illuminator. It is not unlikely that this is the fish which
deposits its spawn on the surface of the deep sea under
the rays of a powerful sun, but what Ave saw Avas certainly not allowed to hatch out, for in a few hours,
while exchanging courtesies, en route, with the City of
Topeka   northward  bound, we  saAV large schools of i8o
whales going straight for this food
with Avonderful instinct.
A great effort was made to in-
duce Captain Carroll to run up
into Bute Inlet, but at this he
drew the line ; he had never explored it excepting in a small
boat,   and was  ignorant  of  the
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soundings, although he believed
CD   ' CD
it had, like all the other fiords on
the coast, an abundance of deep
water. The Captain spoke of it
Avith much enthusiasm, describing
W 7 O
3    the canyons as resembling those
M    of the Yellowstone, and mounting
3    in   a   precipitous   perpendicular
1    eight  thousand   feet.     In   fact,
g    every  year  develops  some new
|    feature of this glorious trip, pro-
8    ducing a  fever to  return to it,
which has possessed me ever since
I stepped ashore at Tacoma, after
twelve of the most  restful  and
enjoyable days of my life.
The Avonderful discoveries of
Professors Israel C. Russell and
Mark B. Kerr during the past summer in their explorations of the
Mount St. Elias range, lead me to
hope that upon my next trip our FORT SIMPSON.
ship will visit Yakutat Bay, Avhere the Lucia and Baird
glaciers reach the navigable Avaters of the North Pacific
Ocean. I cannot bring myself to believe that I have
yet to see a mass of ice equalling the gigantic proportions
of the Muir, and yet Mr. Kerr tells us the "Lucia" is
ten miles in Avidth, and Mr. Russell says the " Piedmont " is the largest glacier in the Northern Hemisphere.
Fort Simpson, however, Avas the treat the Captain.had
in store for us, and a real treat it was. We had left Fort
Tongas behind us, and were scraping the edges of the
beautiful Dundas Island. We knew that Metlahkatlah,
the refugee home of the band of pilgrim Indians Avho
had fled from the debasing influences of their kin at
Fort Simpson, Avas right ahead of us, and Ave felt sure
that Ave would be dropped down among these Indians,
living up to a nineteenth century civilization, Avith
churches, school-houses, lighted streets, a city government, and so on ;—but nothing of the kind ; we
steered direct for Fort Simpson itself, where Ave arrived
just before sunset. Oh, what a pity we had not been
there a few hours earlier ; Avhat a splendid field for our
camera, for it is the home of the totem-pole and of
every type of Indian life and custom, civilized and
savage. Fort Simpson is in British Columbia, and
floats the British flag.    As early as 1821, the Hudson
CD */
Bay Company, Avhich was the incorporated successor
to the grant of Charles II. to his cousin Prince Rupert,
giving him exclusive right of exploration and settlement on the North American continent, established
the  post  of  Fort  Simpson,  giving   it the  name  of i8:
its president. There are tAVO bastions and a stockade
here, but Avhether built then or more recently to
resist the incursions of hostile Indians, I was unable
to ascertain. I visited, nevertheless, the company's
store, which seems to be about the only place of trade
in the village; was quite courteously received by the
gentleman in charge, who showed me the candle-fish
and other indigenous curiosities, and then I joined the
column (we are beginning to look aAvfully like Cook's
tourists wandering around the Alps), note-book in
The location of Fort Simpson is very much like that
of Sitka and Juneau; the same kind of harbor and the
same gaunt, Aveird and sheltering mountains, but the
CD l CD 7
population is almost entirely natiAre, consisting of fifteen Avhite people and nine hundred and fifty Indians;
most of the men were off fishing and canning at the
canneries along the shore, taking their entire families
O 7 CD
Avith them and closing up their houses. Those who
were still at home seemed to be superior to any Ave
had yet seen, their houses having neat outsides, though
the interiors afford much room for improvement. It
boasts of a Methodist church, an exceedingly plain
structure of four Avails with a cheap lot of benches,
and a simple decoration of " God is love " behind the
pulpit, a great contrast to the Greek church of Sitka.
