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Title: In to the Yukon
Author: Edwards, William Seymour, 1856-1915
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "In to the Yukon" ***

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Transcriber's Note

There are numerous photographs included in this text. Each is indicated
using captions as [Illustration: Description.]. Italic text is shown
using underscore delimiters as _italic_. There is a single instance of
the 'oe' ligature, which is here given as 'oe'.

Spelling is generally retained, with several exceptions which appear to
be printer's errors. Details may be found in an End Note following this
text. Hyphenation can be variable and is retained as found. Where the
sole instance of a hyphenated word occurs on a line break, modern usage
is followed.

There is a single footnote, a gloss on the title of the Fifth Letter,
which has been left near the beginning of that Letter.


     IN TO






     COPYRIGHT, 1904, BY







These letters were not written for publication originally. They were
written for the home circle and the few friends who might care to read
them. They are the brief narrative of daily journeyings and experiences
during a very delightful two months of travel into the far north and
along the Pacific slope of our continent. Some of the letters were
afterwards published in the daily press. They are now put into this
little book and a few of the Kodak snapshots taken are given in
half-tone prints.

We were greeted with much friendliness along the way and were the
recipients of many courtesies. None showed us greater attention than the
able and considerate officials of the Pacific Coast S. S. Co., the
Alaska S. S. Co. and the White Pass and Yukon Railway Co., including Mr.
Kekewich, managing Director of the London Board, and Mr. Newell,
Vice-President of the Company.

At Atlin and Dawson we met and made many friends, and we would here
reiterate to them, one and all, our warm appreciation of their


     August, 1904.



      I. THE GREAT LAKES. CLEVELAND TO DETROIT                       13

           LANDS OF THE FAR NORTHWEST                                20

           AND SELKIRKS                                              38


      V. SKAGWAY, CARIBOU CROSSING AND ATLIN                         75

     VI. THE GREAT LLEWELLYN OR TAKU GLACIER                        109

    VII. VOYAGING DOWN THE MIGHTY YUKON                             112

   VIII. DAWSON AND THE GOLDEN KLONDIKE                             132

     IX. MEN OF THE KLONDIKE                                        170

      X. DOG LORE OF THE NORTH                                      180

     XI. HOW THE GOVERNMENT SEARCHES FOR GOLD                       195

           AND COMMERCE OF THE NORTH                                206

   XIII. THE VALLEY OF THE WILLAMETTE                               224

    XIV. SAN FRANCISCO                                              230

     XV. LOS ANGELES                                                249

    XVI. SAN FRANCISCO AND SALT LAKE CITY                           260

   XVII. A BRONCHO-BUSTING MATCH                                    282

  XVIII. COLORADO AND DENVER                                        300

    XIX. ACROSS NEBRASKA                                            307

     XX. ALONG IOWA AND INTO MISSOURI TO ST. LOUIS                  314

         INDEX                                                      333



  The Author and His Wife Upon the Trail                 _Frontispiece_.

  The Waterside, Cleveland                                           15

  Entrance St. Clair Canal                                           15

  White Bear Lake, St. Paul                                          31

  Down the Silver Bow--Banff                                         31

  A Reach of the Fraser River                                        41

  Big Douglas Fir--Vancouver Park                                    45

  Victoria, B. C.--The Harbor                                        49

  Leaving Vancouver                                                  53

  Awaiting Cargo--Vancouver, B. C.                                   57

  Totem Poles at Ketchikan                                           61

  Glaciers on Frederick Sound                                        63

  Approaching Fort Wrangel                                           67

  The Pier--Fort Wrangel                                             67

  The Pier--Skagway                                                  71

  Lynn Canal from the Summit of White Pass                           71

  Looking Down White Pass                                            73

  The Summit--White Pass                                             73

  Railway Train--Skagway                                             77

  The International Boundary                                         77

  Early September Snow, Caribou Crossing                             79

  Caribou Crossing                                                   79

  A Vista on Lake Marsh                                              83

  Woodland Along Lake Marsh                                          83

  On the Trail at Caribou                                            85

  View Near Caribou Crossing                                         85

  The Taku River                                                     89

  Lake Atlin                                                         91

  Dogs, Atlin                                                        91

  Atlin Baggage Express                                              95

  Atlin City Waterworks                                              95

  Government Mail Crossing Lake Atlin                                99

  Miner's Cabin on Spruce Creek, Atlin Gold Diggings                 99

  Finding "Color," a Good Strike, Otter Creek, B. C.                103

  Sluicing for Gold, Otter Creek, B. C.                             103

  An Atlin Gold Digger                                              105

  Bishop and Mrs. Bompas                                            113

  Great Llewellyn or Taku Glacier                                   113

  Fishing for Grayling, White Horse Rapids                          117

  Moonlight on Lake Le Barge                                        119

  Lake Bennett, from Our Car                                        119

  A Yukon Sunset                                                    123

  The Upper Yukon                                                   123

  A Yukon Coal Mine                                                 125

  Five Finger Rapids on the Yukon                                   125

  Coming Up the Yukon                                               129

  The "Sarah" Arriving at Dawson, 1,600 Miles up from
    St. Michael's                                                   133

  The Levee, Dawson--Our Steamer                                    133

  Dawson City, The Yukon--Looking Down                              137

  Dawson and Mouth of Klondike River, Looking Up                    137

  Second Avenue, Dawson                                             141

  Dawson--View Down the Yukon                                       141

  The Cecil--The First Hotel in Dawson                              143

  A Private Carriage, Dawson                                        143

  Dog Corral--The Fastest Team in Dawson                            147

  A Potato Patch at Dawson                                          147

  First Agricultural Fair Held at Dawson, September, 1903           151

  Daily Stage on Bonanza                                            155

  Discovery Claim on Bonanza of the Klondike                        155

  Looking Up the Klondike River                                     159

  The Author at White Horse Rapids                                  159

  "Mes Enfants," Malamute Pups                                      161

  A Klondike Cabin                                                  161

  On the Yukon                                                      175

  Floating Down the Yukon                                           175

  Approaching Seattle                                               181

  With and Without                                                  181

  Malamute Team of Government Mail Carrier, Dawson                  187

  Breaking of the Yukon--May 17, 1903                               187

  Sun Dogs                                                          189

  Winter Landscape                                                  189

  Lake Bennett                                                      197

  The Height of Land, White Pass                                    197

  Mt. Ranier or Tacoma                                              217

  Along the Columbia River                                          221

  A Big Redwood                                                     235

  Italian Fishing Craft at Santa Cruz                               239

  Approaching San Francisco                                         239

  The Franciscan Garden--Santa Barbara                              243

  Our Franciscan Guide                                              243

  The Sea--Santa Barbara (two views)                                245

  Marengo Avenue, Pasadena                                          251

  Street View, Los Angeles                                          251

  The Sagebrush and Alkali Desert                                   263

  The Mormon Temple                                                 267

  The Mormon Tithing House                                          271

  The Mormon "Lion House"                                           271

  Great Salt Lake                                                   277

  Nuckolds Putting on the Hoodwink                                  285

  Nuckolds, "The Broncho Busted"                                    285

  Grimsby and the Judges                                            289

  Bunn, Making Rope Bridle                                          289

  Arizona Moore Up                                                  293

  Arizona Moore                                                     293

  The Crowd at the Broncho-Busting Match                            298

  The Dun-colored Devil                                             298

  On the Great Kanawha                                              325

  Our Kanawha Garden                                                327

  Map of Route in the United States                                 329

  Map of Upper Yukon Basin                                          331




                         August 11, 1903. }

We reached Cleveland just in time to catch the big liner, which cast off
her cables almost as soon as we were aboard. A vessel of 5,000 tons, a
regular sea ship. The boat was packed with well-dressed people, out for
a vacation trip, most of them. By and by we began to pass islands, and
about 2 P. M. turned into a broad channel between sedgy banks--the
Detroit River. Many craft we passed and more overtook, for we were the
fastest thing on the lakes as well as the biggest.

Toward 3 P. M., the tall chimneys of the huge salt works and the church
spires of the city of Detroit began to come into view. A superb water
front, several miles long, and great warehouses and substantial
buildings of brick and stone, fit for a vast commerce.

The sail up the Detroit River, through Lake St. Clair, and then up the
St. Clair River to Lake Huron, was as lovely a water trip as any I have
made. The superb park "Belle Isle," the pride of Detroit; the many,
very many, villas and cottages all along the water-side, hundreds of
them; everywhere boats, skiffs, launches, naphtha and steam, all filled
with Sunday pleasure excursionists, the many great pleasure excursion
steamers loaded down with passengers, gave a life and liveliness to the
water views that astonished and pleased us.

The Lake St. Clair is about twenty miles across, apparently broader than
it is, for the reason that its sedgy margins are so wide that the trees
and higher land further back seem the real border of the lake. What is
called the "St. Clair Flats" are the wide, low-lying lands on each side
of the long reaches of the St. Clair River. Twenty miles of cottages,
hotels, club-houses, are strung along the water-side, each with its
little pier and its boats.

Towards dark--eight o'clock--we came to Sarnia and Port Huron, and
pointed out into the great lake, second in depth to Superior--larger
than any but Superior--a bit of geography I had quite forgotten.

At dawn on Monday, we were skirting the high-wooded southern shore, and
by 11 A. M. sighted the fir-clad heights of Mackinac where Lake Michigan
comes in. Here is a beautiful protected bay, where is a big hotel, and
the good people of Chicago come to forget the summer heats. After half
an hour, we turned again and toward the north, in a half circle, and by
4 P. M. were amidst islands and in a narrow channel, the St. Mary's



Huron is a deep blue like Superior, and unlike the green of shallow
Erie. The channel toward the Soo is very tortuous--many windings and
sharp turns, marked by buoys and multitudinous beacon lights. All along
we had passed great numbers of steamships and barges--ore carriers, but
nowhere saw a large sailing craft, only a sail boat here and there. This
entire extensive traffic is a steam traffic, and though we see many
boats, they are black and sombre, and burdened with coal and ore.

It was late, nearly seven o'clock, when we steamed slowly into the lock
basin at the Soo. High fir-clad hills on either hand; a multitude of
channels among wooded islands. A new and vigorous manufacturing
community growing up on either shore where the electric power is being
harnessed. Many buildings, many new residences, some of them large and
imposing, covering the sloping hillsides. The rapids are a mile or more
in length and half a mile wide. The American canal with its locks is on
the south side. One, the old lock, small; the other, large and deep for
modern traffic. We were here delayed more than two hours by reason of
the pack of boats ahead of us. It was dark when we came out of the
lock--a lift of twenty-one feet. But meantime, the hills on either hand
had burst out into hundreds of electric lights, betokening a much
greater population than I had conceived. As we entered the American
lock, a big black ship, almost as large as ours, crept in behind us to
the Canadian lock on the river's further side--one of the Canadian
Pacific line going to Fort William.

It was a full moon as we came out of the upper river and lost ourselves
in the blackness of Lake Superior. A keen, crisp wind, a heavier swell
than on the lakes below. We were continually passing innumerable craft
with their dancing night lights. The tonnage that now goes through the
Soo canals is greater than that of Suez. How little could the world have
dreamed of this a few years ago!

To-day when I came on deck we were just entering the ship canal that
makes the short cut by way of Houghton. A cold mist and rain, fir-trees
and birches, small and stunted, a cold land. A country smacking strongly
of Norway. No wonder the Scandinavians and Finns take to a land so like
their own.

At Houghton we were in the center of the copper region. A vigorous town,
many handsome residences. But it has been cold all day. Mercury 56
degrees this morning. A sharp wind from the north. The bulk of the
passengers are summer tourists in thin gauze and light clothing, and all
day they are shivering in the cabin under cover, while we stay warm out
on deck.

The food is excellent, and the famous planked white fish is our

This whole trip is a great surprise to me. The splendid great ship, the
conveniences and luxury equalling any trans-Atlantic liner. The variety
and beauty of the scenery, the differences in the lakes, their
magnitude, the islands, the tributary rivers with their great flow of
clear water, the vast traffic of multitudinous big boats. The life and
vigor and stir of this north country! Many of the passengers are going
to the Yellowstone. We will reach Duluth about 10 P. M., and leave by
the 11:10 Great Northern train for St. Paul.



     ST. PAUL, Minnesota, August 13, 1903.

We have spent two delightful days in St. Paul, great city of the
Northwest that it is. We came over from West Superior by the "Great
Northern" route, very comfortably in a new and fresh-kept sleeper--a
night's ride. I was early awake and sat for an hour watching the wide
flat farming country of Minnesota. Not much timber, never a cornfield,
much wheat and oats and hay land. A black, rich soil. Still a good deal
of roll to the landscape, and, at the same time, a certain premonition
of the greater, more boundless flatness of the land yet further west.
And a land, as well, of many picturesque little lakes and pools. I now
the more perfectly comprehend why the Indian word "Minne," water, comes
in so often among the names and titles of Minne-sota.

The farm houses and farm buildings we pass are large and well built, and
here and there I see a building which might be along the Baegna Valley
or the Telemarken Fjords of Norway, it is so evidently Norse. There are,
as yet, but few people at the way-stations. We are a through flyer,
and the earlier commuters are not yet astir.

About the houses and barns, also, I notice a certain snugness,
indicative of winters that are cold.

Now, we are nearing the city, there are more men at the way-stations. It
is evident that the early morning local will follow us close behind.

We came into the big Union Depot on time. The air was crisp and dry.
There was much bustle and ado. These people move with an alert vigor,
their cheeks are rosy, their eyes are snappy, and I like the swing of
their shoulders as they step briskly along the streets. Mankind migrates
along earth's parallels of latitude, so 'tis said--and Minnesota and the
great Northwest is but another New England and New York. Vermont and New
Hampshire, Massachusetts and New York have sent her their ablest sons
and daughters, while Ontario and Quebec and the Maritime Provinces have
contributed to her population of their force and power. Upon and among
this matrix of superior American and Canadian stock, has also been
superimposed many thousands of the more energetic and vigorous men,
women and children of Europe's ancient warlike breeds--the viking
Northmen of Norway and Sweden and of Denmark, of all Scandinavia. A
still great race in their fatherlands, a splendid reinforcement to the
virtues of Puritan and Knickerbocker; while there have also come cross
currents from Virginia and the South. The type you see upon the streets
is American, but among it, and with it, is prominently evident the Norse
blue eyes and yellow hair of Scandinavia.

St. Paul is surely a great city, great in her present, great in her
future. St. Paul is builded on several hills, out along which are
avenues and boulevards and rows of sumptuous private residences, while
down in the valleys are gathered the more part of the big, modern
business blocks and store houses and manufacturing establishments, where
are centered the energies which direct her industries and commerce. St.
Paul is a rich city, a solid city. The wild boom days of fifteen and
twenty years ago are quite gone by, the bubble period has been safely
weathered, she is now settled down to conservative although keen and
active business and trade. She supplies all of that immense region lying
west and north of her, even into the now unfolding Canadian Far
Northwest. The continent is hers, even to the Pacific and the Arctic
Seas. Minnesota and the Dakotas and Montana have already poured their
wealth of grains and of ores, of wheat and of oats, of rye and of
barley, of iron and of copper, of silver and of gold, into her capacious
lap, and now Manitoba and Alberta and Assiniboia and Saskatchewan and
Athabaska, and all the unfolding regions between the Hudson Bay and the
Rocky Mountains, the fertile valleys of the Saskatchewan and Peace
Rivers, are to contribute even yet more lavishly to her future
commercial predominance as unrivalled mistress of the North. She and
Minneapolis will have this trade. She and her twin sister city are
entitled to it. And if I mistake not the spirit of the men I have talked
with upon her streets, in her shops and banks and clubs, she and
Minneapolis will secure of it their full and certain share.

Here in the splendid stores of St. Paul we have made the last few
purchases of the things we shall need for our going into the distant
Yukon. H. has bought a perfectly fitting sweater--a garment that we
searched for and ransacked through the town of Antwerp, in Belgium, two
years ago, and could not find, while I have laid in some woolen
garments, so fit and warm that they make one hanker for an Arctic
blizzard just for the joy of trying them on.

And we have been feted and wined and dined as only mortals may be, who
have fallen among long-time and well-tried friends. A sumptuous lunch
has been given us at the Merchants' Club, where old chums and classmates
of my Cornell College days did make me almost believe that it was but
yesterday that we went forth from our Alma Mater's Halls.

Later in the day we have taken one of the many suburban trains and
journeyed down ten miles to the summer country home of another old-time
friend, along the shores of White Bear Lake, and all the afternoon have
enjoyed a sail in the crack yacht of the fleet that parades these
waters. A new design of boat. Conceived and perfected in St. Paul, and
which has this summer carried havoc and defeat to every competing yacht
club of all the wide country of the western and northern lakes, and even
caused perturbation among the proud salt-water skippers of the east. I
send you a snap-shot of the prize yacht as she lies floating at her
little pier.

And when we came back and landed from our voyage, we found assembled an
even greater company than we had yet met, to again give us welcome
without stint. We gathered in the commodious dining-hall of our host, a
delightful company, these men who once with me were boys, and their
cultivated wives! Long and late we sat, and old college songs we sang,
until the eastern sky was already lightening with the approach of dawn.
Many of us had not met for nigh twenty years, when we had parted to go
forth to fight life's battles and to win or lose.

Then, in the second afternoon, yet other friends, of yet later knowing,
have taken us in hand and have trollied and driven us to see St. Paul's
twin sister, Minneapolis. With her monstrous flouring mills along the
Mississippi, she is become the wheat milling center of the world, but
she has never succeeded in rivalling St. Paul in the reach and volume of
her jobbing trade. Once bitter enemies, rivals for the supremacy of the
trade and commerce of the Northwest, their borders have now met, their
streets have coalesced, and it will not be many years before the two
will have fused and melted into one, even as Canada will one day
inevitably become knitted and commingled with the great Republic, for
there is room for but one nationality, one English-speaking nationality
upon the northern continent of the western world.

In the long gloaming of the waning eventide we were driven in an easy
victoria behind a pair of spanking bays and threaded our way among and
along the lawns and lakes and avenues of the twin cities' splendid
parks. The deciduous trees do not here grow as large as with us further
to the south. The conifers, the pines and firs, are here necessarily
more frequently employed by the landscape artist to perfect his plans,
but the flowers seemed just as big, just as fine in coloring and in
wealth of leaf.

The day was ended with another elaborately served dinner, with other
intelligent and cultivated friends, and then, before the night quite
fully fell, we were driven to the big station which first we had
entered, and were bidden a hearty farewell. We have boarded the sleeper
for Winnipeg. A white porter now makes up our berths, and tells us we
shall travel in his company some sixteen hours, so long is now the
journey to Canada's nearest city in the north.

     WINNIPEG, August 14, 1908.

We left St. Paul in the Winnipeg sleeper on the Great Northern Railroad
at 8:06 P. M. When we awoke this morning we were flying through the
wheatfields of North Dakota, passing Grand Forks at about 9 A. M., and
reaching Neche, on the Canadian border, at eleven, and arriving at
Winnipeg at 1:40 P. M., a longer journey to the north--440 miles--than
I had realized. It was my first sight of a prairie--that vast stretch of
wheat country reaching 1,000 miles west of St. Paul, and as far to the
north of it. In the States it was wheat as far as the eye could reach in
all directions--ripening wheat, waving in the keen wind like a golden
sea, or cut and stacked wheat in innumerable piles, in countless shocks.
A few miles north of the boundary the wheat land gradually changed to
meadow and grass land, with many red cattle. Huge hay stacks here and
there--the country flat.

