John Muir


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son and two women. Their canoe was Heavily laden with boxes of fish oil and dried salmon in packages which they were taking to Fort Wrangel to sell and trade. It is astonishing how well these Indians can use a paddle. This man and boy and two women could out-sail our canoe propelled by 3 oars and a paddle and less heavily laden. The wind being ahead they camped within a half dozen yds. of us. With thin ced[ar] bark and poles they speedily made a hut, spreading spruce boughs on the ground. Then all hands unloaded the canoe and drew it ashore, storing their goods in the hut. Towards eve the old man came smiling with a fresh salmon to Toyatte, who cut it in pieces and boiled it at once, and with his comp[anion]s ate it as we would an apple between meals. Then a few minutes later he came to Toyatte with a dried salmon, which he roasted and ate as before. Then our Indians ate a pot of two of boiled venison, beans, bread, etc. A good deal of sport was made of my pity for the animals. They called me the Ice Angoon, the deer’s Tillicum, etc. and when the miners in Sum Dum Bay rallied Toyatte for now shooting plenty of ducks on our trip he said that the ducks’ friend would not let him. I usually rocked the canoe while they were taking aim and made a noise frighten them away. Nov 16th. Sunday. A wild, driving, windy day, with but little rain but big promise of more. Took a walk back into the woods. The timber here is very good, as large as any I have seen in Alaska. Much better than further north. The two Spruces, 150 or 200 ft. h[igh], slender and handsome. The Menzies makes good firewood even when green, the other very poor. Back a little way from the sea there is a great abundance of yellow cedar, the best I have yet seen. The largest specimens I measured aer 5-3 & 4 ft.-2 inches in diameter and about a 100 or 140 ft. h[igh]. Smooth tapering bodies with many rather slender branches giving the tree, with its sparse foliage a rather hairy unclad look. The bark is ashen color on the outside, dark chocolate on the inside. It grows better on boggy ground than any other tree, {sketch: [islands, fly]}

Date Original



Original journal dimensions: 11.5 x 18 cm.

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Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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John Muir, journals, drawings, writings, travel, journaling, naturalist