During the past winter there had been forty-five deaths
from la grippe, and many houses bore the Indian insignia of mourning—a piece of black crepe, pinked at
the edges and placed on a sheet of Avhite paper.   These FORT SIMPSON.
badges Avere nailed on the homes of recent death,
and in many cases a Avell-sculptured marble tombstone
stood before the house, inscribed (as with us) Avith the
name and age of the deceased, which is kept here only7
during the months of mourniDg, and is then carried to
the grave. The graveyard is A^ery interesting and
worth a visit; but the totem-poles are by far the
most remarkable feature of the place; they are of
large size and grotesque sculpturing, and contain the
cremated ashes of the departed. It would not have
been a sin against the Decalogue to have fallen down
and Avorshipped them, for they were unlike any thing
"that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the waters under the earth." The
children told us that the animals represented existed
in the olden time, but were uoav all buried in the sea.
Here we saw abundant specimens of "muck a muck,"
which Ave took to be cuttings of peat for fuel, until
informed, to our great disgust, that it was the Indians'
7 O CD 7
staple food; black in color, and made up into cakes
about twelve inches square and an inch thick, it lay all
around the place, drying in the sun, and overrun by
the dogs and cats of the village ; it is made of sea-
weed, and when Avell dried is converted into soup. I
brought a specimen home Avith me, but only to look at.
The people Avho are still in the village have been,
within the last thirty years, reclaimed from a life of
barbarism marked by atrocities the recitals of which
are blood-curdling. When the first missionary, Mr.
William  Duncan   arrived   from  Scotland, he  found 184
them absolutely under the influence of the Shaman.
The Shamans Avere of two classes, man-eaters and dog-
eaters. At their will life was sacrificed to remedy the
most trifling evils, the lowly serfs being put to death
to avert some imagined catastrophe about to happen to
a chief. Women Avere dragged by ropes to the beach,
brutally murdered, and thus sent into the other world
to be ready7 in Avaiting as slaves to receive the sick
daughter of the chief who lay upon her dying bed;
and Avhen murdered, their bodies 'Avere eaten by the
Shamans in the presence of the assembled populace.
"These are some of the things and scenes," says Mr.
Duncan, "which occur in the day during the winter
months, AArhile the nights are taken up with amusements, singing, and dancing.  Occasionally the medicine-
7 CD        CD' CD «/
parties invite people to their houses and play tricks
before them of various kinds. . . . The great feature of
their proceedings is to pretend to murder and then
restore to life.   The cannibal, on such occasions, is gen-
7 / O
erally supplied Avith tAVO, three, or four human bodies,
which he tears to pieces before his audience. Several
persons, either from bravado or for a charm, present
their arms for him to bite. I have seen several whom
he had thus bitten, and I hear tAvo have died from the
effects." All this, however, has now changed, the people seem to be well clad, well fed, and contented, and
the children give signs of intelligence and education.
Of course, the plague spots are not all eradicated yet;
old habits still cling to the aged, and they are really in
<-> CD 7 J J
a deplorable condition.   Being told that an old chieftain FORT SIMPSON.
was dying in one of the huts, Ave entered; not from
curiosity merely, but in the hope that Ave might perhaps render him service. Alas, it was too late. He
lay 011 a blanket on the floor, surrounded by half a
dozen women of all ages stretched upon the ground
like as many seals, and life Avas ebbing peacefully
away. We spoke to the Avomen, who simply glared at
us Avith a dazed expression, but made no reply. At
the door, as Ave AA7ere going aAvay, Ave met an old squaw,
probably the chieftain's wife, laboring up the steep
hill, staff in hand, and a load of blankets on her back
(blankets are the currency of her people); she must
haA^e been ninety years of age, and when she reached
J       %/ CD    '
the house of mourning it was Avith difficulty
she sat doAvn, but she kept up a continual
muttering   of   despairing |M
tones Avhich Avere heartrending. There was no
doubt about her soitoav.
The fountain of her tears
had dried up, and she
reminded me of Dante's
description of that agony
Avhich knoAvs no A7ent and J|
finds no relief,"To von plan-
geva, si dentro inipietrai?