Winnipeg holds about 60,000 people, they tell me. Wooden houses mostly,
but some fine modern ones of stone and brick. Hundreds of new houses
built and houses a-building. Fine electric tramway system, on which we
have been riding all the afternoon. Many paved streets, some wood-paved,
but mostly the native black earth of all this northland. A vigorous,
hustling town, with now a big boom on, owing to the rapid development of
the far north wheat lands--"the Chicago of the far Northwest," they call
it. We go on to-night by 6 P. M. train, and should reach Banff in two
nights and a day. There we rest a day.

                        August 18, 1903. }

We had intended leaving Winnipeg by the through train called the
"Imperial Limited," which crosses the continent three times a week each
way, but to do so we should have had to lie over in Winnipeg a full day
and a half longer, and we had already seen the shell of the town in our
first afternoon, so we mended our plans, paid our modest dinner bill of
fifty cents each at the Clarendon Hotel, and took the ordinary daily
through Pacific express which, leaving Winnipeg at 6 P. M., would yet
bring us to Banff, even though it would take a half day longer in doing
it, earlier than the Imperial Limited train. A good many people seemed
to be of our mind, and so the railway people attached an extra sleeper
to the already crowded train. We were fixed in this. A sumptuous car,
finished in curled maple and brass, longer, wider, higher than even the
large cars run on the N. Y. C. & H. R. R., that traverse no tunnels.
These Canadian Pacific Railway cars are built by the railway company,
owned and run by it. No "Pullman conductor;" the porter, be he white or
black, runs the car and handles the tickets and the cash.

The company were mostly Canadians, going out to Regina, Calgary,
Edmonton, etc., large towns toward which Winnipeg bears the same
relation as does Cincinnati to our country (West Virginia), and many
Australians en route to take ship at Vancouver.

For a long distance the track seemed to be perfectly straight, and miles
and miles west of Winnipeg, the city still peeped far distant between
the rails. We rose a little, too, just a little, but steadily,
constantly. And on either hand and before and behind spread out the
wonderful flatness of the earth. The real prairie now. Not even a tree,
not a bush, not a hill, just as smooth as a floor, like an even sea, as
far as the eye could reach and out beyond.

A good deal of wheat grows west of Winnipeg, as well as south and north
and east of it. We were still in wheat land when we awoke yesterday
morning, though the now intervening patches of green grass grew larger
and larger until the grass covered and dominated everything. And then we
had miles and miles of a more rolling country. Here and there began to
appear pools of water, ponds, even small lakes and deep sunk streams
bordered with rushes and scrub willow and stunted alders.

Every bit of water was alive with wild fowl. Each pool we hurried by was
seemingly packed with geese, brant and ducks. All the myriads of the
north land water birds seemed to be here gathering and resting
preparatory to their long flight to the distant south. Many plover,
snipe and some herons and even cranes I noted along the margins of the
pools and streams. And this prolific bird life cared but little for the
presence of man. Our rushing train did not frighten them, none ever
took to wing, too much engrossed were they in their own pursuits.

Through the flat wheat land the farmsteads were few and far between, and
the towns only at long intervals. Nor is there here the population seen
among the many and thrifty towns and villages of Minnesota and Dakota.

In the grass lands we saw no towns at all, nor made many stops, while
herds of cattle began to increase in number; of horses, also, as we drew
further and further west and north.

Toward evening, through the long twilight, we entered a hill country,
where were a great many cattle and horses, and some Mexican cowboys
rounding up the stock ere nightfall.

Here, also, the wilder life of the hills came close upon us. Just as we
drew beyond the prairie a large grey wolf had crossed our way. He had no
fear of the iron horse; he stood and watched us with evident curiosity,
lifting one forepaw as he gazed upon the flying train, not fifty feet
away. When we were gone by, he turned and trotted leisurely into the

New buildings with added frequency met our view. Sometimes whole new
towns. All this I afterward learned is largely owing to the present
American immigration.

At dusk we stopped at the bustling town of Dunmore, just where the
railway crosses the broad Assiniboia River on a long bridge. Here many
of our fellow sleepers left us, and several new passengers got into our
car to ride through to Calgary, the largest town in the Northwest
Territory--seven or eight thousand inhabitants--and where the Edmonton
branch goes off two hundred miles into the north, and will soon go three
or four hundred miles further through the opening wheat country which
the world is now pouring into.

This morning we were following the Silver Bow River, past a long lake
which it widens into in the journey of its waters toward Hudson's Bay;
then we were among fir-clad foot-hills, and then, quite suddenly, as the
enveloping mist lifted, there were revealed upon either side of us the
gigantic, bare, rocky, snow-capped masses of the real Rocky Mountain
chain. I have never yet seen as immense and gigantic masses of bare
rock, unless it be the Cordillera of Michoacan, in Mexico.

Here we are at a fine modern hotel kept by the Canadian Pacific
Railroad. It is cool, even cold, almost. As cold as on Lake Superior, 54
and 56 degrees, and as in St. Paul the days we were there, but here the
air is so much drier that one sits by the open window and does not feel
the cold.

[Illustration: WHITE BEAR LAKE--ST. PAUL.]


Among the passengers on our train I fell in with several of those who
now make their homes in this booming land--from Winnipeg west and north,
all this vast country is now on what is called a boom--a wheat-land
boom, a cattle boom, a town boom! One, a vigorous six-footer from
Wisconsin, a drummer for an American harvesting machine, has put and
is now putting all the money he can raise into the buying of these
northern wheat lands. And there is no finer wheat land in all the world,
he said, than the rich, warm Peace River valley, four hundred or five
hundred miles north of Edmonton. A Canadian drummer, who had won a medal
fighting in South Africa, also told me much of the awakening up here.
The Hudson Bay Company had for years kept secret the fatness of this
north land, although they and their agents had (for more than a century)
raised great wheat harvests on their own hidden-away farms along the
distant Peace River, where their mills made it into flour for their own
use, and to feed the fur-trapping Indians. But never a word had they or
their close-mouthed Scotch servants said about all the richness of which
they so well knew. But little by little had the news of these wheat
crops leaked out into the world beyond, and little by little, after the
opening of the Canadian Pacific Railway, and cession to Canada of their
exclusive rights, had the pioneer settlers quietly crept into the hidden
country. Now there were many farmers snugly living on their own lands
along the Peace River valley and in that neighboring region. Every year
there are more of them. They haul their supplies three hundred miles
north from Edmonton, or buy direct of the nearest Hudson Bay Post. Soon
the railways will be up among them, soon the greatest export of Canadian
wheat will come from that now far-away country. And here is where the
hustling American comes in. The Canadian has been slow to "catch on."
The dull farmer of Ontario has scoffed at the notion of good wheat land
so far north. He preferred to stay at home and raise peas and barley.
The French habitan, too, did not take stock in the tales of a land so
far from church and kindred. Nor did the Englishman do more than look
blandly incredulous at whatever secret tales he might hear. He would
just inquire of the office of the Hudson's Bay Company, where he always
learned that the tale was a joke out of the whole cloth. Not even the
bankers of now booming Winnipeg would invest a dollar in buying
Government land beyond the already well-defined wheat limits of
Manitoba. It was the keen-scented Yankee who caught on. A group of
bright men in St. Paul and Minneapolis heard in some way of the
possibilities of the far north. They quietly sent their own experienced
Minnesota and Dakota farm land experts and practical wheat judges up
into Saskatchewan and Assiniboia to look, examine and report. This they
did, and then the Americans began to buy direct of the Canadian
Government at Ottawa. Their expert investigators also had friends and
neighbors who had money, who had made money in farming, and some of them
went up. All who went up staid, and sent back word of having got hold of
a good thing. The first the world knew, fifty thousand American farmers
went in last year, more than two hundred thousand have gone in this
year, and the Canadian world and the English world have awakened to the
fact that the bulk of the rich wheat lands of the far north are already
owned by the American land companies, American banks and American
farmers. In St. Paul to-day you can learn more about all this rich far
north, and buy its best lands, rather than in Toronto or even in
Winnipeg. Now the railroads are also beginning to stir themselves. The
Canadian Pacific Railway is to build more north branch lines. The Grand
Trunk Pacific is to be built right through the Peace River country to
Port Simpson, and everybody is astir to get a chance at the golden
future. But the Americans have the cinch. And what is more, they do
better and succeed when the Canadians, from Quebec or Ontario, and,
above all, the Englishmen, make rank failures. The Americans have been
farming on the same sort of land in Minnesota, in Iowa and in the
Dakotas. They go into this new land with the same machinery and same
methods. They all do well. Many of the Canadians fail, most of the
English likewise, and the prospering American buys them out. Now, also,
the Americans are beginning to find out that there is much good cattle
range in this north land. The American cattle men are coming up with
their herds, even with their Mexican cowboys.

No blizzards here, such as freeze and destroy in Montana. No lack of
water here the year round. No drouths like those of Texas. Nor is the
still, quiet, steady cold of these plains more fatal, not as much so,
as the more variable temperatures of the States. Not much snow over
these northern plains, rarely more than a foot. The buffalo grass may be
always reached through it. The mercury rarely more than fifty below
zero, and so dry is the air and so still that no one minds that

So we have it, that this entire rich wheat-yielding land of the far, far
north, that the bulk of these grazing lands, tempered as the winter is
by the warm Pacific climate, which here climbs over the rather low
barrier of the Rockies, are falling into alert American hands. Even the
storekeepers, they tell me, would rather trade with the American--he
buys more freely, buys higher-priced machinery and goods; he is better
pay in the end. "The Englishman brings out money, but after the first
year or two it is gone." "The American brings some and then keeps making
more." So my Canadian drummer friend tells me, and he gathers his
information from the storekeepers in all these northwest towns with whom
he deals. "Some even tell me," he said, "that if it wouldn't make any
disturbance, why they would do better if all this country was part of
the States." So the American is popular here, and he is growing rich,
richer than the Canadian and Englishman, and in course of time, I take
it, he will even yet the more completely dominate the land. It is
strange how the American spirit seems to have an energy and force that
tells everywhere, in Canada as well as in Mexico. The information I give
you here comes to me from the intelligent fellow-travelers I have
chanced to meet, and, I take it, is probably a fair statement.

We are some 4,500 feet above the sea, and the highest summits near us
rise to about 10,000 or 11,000 feet. There is none of the somber
blackness of the Norwegian rocks, nor the greenness of the Swiss slopes,
while the contour of the summits and ridges is much like that of the
volcanic, serrated summits of the mountains I saw in Mexico.



                       August 19, 1903. }

Our day crossing the Rockies was delightful. We left Banff about 2 P. M.,
following up the valley of the Silver Bow River to its very head. A
deep valley, shut in on either hand by gigantic granite mountains,
rising to 10,000 and 12,000 feet, their lower slopes covered with small
fir, aspen, birch, then a sparse grass, and lichens, and then rising up
into the clouds and eternal snows. Snow fields everywhere, and many
glaciers quite unexplored and unnamed. The rise was so easy, however,
that we were surprised when we actually attained the summit of the
divide, where a mountain stream forks and sends its waters, part to
Hudson's Bay, part to the Pacific. But the descent toward the west was
precipitous. Since leaving Winnipeg, two days and nights across plains
and prairie, and a night and day up the valley of the Silver Bow River,
we had steadily risen, but so gradually that we were almost unconscious
of the ascending grade, but now we were to come down the 5,000 feet from
the height of land and reach the Pacific in little more than a single
day. Not so sheer a ride as down the Dal of the Laera River in Norway,
3,000 feet in three hours behind the ponies, but yet so steep that the
iron horse crept at a snail's pace, holding back the heavy train almost
painfully, and descending into gorges and cañons and shadowy valleys
until one's hair nearly stood on end. How on earth they ever manage to
pull and push the long passenger and short freight trains up these
grades for the east-bound traffic, is a matter of amazement; that is,
shove them up and make the business pay.

At once, so soon as the divide was crossed, the influence of the warm,
moist air of the Pacific was apparent. No longer the bare, bleak, naked
masses of granite, no longer the puny firs and dwarf aspen and birches,
but instead, the entire vast slopes of these gigantic mountain masses
were covered with a dense forest. The tall Douglas firs stood almost
trunk to trunk, so close together that the distant slopes looked as
though covered with gigantic coverlets of green fur. The trees seemed
all about of one height and size. And the slopes were green right up to
the snow field's very edge. Our way wound down the profound cañon of the
Kicking Horse River, sometimes sheer precipices below and also above us,
the road blasted out of the granite sides, then we swept out into the
beautiful Wapta Valley, green as emerald, the white snow waters of the
river--not white foam, but a muddy white like the snow-fed waters of the
streams of Switzerland--roaring and plunging, and spreading out into
placid pools. At last we emerged through a gorge and came into the
great wide, verdant valley of the British Columbia, from which the
province takes its name. A river, even there on its upper reaches, as
wide as the Ohio, but wild and turbulent, and muddy white from the
melting snows. Behind us the towering granite masses of the Rocky
Mountains--a name whose meaning I never comprehended before--their peaks
lost in clouds, their flanks and summits buried in verdure. The valley
of the Columbia is wide and fertile. Many villages and farms and
saw-mills already prospering along it. Here and there were indications
of a developing mine upon the mountain slopes. We followed the great
river until we passed through a narrow gorge where the Selkirk Mountain
range jams its rock masses hard against the western flanks of the
Rockies and the river thrusts itself between, to begin its long journey
southward through Washington and Oregon to the Pacific; and then turning
up a wild creek called Six Mile, we began again to climb the second and
last mountain chain before we should reach the sea. These grades are
very heavy. Too heavy, I should say, for a railroad built for business
and traffic and not subsidized by a government, as in practical effect
the Canadian Pacific is. The pass at the divide is almost as high as
that at the source of the Silver Bow, and much more impeded in winter
with snowfalls and avalanches, which require many miles of snow-sheds
to save the road.


We dined about 8 P. M., in a fine large hotel owned by the railroad
company at a station called "Glacier," for it is right at the foot of
one of the most gigantic glaciers of the Selkirks, and many tourists
tarry here to see it and climb upon it; Swiss guides being provided by
the railway company for these adventures. And then we came down again,
all night and half the next day, following the valley of the Fraser
River until it debouched into level tidal reaches a few miles from Puget

The Fraser River is a magnificent stream; as great as the Columbia, as
wild as New River of West Virginia. We stood upon the platform of the
rear car and snapped the kodak at the flying gorges, tempestuous rapids
and cascades. All along, wherever the water grew angry and spume spun,
were Indians fishing for salmon, sometimes standing alert, intent, spear
in hand poised and ready, or, more often, watching their nets or drawing
them in. And every rocky point held its poles for drying the fish,
belonging to some individual Indian or tribe, safe from trespass or
molestation by immemorial usage. The sands of the river are said to also
have been recently discovered to hide many grains of gold, and we saw in
several places Chinamen industriously panning by the water-side. Near
Vancouver we passed several extensive salmon canneries, and their catch
this year is said to be unusually large.

As we came nearer to the sea the air grew warmer, the vegetation more
luxuriant, the flowers more prolific, and the Douglas fir more lofty and
imposing. A single shaft, with sparse, ill-feathered limbs, down-bent
and twisted, these marvelous trees lift their ungainly trunks above
every other living thing about. The flowers, too, would have delighted
you. Zinnias as tall as dahlias, dahlias as tall as hollyhocks,
nasturtiums growing like grape vines, roses as big as peonies, geraniums
and heliotropes small trees. Great was the delight of our trainload of
Australians. They had never seen such luxuriance of foliage, such wealth
of flowers, except under the care of a gardener and incessant laying on
of water. We came across with a car full of these our antipodean kin.
Most have been "home," to England, and had come across to Canada to
avoid the frightful heats of the voyage by Suez and the Red Sea. And
they marveled at the vigor and the activity of both Canada and the
States. Some had lingered at the fine hotels up in the mountains now
maintained by the Canadian Pacific Railroad. All were sorry to go back
to the heats of the Australian continent.


The building and maintaining of this railway has been accomplished by
the giving of millions of dollars in hard cash, and millions of acres in
land grants, to the railway company by the government of the Dominion.
Fortunes were made and pocketed by the promoters and builders, and the
Canadian people now hold the bag--but although as a mere investment it
can never pay, yet as a national enterprise it has made a Canadian
Dominion possible. It owns its terminals on the Atlantic and on the
Pacific. It owns its own telegraph lines, its own cars, sleeping-cars,
and rolling stock; it owns and runs ten, a dozen, a score of fine
hotels; it is a vast land-owner. Its stock can never be bought up and
owned out of Canadian hands. A Morgan or a Gould can never seize it,
manipulate it, or wreck it. It is a good thing for Canada to have it so.
It is a good thing for the people of the United States that it is so.

The Canadian Rockies are the most beautiful and picturesque of any
section of the mountain chain from Mexico north. The air is cooler in
the far northern latitude, keener, more bracing, and the hustling
American has begun to find this out. The great hotels of the Canadian
Pacific are already best patronized by the American visitor, and this
year the sun-baked Californians have come up in swarms and promise
another year even greater numbers. And the Canadian Pacific Railroad
welcomes them all--all who can pay. At Banff, too, were the advance
guard of the English Colony from China, brought over from Shanghai by
the sumptuous steamships of the Canadian Pacific Railway, taken to and
kept at their great hotels, and carried home again, at so low a
round-trip rate that these Rocky Mountain resorts promise to become the
summering-place of the Oriental Englishmen as well as Australian and
Californian! How these things bring the world together!

Our journey from Kanawha, across Ohio, from Cleveland through the Great
Lakes, across the wheatfields of Minnesota and Dakota and Manitoba, and
over the wonderful prairies and plains of the opening far Northwest,
has had a fit ending in the last few days climbing and plunging over and
down the wildest, most picturesque, most stupendous valleys and passes
of the Rocky Mountain and Selkirk Mountain ranges. How vast and varied
and splendid is the continent we live on, and which one of these days
the people of the United States will inevitably wholly possess!

And now the wonders of these Pacific slopes and waters! All the
afternoon we have been wandering through Vancouver's superb Natural
Park, among its gigantic trees, and gazing westward over and across the
waters of Puget Sound, the most mighty fjord of the Pacific seas, the
most capacious land-locked harbor of the world. I must not say more
about this now. I have not yet seen enough. I am only beginning dimly to
comprehend what is the future power of our race and people in the
development of this side of the earth.


                       August 21, 1903. }

We came over here yesterday, leaving Vancouver by a fine new 1,800-ton
steamer "Princess Victoria," and making the voyage in four hours,--all
the way in and out among the islands and straits and inlets. The shores
of the mainland high, lofty;--the mountain summits rising right up till
snow-capped, six or seven thousand feet in the air, their flanks green
with the dense forests of fir that here everywhere abound. The
islands all fir-clad, the trees often leaning out over the deep blue
waters. Many fishing-boats were hovering about the points and shoals
below the mouth of the Fraser River, awaiting the autumnal rush of
salmon into the death-traps of that stream. I hope to see one of these
salmon stampedes--they often pushing each other high and dry on the
shores in their mad eagerness to go on.

