The Adventures of Captain Bonneville, U.S.A., in the Rocky Mountains and the Far West: Digested from His Journal and Illustrated from Various Other Sources

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George P. Putnam, 155 Broadway, and 142 Strand, London., 1849 - Northwestern States - 428 pages

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Page 187 - is a good country. The Great Spirit has put it exactly in the right place; while you are in it you fare well; whenever you go out of it, whichever way you travel, you fare worse. "If you go to the south...
Page 188 - There you can hunt the elk, the deer, and the antelope, when their skins are fit for dressing; there you will find plenty of white bears and mountain sheep. "In the autumn, when your horses are fat and strong from the mountain pastures, you can go down into the plains and hunt the buffalo, or trap beaver on the streams. And when winter comes on, you can take shelter in the woody bottoms along the rivers; there you will find buffalo meat for yourselves, and cotton-wood bark for your horses: or you...
Page 425 - INSTRUCTIONS TO CAPTAIN BONNEVILLE FROM THE MAJOR-GENERAL COMMANDING THE ARMY OF THE UNITEB STATES. Head Quarters of the Army, ~l WASHINGTON, August 3, 1831. \ SIR,—The leave of absence which you have asked, for the purpose of enabling you to carry into execution your design of exploring the country to the Rocky Mountains and beyond, with a view of ascertaining the nature and character of the several tribes of Indians inhabiting those regions ; the trade which might be profitably carried on with...
Page 25 - A man who bestrides a horse, must be essentially different from a man who cowers in a canoe. We find them, accordingly, hardy, lithe, vigorous, and active ; extravagant in word, in thought, and deed ; heedless of hardship ; daring of danger ; prodigal of the present, and thoughtless of the future.
Page 26 - At times, he may be seen with his traps on his shoulder, buffeting his way across rapid streams, amidst floating blocks of ice : at other times, he is to be found with his traps swung on his back clambering the most rugged mountains, scaling or descending the most frightful precipices, searching, by routes inaccessible to the horse, and never before trodden by white man, for springs and lakes unknown to his comrades, and where he may meet with his favorite game. Such is the mountaineer, the hardy...
Page 420 - An immense belt of rocky mountains and volcanic plains, severa" hundred miles in width, must ever remain an irreclaimable wilderness, intervening between the abodes of civilization, and affording a last refuge to the Indian. Here roving tribes of hunters, living in tents or lodges, and following the migrations of the game, may lead a life of savage independence, where there is nothing to tempt the cupidity of the white man.
Page 223 - ... of falling. This attribute, he thinks, has been ascribed to them from the circumstance, that most trees growing near water-courses, either lean bodily towards the stream, or stretch their largest limbs in that direction, to benefit by the space, the light, and the air to be found there. The beaver, of course, attacks those trees which are nearest at hand, and on the banks of the stream or pond. He makes incisions round them, or, in technical phrase, belts them with his teeth, and when they fall,...
Page 403 - ... the trappers, in their seasons of idleness and relaxation, require a degree of license and indulgence, to repay them for the long privations and almost incredible hardships of their periods of active service. In the midst of all this feasting and frolicking, a freak of the tender passion intervened, and wrought a complete change in the scene. Among the Indian beauties in the camp of the Eutaws and Shoshonies, the free trappers discovered two, who had whilom figured as their squaws. These connections...
Page 25 - Bonneville, who lead a life of more continued exertion, peril, and excitement, and who are more enamored of their occupations, than the free trappers of the West. No toil, no danger, no privation can turn the trapper from his pursuit. His passionate excitement at times resembles a mania. In vain may the most vigilant and cruel savages beset his path ; in vain may rocks, and precipices, and wintry torrents oppose his progress ; let but a single track of a beaver meet his eye, and he forgets all dangers...

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