HEN we returned to the ship it was
ten o'clock, not by the light of the
moon, but in another of those glorious
sunsets which nearly always closed
our days. Some of our party said it
was the most gorgeous sunset they had
ever seen, but, to tell the truth, I was
so satiated with the grand and beautiful that all my powers of comparison
had departed. I remember, though,
that the entire ocean and the heavens,
too, were lit up with red and golden shimmering
lights. A few miles from Fort Simpson is the settlement
of Metlahkatlah, Avhere dwell the pilgrim Indians who
fled under the guidance of their Moses, William Duncan, from the atrocities and barbaric life of the former
place in 1862 and founded a town which is a model of
civilization and good government. Their constitution
is a written one, and exceedingly brief. It is a disavowal of vices and an avowal of virtues, and reads as
follows :
11st. To give up their ' Ahlied ' or Indian deviltry.
2d. To cease calling in conjurors when sick.    3d. To
-    186 METLAHKA TLA H.
cease gambling. 4th. To cease giving away property
for display. 5th. To cease painting their faces. 6th.
To cease drinking intoxicating drink. 7th. To rest on
the Sabbath. 8th. To attend religious instruction.
9th. To send their children to school. 10th. To be
cleanly. 11th. To be industrious. 12th. To be peaceful. 13th. To be liberal and honest in trade. 14th.
To build neat houses.    15th. To pay the village tax."
The population of Metlahkatlah may be two or three
thousand—I was unable to ascertain the exact figures,—
and the principal industry of the place is a salmon cannery, which is a joint-stock company, the stock of which
is held by the natives and pays handsome dividends.
The young men are taught useful trades and apprenticed to those who have become proficient. All the
churches, school-houses, and dwellings are built by the
inhabitants, and the women have learned to weave and
to spin. The sanctity of the marriage vow is strictly
obsen^ed, polygamy is unknown, and children are well
cared for physically, mentally, and morally. It is
entirely the product of the English Church Missionary
Society, and their fearless representative, Mr. William
Duncan. Most of this good work has been accomplished in the last quarter of a century; and the field
is still large for similar undertakings.
To describe the exquisite and awe-inspiring scenery
of the next two days as we retraced our steps southward, homeward bound, is beyond the power of my
pen or tongue. It must suffice if I say that from dawn
until dark each day there Avas not a moment Avhen the i88
surroundings did not constitute a charming landscape,
fit for the easel of the most famous artist. At no
time was the ship in a spot the view from which did
not amply^repay the trip across the continent.
Nanaino, on VancouA'-er's Island, was our next halt,
and here Ave remained until the ship was re-coaled from
the celebrated mines at this place, a process which occupied an entire afternoon, affording the young men of
our ship an opportunity to be vanquished by the " Nanaino nine" at base-ball. These mines Avere recently
the scene of a horrible calamity, resulting from the
careless use of a lamp by a Chinese miner, in which
one hundred and eighty lives were lost—making forty-
one Avidows and one hundred and forty orphans,—
since which time Chinese labor has been excluded
from the town. The place is decidedly English, prettily located, with beautiful drives, and is said to be the
best hunting and fishing resort on the Pacific Coast.
We took a drive of tAvelve miles to a trout lake, where,
at a little house in the Avoods, we were courteously
received by an English gentleman and his wife, Avho
t/ CD CD 7
kindly loaned us their boat and succeeded in doing
every thing for our entertainment excepting to prevail
upon the fish to bite; the few unlucky ones who did
were safely captured. It is not an uncommon thing,
our host told us, to see a dozen deer coming here to
drink in the evening; bear are quite common, and the
whole country is OArerrun with grouse.
Next morning we debarked once more at Victoria,
where we parted Avith our friend Mrs. 9 avIio had jb
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1. 190
now reached home, but was willing, she said, to repeat
the trip at any moment. We, of course, took lunch at
the § Poodle Dog," and then drove to 'Squimault, three
or four miles distant, Avhere are the government dockyards, and to the boating grounds. It was a lovely
drive, commanding a grand vieAv of the bay and the far-
CD CD «7
off Olympic Mountains.  It was election day in Victoria,
1 this gaA7e the gentlemen of our party an oppor-
tunity of studying the neAV Australian system, which
requires that each voter, before depositing his ballot,
shall shut himself up in a confessional box, and fight
the political campaign out all byT himself; and, having
satisfied his conscience, Avithout extraneous interference, he is permitted to drop his ticket in the box,
after having marked a big X opposite the names of
the candidates of his choice. Having done this, he immediately tells everybody hoAV he has voted, with the
same volubility that he declared in advance hoAV he was
going to Arote. So much for the secrecy of the ballot.