[Illustration: VICTORIA, B. C.--THE HARBOR.]

Tuesday we reached Vancouver. Wednesday we consumed seeing the lusty
little city.

Yesterday we spent the morning in picking up the few extra things needed
for the Yukon--among others a bottle of tar and carbolic--a mixture to
rub on to offend the yet active mosquito.

Vancouver is a city of some 30,000 people, full of solid buildings,
asphalted streets, electric car lines, bustle and activity. Much of the
outfitting for the Canadian Yukon is done there, though Seattle gets the
bulk of even this trade.

To-day we are in Victoria, a town of twelve or fifteen thousand, a fine
harbor, and near it the British naval and military station of
Esquimault, the seat of its North Pacific war power. The town is sleepy,
the buildings low and solid, the air of the whole place very English.
The capitol building is an imposing structure of granite, surmounted by
a successful dome.



              August 23, 1903. }

We arrived in Vancouver by the steamer "Charmer" from Victoria about ten
o'clock A. M.--two hours late--a small boat, packed with passengers. We
could not get a state-room to ourselves, so were glad of berths, while
many people lay on mattresses in the cabin and many sat up. Tourist
travel surprises the slow-going Canadian, and he does not catch up with

We went to the Hotel Vancouver, where we had been staying, and there

Our boat, "City of Seattle," is roomy and comfortable. We have a large
upper state-room on the starboard side, plenty of fresh air and
sunlight. It is loaded down with an immense cargo of miscellaneous
freight, from piles of boxes of Iowa butter and fresh eggs, to sheep and
live stock, chickens and pigs, vegetables and canned goods, most of it
billed to Dawson and even to points below. The Yukon has been so low
this year--less snow than usual falling last winter--that the bulk of
the freight "going in" has had to be shipped via these Skagway boats and
the White Pass Railway, despite the exorbitant freight rates they are
charging for everything.

[Illustration: LEAVING VANCOUVER.]

The travellers are of two sorts. A good many making the round trip from
Seattle to Skagway, and the Yukoner "going in" for the winter. The
former are not of much concern to us, but among the latter I have found
a number of interesting acquaintances. One, a man who hunts for a
business, and is full of forest lore and hunting tales. He is also
something of a naturalist and taxidermist, and I have been showing him
our volumes of the report of the Harriman Expedition, to his delight. He
has also explored along the Kamtschatka coasts of Siberia, and describes
it as a land stocked with salmon and fur animals. He says, too, that I
have done right to bring along my gun, for there are lots of ptarmigan
as well as mountain sheep and goats in the Yukon Valley, and caribou and
moose are also plentiful.

Another man has spent a year or more on the Yukon--our chief
engineer--and thinks we will have no difficulty in getting a boat down
from Dawson, and the scenery he says is grand. Another is a lumber-man
of Wrangel--from Pennsylvania--and tells me they have some fine timber
there, though most of that of these far northern latitudes is too small
to now profitably compete with the big logs of Washington.

Our vis-a-vis at table is going up to the Porcupine Placer district to
try his luck with finding gold, and several men are going into
Atlin--whither we are bound--to find work at big pay.

The atmosphere of the company is buoyant and hopeful, even the women
have a dash of prosperity about them--gold chains and diamonds--of which
there are not a few.

From all I can pick up, an immense trade is already developed with
Alaska and is still growing with bounds. The United States Government
statisticians give thirty-seven millions as the figure for the trade of
the past year. Already three or four lines of steamers ply between
Skagway alone and Puget Sound ports, and several more run to St.
Michaels and Nome.

The sail from Vancouver is most delightful. You come out of a narrow
channel through which the tides foam and churn, and then turn north
through the "Gulf of Georgia," twenty or thirty miles wide. Vancouver
Island stretches for three hundred miles along the west, fir-clad,
backboned by a chain of mountains rising up into the snows. On the east
a coast indented with multitudinous bays and deep channels, sharp
promontories and islands; the forest coming to the water's edge, the
mountains rising sharply six and seven thousand feet into the snows and
clouds, as lofty as the fjelde of Norway, but not so bare and naked, the
dense, deep green fir forests growing from water to snow line.


We were crossing Queen Charlotte Sound when we awoke this morning, and
all day long have been threading our way among islands, through narrow
channels, across seemingly shut-in lakes, ten and twelve miles wide, and
then no wider than the Kanawha River or even narrower. As we come north
the mountains grow higher and come closer to the water we sail upon,
and there is more snow on their summits.

You might imagine yourself with Henrik Hudson on his first voyage, when
the Hudson valley was covered with primeval forests.

Last evening we saw a number of humpbacked whales, and to-day more. This
morning saw my first sea lions and also fur and hair seals. To-morrow,
they say, we shall see yet more. Only gulls, a few terns and ducks
to-day. No larger birds as yet.

     MONDAY, August 24, 1903.

The greyness of yesterday is vanished. The sky is cloudless, the
atmosphere translucent. The mountains are more lofty, the snow patches
grown into wide fields, and the air has taken on a certain added
keenness, telling of distant snow and ice. To-morrow we shall see more
snow and even glaciers. All day we have been going from one broad sound
or channel through narrow straits into others as broad. We crossed
Dixon's Channel at breakfast-time, through which the commerce of the
Orient will come to Port Simpson, the Canadians hope, when the Grand
Trunk Pacific shall have been built.

About noon we came around a wooded island and made our first port of
Ketchikan, where there are salmon canneries, and hard by quartz mines
yielding gold, and saloons and stores. Here we had our first view of
near-by totem poles, and our first sight of the shoals of salmon that
make alive these waters. From a foot-bridge crossing a little creek that
debouched near our steamer wharf, we looked down into the clear water
and saw it fairly swarming with salmon, fish from ten to fifteen pounds,
"small ones," they said. But the waters were choked with them. Dipping a
net down, you might haul up a wagon load as easily as one. Yet no one
was catching them. So plentiful are the fish that no one wants to eat
salmon except as a last resort--"food fit only for dogs," they say, and
the distant tenderfeet whom the canneries supply. And these swarming
fish below us shoved each other upon the shallow shore continually, when
there would be a great splashing to get back.

From Ketchikan we have come out into the great Clarence Strait, with
Belim and Ernest Sounds stretching away into the snow-covered mountains
toward the east. The strait is as wide as the Hudson at the Palisades,
the shores fir clad, the mountains six to seven thousand feet, up into
clouds and snow. The water to-day is like a mirror, and many porpoises
are playing about. I have just seen three big blue herons, and awhile
ago we passed a loon. Last night just at dusk, we saw several flocks of
snipe or plover, small, brown, swift in flight, close above the water.



We have just looked upon the most superb panorama we have yet beheld.
The last four hours the mountains both east and west of us have come
closer to the shores, and risen higher, the fir mantle enveloping
them has grown a darker green, larger timber than for the last few
hundred miles, and then we came round a bend in our great strait--about
six to ten miles wide--forty or fifty miles long--and there in front of
us, bounding the horizon on the north, stretched an immense mass of
jagged, serrated mountain chain, glittering like silver in the slanting
sun rays. Not mere snow patches, not mere fields of snow, but vast
"fjellen" of snow, snow hiding all but the most ragged rock peaks, and
even sometimes enveloping these. Valleys all snow-filled and from which
descend mighty glaciers. Below the miles of snow lay the deep green
forests of the lesser mountain summits and sloping flanks, and then the
dark blue waters of the giant fjord, dotted with many fir-clad islands.
We agree that we have seen nothing in our lives so sublimely beautiful.
Never yet nature on so stupendous a scale.

The quiet waters of the last two days are now alive with gulls and ducks
and grebes and divers, many loons. More bird life than we have yet seen.
Just as is told by the Harriman naturalist. Only at Wrangel does the
real bird life of the north begin. Curving around another wooded
promontory, we beheld the town of Wrangel, at Fort Wrangel, on Wrangel
Island, ten miles away, nestling at the mouth of a little valley, below
the firs and snow summits behind. We are now tied up to the pier at this
port, and shall lie here till 2 A. M., when flood tide will allow us to
continue the voyage, and at daylight pass through the narrowest and
most hazardous strait of the trip. We mean to be waked at four o'clock
so as to see the pass.

In the village, which claims to be the second town in Alaska, we have
walked about and seen some of the totem poles which stand before many of
the Indian cabins. Grotesque things, surely.

It is now near nine o'clock and yet the lingering twilight permits one
to read. At Dawson, they tell me, there is in June no night, and
baseball matches are played at 10 P. M.

     August 25, 1903.

We did not leave Wrangel till 2 A. M., lying there waiting for the flood
of the tide. We were to pass through the very tortuous, narrow and
difficult straits and passages between Wrangel Bay and Frederick Sound,
through which the tides rush with terrific fury--the tides rise twenty
or thirty feet along these shores--and the ship would only venture at
flood tide and after dawn. In order to see these picturesque passages, I
climbed out between three and four o'clock this morning, wrapped in a
blanket shawl above my overcoat, and stood in the ice-chilled air while
we threaded slowly our dangerous way. Along sheer mountain-sides,
between low wooded islands (all fir), a channel carefully marked with
many buoys and white beacons, with many sharp turns, finally entering
the great Frederick Sound, where many whales were blowing, and we saw
our first real icebergs--masses of ice, blue and green, translucent,
with deep, clear coloring.


[Illustration: THE PIER--FORT WRANGEL.]

All day we have sailed up this great land-locked sheet of blue water,
the icebergs and floes increasing in number as we approached Taku Inlet,
from whose great live glaciers they are incessantly shed off.

4 P. M.--We have landed at the Treadwell Mines on Douglas Island, where
the largest stamp mill in the world crushes a low grade quartz night and
day the year around, and where is gathered a mining population of
several thousand. Then we crossed the fjord to the bustling port of
Juneau, the would-be capital of Alaska, the rival of Sitka. A curious
little town of wooden buildings, wooden streets, wooden sidewalks,
nestling under a mighty snow-capped mountain, and, like those other
towns, largely built on piles, on account of the tides.

Now we are off for Skagway, a twelve hours' run with our thirteen-knot

To-day we have fallen in with two more fellow-travelers. One a young
fellow named Baldwin, attached to the U. S. Fish Commission, who tells
me much about the fishing on these coasts, and the efforts now being
made to stay the indiscriminate slaughter. Another, a grave-faced,
sturdy man from Maine who is panning free gold near Circle City, and has
endured much of hardship and suffering. He hopes to win enough this
winter and coming summer from his claim to go back to California and
make a home for his old mother who waits for him there.

     SKAGWAY, ALASKA, Wednesday, August 25.

Here we are, safe and sound after a voyage due north four days and four
nights, more than 1,500 miles--I do not know just how far. We came out
from Juneau last night in a nasty rain, mist (snow-rain almost) and wind
driving against the rushing tides. Coming around Douglas Island in the
teeth of the gale, we passed over the very spot where a year or two ago
the ill-fated S. S. "Islander" struck a sunken iceberg, and went down
into the profound depths with all on board. As I heard the moan of the
winds, the rain splash on our cabin window, and hearkened to the roar of
the whirling tides against whose currents we were entering the great
Lynn Canal--fjord we should say--ninety miles or more long--ten to
fifteen miles wide--I could not help thinking of the innumerable frail
and lesser boats that dared these dangerous waters in the first mad rush
to the Klondike but a few short years ago. In the darkness we have
passed many fine glaciers, and along the bases of immense snow and ice
crested mountains, which we are sorry not to have seen, but so much is
now before us that our minds are already bent toward the great Yukon.

We are tied to an immense pier, and mechanical lifters seem to be
dragging out the very entrails of the ship. Across the line of the
warehouses I see the trucks of the railway, the hackmen are crying out
their hotels. "This way, free 'bus to the Fifth Avenue Hotel."

[Illustration: THE PIER, SKAGWAY.]



[Illustration: THE SUMMIT--WHITE PASS.]



     ATLIN, BRITISH COLUMBIA, August 29, 1903.

Here we are at the mining camp of Atlin, on Atlin Lake. We left Skagway
the same morning we arrived. Our boat, the "City of Seattle," came in
early Wednesday morning, and long before we got up we heard them
discharging cargo, all hands at work. The day was cloudy, cold, and icy
winds swept down from the glaciers. It seemed November. The little town
is built on a low sand tongue of detritus carried down from the glaciers
by the snow rivers, the river Skagway here pouring out a flood of muddy
white water like the Swiss streams.

[A] Caribou Crossing now called Carcross.

The railway is a narrow, three-foot gauge, and the cars are low but
roomy. Our train consisted of nine freight cars, a baggage, two
passenger cars and three locomotives, one in front and two in the
middle. The famous ride was all that has been said of it. First, a
gradual ascent up the deep valley of the Skagway, then steep climbing
and many doubles and winds up through the cañon to the summit, twenty
miles away, and 3,200 feet above the sea. In many places the road-bed is
blasted out of the granite rock, sheer precipices above and below, a
most costly piece of work, and ever down below winds the difficult,
dangerous trail, over which fifty to one hundred thousand men and women
footed it in the winters of 1897-1898, in the strange, mad world-rush to
the fabulous gold fields of the interior. How they got up and through at
all is the wonder; yet men tell me that men, pack-laden, footsore,
determined, were so closely massed along the trail that it was one
continuous line from Skagway to summit and beyond, for months at a time.
The various views from our car were magnificent and even appalling;
sometimes we seemed to hang in mid-air as we crawled upward. As we
approached the summit we came among snow fields and near many glaciers,
and then passed through long snow-sheds over which the avalanches often
slip and thunder into the abysses below.

Near the divide is the international boundary line, and the customs
station for Alaska and the Yukon Territory of Canada, and where the
red-coated Canadian mounted police come first in evidence. Here our bags
were examined by the customs. Then we began a gradual descent into wide,
open, flat valleys, over bare granite rock masses and through a stunted
fir wilderness into the basin of the Yukon, 2,600 miles from the Behring
Sea at St. Michaels. Flocks of ptarmigan flew up as the train rolled
down, and a few eagles soared high above the snow summits.

Our first stop was at a railway eating-house near the head of Lake
Bennett, a sheet of light green water, two to ten miles wide and over
thirty miles long, all shut in by gigantic granite mountains whose
summits were covered with glittering snow. The railway skirts the
water for the entire distance until it crosses at a bridge over a swift
current where Lake Bennett flows into Lake Marsh, and where is the
station of Caribou.



[Illustration: CARIBOU CROSSING.]


Here we were put off, and here we would, two days later, take the
bi-weekly steamer for Atlin, on Atlin Lake, where we now are, and here
the railway leaves the lakes and takes a short cut across a low divide
to White Horse Rapids, where begins the steamboat navigation on the
Yukon River.

Caribou is a collection of cabins and tents, and is the first settlement
where, they say, will some day be a city.

It was on Lake Bennett that the weary pilgrims used to camp to build
their boats and rafts and begin their long water journey of five hundred
miles to Dawson and the golden Klondike.

Our hotel we found surprisingly neat and clean; owned and kept by a
famous Indian, "Dawson Charlie," who was one of the discoverers of the
gold of Bonanza Creek in the Klondike, and who had the sense to himself
stake out several claims, the gold from which has made him now a magnate
worth several hundred thousand dollars, and who lives and entertains
like a white man. He housed us in a neat, comfortable room, iron
bedstead, wire mattress, carpeted floor. He fed us at fifty cents a meal
as well, as abundantly as in West Virginia, and only his Indian
daughter, who waited on us, dressed neatly and fashionably, with big
diamonds in her ears, made us realize that we were not in our own land.
Here we have spent two delightful days. The air is as wonderfully clear
as on the table-lands of Mexico, full of ozone, but cold in the shadow
even in midday, though the sun is warm.

On the ship we met a delightful naturalist, Mr. Baldwin, of New Haven,
artist of the U. S. Fish Commission, and who came with us to try and
catch some grayling, in order to make drawings for the Commission, and
for two days we have been out in the woods, he with my rod, H---- with
your butterfly net, and I with my gun. He caught his grayling, several
of them. I shot several mallard ducks, but H---- caught no butterflies,
nor saw one. It was too late in the season for that.

On the way up we fell in with a very intelligent Swede, whose partner in
the Klondike is a Dane, and who, when he learned H----'s nationality,
and she had talked Danish with him, was all courtesy and friendliness.
He had come in with the "mushers" (corruption of the French _marche_),
as the early foot-farers are called, and had succeeded. When we get to
Dawson he will welcome us.

[Illustration: A VISTA ON LAKE MARSH.]


[Illustration: ON THE TRAIL AT CARIBOU.]


At Caribou we also made acquaintance with the Canadian customs officer,
Mr. John Turnure, a fine type of Canadian official, big, bluff, yet
courteous, who at first was going to tax all my cartridges and kodak
films, notwithstanding I had passed the customs at Winnipeg and had come
from Vancouver direct, but who, upon explanation, relented, and
afterward called on us and invited H----, Mr. B---- and myself to
call on his wife and family at his log cabin mansion near the station,
which we did, and were served cake and coffee from dainty china, and sat
on a divan covered with priceless furs, near a good piano. His daughters
were now at home from school on vacation, and his wife, a cultured
woman, was next day going with them on a shopping visit to Dawson, the
New York or Cincinnati of this far north.

The Yukon territory is governed from Ottawa by appointees, and policed
by the "Northwest Mounted Police," a fine body of men--including many
young Englishmen of good family--in cowboy hats and red coats. While
here in Atlin, we are just over the line in the Province of British
Columbia, a state with its own laws and civil magistrates.

We left Caribou on a little steamer with a big sternwheel--all of which,
timber and machinery, had been carried from Skagway over the White Pass
on horses' backs, and sledges, dragged by men and dogs, and put together
on Lake Bennett, before the railway was even thought of. How in the name
of heaven a ten-ton boiler, and the engines and big timbers, were got
over that foot-path trail, is even yet a standing marvel--the boat is as
big as the steamer "Calvert" on the Kanawha River--but it was done, and
to-day I have talked with the man who bossed and directed the job,
Captain Irving, now a gold hunter of Atlin and a member of the British
Columbia Parliament.

We first came slowly through a well-marked track on a little lake, Lake
Marsh, for about ten miles, then through a short river, and then out
into Lake Taggish, a sheet of water larger than Lake Bennett, and one
arm of which is famous for its desperate winds from the glaciers--the
"hurricane" arm--another arm of which heads toward the White Horse
Rapids, and a third arm, "The Taku Arm," which extends southerly toward
Lake Atlin, a lake more than one hundred miles in length, which empties
into it through a short, swift, turbulent river. This southerly portion
of the lake is eight or ten miles wide and we were all night steaming on
it to Taku, where we landed this morning--a distance of forty or fifty
miles--when, taking a little, short, two-mile railway, we were pulled
over to Atlin Lake, a yet bigger body of water. There embarking on
another steamboat, we were ferried ten miles across to Atlin, a town
with a courthouse, several churches, a little hospital, a newspaper, a
bank, a dozen hotels, a multitude of restaurants, bicycles, numerous
livery stables, and which is the center of a gold-mining region from
which already several millions of dollars have been taken since the
first pay dirt was found in 1898. We dined at a restaurant where a
colored French cook presides, and you may have any delicacy New York
could afford. At the bars men preside with diamonds the size of
hickory nuts in their shirts, drinks are twenty-five cents each and
cigars the same. The hotels are full of keen-faced men; well-gowned and
refined women are to be seen on the streets; the baby carriages are
pulled by great big dogs, and even the water carts and delivery wagons
are hauled by teams of eight and ten dogs--Newfoundland or wolfish

[Illustration: THE TAKU RIVER.]

