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Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 6, page 79, August 18, 1853

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Identifier: DX04102393

Title: Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 6, page 79, August 18, 1853

Description: Describes a delay while the crew of the Sam Ward determines if they can pass over a sand bar.


and a half-breed Voyageur visit us, and retire in dudgeon at not being hired to take us up the river [St. Louis River]. The Captain and others try soundings and channel-depths in the boat for an hour or so. Previous to this much speculation is rife among the passengers as to whether we shall, or shall not reach Fond du Lac. I with cosmopolitan Frisell seek the Canadian-French Voyageur we have on board, and propose to be rowed up the two and twenty miles in his birch-bark canoe. But it had got damaged and he would not venture. More cogitation & discussion among passengers standing on the foreward deck, gazing at the long, low lying necks of sand stretching out, as if to bar our progress. A selling scene got up at the expense of [Thompson P.] Mc Elrath. He’s told how Norris, (Genessee man) hath been occupied in taking comprehensive notes touching his involuntary cold baths. I intimate that originally, he had put down that Mac was thrown out of window, by the card-players. It took well, for the young fellow, — (a good-humored impulsive, rude, sensual boy, merely;) was in great dread, and indulged in divers “G__d__n hims!” More talk. Caprain Shattook, (fat, gallant, jocular Southerner, member of some legislature, and Mississippi Captain, — he looks like a good looking General Cass at the age of forty;) comes out strong in talk. One good thing he said, describing the welt and texture of a shirt he had bought at Ontonagon, quoth he, “You could throw a hat through it!” Meantime Captain & boat return with the word that there’s nine feet water at the bar, — our vessel draws 5, and 2 being allowed for surf, two feet clear may be reckoned on. So the passage is resolved upon. Men are left on the neck to beckon,

Rights: NoC-US


Dates: 1853-08-18

Type(s): Diary

Maker/Creator: Gunn, Thomas Butler, 1826-1903

Subjects: Great Lakes (North America)
Superior, Lake
Saint Louis River (Minn. and Wis.)
Canoes and canoeing


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