One colored man interested us with the story of his
arrest for illegal A'oting many years ago, before the
war. It appears there Avas then a requirement that
all American citizens should be naturalized before
voting. This man had fled to British Columbia from
slavery after the Dred Scott decision had declared
that a slaA^e Avas not a citizen of the United States, and
the Victoria court decided that the requirement did
not apply to him. The gentlemen of our party thought
this quite a cause celebre, and made a note of it. The
trip up Puget Sound was again full of interest, though  192
only a repetition, in a mild form, of that exquisite
blending of land- and water-scape which Ave had en-
joyed for the past week.
At Port Townsend we rested for a few hours until
the custom-house officials had satisfied themselves that
Ave had not smuggled any thing from British Columbia;
OO */ CD
and here I discovered one or two of my fellow-passengers rather unseasonably clad in fur overcoats, pur-
chased in Victoria. They Avere evidently wearing them
from a sense of duty to their government.
We reached the wharf at Tacoma on the morning of
Saturday, June 14th, haA7ing made the round trip in just
twelve days, and I do not hesitate to say that there
were no passengers Avho would not gladly haAre turned
x CD CD «/
round and faced again to the northward, if their
several  engagements Avould have permitted.    As for
CD    CD X.
myself, I Avas bound for the Yosemite, and so little had
my Alaska trip fatigued me that I remained in Tacoma
for a few hours only, and then started for San Francisco.
These pages I have Avritten at Saratoga Springs, in the
midst of the gayTest season Avithin my meniorv. I am
surrounded by many dear friends and by acquaintances
Avhom it is a privilege to knoAV.    They haA^e given me
a most attentive and interested hearing wheneA^er I
have taken occasion to speak of my trip to Alaska, and
it is a satisfaction to feel that they really Avant to see my
impressions and my photographs published between two
covers. What I have seen, you and they may see. Three L'ENVOI. I93
hundred and fifty dollars cannot be more profitably
spent for a summer vacation, and this is more than it
costs from NeAV York to the icebergs and back. Think
of it! hardly the price of a French costume, a ring, or
a bracelet, and yet the memory of such a trip will outlive them all. The pleasure is much enhanced too by
the fact that those who are your felloAV-passengers are
v x o
apt to be ladies and gentlemen, by Avhich I mean persons whose good breeding naturally tends to a regard
for the comfort of their companions ; and among them
you Avill find men and Avomen, young and old, of bright
*/ 7  j CD CD
intelligence, Avho, deA^oting their time to travel, are full
of fact and anecdote—scientists, saA^ants, authors, and
artists of renoAvn from all parts of the world.
\fEntre nous, I haAre heard of and seen more than
one friendship, commencing on an Alaskan trip,. Avhich
has ripened into mutual pledges " for good or for bad,
for better, for Avorse," and especially7 of one Avealthy and
much-travelled Benedict, Avho Avas accustomed to congratulate himself that
' I A bachelor
May thrive, by observation, on a little ;
A single life 's no burthen " ;
but A\"ho fell a Adctirn in Alaskan waters to female
charms, in furs and ulster, resulting in
" A contract of eternal bond of love
Confirmed by mutual joinder of their hands,"
and, happily, there are no regrets.]
If you take this trip as I have taken it, you will
return home Avith a theme which will force you to 194
fluency^ and eloquence in spite of yourself, and Avith
a longing to return for further explorations in this
Avonderland, which will be the hope of your life. You
will mentally photograph pictures which will preserve
their lights and shadoAvs long after those of the Louvre
and the Vatican have faded into an indistinguishable
mass: the mountain-AA7alled channels of British Columbia, the ocean canyons of the Sitkan Archipelago, the
deep translucent waters of the inland fiords, the snow-
peaks of the beautiful Fairweather range, and the
gigantic and appalling Muir Glacier, are scenes so unparalleled that they can never be forgotten; and the
life of the Esquimaux of yesterday and to-day, his vices
and his virtues, his ignorance and his intelligence, his
yearning and his gratitude, will give you occasion to
v CD CD 7 O «/
thank God that He has spared you to see Avith your
own eyes Iioav education and civilization are enlarging
their domains.
This is your birthday, and this, my dear child, is my
remembrance of it.
Affectionately your mother,
Septim.v M.' Collis.
1055 Fifth Avenue, New York,
September 25, 1890.      


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