[Illustration: LAKE ATLIN.]

[Illustration: DOGS--ATLIN.]

"The Camp," or city, is now in the midst of a boom, and this morning we
were shown several buckets of gold nuggets just brought in last night
from a recent "clean up."

When in the midst of Lake Taggish, yesterday afternoon, we were hailed
by a naphtha launch of the Mounted Police, and, on our lying to, three
gentlemen climbed in. One face seemed in some way familiar to me, and
when I presently heard some one call him Mr. Sutton I recognized one of
my old Port Hope schoolmates, who had also been at Cornell, and who had
been an especial friend. He was as well pleased as I at the meeting, and
is now here with me. He was a brilliant scholar, and is now British
Columbia's most eminent geologist and mining expert. We have been out
together to-day, and to have his expert opinion here on what I see is
invaluable. We have also met here a Mr. and Mrs. R----, of Philadelphia,
to whom I had a letter, a promoter of the largest hydraulic company
here, and H---- has been off with Mrs. R---- to-day and panned her first
chunks of real, true, genuine gold, of which performance she is not a
little proud. The whole country seems to be more or less full of gold;
it is in the gravels and sands everywhere, and a number of very large
gold-getting enterprises are under way, mostly hydraulic placer mining,
but also some fine quartz veins carrying free gold are being opened up,
and I have been off with Sutton all the afternoon looking at one.

     September 1, 1903.

We have had three days of outing; at least, I have. Saturday morning I
made an early start with Sutton and three other men for a visit to some
hydraulic mining operations up on Pine Creek, and to the great dredge
now being built. At one of these, an operation called "The Sunrise Gold
Co.," I found in charge a Mr. Ruffner, of Cincinnati, a cousin to the
Kanawha family, grandson of one of the original Ruffner brothers, who,
hating slavery, had freed his slaves and removed to free soil in Ohio. A
bright young fellow, managing a large operation. Then we went on further
to Gold Run, where an enormous dredge is being built. An experiment in
this country, about the final success of which there is yet much
question. Here I dined in a tent, which is warmer, they say, than any
timber building, even when the temperature is 50 degrees below zero. The
valley is a broad, open one, all of glacial formation. It is very level,
with Pine Creek cutting deeply between high gravel banks. A black top
soil of a foot or two, eight or ten feet of grey gravel, then as much
more yellowish sandy gravel, and often a foot or two of black sand at
the bottom, lying upon a bed of serpentine rock; and it is in this
lowest ten feet of yellow gravel and black sand that the free gold is
found, nuggets of a pound or two down to minute gold dust, a red gold of
about 22 to 23 carats in combination with copper or silver. Through this
gravel are also immense stones and boulders, and these are the gold
diggers' particular bete noir. Most of the digging is done by getting
out this gravel, freeing it of the boulders and washing it. Pine Creek
is the overflow of Surprise Lake, a sheet of water twenty miles long and
one-half to one mile wide; and although a considerable stream, yet its
waters are so much needed in these gold-washing operations that a
constant water-war among the diggers and digging companies goes on.
There is much waste also in the present methods, and it is to prevent
the wars as well as to save the fine gold that now largely escapes that
the dredging method is to be applied. Then, too, there are only four, or
at most five, months in the year when men can work, so that great energy
must be expended during the open season. There is no night up here for
these four months, and men work all the twenty-four hours in eight-hour
shifts; thus, really, more work is done than one would at first imagine.
The life of the ideally successful gold digger is to toil with
unflagging vigor for the four or five months of daylight and open
weather, then "come out" and blow it in leisurely luxury in some
comfortable city. But not all are so able to make their summer pile.
They may not strike rich pay dirt, but may find it lean, or even barren,
and such must just live on through ice and snow and mighty frost, hoping
for more luck another year. Many are the tales of hardship and suffering
and dire wreck one hears. The little graveyard out along the Pine Creek
pike has many graves in it. One man died a natural death, they say, but
all the rest went to their graves stark mad from disappointment, poverty
and privation. Every train passing out over the White Pass Railway
carries its complement of the hopelessly insane, gone mad in the hunt
for gold.



In this little town or "camp," as it is called, are very many too poor
to get away, too broken in health and spirits to more than barely exist.
A delicate woman, once the wife of the mayor of an Illinois city, does
our washing; her husband, a maimed and frozen cripple, sits penniless
and helpless while she earns a pittance at the tub. Our landlady lets
rooms to lodgers, her husband's body lying beneath the deep waters of
Teslin Lake.

A Cambridge Senior wrangler passed us yesterday on the road driving two
dogs hitched to a little wagon, peddling cabbages and fish. A few strike
gold, and, making their piles, depart, but the many toil hopelessly on,
working for a wage, or frozen or crippled, weary in spirit and out of
heart, sink into penury, or die mad.



After our dinner in the tent I joined another party, some of those
interested in the building of the dredge, and drove with them twenty
miles up into the interior to Otter Creek, where three of them have just
started an operation, sluicing for gold. We passed many cabins and small
tents, where live the men who are working claims and washing for gold.
Some were quite shut down for lack of water, others were eagerly at
work. At one point a Mr. S---- and I left the wagon and struck six miles
across a great grassy mountain. We must have ascended 2,000 feet or
more. An easy ascent over a vast expanse of moss and tufted grass; no
trees, no bushes, no hardy herbs, nothing but grass and moss. Only on
the south and west was the horizon bounded by jagged peaks and summits
of snow-topped mountains. Glacial action has everywhere worn down the
surface into rounded rolling domes and slopes, and for hundreds of miles
the land is one wide moorland of grass and moss.

Here are many flocks of wild sheep and mountain goats, and here moose
and caribou are said to abound. During the day, about the noon hour, a
giant bull moose had stalked deliberately through the midst of the camp,
neither quickening his pace, nor fearing man. So engrossed were the men
in their search for gold, that none dropped pick or shovel to molest

On these higher slopes are multitudes of ptarmigan,--the birds breeding
close to the permanent snow line, remaining high up during the summer
heats, and gradually descending to the valleys as the fresh falling
autumnal snows little by little push them down.

In Atlin, the other day, a young Swedish engineer, a graduate of Upsala,
showed me a fine pair of ibex horns from one which he had shot high up
on the mountains beyond the lake. The animal, though not uncommon, is
difficult to get, inhabiting the most inaccessible summits and rarely
descending to even the levels where the mountain sheep and goats find

A superb and seemingly boundless pasture land where great herds of
cattle ought also to be feeding, and would be, except for the terror of
the winter's cold. Perhaps the reindeer will some day here find a
congenial home.

We sat by fires after nightfall, and when day came icicles a foot long
hung all along the drip of the flume, and in the afternoon snow fell,
covering every rounded summit with its white mantle.

Returning, I walked another ten miles down the winding valley of Otter
Creek. A stretch of open, grassy moorland, where in the winter-time the
moose and caribou gather in numbers seeking shelter from the winds, and
finding the dried grass through the scraped-off snow.



[Illustration: AN ATLIN GOLD-DIGGER.]

To-day H----, Sutton and I have driven for hours along the valley of
Spruce Creek, visiting another industrious gold-washing section. We
picnicked for lunch in an abandoned miner's camp, and H---- saw her
first real washing for gold. We took the picture of one old man, a
Mr. Alfred Sutton, in whose cabin we had sought shelter from a passing
rain squall. He had hoped to return to England for the winter--he left
there many years ago--but the gold had not come in as rich as he had
hoped, so he must delay his going for one more year. Poor old fellow,
his beard was long and white, so, too, his uncombed hair. He had not yet
made his yellow pile, but was as hopeful as a boy of twenty. I promised
to send him a copy of the photograph and he thanked me joyfully, saying,
"And I shall send it to my family at home"--in England.

We are here two days longer, when we move on to Dawson and I mail these
lines to you.

     September 2, 1903.

This is our last day in Atlin. The morning was cold like late November
in Virginia, the air keen and frosty. Ice has formed in the pools,
though the aspen and scrub willow and a sort of stunted alder are only
turned yellow in spots and patches. The mountain-tops are now all
whitened with the delicate early snows, extending like blankets of
hoar-frost out beyond the margins of the snow fields that never melt.

We dine sumptuously, and all through the gold fields it is the same. The
one thing men will and must have is food, good food and no stint. The
most expensive canned goods, the costliest preserves, the most
high-priced fresh fruits, oranges, bananas, pears and grapes, the
finest beef steaks and meats, the most ample variety of vegetables. Such
an average as New York gives only in her best hotels, is what the gold
digger demands, will have, and freely spends his nuggets to obtain. We
are astonished at such lavish eating. At the diggings where men work for
wages, $4.50 and $5.00 per day, board is always included and demanded,
and only this high-priced, costly food is accepted. The cooks are
connoisseurs. Their wages run from $125.00 to $150.00 per month and free
board. At the camp high amidst the desolate moorlands of Otter Creek,
the men eat beef steaks, thick, juicy, rare, California fresh fruit and
lemon meringue pie; with lemons $1.00 per dozen and eggs ten cents
apiece! Dundee marmalade is eaten by the ton; the costliest canned cream
is swallowed by the gallon--the one permitted, recognized and
established extravagance of the gold fields is the sumptuous eating of
every man who finds the gold.

This afternoon Sutton and ourselves with a few friends are going down to
see the great glacier at the south end of Lake Atlin.



     CARIBOU CROSSING, September 4, 1903.

We have just come in on the steamboat from Atlin, and are waiting for
the train which will take us to White Horse this afternoon, where we
will take a river boat to Dawson.

Day before yesterday we took the little steamboat that plies across
Atlin Lake, having chartered it with Sutton, and having asked a Mr.
Knight, of Philadelphia, and Captain Irving, of Victoria, making a party
of five, and went to the head of the lake--forty-five miles. A lovely
sail. Up the narrow mountain-locked channel on the west of Goat Island
(named from the many wild goats on it). The water a clear, deep blue and
light green, according to its depth. The mountains chiefly granite,
rising sheer up on either hand four and five thousand feet; the fir
forest, dense and sombre, clothing their bases, then running out to
ground pine and low shrubs, then the grass and mosses, then the bare
rocks and jagged crags and the everlasting snows. The lake channel is
everywhere narrow, sometimes widening out to five or six miles, then
narrowing into a mile or two, but the air is so wonderfully translucent
that ten miles look like one, and distant shores seem close at hand. The
further we sailed the narrower grew the channel, until we were among
islands and cañons, with sheer snow-capped heights hanging above us, at
last slowly creeping through a tortuous passageway of still water out
into a long, silent arm, at whose head we tied up to the forest for the
night. These clear waters are filled with trout and grayling--the latter
chiefly, but of birds there were almost none. Only a belated and
startled great blue heron flapped lazily away to the west. Using our
glasses, we saw two or three wild goats up on the heights above us, and
probably many more saw us far down below.

In the morning we breakfasted early, and started for the glacier--the
great Llewellen or Taku glacier, said to be the largest in the British
possessions of North America, sixty miles long to where it comes to Taku
Bay, near Juneau, and is there known as Taku glacier. We clambered over
a mile of trail, through dense, close-growing fir, then out into a wide
plain of detritus, once covered by the ice, now two miles long by a mile
wide. Difficult walking, all glacial drift, and boulders great and
small. The distance to the vast slope of dirty ice seemed only a little
way; nothing but the walk would convince one that it was over two miles.
The glacier projects in a great bow. On its center, like a hog-back
mane, are piled masses of earth and rocks. It is there that the moving
ice river is. On either side the ice is almost still and white. For five
or ten miles the glacier rises toward an apparent summit and stretches
toward the coast, fed by a multitude of lesser ice streams issuing from
every mountain gorge and valley, while monstrous masses of rock, granite
and porphyry, tower into the snows and clouds above it. We had some
difficulty in climbing upon the glacier. Chasms opened on either side,
the front was a cracking ice cliff, crevasses yawned everywhere. Though
the surface was dirty and blackened, yet down in the cracks and
crevasses the wonderful blue ice appeared. From the base of the glacier
flows a river, and over its surface coursed a thousand rills.

We walked upon the ice and lingered near it till about noon, when our
boat took us back to Atlin through the greater lake, along the east
shores of Goat Island, a four hours' sail.

From Atlin we have returned as we went, and are now spending a few hours
here. There were very few birds on Atlin Lake, though I saw a superb
loon yesterday near the western shore.

Ice formed on the lake last night. Snow is in the air. We may be too
late to go down the Yukon from Dawson.



     DAWSON, September 5, 1903.

This letter is headed Dawson, for I shall mail it there, but I begin it
at White Horse, a thriving town of over 2,000 people, on the west bank
of the Fifty Mile River, just below the famous rapids. The streets are
wide, of hard gravel, many large buildings. We are in the "Windsor"
Hotel, a three-storied wooden structure, iron bedsteads, wire
mattresses, modern American oak furniture--very comfortable, but as all
the partitions are of paper--no plaster--you can hear in one room all
that is said on six sides of you--above and below, too. The city and
hotel are electric-lighted. Many churches, a commodious public school,
public hall and reading-room supplied with all current American,
Canadian and English magazines. The town is up to date. It is at the
head of the Yukon navigation, where those "going out" take the White
Pass and Yukon Railway for Skagway, and those "going in" take the boats
for "Dawson." Just now the town is half deserted, many of its
inhabitants having stampeded to the new Kluhane gold strike, some one
hundred and forty miles away. It is here claimed that a new Eldorado as
rich as the Klondike has been found, and White Horse now expects to yet
rival Dawson. Extensive finds of copper ore of high grade are also
reported in the neighborhood.

[Illustration: BISHOP AND MRS. BOMPAS.]


We arrived at Caribou yesterday morning on the little S. S. "Scotia,"
built on Lake Bennett, after a very comfortable night, and went over to
Dawson Charlie's hotel for a good breakfast. By this time H---- and the
Indian housekeeper had become fast friends, and the girl accordingly
brought out her store of nuggets and nugget jewelry for H---- to see. A
lovely chain of little nuggets linked together, a yard or more long,
earrings, breastpins, buckles, and sundry nuggets, large and small. It
is Dawson Charlie's habit, when in a good humor, to give her one of the
pocketful of nuggets he usually carries around.

We crossed the bridge over the rushing outflow of Lake Bennett and went
down to the Indian village, and called on the man whom all Canadian
churchmen affectionately and reverently term the "Apostle of the North,"
old Bishop Bompas and his quaint, white-haired wife. For over forty-five
years he has wrought among the Indians of the Peace River, the Mackenzie
and Yukon watersheds. He is an old man, but as erect as a Cree brave.
His diocese is now limited to the Yukon waters, where, he says, are
about 1,000 Indians, and, of course, an increasing number of white men.
They lived in this back, wild country long before the white men thought
of gold, or the Indian knew of its value. I took their pictures and
promised to send them copies.

This morning we have walked a few miles up the river to see the
celebrated White Horse Rapids, and I went four miles further, and saw
also the Miles Cañon, where the waters of Lake Taggish and Fifty Mile
River begin their wild six miles before reaching here. The cañon is
sharply cleft in trap rock, and the sides rise sheer and pilastered as
though cut into right-angled pillars. These cliffs rise up 200 feet or
more and go down as deep below the foaming tide. The cleft does not seem
more than 100 yards wide, and through it the waters boil and roar. How
the early gold hunters ever got through the furious waters alive is the
wonder, and indeed very many did lose their lives here, as well as in
the dashing rapids below.

     ON THE YUKON, September 7, 1903.

We have boarded the steamer "White Horse," whose captain is commodore of
the Yukon fleet--twenty-odd large steamers owned by the White Pass &
Yukon Ry. Co. We have a stateroom at the rear of the texas, with a
window looking out behind as well as at the side. I can lie in my berth
and see the river behind us. We swung out into the swift blue current
about a quarter to seven, yet bright day, the big boat turning easily in
the rather narrow channel. The boat is about the size of those running
between Charleston, W. Va., and Cincinnati or Pittsburg--165 feet long,
35 feet wide, and draws 2-1/2 feet, with a big stern wheel:--the
Columbia River type rather than the Mississippi, such as run from Dawson
down--sits rather high in the water and lower parts all enclosed.
She has powerful machinery fit for breasting the swift waters; a large,
commodious dining salon; a ladies' parlor in the rear; a smoking-room
for gentlemen forward; lighted with electricity, and all modern
conveniences. She was built at White Horse, as were also ten of the
sister boats run by the railway company. Six years ago no steamboat had
traversed these waters. With the current we travel fourteen to twenty
miles an hour, against the current only five! The river winds among
hills and flats, and mountains all fir-clad and yellowed with much
golden aspen, turned by the nightly frosts.




We came down through Fifty Mile River, which is the name given to the
waters connecting Lake Taggish and Lake Lebarge. The moon hung full and
low in the south, giving a light as white as upon the table-lands of
Mexico, so clear is the atmosphere and free from atmospheric dust. We
sat upon the upper deck until late in the night, watching the varying
panorama. From the window of my stateroom, lying in my berth, I looked
an hour or more while we sailed through Lake Lebarge--five or six miles
wide, thirty miles long--hemmed in by lofty, rounded, fir-clad limestone
mountains, 4,000 or 5,000 feet in altitude--the full moon illuminating
the quiet waters. Only the frequent mocking laugh of the loon echoed on
the still night air--there seemed to be hosts of them. Once I heard the
melancholy howling of a timber wolf among the shadows of a deep bay.
From Lake Lebarge we entered the swift and dangerous currents of Thirty
Mile River. Here the boats usually tie up till daylight, but with the
full moon and our immense electric searchlight, the captain ventured to
go down. Again I sat up watching the foaming waters behind us and how
deftly we backed and swung round the many sharp bends:--high mountains
quite shutting us in, the foaming waters white and black in the
moonlight and shadow. At last, when the mountains seemed higher,
blacker, more formidable than ever, we suddenly rounded a precipitous
mass of limestone and granite and floated out into an immense pool,
while away to the east seemingly joined us another river as large as our
own, the Hootalinqua, fetching down the yet greater tides of Lake
Teslin, and forming with the Thirty Mile, the true Yukon--though the
stream is mapped as the Lewes, until joined by the Pelly, many miles

We have now been descending this great river all day long; as wide as
the Ohio, but swifter and deeper and always dark blue water. The valley
is wide like the Ohio; the bottom lands lying higher above the water and
the country rising in successive benches till the horizon is bounded by
rounded mountains eight or ten miles away. Mountains green with fir,
golden yellow with the aspen and the birch, and red and scarlet with the
lutestring herb and lichens of the higher slopes. A magnificent
panorama, an immense and unknown land, not yet taken possession of by
man! The soil of many of these bottoms is rich, and will yield
wonderful crops when tilled. Some distant day, towns and villages will
be here. We have seen many loons upon the river, and probably twenty or
thirty golden eagles soaring high in mighty circles--more than I have
seen in a single day before. We caught sight of a black fox in the
twilight last evening, and surprised a red fox hunting mussel shells
upon a river bar to-day.

[Illustration: A YUKON SUNSET.]

[Illustration: THE UPPER YUKON.]

[Illustration: A YUKON COAL MINE.]


We have passed several steamers coming up the river and stopped twice to
take on firewood and a few times to put off mail at the stations of the
Northwest Mounted Police. About four o'clock P. M. we safely passed
through the dangerous rocky pass of the Five Fingers, where five basalt
rocks of gigantic size tower 100 feet into the air and block the passage
of the foaming waters. Just where we passed, the cliffs seemed almost to
touch our gunwales, so near are they together. The banks are high slopes
of sand and gravel, now and then striped by a white band of volcanic
dust. The trees are small and stunted, but growing thickly together, so
as scarcely to let a man pass between. We have seen two puny coal banks
where is mined a dirty bituminous coal, but worth $30.00 to $40.00 per
ton in Dawson. Better than a mine of gold!

We have just now run through the difficult passage known as Hell's
Gates, where on one side a mass of cliff and on the other a shifting
sand bar confine the waters to a swift and treacherous chute. So close
to the rocks have we passed that one might have clasped hands with a
man upon them, yet for a mile we never touched their jagged sides.
Clever steering by our Norwegian pilot!

Now we are past the mouth of the great Pelly River, itself navigable for
steamboats for some three hundred miles, as far as up to White Horse by
the main stream, and are hove to at Fort Selkirk, an old Hudson Bay
Company post. Here the mounted police maintain a considerable force.
They are standing on the bank, many of them in their red coats, together
with a group of the Pelly Indians, a tribe of famous fur hunters.

Passing safely through the treacherous Lewes Rapids above the mouth of
the Pelly, we have swung out into the true Yukon, an immense river, wide
as the Mississippi at St. Louis, many islands and sand bars. At high
water the river must here be two miles across. The moon hangs round and
white in the south, not much above the horizon, and we shall slowly
steam ahead all night.

     September 7, 1903.

We are making a quick trip. We passed the mouth of the Stewart River in
the early dawn. Another great stream navigable for 200 miles. By the
Pelly Valley or by the Stewart, and their feeding lakes, will some day
enter the railroads from the valley of the Mackenzie, coming up from
Edmonton and the southeast. There is supposed to be yet much
undiscovered gold on both of these streams, and fine grass land and
black soil fit for root crops.

[Illustration: COMING UP THE YUKON.]

The Yukon, the mighty Yukon, is surely now become a gigantic river, its
deep blue waters carrying a tide as great as the St. Lawrence. We are
making a record trip, Ogilvie by 11 A. M., and Dawson, sixty miles
below, in three more hours! So the captain cheerily avers--the fuller
current and deeper tide of waters carrying us the more swiftly.

The mountains are lower, more rounded in outline, fir and golden aspen
and now red-leaved birch forests covering them to their summits. The air
is cold and keen. Ice at night, grey fogs at dawn, clear blue sky by the
time the sun feebly warms at nine or ten o'clock.

We are reaching lands where the ground is frozen solid a few feet below
the summer thaws, and the twilight still lingers till nine o'clock. They
tell us the days are shortening, but it is hard to credit it, so long is
yet the eventime.

I shall mail this letter at Dawson and send you yet another before we go
down the river to the Behring Sea.

To-day I saw the first gulls, white and brown, some ducks on wing, many
ravens and but few eagles. We are having a great trip, worth all the
time and effort to get here--on the brink of the Arctic north, and in
one of the yet but half-explored regions of the earth.



     Thursday, September 10, 1903.    }

We came in on Tuesday afternoon, the steamer "White Horse" having had an
unusually good run. As we descended the river the stream grew larger,
wider, with more water, and when we passed the White River the blue
water there changed to a muddy white, discolored by the turgid, whitish
tide of that stream. It must flow somewhere through beds of the white
volcanic ash, that for so many miles marks the banks of the Yukon with
its threadlike white line a foot or two below the surface soil.

As we passed the swift water of Klondike shoals and rounded in toward
the landing, our own hoarse whistle was replied to by several steamers
lying at the various wharfboats. We were ahead of time;--our arrival was
an event.

The town lies well, upon a wide bottom, and now begins to climb the back
hill to a secondary flat. It is laid off with wide streets, the chief of
which are graveled and fairly kept. There are a few brick buildings, but
most are of wood, here and there an old-time (six years old) log
building appearing among the more modern ones built of sawed lumber--for
logs are now too precious and too costly to squander.



The town has telephones and electric lights, which latter must pay
finely when you realize that for nearly seven months darkness prevails
over day. There are two morning daily, and one evening daily newspapers,
with all Associated Press telegraphic news. I send you a copy of one of
them. Two banks handle the gold, buying the miners' "dust" and doing a
thriving business.

There are half a dozen quite handsome churches, two hospitals,
government buildings, the "Governor's Palace," and a number of
residences that would do credit to any town. There are two large
sawmills near the mouth of the Klondike River, which is crossed by two
fine bridges, one iron and one wood. Of foundries and machine shops
there are many. The stores and shops are many of them pretentious and
filled with the most expensive high-class goods and wares--for, in the
first place, the gold miner is lavish, extravagant, and will only have
the very best, while it costs as much freight to bring in a cheap
commodity as an expensive one. You can buy as handsome things here as in
San Francisco or New York, if you don't mind the price. The daily
newspapers are sold by newsboys on the streets at 25 cents a copy. Fine
steaks and roasts, mutton and veal, are thirty-five to sixty-five cents
per pound. Chickens, $2.00 to $3.00 each. A glass of beer, twenty-five

Some elegant drags and victorias, with fine horses, as well as many
superb draft horses, are seen on the streets. It only pays to have the
best horses; a scrub costs as much to bring in and to keep as a good
one, and hay is $60.00 to $150.00 per ton, and oats are sold by the
pound, sometimes $1.00 per pound. Cows' milk is an expensive luxury at
the restaurants, and various canned goods form the staple of life.

Many large steamboats ply on the Yukon, and those running down to St.
Michael, 1,800 miles below, are of the finest Mississippi type, and are
run by Mississippi captains and pilots. We shall go down on one of
these, the "Sarah," belonging to the "Northern Commercial Company," one
of the two great American trading companies. Also large towboats push
huge freight barges up and down the river.

Several six-horse stage lines run many times a day to the various mining
camps up and adjacent to the Klondike Valley, which is itself now
settled and worked for one hundred and fifty miles from Dawson. Probably
thirty to thirty-five thousand people are at work in these various
diggings, and trade and spend in Dawson. Hence Dawson takes on
metropolitan airs, and considers herself the new metropolis of the far
north and Yukon Valley.

Two things strike the eye on first walking about the town. The multitude
of big, long-haired, wolflike-looking dogs, loafing about, and the
smallness of the neat dwelling-houses. The dogs play in the summer and
work untiringly through the long seven months of winter--a "dog's life"
then means a volume. Small houses are easier to warm than big ones,
when fuel is scarce and wood $16, $20 and $50 per cord, and soft spruce
wood at that!



But Dawson has an air of prosperity about it. The men and women are well
dressed, and have strong, keen faces. Many of them "mushed" across
Chilkoot Pass in 1897, and have made their piles. And they are ready to
stampede to any new gold field that may be discovered.

It is said that there are 6,000 people here, stayers, and then there is
a fluctuating horde of comers and goers, tenderfeet many of them. This
year eleven millions of dust has come into Dawson from the neighboring
diggings, and since 1897, they say, near a hundred millions have been
found! Many men and even women have made their millions and "gone out."
Others have spent as much, and are starting in anew, and the multitude
all expect to have their piles within a year or two. A curious
aggregation of people are here come together, and from all parts! There
are very many whom you must not question as to their past. German
officers driven from their Fatherland, busted English bloods, many of
these in the Northwest Mounted Police, and titled ne'er-do-wells
depending upon the quarterly remittances from London, and Americans who
had rather not meet other fellow countrymen;--mortals who have failed to
get on in other parts of this earth, and who have come to hide for
awhile in these vast, solitary regions, strike it rich if possible and
get another start. And many of them do this very thing, hit upon new
fortunes, and sometimes, steadied by former adversity, lead new,
honorable careers; but most of the black sheep, if luck is kindly to
them, only plunge the deeper and more recklessly into vice and
dissipation. The town is full of splendid bar-rooms and gilded
gambling-hells. Two hundred thousand a night has been lost and won in
some of them.

I drove past a large, fine-looking man, but possessed of a weak,
dissipated mouth, on Eldorado Creek yesterday. His claim has been one of
the fabulously rich, a million or more out of a patch of gravel 1,000
feet by 250, and he has now drunk and gambled most of it away, divorced
a nice wife "in the States outside," then married a notorious belle of
nether Dawson, and will soon again be back to pick and pan and dogs.
Another claim of like size on Bonanza Creek was pointed out to me where
two brothers have taken out over a million and a quarter since 1897, and
have been ruined by their luck. They have recklessly squandered every
nugget of their sudden riches in drunkenness and with cards and wine and
women to a degree that would put the ancient Californian days of '49 in
the shade. On the other hand, there are such men as Lippy, who have made
their millions, saved and invested them wisely, and are regarded as
veritable pillars in their communities. Lippy has just given the
splendid Y. M. C. A. building to Seattle.

[Illustration: SECOND AVENUE, DAWSON.]




There is now much substantial wealth in Dawson and the Klondike. Most of
the large operations are in the hands of Americans, especially of the
American companies who have bought up the claims after the individual
miner, who just worked it superficially and dug out the cream, has sold
the skim milk. And even the major part of the original "stakers" seem to
have been Americans. There are many good people in Dawson among these.
Then, too, there is the body of Canadian officials who govern the
territory of Yukon--political henchmen of Laurier and the Liberal party,
many of them French Canadians. The governor himself and the chief of
these officials live here, and their families form the inner circle of
select society. Very anti-American they are said to be, and they do not
mix much with the Americans who, of equal or superior social standing at
home, here devote themselves to business and gold getting and let
Canadian society and politics altogether alone. But while the alert
American has been the first to stake, occupy and extract the wealth of
the Klondike, and while by his energy and tireless perseverance he has
made the Yukon Territory the greatest placer mining region of the world,
yet this acquirement of vast wealth by Americans has not really been
pleasing to the Canadians, nor to the government of Ottawa. So these
governing gentlemen in Ottawa have put their heads together to discover
how they, too, might profit, and especially profit, by the energy of the
venturesome American. How themselves secure the chestnuts after he had,
at peril of life and fortune, securely pulled the same out of the
fire--in this case, frightful frost and ice! And they hit upon this
plan: They resolved themselves into little groups, and the government
then began granting extensive and exclusive blanket concessions to these
groups. Just now a great row is on over some of these private concession
grants. One man, Treadgold by name, turns up and discovers himself to be
possessed of an exclusive blanket grant to all the water rights of the
Klondike Valley and its affluent creeks, as well as the exclusive right
to hold and work all gold-bearing land not already occupied, and also to
hold and have every claim already staked, or worked, which for any
reason may lapse to the crown either for non-payment of taxes or any
other reason, thus shutting out the individual miner from ever staking a
new claim within this region should he discover the gold, and from
taking up any lapsed claim, and from re-titling his own claim, should he
be careless and neglect to pay his annual taxes by the appointed day!



Another man, named Boyle, also appears with a similar concession
covering the famous Bonanza and Eldorado Creeks, where land is valued by
the inch, and millions beyond count have in these few years been dug
out. Such flagrant and audacious jobbery as the creation and granting of
these blanket concessions in the quiet of Ottawa, presents to the world,
has probably never before been witnessed, unless it be among the inner
circle of the entourage of the Russian Czar. These steals have been
so bold and unabashed that this entire mining region has risen as a unit
in angry protest. While the miner has been prospecting, discovering,
freezing, digging in these Arctic solitudes, the snug, smug politician
of Ottawa has fixed up a job to swipe the whole find should the
innocent, ignorant prospector happen to make one. So vigorous has been
the protest against these daring abuses of a government clique, that
this summer what is called a "Dominion Royal Commission" has been sent
here to investigate the situation. The papers are full of the matter.
The citizens have met in mass-meeting and unanimously joined in the
protest against the concessions, calling for their revocation, and
Judge--"Justice"--Britton, the head of the commission, is bitterly
denounced as a partisan here simply on a whitewashing trip to exculpate
Laurier and his friends. And the result of what has unquestionably been
crooked jobbery at Ottawa is said to be that hundreds of prospectors and
miners are moving out of the Yukon and into Alaska, where they say
"there is fair play," and a man may have what he finds. What I here tell
you is the current talk in Dawson--quite unanimous talk--and I should
like to have heard the other side, if there is one.

To-day H---- and I have been across the river to visit a characteristic
establishment of these far northern lands--a summer "dog ranch"--a place
where, during the summer months, the teams of "Huskies" and "Malamutes"
may be boarded and cared for till the working-time of winter comes
again. Here are some seventy-five dogs in large kennels of rough timber,
each team of six dogs having its own private kennel, with a large
central yard inside the tiers of pens, into which the whole pack are
turned once a day for exercise. We hoped to find the proprietor at home
and induce him to give his pets a scamper in the central yard, but he
was away. The only visitors besides ourselves were two strange dogs
which stood outside, running up and down the line and arousing the
entire seventy-five to one great chorus of barks and howls. Some of
the groups of dogs were superb. And two teams of Huskies--the
true Esquimaux--must have been worth their weight in gold--six
dogs--$1,000.00 at the very least. We tried to get some kodak shots, but
a cloudy sky and pine log bars made the result doubtful.


We have just returned from an evening at the first annual show of the
Dawson or Yukon "Horticultural Society." The name itself is a surprise;
the display of vegetables particularly and flowers astonished me. The
biggest beets I have ever seen, the meaty substance all clear, solid,
firm and juicy. Potatoes, Early Rose and other varieties, some new kinds
raised from seed in three years--large, a pound or more in size. And
such cabbage, cauliflower and lettuce as you never saw before! Many
kinds, full-headed and able to compete with any produced anywhere. All
these raised in the open air on the rich, black bottom and bench land
of the Yukon. Squashes and also tomatoes, but these latter, some of
them, not fully ripened. Also a display of fine strawberries just now
ripe. We bought strawberries in the markets of Cristiania and Stockholm
upon the 12th and 13th of September, last year, and now we find a
superior ripe fruit here at just about the same degree of north
latitude. The wild currants, blueberries and raspberries with which
these northern latitudes abound are notorious. And the show of oats,
rye, barley, wheat and timothy and native grasses, as well as of red and
white clover, was notable, proving beyond a doubt that this Yukon region
is capable of raising varied and nutritious crops necessary for man's
food and for the support of stock, horses and cattle. Already a good
many thrifty mortals, instead of losing themselves in the hunt for gold,
are quietly going into the raising of vegetables and hay and grain, and
get fabulous prices for what grows spontaneously almost in a night. And
the show of flowers grown in the open air would have delighted you. All
of these products of the soil have been grown in sixty or seventy days
from the planting of the seed, the almost perpetual sunlight of the
summer season forcing plant life to most astonishing growth.

     September 11th.

Day before yesterday I took the six-horse stage up Bonanza Creek of the
Klondike and rode some thirteen miles over the fine government road to
"Discovery" claim, where a Cleveland (O.) company is using a dredge and
paying the Indian "Skookum Jim," whose house we saw at Caribou, a
royalty that this year will place $90,000.00 to his credit, I am told.



The Klondike is a large stream, about like Elk River of West Virginia,
rising two hundred miles eastward in the Rockies, where the summer's
melting snow gives it a large flow of water. The valley is broad--a mile
or more. The hills are rolling and rounded, black soil, broad flats of
small firs and birches. Bonanza Creek, on which Skookum Jim and "Dawson
Charlie" and the white man, discovered the first gold in 1897, has
proved the richest placer mining patch of ground the world has ever
known. For a length of some twenty miles it is occupied by the several
claim-holders, who are working both in the creek bed and also ancient
river beds high up on the rolling hill slopes, a thing never known
before. Here the claims are larger than at Atlin, being 1,000 feet wide
and 250 feet up and down the creek. The claim where a discovery is made
is called "Discovery Claim," and the others are named "No. 1 above" and
"No. 1 below," "No. 2 above" and "No. 2 below," etc., and so entered of
record. I had seen the dredge being built on Gold Run at Atlin. I wished
to see one working here. I found a young American named Elmer in charge,
and he showed me everything. Then he insisted that I dine with him, and
took me up to his snug cottage, where I was cordially greeted by his
American wife, and taken to the mess tent, where a Japanese cook set
a good dinner before us. Then Mrs. Elmer said that if I would like she
would be delighted to drive me still further up Bonanza, and up the
equally famous Eldorado Fork, and show me the more noted claims. Her
horse was a good one, and for nearly three hours we spanked along. At
"16 Eldorado below" I saw the yawning gravel pit from which $1,200,000
has already been taken out by the lucky owner. From "28 Eldorado above"
I saw where the pay gravel yielded another enormous sum. And all along
men were still digging, dumping, sluicing and getting gold. At "18
Bonanza above," yet another particularly rich strike was shown me, and
at "28 Bonanza above," working in the mud and gravel, were men already
enormously rich, who in 1897 owned nothing but their outfit. And up
along the hillsides, too, near the tops, were other gashes in the gravel
soil where gold in equally fabulous sums has been taken out and is still
being got, for all these rich sands are yet far from being worked out or
exhausted. The first mad rush is over. Men do not now merely pick out
the big nuggets, but are putting in improved machinery and saving the
finer dust. Along the roadside we also saw many men digging and
"rocking" for gold, who have leased a few square yards or an acre or two
on a royalty and who are said to be "working a lay." After our drive, I
caught the returning stage and came home in the long twilight.

To-day I have staged again twenty miles on to the famous Hunker Creek,
and then been driven further and home again by Mr. Orr, the owner of the
stage line, behind a team of swift bays, over another fine government
highway. I have looked at more machinery, steam shovels, hoist and
labor-saving apparatus, and seen more millions already made and in the
making. The present and potential wealth of this country almost
stupifies one, and dollars fall into the insignificance of dimes. The
traffic on these fine roads is also surprising. Substantial log "road
houses," or inns, every mile or so, and frequently at even shorter
intervals, very many foot-farers traveling from place to place. Young
men with strong, resolute faces; bicycle riders trundling a pack
strapped to their handle-bars, and many six and eight span teams of big
mules and big horses hauling immense loads--sometimes two great
broad-tired wagons chained together in a train. Ten or twelve four and
six horse stages leave Dawson every day, and as many come in, carrying
passengers and mails to and from the many mining camps. In my stage
to-day behind me sat two Mormons, a man and a woman, who had never met
before, from Utah, and a woman from South Africa, the wife of an
expatriated Boer; a Swede who was getting rich and a French Canadian. My
host at dinner was from Montreal, a black-eyed, bulldog-jawed "habitan,"
whose heart warmed to me when I told him that my great grandmother, too,
was French from Quebec, and who thereupon walked me out to the barn
to see his eleven Malamute pups, and afterward insisted that I take a
free drink at his bar. I took a kodak of him with "_mes enfants_," and
promised to send him a copy of the same.




[Illustration: A KLONDIKE CABIN.]

To-night I ventured out to try again the restaurant of our first
adventure. Sitting at a little table, I was soon joined by three
bright-looking men--one a "barrister," one a mining engineer, one a
reporter. Result (1), an interview; (2), a pass to the fair; (3), my
dinner paid for, a 50-cent Havana cigar thrust upon me, and (4) myself
carried off to the said fair by two of its directors, and again shown
its fine display of fruits and grains and flowers and all its special
attractions by the management itself. In fact, the Dawsonite can not do
too much for the stranger sojourning in his midst.

Mercury 26 to 28 degrees every morning.

Before arriving in Dawson a big, rugged, government official had said to
me, "Go to the hotel ---- and give my love to Mrs. ----. She has a red
head and a rich heart. She has cheered more stricken men than any woman
in the Yukon. She mushed through with her husband with the first
'sourdoughs' over the ice passes in '97. She was a streak of sunshine
amidst the perils and heartaches of that terrible human treck. She runs
the only hotel worth going to in Dawson. You will be lucky to get into
it. Give her our love, the love of all of us. Tell her you're our
friends, and maybe she will take you in." So we were curious about this
woman who had dared so much, who had done so much, who was yet mistress
of the hearts of the rough, strong men of the Yukon. We went to her
hotel. We asked to see her. We were shown into a cosy, well-furnished
parlor. We might just as well have been in a home in Kanawha or New
York. We heard some orders given in a firm, low-pitched voice, a quick
step, Mrs. ---- was before us. An agreeable presence, dignity, reserve,
force. Tall, very tall, but so well poised and proportioned you didn't
notice it. A head broad browed and finely set on neck and shoulders.
Yes, the hair was red, Venetian red with a glimmer of sunshine in it. I
delivered the message straight. She received it coolly. "The house was
full, but she would have place for us before night. A party would leave
on the 4 P. M. stage for Dominion Creek. We should have his room. Dinner
would be served at seven." The chamber was given us in due time. Plainly
furnished, but comfortable. The hotel is an immense log house, chinked
with moss and plaster, and paper lined, and all the partitions between
the rooms are also paper. But we are learning to talk in low voices,
and, between a little French and German and Danish, H. and I manage to
keep our secrets to ourselves, although of the private affairs of all
the other guests we shall soon be apprised.

The dining-room is large, the whole width of the house, in the center a
huge furnace stove from which radiate many large, hot pipes, where in
the long winter night-time is kept up a furious fire, and a cord of wood
is burned each day--and wood at $25 to $50 per cord! The guests sit at
many little tables. The linen is spotless. The china good English ware.
The fare is delicious. The cook is paid $300 per month, the maids $125,
with board thrown in. Delicate bacon from Chicago. Fresh eggs from Iowa.
Chickens from Oregon--no live chickens in Dawson. The first mushers
brought in a few, but the hawks and owls, the foxes and minks and other
varments devoured many of them, and the surviving ones, after waiting
around a week or two for the sun to set, went cackling crazy for lack of
sleep, and died of shattered nerves. Caribou steak and tenderloin of
moose we have at every meal. And to-day wild duck and currant jelly. The
ducks abound along the river, the currants grow wild all over the
mountain slopes. And such celery and lettuce and radishes and cabbage!
Potatoes, big and mealy, and turnips, and carrots, delicate and crisp,
all grown in the local gardens round about. Cabbage here sells at a
dollar a head and lettuce at almost as much. But you never ate the like.
White and hard as celery, so quickly do they grow in the nightless days!
Nowhere in all the world can you live so well as in Dawson, live if only
you have the "stuff." Live if you can pay. We follow the habit of the
land and pay up in full after each meal. It is dangerous to trust the
stranger for his board. It is well for us we hold fast to this custom,
else we might not be able to leave the town--a regulation of the
government of the city--no man may leave with bills unpaid. So long as
he owes even a single dollar, he must remain! And the N. W. M. P. watch
the boats, the river and the mountain passes and enforce this law.

Our hostess takes good care of her guests. Very many young men working
for the larger commercial companies board here, all, who are allowed,
come for transient meals. And those who are homesick and down in spirit
come just for the sake of neighborship to the tall, well-gowned woman
whose invariable tact and sympathy, and often motherly tenderness, has
given new heart to many a lonely "chechaqua" (tenderfoot), so far away
from home!

In this dining-room, too, one sees a type not so often now met in our
own great country, but inherent to English methods. The permanent Chief
Clerk. The man whose career is to be forever a book-keeper or a clerk,
whose highest ambition is to be a book-keeper or a clerk just all his
life, and who will be trusted with the highest subordinate positions,
but will never be made a partner, however much he may merit it. London
is filled with such. The offices of the great British Commercial
companies are full of such the world round. Men who know their business
and attend to it faithfully, and whose lives are a round of precise
routine. Such men sit at tables all about us. In London every morning
the _Times_ or _Daily Telegraph_ is laid at their plates. Here the Yukon
_Sun_ or Dawson _Times_ is laid before them just the same, and they
gravely read the news of the world, while they sip their tea and munch
their cold toast, just as though they were "at home." And they walk in
and out with the same stoop-shouldered shuffle gait one sees along the
Strand or Bishopsgate Street within, or Mansionhouse Square.

Our hostess greets each guest as he enters, and walks about among them
and says a cheery word to every one. One, on her left, has just now been
reading to her from a letter which tells of his mother in England, and,
I surmise, hints of a waiting sweetheart; and another, an Australian,
who is just going away on a prospecting trip far up the Stuart River, is
telling her what to write home for him in case he shall never come back.

The two other chief objects of interest in this dining-room, besides
Mrs. ----, are--her small boy of six, who is being greatly praised this
morning by all the company--he has just licked the big boy across the
street, who for a week or two has tried to bully him, on account of
which feat his mother is immensely proud--and a wonderful grey and white
cat that sits up and begs just like a prairie dog or a gopher. When a
kitten, pussy must have gone out and played with some of the millions of
gophers that inhabit every hillside, and learned from them how to
properly sit up. She visits each guest every morning and sits up and
folds her paws across her breast and mews so plaintively that no hand
can forbear giving her a tidbit.

"We were among the first. We came up from San Francisco in a waterlogged
schooner through the wash of ice and winter gales to Dyea, and then
mushed over Chilkoot Pass on snowshoes with the dogs. I shouldered my
pack like the men. And John--John would have backed out or died of
weariness, if I hadn't told him that if he quit, I should come on in
just all the same. Yes! I carried my gun--I didn't have to use it but
once or twice. Yes! We've done very well in Dawson, very well in the
Klondike, very well!" And a big diamond glinted as though to reenforce
the remark. She spoke rapidly, though easily, in crisp, curt sentences,
and you felt she had indeed "mushed" in, that frightful winter, over
those perilous snow and ice passes, just sure enough! As I looked into
her wide-open, brown eyes, I felt that I beheld there that spirit which
I have everywhere noted in the keen faces of the men and women of the
Yukon, the yet living spirit of the great West, of the West of half a
century ago; of Virginia and New England two hundred years ago; the
spirit which drove Drake and Frobisher and Captain Cook and their daring
mariners out from the little islands of our motherland to possess and
dominate the earth's mysterious and unchartered seas; the spirit which
still makes the name American stand for energy and power and
accomplishment in all the world; the spirit, shall I say, which gives
the future of the earth to the yet virile Anglo-Saxon race.



     YUKON TERRITORY, CANADA, September 18, 1903.

We lingered in Dawson a week waiting for the steamers "Sarah" or
"Louise" or "Cudahy" to come up from the lower river, and though always
"coming," they never came. Meantime the days had begun to visibly
shorten, the frosts left thicker rime on roof and road each morning.
"Three weeks till the freeze-up," men said, and we concluded that so
late was now the season that we had best not chance a winter on a
sand-bar in the wide and shallow lower Yukon, and a nasty time with fogs
and floe ice in Behring Sea. So on Wednesday, the 16th, we again took
the fine steamer "White Horse," and are now two days up the river on our
way. We will reach White Horse Sunday morning, stay there till Monday
morning, when we will take the little railway to Skagway, then the ocean
coaster to Seattle and the land of dimes and nickels. We regret not
having been able to go down to St. Michael and Nome, and to see the
whole great Yukon. My heart was quite set on it, and the expense was
about the same as the route we now take, but to do so we should have had
to take too great risks at this late season.

While lingering in Dawson we were able to see more of the interests of
the community. One day we called on a quite notable figure, _a_, or
rather _the_, Dr. Grant of St. Andrews Hospital, M. D., and of St.
Andrews great church, D. D.! A Canadian Scotchman of, say, thirty-five
years, who, although a man of independent fortune, chose the wild life
of the border just from the very joy of buffet and conquest. He "mushed"
it in 1897 over the Chilkoot Pass. He built little churches and
hospitals all in one, and became the helper of thousands whom the perils
and stresses of the great trek quite overcame. So now he is a power in
Dawson. A large and perfectly equipped hospital, his creation, has been
endowed by the government; a fine, modern church holding six hundred; a
pretty manse and big mission school buildings of logs. All these
standing in a green turfed enclosure of two or three acres. The church
cost $60,000. He preaches Sundays to a packed house. He is chief surgeon
of the hospital during the rest of the time. He gives away his salary,
and the men of these mining camps, who know a real man when they see
him, can't respond too liberally to the call of the preacher-surgeon who
generally saves their bodies and sometimes their souls. I found him a
most interesting man--a naturalist, a scientific man, a man of the world
and who independently expounds a Presbyterian cult rather of the Lyman
Abbott type. He showed us all through the hospitals; many surgical
accident cases; very few fevers or sickness. The church, too, we
inspected; all fittings within modern and up to date; a fine organ, the
freight on which alone was $5,000, 40 per cent. of its cost; a furnace
that warmed the building even at 80 below zero, and a congregation of
400 to 500 people, better dressed (the night we attended) than would be
a similar number in New York. There are no old clothes among the
well-to-do; gold buys the latest styles and disdains the cost. There are
few old clothes among the poor, for the poor are very few. So as I
looked upon the congregation before Dr. Grant, I might as well have been
in New York but for a pew full of red coats of "N. W. M. P." (North West
Mounted Police).

The succeeding day Dr. Grant called upon us, and escorted us through the
military establishment that polices and also governs the Yukon territory
as well as the whole Canadian Northwest. Barracks for 250 men,
storerooms, armory, horse barn, dog kennel--150 dogs--jail, mad-house
and courtrooms. The executive and judicial departments all under one
hand and even the civil rule as well. Everywhere evidence of the cold
and protection against it. A whole room full of splendid fur coats,
parquets, with great fur hoods. Such garments as even an Esquimaux would
rejoice in.

Later, we attended the fine public school, where are over 250 children
in attendance; all equipment the latest and up to date; kindergarten
department and grades to the top, the teachers carefully picked from
eastern Canada. The positions are much sought for by reason of unusually
high salaries paid. The new principal had just come from Toronto. He
told us that these were the brightest, most alert children he had ever
taught. Keen faces, good chins, inheriting the aggressive initiative of
the parents who had dared to come so far. In the kindergarten a little
colored boy sat among his white mates. In Canada, like Mexico, there is
no color line.

It now takes us four days to creep up the river against the strong
current and through the many shallows to White Horse. On the boat there
are all sorts. I have met a number of quaint figures. One a French
Canadian trapper, on his way to a winter camp on McMillan Creek of the
Pelly River. He will have three or more cabins along a route where he
will set his traps. About two hundred he keeps a-going, and sees as many
of them as he can each day. Mink and marten and otter and beaver, as
well as wolves and foxes, lynx and bears. For meat he prefers caribou to
moose. For many years he trapped for the "H. B. C." (Hudson Bay Company)
over east of the Rockies. But they paid him almost nothing and there
were no other buyers. Now he sells to Dawson merchants and gets $6.00
for a marten skin "all through"--the whole lot. The fur merchant in
Victoria asked $30.00 for just such, and said we might buy them as low
as $10.00 in the Yukon country, so he had heard. Another man to-day has
sat on the wood-pile with me and told me of the great North--a man with
a well-shaped face, who used language of the educated sort, yet dressed
in the roughest canvas, and who is raising hay here along the Yukon
which he "sells at three cents a pound in Dawson, or one cent a pound
in the stack," wild, native hay at that. And he had "mushed" and
"voyaged" all through the far north. He had set out from Edmonton, he
and his "pardner," and driven to "Athabasca landing" in their farm
wagon, three or four hundred miles over the "Government road;" had
passed through the beautiful, wide, gently sloping valley of the Peace
River, and through the well-timbered regions north of the Peace. At
Athabasca landing they had sold the wagon and built a stout flatboat,
and in this had floated down some three hundred miles to Athabasca Lake,
Indian pilots having taken them through the more dangerous rapids. The
Athabasca River enters the lake among swamps and low, willowy spits of
land, where grows wild hay and ducks abound, and the "Great Slave" River
flows out of it into the body of water of that name. These two rivers
enter and depart near together, and the voyager escapes the dangers of a
journey on the great and shallow Athabasca, where the surf is most
dangerous. Three or four hundred miles of a yet greater river, with many
rapids through which you are guided by Indian pilots, who live near the
dangerous waters, carry you into the Great Slave Lake, the largest body
of fresh water in Canada. Steamboats of the Hudson Bay Company run upon
it and ply upon the inflowing rivers, and even go up and down the
McKenzie to Herschell Island at its mouth, and where the "N. W. M. P."
have a post, chiefly to protect the natives from the whalers who
gather there to trade and smuggle in dutiable goods. The McKenzie is
greater than the Yukon, is wider and much deeper and carries a much
greater volume of water. Great Slave Lake, while shallow and flat toward
the eastern end, is deep and bounded by great cliffs and rocks on the
west. Storms rage upon it, and at all times the voyagers count it
dangerous water. Both it and Athabasca are full of fish, so, too, the
adjacent rivers and the McKenzie. Floating down the McKenzie, passing
the mouth of the Nelson River, they came at last to the Liard, and up
this they canoed to within half a mile of the waters of the Pelly, down
which they floated to the Yukon. The French trapper had also "come in"
by this route. "Two seasons it takes," he said, "an easy trip," and you
can winter quite comfortably in the mountains. East of the mountains
there is much big game, "plenta big game;" musk ox are there, and moose
and caribou. But the Indians and wolves kill too many of them. The
Indians catch the caribou on the ice and kill them for their tongues.
"Smoked caribou tongue mighta nice." They leave the carcasses where they
fall, and then come the foxes for the feast. "Thousands of fox, red fox,
silver fox, black fox, white fox. Mr. Fox he eat caribou, he forget
Indian--Indian set the trap and fox he caught. The wolf, too, he creep
up upon the caribou, even upon the moose when he alone, when he lying
down; the wolf he bites the hamstring. He kill many moose. That a grand
country for to trap, but the Hudson Bay Company it pay nothing for the
fur. A sack of flour I see them give one Indian for a black fox. Now
since Hudson Bay lose his exclusive right, no man trade with him or sell
him fur except he must for food."

[Illustration: ON THE YUKON.]


We have just passed a little log cabin beneath great firs and amidst a
cluster of golden aspen. Its door and solitary window are wide open. No
one occupies it, or ever will. Wild things may live in it, but not man.
Near the cabin, where the Yukon makes a great sweeping bend, and the
swift water purls round into bubbling eddies, a narrow trail cut from
the river bank leads up among the trees. The dweller in the cabin could
see far up the great river; he could espy the raft or skiff or barge
descending and mark its occupants; then he used to take his trusty
rifle, step across to the opening in the trees at the point, and pick
off his victims. Sometimes their bodies fell into the deep, cold,
swift-running waters. The wolves and foxes picked their bones on the
bars below. Sometimes he captured the body as well as the outfit, and
sunk and buried them at leisure. The pictures of the three last men he
murdered hang in the office of the chief of the Northwest Mounted
Police, at Dawson, beside his own. It took three years to gather the
complete chain of circumstantial evidence, but at last they hanged him,
two years ago. In the beginning there were many other crimes quite as
atrocious committed in this vast region of the unknown north, but soon
the efficiency and systematic vigilance of the Northwest Mounted Police
broke up forever the bandits and thugs who had crowded in here from all
the earth, and Uncle Sam's dominion in particular. Many were hanged,
many sent up for long terms, many run out. Life sentences were common
for robbery. To-day the Yukon country is more free from crime than West
Virginia, and Dawson more orderly than Charleston.



     WHITE HORSE, Sunday, September 20, 1903.

We arrived about nine o'clock this morning. The voyage up the Yukon from
Dawson has taken us since Wednesday at 2:30, when we cast off and
stemmed the swift waters--twenty-four hours longer than going down.
During the week of our stay at Dawson the days grew perceptibly shorter
and the nights colder. There is no autumn in this land. Two weeks ago
the foliage had just begun to turn; a week ago the aspens and birches
were showing a golden yellow, but the willows and alders were yet green.
Now every leaf is saffron and golden--gamboge--and red. In a week or
more they will have mostly fallen. As yet the waters of the Yukon and
affluent rivers show no ice. In three weeks they are expected to be
frozen stiff, and so remain until the ice goes out next June. The
seasons of this land are said to be "Winter and June, July and August."
To me it seems inconceivable that the Arctic frosts should descend so
precipitately. But on every hand there is evident preparation for the
cold, the profound cold. Double windows and doors are being fastened on.
Immense piles of sawed and cut firewood are being stored close at hand.
Sleighs and especially sledges are being painted and put in order;
the dogs which have run wild, and mostly foraged for themselves during
the summer, are being discovered, captured and led off by strings and
straps and wires about their necks. Men are buying new dogs, and the
holiday of dogkind is evidently close at an end. Women are already
wearing some of their furs. Ice half to a full inch forms every night,
and yesterday we passed through our first snow storm, and all the
mountains round about, and even the higher hills, are to-day glistening
in mantles of new, fresh, soft-looking snow. The steamers of the White
Pass and Yukon Railway Company will be laid up in three weeks now, they
tell us, and already the sleighs and teams for the overland stage route
are being gathered, the stage houses at twenty-four-mile intervals being
set in order, and the "Government road" being prepared afresh for the
transmission of mails and passengers.


[Illustration: WITH AND WITHOUT.]

We have just seen some of the magnificent Labrador dogs, with their
keeper, passing along the street, owned by the Government post
here--immense animals, as big as big calves, heifers, yearlings, I might
say. They take the mails to outlying posts and even to Dawson when too
cold for the horses--horses are not driven when the thermometer is more
than 40 degrees below!

As I sat in the forward cabin the other night watching the motley crowd
we were taking "out," two bright young fellows, who turned out to be
"Government dog-drivers" going to the post here to report for winter
duty, fell into animated discussion of their business, and told me much
dog lore. The big, well-furred, long-legged "Labrador Huskies" are the
most powerful as well as fiercest. A load of 150 pounds per dog is the
usual burden, and seven to nine dogs attached each by a separate
trace--the Labrador harness is used with them, so the dogs spread out
fan-shaped from the sledge and do not interfere with each other. The
great care of the driver is to maintain discipline, keep the dogs from
shirking, from tangling up, and from attacking himself or each other. He
carries a club and a seal-hide whip, and uses each unmercifully. If they
think you afraid, the dogs will attack you instantly, and would easily
kill you. And they incessantly attack each other, and the whole pack
will always pounce on the under dog so as to surely be in at a killing,
just for the fun of it, ripping up the unfortunate and lapping his blood
eagerly, though they rarely eat him. And as these dogs are worth
anywhere from $100 up, the driver has much ado to prevent the
self-destruction of his team. And to club them till you stun them is the
only way to stop their quarrels. Then, too, the dogs are clever and
delight to spill the driver and gallop away from him, when he can rarely
catch them until they draw up at the next post house, and it may be ten
or twelve or thirty miles to that, unless it be that they get tangled
among the trees or brush, when the driver will find them fast asleep,
curled up in the snow, where each burrows out a cozy bed. The
Malamutes, or native Indian dog, usually half wolf, are driven and
harnessed differently--all in a line--and one before the other. They are
shorter haired, faster, and infinitely meaner than the long-haired
Huskie (of which sort the Labrador dogs are). Their delight is to get
into a fight and become tangled, and the only way out is to club them
into insensibility, and cut the leather harness, or they will cut the
seal-hide thongs themselves at a single bite if they are quite sure your
long plaited whip will not crack them before they can do it. These
Malamutes are the usual dogs driven in this country, for few there are
to afford or know how to handle the more powerful Labrador Huskie. And
the Malamute is the king of all thieves. He will pull the leather boots
off your feet while you sleep and eat them for a midnight supper; he
delights to eat up his seal-hide harness; he has learned to open a
wooden box and will devour canned food, opening any tin can made, with
his sharp fangs, quicker than a steel can-opener. Canned tomatoes,
fruit, vegetables, sardines, anything that man may put in, he will
deftly take out. Even the tarpaulins and leather coverings of the goods
he may be pulling, he will rip to pieces, and he will devour the load
unless watched with incessant vigilance night and day. Yet, with all
their wolfish greed and manners, these dogs perform astonishing feats of
endurance, and never in all their lives receive a kindly word. "If you
treat them kindly, they think you are afraid, and will at once attack
you," the driver said; "the only way to govern them is through fear."
Once a day only are they fed on raw fish, and while the Malamute prefers
to pilfer and steal around the camp, the Huskie will go and fish for
himself when off duty, if given the chance. Just like the bears and lynx
of the salmon-running streams, he will stand along the shore and seize
the fish that is shoved too far upon the shallows. Seventy miles a day
is the rule with the Indians and their dog teams, and the white man does
almost as much. Forty miles is it from here to Caribou Crossing, and the
Northwest Mounted Police, with their Labrador teams, take the mails when
the trains are snowbound and cover the distance in four to five hours.
Great going this must be!

And then the conversation turned to the great cold of this far north
land, when during the long nights the sun only shows for an hour or two
above the horizon.

When the thermometer falls below fifty degrees (Fahr.), then are the
horses put away, what few there may be, and the dogs transport the
freight and mails along the Government road between White Horse and
Dawson, as well as from Dawson to the mining camps to which the stage
lines usually run. Indeed, throughout all of this north land, with the
coming of the snow, the dogs are harnessed to the sledges and become the
constant traveling companions of man.


[Illustration: BREAKING OF THE YUKON--MAY 17, 1903.]

[Illustration: SUN DOGS.]

[Illustration: WINTER LANDSCAPE].

The air is dry in all this great interior basin of the continent, and,
consequently, the great cold is not so keenly felt as in the damper airs
nearer to the sea. The dogs can travel in all weathers which man can
stand, and even when it becomes so cold that men dare not move. The
lowest Government record of the thermometer yet obtained at Dawson City
is eighty-three degrees below zero. These great falls of temperature
only occasionally occur, but when the thermometer comes down to minus
sixty degrees, then men stay fast indoors, and only venture out as the
necessity demands; then the usually clear atmosphere becomes filled with
a misty fog, often so thick that it is difficult to see a hundred yards

When traveling with a dog team, or, indeed, when "mushing" upon
snow-shoes across streams and forests, men go rather lightly clad,
discarding furs, and ordinarily wearing only thick clothes, with the
long canvas parquet as protection against the wind rather than against
the temperature; then motion becomes a necessity, and to tarry means to
freeze. The danger of the traveler going by himself is that the frost
may affect his eyesight, freezing the eyelids together, perhaps dazing
his sight, unless snow-glasses are worn. And the ice forms in the
nostrils so rapidly, as well as about the mouth, and upon the mustache
and beard, that it is a constant effort to keep the face free from
accumulating ice. In small parties, however, men travel long distances,
watching each other as well as themselves to insure escape from the
ravages of the frost. When the journey is long and the toil has become
severe, the Arctic drowsiness is another of the enemies which must be
prevented from overcoming the traveler, and the methods are often cruel
which friends must exercise in order to prevent their companions from
falling asleep.

During this long period of Arctic winter and Arctic night, there seems
to be no great cessation in the struggle for gold; the diggings in the
Klondike and remoter regions retain their companies of men toiling to
find the gold. The frozen gravels are blasted out and piled up to be
thawed the next summer by the heat of the sun and washed with the
flowing waters.

While the Arctic night prevails for twenty-two or twenty-three hours out
of the twenty-four, yet so brilliant are the stars and so refulgent are
the heavens with the lightening of the aurora borealis, that men work
and travel and carry on the usual occupations, little hindered by the
absence of the sun. Sometimes, in the very coldest days, is beheld the
curious phenomenon of several suns appearing above the horizon, and
these are called the "sun dogs," the sun itself being seemingly
surrounded by lesser ones. I was fortunate enough to obtain a fine
photograph taken on one of these days, which I am able to send you.

The freezing of the Yukon comes on very suddenly, the great river often
becoming solid in a night. The curious thing of these northern lakes and
rivers is, that the ice forms first upon the bottom, and, rising, fills
the water with floating masses and ice particles, which then become
congealed almost immediately.

Early in last October our steamer "White Horse," on which we are now
traveling, became permanently frozen in when within one hundred miles of
Dawson City, the apparently clear river freezing so quickly that the
boat became fast for the winter, and the passengers were compelled to
"mush" their way, as best they might, across the yet snowless country, a
terrible and trying experience in the gathering cold.

You may be in a row-boat or a canoe upon ice-free waters, and, as you
paddle, you may notice bubbles and particles of ice coming to the
surface. Great, then, is the danger. The bottom has begun to freeze. You
may be frozen in before you reach the shore in ice yet too thin to walk
upon or permit escape.

For the greater part of the winter season the frozen streams become the
natural highways of the traveler, and the dog teams usually prefer the
snow-covered ice rather than attempt to go over the rougher surface of
the land.

Another curious thing, friends tell me, affects them in this winter
night-time, and that is the disposition of men to hibernate. Fifteen and
sixteen hours of sleep are commonly required, while in the nightless
summer-time three and four and five hours satisfy all the demands nature
seems to make--thus the long sleeps of winter compensate for the lack of
rest taken during the summer-time.

And yet these hardy men of the north tell me that they enjoy the winter,
and that they perform their toils with deliberation and ease, and take
full advantage of the long sleeping periods.

The Yukon freezes up about the 10th of October, the snow shortly
follows, and there is no melting of the ice until early June. This year
the ice went out from the river at Dawson upon June 10th; thus, there
are seven to eight months of snow and ice-bound winter in this Arctic



     STEAMER DOLPHIN, September 22, 1903.

We left White Horse by the little narrow-gauge railway, White Pass &
Yukon Railway, at 9:30--two passenger cars, one smoker, mail and express
and baggage hung on behind a dozen freight cars. Our steamer brought up
about one hundred passengers from Dawson and down-river points, and
together with what got on board at White Horse, the train was packed.
Many red-coated Northwest Mounted Police also boarded the train, and
just as it pulled out, a strapping big, strong-chinned, muscular woman
came in the rear door and sat down. She was elegantly gowned, dark,
heavy serge, white shirt waist, embroidered cloth jacket, and much gold
jewelry, high plumed hat. Presently a big man called out that all the
men must go forward into the next car, and the big woman announced that
she would proceed to examine all the ladies for gold dust. The paternal
government of the Yukon Territory exacts a tax of 2-1/2 per cent. of all
gold found, and examines all persons going out of the territory, and
confiscates all dust found on the person. Women are said to be the most
inveterate smugglers, and the big woman goes through them most
unmercifully. She bade the lady next her to stand up and then proceeded
to feel her from stockings to chemise top, and did the same by the
others. Those who wore corsets had a tough time, and some had to undo
their hair. As the first victim stood up and was unbuttoned and felt
over, she was greeted with an audible smile by the other ladies, but
silence fell as the next victim was taken in hand. Meanwhile, during
this pleasant diversion, a big red-coat stood with his back to each
door, and the men were being similarly though not so ruthlessly gone
through in the other cars. This trip no dust was found, I believe, but
last week one woman was relieved of $1,800 sewed into the margin of her
skirts and tucked deep into the recesses of her bosom. Stockings and
bosom are the two chief feminine caches for gold, and when a culprit is
thus discovered and relieved, many are the protestations and unavailing
the clamors raised. During the past year I am told that the examiners
have seized in these searches some $60,000 in dust, so I presume the
happy custom will for some time continue. Detectives are kept in Dawson,
travel on the boats, and so watch and scrutinize every traveler that by
the time the final round-up and search takes place, the probable
smugglers are all pretty well spotted. As each is examined, his or her
name is checked off in a little book.

We were close to Caribou Crossing when the ceremony was over, and I with
others of my sex was permitted to re-enter the rear car and rejoin the
company of the much beflustered ladies.

[Illustration: LAKE BENNETT.]


All along the advance of winter was apparent. The green of a fortnight
ago had turned into the universal golden yellow, and the fresh snow lay
in more extended covering upon all the mountain summits and even far
down their slopes. So it is in this far north, each day the snow creeps
down and down until it has caught and covered all the valleys as well as

At Caribou we met old Bishop Bompas and his good little wife, who, with
a big cane, came all the way into the car to see us and say good-by. A
charming couple who have given their lives doing a noble work.

Lake Bennett was like a mirror, and Lake Lindemann above it, too, seemed
all the greener in contrast to the encroaching snows. We were at the
White Pass Summit by 3 P. M., and then for an hour came down the 3,200
feet of four per cent. grade, the twenty miles to Skagway. The increase
of snows on all the mountains seemed to bring out more saliently than
ever the sharp, jagged granite rock masses. It even seemed to us that we
were traversing a wilder, bolder, harsher land than when three weeks ago
we entered it. And the views and vistas down into the warmer valleys we
were plunging into were at times magnificent. Snow around and above us,
increasing greenness of foliage below us, and beyond recurring glimpses
of the Lynn fiord, with Skagway nestling at its head. In every affluent
valley a glacier and a roaring torrent.

One of the newest and best boats in the trade, "The Dolphin," was
awaiting us. Our stateroom was already wired for and secured. We took
our last Alaska meal at the "Pack Train Restaurant," where we snacked
sumptuously on roast beef, baked potatoes and coffee for seventy cents
(in Dawson it would have been an easy $3.00), and walked down the
mile-long pier to the boat. The tides are some twenty feet here, and the
sandy bars of Skagway require long piers to permit the ships to land
when the tides are out.

We cast off about 10 P. M., with the tide almost at its height, and only
awoke to-day just as we were steaming out of Juneau. Now we are
approaching the beautiful and dangerous Wrangel Narrows, and see
everywhere above us the fresh snows of the fortnight's making.


     WEDNESDAY, September 23rd.

It is the middle of the afternoon and we are just safely through
the--to-day--tempestuous passage of "Dixon's Entrance," the
thirty-three-mile break in the coast's protecting chain of islands and
the outlet for Port Simpson to the open sea. Yesterday we passed through
the dangerous twenty miles of the Wrangel Narrows just before dark, and
only the swift swirls of the fighting tides endangered us; they fall and
rise seventeen feet in a few hours, and the waters entering the tortuous
channels from each end meet in eddying struggle somewhere near the
upper end. The boats try and pass through just before the flood tide or
a little after it, or else tie up and wait for the high water. If we had
been an hour later, we should have had to lie by for fifteen hours, the
captain said. As we turned in from Frederick Sound, between two
low-lying islands all densely wooded with impenetrable forests of fir,
the waters were running out against us almost in fury, but in a mile or
two they were flowing with us just as swiftly.

To-day we saw a good many ducks, chiefly mallard and teal, and small
divers, and my first cormorant, black, long-necked and circling near us
with much swifter flight than the gull. In the narrows we started a
great blue heron and one or two smaller bitterns.

From the narrows we passed into Sumner Strait, and then turning to the
right and avoiding Wrangel Bay and Fort Wrangel, where we stopped going
up, passed into the great Clarence Strait that leads up direct from the
sea. A sound or fiord one hundred miles or more long, ten or fifteen
miles wide.

The day had been clear, but, before passing through the narrows, clouds
had gathered, and a sort of fierce Scotch mist had blown our rain-coats
wet. On coming out into wider waters, the storm had become a gale. The
wildest night we have had since twelve months ago in the tempest of
the year upon the Gulf of Finland. To-day, until now, the waters have
been too boisterous to write. All down Clarence Strait, until we turned
into Revilla and Gigedo Channels--named for and by the Spanish
discoverers--and across the thirty-three miles of Dixon's Entrance, we
have shuttlecocked about at the mercy of the gale and in the teeth of
the running sea. The guests at table have been few, but now we are snug
behind Porcher Island and passing into the smooth waters of Greenville
Channel, so I am able to write again. The Swedish captain says the storm
is our equinoctial, and that may be, and now that the sun is out and the
blue sky appearing, we shall soon forget the stress, although to-night,
as we pass from Fitzhugh Sound into Queen Charlotte Sound, we shall have
a taste of the Pacific swell again, and probably yet have some thick
weather in the Gulf of Georgia. Considering the lateness of the season,
we are, all in all, satisfied that we rightly gave up the St. Michaels
trip, though it has sorely disappointed us not to have seen the entire
two thousand miles of the mighty Yukon.

Already we notice the moderation of the temperature and the greater
altitude of the sun, for we are quite one thousand miles south of
Dawson, while the air has lost its quickening, exhilarating, tonic

We are becoming right well acquainted with our sundry shipmates,
particularly those who have "come out" from the Yukon with us. Among
them we have found out another interesting man. Across the table from us
on the steamer "White Horse" sat a shock-headed man of about thirty
years, tall, very tall, but muscularly built, with a strong, square jaw
and firm, blue eyes. A fellow to have his own way; a bad man in a
mix-up. A flannel shirt, no collar, rough clothes. Possibly a gentleman,
perhaps a boss tough. We find him a graduate of the University of
Michigan. He has lived in Mexico, and now for five straight years has
been "mushing it," and prospecting in the far north; has tramped almost
to the Arctic Sea, into the water-shed of the Mackenzie, and bossed
fifty to one hundred men at the Klondike and Dominion diggings. His
camera has always been his companion, and for an hour yesterday he sat
in our cabin and read to us from the MSS. some of the verse and poems
with which his valise is stacked. Some of the things are charming and
some will bring the tears. This far north land of gold and frost has as
yet sent out no poet to depict its hopes, its perils, its wrecks. It may
be that he is the man. His name is Luther F. Campbell, and you may watch
for the name. And so we meet all sorts.

     FRIDAY, September 25th.

Yesterday was a "nasty" day, as was the day before. Early, 2 or 3 A. M.,
we passed through the ugly waters of Millbank Sound, where the sweeping
surge of the foam-capped Pacific smashes full force against the
rock-bound coast. We were tossed about greatly in our little 400-ton
boat, until at last, passing a projecting headland, we were instantly in
dead quiet water and behind islands once more. About 10 A. M. we came
again into the angry Pacific, and for fifty miles--four hours--were
tossed upon the heavy sea, Queen Charlotte Sound. The equinoctial gales
have had a wild time on the Pacific, and the gigantic swell of that
ocean buffeted our little boat about like a toy. But she is a fine "sea
boat," and sat trim as a duck, rolling but little, nor taking much
water. Toward middle afternoon we were in quiet waters again, and by
nightfall at the dangerous Seymour Narrows, where Vancouver Island leans
up against the continent, or has cracked off from it, and a very narrow
channel separates the two. Here the tides--twelve feet--rise, rush and
eddy, meet and whirl, and only at flood stage do boats try to pass

In 1875, a U. S. man-of-war tried to pass through when the tides were
low, and, caught in the swirling maelstrom, sank in one hundred fathoms
of water. In 1883, a coastwise steamer ventured at improper moment to
make the passage, was caught in the mad currents, and was engulfed with
nearly all on board; half a dozen men alone were saved. Hence the
captains are now very careful in making the passage, and so we lay at
anchor--or lay to--from seven to twelve, midnight, waiting for the tide.

To-day we are spinning down the Gulf of Georgia and Puget Sound, the
wind direct astern, and have already left Vancouver and Victoria to the
north. The sun is clear and soft, not hard and brilliant as in Dawson.
Whales are blowing at play about the ship, gulls skimming the air in
multitudes. All our company are over their seasickness and now mostly on
deck. We are repacking our bags and the steamer trunk, taking off heavy
winter flannels and outer wear, and preparing to land at Seattle clad
again in semi-summer clothes.



     THE PORTLAND HOTEL,                }
     Portland, Oregon, October 3, 1903. }

Just one week ago to-day the steamer "Dolphin" landed us safely at the
pier at Seattle. The sail on Puget Sound, a body of deep water open for
one hundred miles to the ocean, was delightful. We passed many vessels,
one a great four-masted barque nearing its port after six or eight
months' voyage round the Horn from Liverpool.

Seattle lies upon a semi-circle of steep hills, curving round the deep
waters of the Sound like a new moon. An ideal site for a city and for a
mighty seaport, which some day it will be. Many big ships by the
extensive piers and warehouses. The largest ships may come right
alongside the wharves, even those drawing forty feet. The tracks of the
Great Northern and Northern Pacific Railways bring the cars along the
ship's side, and there load and unload. All this we noted as our boat
warped in to her berth. A great crowd awaited us. Many of our passengers
were coming home from the far north after two and three years' absence.
Friends and families were there to greet them; hotel runners and
boarding-house hawkers; citizens, too, of the half world who live by
pillage of their fellowmen were there, and police and plain clothes men
of the detective service were there, all alike ready to greet the
returning Klondiker with his greater or lesser poke of gold. It was
exciting to look down upon them and watch their own excitement and
emotion as they espied the home-comers upon the decks. We, as well, had
all sorts of people among our passengers. Mostly the fortunate
gold-finders who had made enough from the diggings to "come out" for the
winter, and some, even to stay "out" for good. A young couple stood near
me; they were on their wedding trip; they would spend the winter in
balmy Los Angeles and then return to the far north in the spring. An old
man stood leaning on the rail. Deep lines marked his face, on which was
yet stamped contentment. He had been "in" to see his son who had struck
it rich on Dominion Creek, who had already put "a hundred thousand in
the bank," he said. He had with him a magnificent great, black Malamute,
"leader of my boy's team and who once saved him from death. The dog cost
us a hundred dollars. I am taking him to Victoria. I couldn't let him
go. His life shall be easy now," the old man added. Just then I noted a
tall man in quiet gray down on the dock looking intently at two men who
stood by one another a little to my left. They seemed to feel his
glance, spoke together and moved uneasily away. They were a pair of "bad
eggs" who had been warned out of the Yukon by the Mounted Police, and
who were evidently expected in Seattle. One, who wore a green vest and
nugget chain, played the gentleman. The other, who worked with him, did
the heavy work and had an ugly record. He was roughly dressed and wore a
blue flannel shirt and a cap. A bull neck, face covered with
dense-growing, close-cropped red beard, shifty gray eyes. He had been
suspected of several murders and many hold-ups. Detectives frequently
travel on these boats, keeping watch upon the "bad men" who are sent out
of the north. We probably had a few on board. In the captain's cabin,
close to our own, were piled up more than half a million dollars in gold
bars; the passengers, most of them, carried dust. But the pair, and any
pals they may have had along, had kept very quiet. They were spotted at
the start. They knew it. Now they were spotted again, and this, too,
they discerned.

Seattle is the first homing port for all that army of thugs and
scalawags who seek a new land like the far north, and who, when there
discovered, are summarily hurried back again. It is said to be the
"nearest hell" of any city on the coast. The hungry horde of vampire
parasites would make a fat living from the pillage of the returned
goldseeker if it were not for the vigilance of the police. A strong
effort is now being made by the authorities of Seattle to stamp out this
criminal class and drive it from the city.

Our impression, as we crowded our way through the pressing throngs upon
the pier and pushed on up into the city, was that we were in another
Chicago. Tall buildings, wide streets, fine shops, great motion of the
crowds upon the streets, many electric tram-cars running at brief
intervals, and all crowded.

On our trip up the Yukon we had made the pleasant acquaintance of a Mr.
S---- and a Mr. M---- of Columbus, O. Keen and agreeable men who had
been spending a month in Dawson puncturing a gold swindle into which an
effort had been made to lead them and their friends by unscrupulous
alleged bonanza kings. They had cleverly nipped the attempt in the bud,
and were now returning, well satisfied with their achievements. We had
become fast comrades and resolved to keep together yet another few days.
We found our way to the Grand Rainier Hotel, one of Seattle's best, and
now kept by the old host of the Gibson House in Cincinnati.

Our favorable impressions of Seattle were confirmed that night when our
friends introduced us to the chief glory of Puget Sound, the monstrous
and delicious crab, a crab as big as a dinner plate and more delicate
than the most luscious lobster you ever ate. They boil him, cool him,
crack him and serve him with mayonnaise dressing. You eat him, and
continue to eat him as long as Providence gives you power, and when you
have cracked the last shell and sucked the last claw, and finally
desist, you contentedly comprehend that your palate has reflected to
your brain all the gustatory sensations of a Delmonico banquet, with a
Sousa band concert thrown in.

Saturday, after we had spent the morning in seeing the shops and
wandering along the fine streets of the choicer residence section of the
city, we all took the tourist electric car, which, at 2 P. M., sets out
and tours the town with a guide who, through a megaphone, explains the

Seattle now claims one hundred and twenty to one hundred and thirty
thousand inhabitants, and probably has almost that number. A distinctly
new city, yet growing marvelously, and already possessing many great
buildings of which a much larger town might well boast.

Toward evening, at 4:30 P. M., we took the through electric flyer, and
sped across a country of many truck gardens and apple orchards, some
thirty-five miles to Tacoma, that distance farther up the Sound, and
once the rival of Seattle. A city more spread out and less well built,
the creation of the promoters of the Northern Pacific Railway Co., in
the palmy days of Henry Villard. Tacoma, too, possesses superb docking
facilities and a good two miles of huge warehouses and monstrous
wharves, where, also, great ships are constantly loaded and unloaded for
the Orient, South Africa and all the world, but whence few or no ships
depart for the Northern Continent of Alaska. Tacoma seemed less alive
and alert than Seattle, fewer people on the streets, smaller shops and
business blocks, and the people moving more leisurely along the
thoroughfares. In Seattle the houses mostly fresh painted; in Tacoma the
houses looking dingy and as though not painted now for many a month.
Seattle is noted for the public spirit of its citizens; they work and
pull together for the common weal, but Tacoma is so dominated by the
railway influence which created it, that the people are lacking in the
vigor of the rival town.

As our electric train came to a standstill, W---- rode up on his
bicycle, and he was surely glad to see us. Messrs. S---- and M---- had
come over with us for the ride, and we all five set right off to find
our dinner. "Cracked Crabs" was again the word, and W---- added, "Puget
Sound oysters broiled on toast." A delicate little oyster about the size
of one's finger nail, and most savory. When our party left the table, we
were as contented a group as ever had dined.

We lodged with W----, and were delightfully cared for--a large, sunny
room overlooking such a garden of roses and green turf as I never before
have seen. Roses as big as peonies and grass as green and thick as the
velvet turf of the Oxford "quads." Our host gave us each morning a
dainty breakfast, and then we foraged for ourselves during the day.

In the morning of Sunday we attended the Congregational Church, and in
the afternoon rode on the electric car to the park, a few miles--two or
three--out of the city, along the shores of one of the fine bays that
indent the Sound. Not so fine a park as Vancouver's, but one that some
day will probably rank among the more beautiful ones of our American

On Monday we wandered about the town, visited its museum, saw the fine
public buildings, and spent several hours in going over and through the
most extensive sawmill plant on the coast--"in the world," they say. The
big business originally instituted by one of the early pioneers, is now
managed by his four sons, all graduates of Yale. We met the elder of
them in blue overalls and slouch hat, all mill dust. A keen, intelligent
face. He works with his men and keeps the details of the business well
in hand. How different, I thought, from the English manner of doing
things. These men are rich, millionaires; college bred, they work with
their men. In England they tell you that no man who would give his son a
business career would think of sending him to college. Oxford or
Cambridge would there unfit him for business life. He would come out
merely a "gentleman," which there means a man who does nothing, who
earns no bread, but who lives forever a parasite on the toil of others.

In these great mills the monstrous fir and pine logs of Washington are
sawed up, cut, planed, and loaded directly into ships for all the
markets of the earth--Europe, South Africa, Australia, China, South
America and New York, wherever these splendid woods are in demand. The
forests of Washington and British Columbia are said to possess the
finest timber in the world, and all the world seems to be now seeking to
have of it.

Many fishing-boats were in the harbor and along the water-side, and many
of the big sixty-foot canoes, dug out of a single immense log, paddled
by Indians, were passing up and down the bay. Throughout the States of
Washington and Oregon the Indians are the chief reliance of the hop
growers for the picking of their crops, and every summer's-end the
various tribes along the coast gather to the work. They come from
everywhere--from Vancouver's Island, from British Columbia and even from
Alaska. They voyage down the coast in their immense sea canoes, stop at
the ports, or ascend the rivers, pushing as far as water will carry
them. They bring the children and the old folks with them, they buy or
hire horses, and they push hundreds of miles inland to the hop fields,
where a merry holiday is made of the gathering of the hops. They were
now returning, and many were passing through Tacoma. They were here
outfitting, and spending their newly earned wages in buying all those
useful and useless things an Indian wants--gay shawls and big ear-rings
for the squaws, gaudy blankets, knives and guns for the bucks; even toys
for the papooses. On the side the women were also selling baskets made
in their seasons of leisure. In the shelter of the long pier one
afternoon we came upon a group of several family canoes preparing for
the long voyage to the north. A number of pale-face women were
bargaining for baskets; one had just bought a toy canoe from an anxious
mother, and I was fortunate in buying another. Near by a man was
carefully cutting out the figures of a Totem pole. They were evidently
from Alaska. Alaska and a thousand miles or more of sea lay between them
and home. They looked like a group of Japanese and spoke in gutteral
throat tones. The Indians we lately met at Yakima were wholly different,
being redskins of the interior, not the light yellow of the coast. When
in Caribou Crossing, old Bishop Bompas, who has spent more than forty
years among the Indians of the north, told me that in his view the coast
Indians had originally come over from North Asia and were allied to the
Mongolian races, while he believed that the red-tinged, eagle-nosed
Indian of the interior was of Malay origin and of a race altogether
distinct. Be this as it may, the coast Indian, according to our
preconceived ideas, is no Indian at all, but rather a bastard Jap. He
fishes and hunts and works, and his labor is an important factor in
solving the agricultural problems of the Pacific Coast. The enormous and
profitable hop crops could not be gathered without him.

We had hoped while in Tacoma to have had the chance of visiting some of
the primeval forest regions of the State, where the largest trees are
yet in undisturbed growth, but the opportunity of taking advantage of a
railway excursion to Yakima, there to see the State Fair, was too good
to be lost, and we accordingly made that journey instead. Mr. S---- had
joined us in Tacoma, so we four bought excursion tickets, and climbed
into one of eleven packed passenger coaches of a Northern Pacific
special, and made the trip. Eight hours of it, due east and southeast,
across the snow-capped Cascade Mountains and down into the dry, arid
Yakima River basin to the city--big village--of North Yakima. An arid
valley, but yet green as an Irish hedge, a curious sight. The hills all
round sere and brown, tufted and patched with dry buffalo grass and sage
brush; the flat bottom lands mostly an emerald green; all this by
irrigation, the first real irrigation I had yet seen. The river is
robbed of its abundant waters, which are carried by innumerable ditches,
and then again divided and sub-divided, until the whole level expanse of
wide valley is soaked and drenched and converted into a smiling garden.
Here and there a piece of land, unwatered, stretched brown and arid
between the green.

North Yakima, named from the Indian tribe that still dwells hard by upon
its reservation, is a thriving little place, the greenest lawns of the
most velvety turf, roses and flowers abounding where the water comes.
Trees shading its streets, which are bounded on each side by flowing
gutters, and the driest, dustiest, vacant lots on earth. The fair is the
annual State show of horses, cattle, sheep and fruits, and these we were
glad to see. All fine, very fine, and such apples as I never before set
eyes on. Thousands of boxes of Washington apples are now shipped to
Chicago, and even to New York, so superior is their size and flavor.

Returning, we had an instance of the insolence of these great land grant
fed railway corporations. While the Northern Pacific had advertised an
excursion to Yakima and hauled eleven carloads of men, women and
children to the fair, it yet made no extra provision to take them back,
so that when next day several hundred were at the station in order to
board the train for home, only a few dozen could get in, and the very
many saw with dismay the train pull away without them! We had got into a
sleeper on the rear, fortunately, and thus escaped another twelve hours
in the overcrowded little town.

Yesterday we boarded the night express for Portland. The country between
this city and Tacoma is said to be rough and unsettled, and not fit for
even lumbering or present cultivation, so we did not regret the travel
at night. On the other hand, we saw much fine forest in crossing the
Cascade Mountains, although the finest timber in the State is, I am
told, over in that northwestern peninsula on the slopes of the Olympia
Mountains, between Puget Sound and the Pacific. There the trees grow
big, very big, and thence come the more gigantic of the logs, fifty and
one hundred feet long and ten to twenty-five feet in diameter at the

[Illustration: MT. RANIER OR TACOMA.]

The Puget Sound cities are destined to become among the chief marts of
commerce and of trade upon the Pacific Coast, and they are filled with
an energetic, intelligent population of the nation's best. The climate,
too, though mild, is cool enough for the preservation of vigor. Roses
bloom all the winter through in Tacoma, they tell me. And the summers
are never overhot. The humidity of the atmosphere is the strangest thing
to one of us from the East. "More like England than any other is the
climate," they say, and the exquisite velvet turf is the best evidence
of this. But the most wonderful sight of all to my Kanawha eyes was the
ever-present snow-massed dome of Mt. Rainier, lifting high into the
sky, sixty miles away, but looking distant not more than ten.

The third great center of the life of this northwest coast is
Portland. Solid, slow, rich, conservative. A hundred and twenty miles
from the sea, but yet a seaport. Situated on the Willamette River, six
miles from its confluence with the mighty Columbia. Already Seattle
outstrips it in population, so a Portland man admitted to me to-day, yet
Portland will always remain one of the great cities of the coast. It
possesses many miles of fine docks; the waters about their piles are not
quiet and serene, but swift and turbulent, sometimes mad and dangerous.
It has a complete and extensive electric tramway system, and this
evening we have ridden many miles about the city, and up by a cable road
onto the heights, a straight pull four hundred feet in the air. Below us
lay the city, level as a floor, the Willamette winding through it,
crossed by many steel draw-bridges, while distant, to the north, we
could just make out the two-mile-wide Columbia. Portland is a wealthy
and substantial city--a city for the elderly and well-to-do, while
Seattle is the city for the young man and for the future.

The lesson we have really been learning to-day, however, is not so much
of Portland as of the river Columbia, the really "mighty Columbia."

At 9:30 we took a train on the Oregon Shortline Railway up along the
Columbia--south shore--to the locks at the Cascades, a three hours' run,
and then came down again upon a powerful steamboat of the Yukon type,
though not so large. It took us about four and one-half hours with only
three landings and with the current. The last fifteen or twenty miles of
the trip the river was fully two miles wide, although at the Cascades it
had narrowed to be no broader than the Kanawha. On either side the
valley was generally occupied by farms and meadows, grazing cattle, many
orchards, substantial farmsteads. A long-time settled country and
naturally fertile. And along either shore, at intervals of not more than
a quarter of a mile, were the fish-traps, the wheels, the divers handy
contrivances of man, to catch the infatuated salmon. Until I saw the
swarming waters of that creek of Ketchikan, my mind had failed to
comprehend the fatuity of these fish. This year, owing, they say, to the
influence of the hatcheries established by the Government, the catch of
salmon here has been enormous; so great, in fact, that "hundreds of
_tons_" of the salmon had to be thrown away, owing to the inability
of the canneries to handle them before they had spoiled.


The Portland people whom I have met and talked with all tell me that
even though Seattle secures the Alaskan trade, even though Seattle and
Tacoma obtain the lion's share of the waxing commerce of China and
Japan, yet will Portland be great, because she must ever remain the
mistress of the trade of that vast region drained by the Columbia and
the Willamette, all of whose products come to her by water, or by a rail
haul that is wholly downgrade. And when I realize that the Columbia is
plied by steamboats even up in Canada, a thousand miles inland, where we
traversed its valley on the Canadian Pacific Railway, and that when
Uncle Sam has built a few more locks, these same boats can then come
down to Portland, and Portland boats ascend even to the Canadian towns,
as well as traverse Washington and enter Idaho and Montana, then is it
that I realize that the future of this fine city is most certainly well



                                    October 3, 1903.}

     From Portland to San Francisco. Written while moving thirty miles
     an hour on the Southern Pacific Railway.

Here we are flying due south from Portland, crossing the entire State of
Oregon. We have left Portland on the 8:30 morning train--"The Southern
Limited"--and shall be in "Frisco" at eight o'clock to-morrow night. We
are now ascending the beautiful valley of the Willamette, "Will-am-ett;"
with a fierce accent on the _am_. Flat and level as a table--ten to
twenty miles wide and two hundred miles long, lying between the Coast
Range on the west and the higher Cascade Mountains on the east. A land
of perfect fertility, so gracious a country as I have never yet beheld.
In winter, rarely any snow, plenty of rain and very much moist Scotch
air. In summer, a sunshine that ripens fields of wheat, a moisture that
grows the biggest apples and prunes and small fruits. Everywhere neat,
tidy farmhouses, big barns. Great stacks of wheat straw and as big ones
of hay, and these generally tented in with brown canvas. We are passing,
too, extensive fields of hop vines, an especially lucrative crop at
present prices--twenty-five cents a pound, while seven cents is reckoned
as the cost. Everywhere we see flocks of chickens, turkeys and some
geese plucking the stubble fields, for the crops are all cut and
harvested. And every now and then we espy a superb Mongolian pheasant in
gorgeous plumage, for they have become acclimated and multiply in this
salubrious climate. Herds of fine cattle and sheep are grazing in the
meadows, and the horses are large and look well cared for. A rich, fat
land, filled with a well-to-do population. I have just fallen into talk
with a young lawyer who lives at the port of Toledo, where Uncle Sam is
dredging the bar at the mouth of the Yaquina River, and to which city
new railroads are coming from the interior, and where they expect a
second Portland to grow up. He tells me that east of the Cascade
Mountains lie other fertile valleys west of the Rockies, and where also
is the great cattle and stock raising region of the State, and where
moisture is precipitated sufficient to save the need of irrigation.

Now we are just coming to the Umpqua River and the town of Roseburg--a
garden full of superb roses blooming by the station--where stages may be
taken to the coast at Coos Bay, another growing seaport section, where
extensive coal mining and timbering prevail. And as the dusk grows we
are passing over the divide to Rogue River and its verdant valley, which
we shall traverse in the night. Oregon is green and the verdure much
like that of England--the same moist skies, with a hotter summer sun
urging all nature to do its best.

In the night we shall climb over the Siskiyou Mountains, and by dawn
will be in sight of Mount Shasta. At Portland we were amidst mists and
fogs and drizzling rain, so we caught no glimpses of Mt. Hood and Mt.
Adams and Mt. St. Helena and Mt. Jefferson, all of whose towering
snow-clad cones may be seen on a clear day. We hope that to-morrow Mt.
Shasta will be less bashful and not hide her white head.

     SUNDAY A. M., October 4th.

In California! We were called at six o'clock that we might see Mt.
Shasta, and also have a drink from the famous waters of Shasta Spring.
Mt. Shasta we did not see, so great were the fog masses and mists
enshrouding her, but we have had a drink from the elixir fountain. A
water much like the springs at Addison, in Webster County, W. Va., but
icy cold.

Now we are coming down the lovely valley of the Sacramento. A downgrade
all the way to "Frisco." The verdure is growing more tropical. The
undergrowth of the forests is more and more luxuriant. I see big, red
lilies by the swift water-side. The air is milder. We have descended
already 1,600 feet since passing Shasta Spring. We have five hundred
feet more to drop to Oakland. We are now in a ruggedly volcanic mining
country, many iron, lead and copper mines and once placer diggings for
gold, these latter now pretty much worked out, only a few Chinese
laboriously washing here and there.

Now we are at Keswick and see our first groves of figs and almonds and
some wide-reaching palms and the spreading umbrella-trees, and many
prune orchards. The valley is widening, the air is warmer than we have
known it for many days. We are surely in California.

I have just been talking with the brakeman. He has been in Dawson and on
the Klondike. "Mushed" through the White Pass, but, after reaching
Dawson, he lost heart and came back again without a stake. The man who
failed! Another, a big man, with a strong jaw and keen eye, has just
climbed on the rear platform. He, too, has been in Dawson, stayed one
day, bought a claim in the morning for $1,000, and sold it in the
evening for $15,000, and then came right back to his almond groves to
invest his make and thereafter rest content with California. The man who

Near us sits a black-eyed Russian woman, young and comely, whose husband
was one of the discoverers of gold in Nome, and with her the loveliest
blue-eyed Norwegian maiden just arrived from Hammerfest. "My husband's
sister who is come to America to stay," the Russian says in perfect
English. She is learning to talk American, and wonders at the huge cars,
the multitude of people, the distances--"only a few hours from Trondhjem
to Kristiania, but over four days and nights from New York to Seattle!"
she exclaims. And her blue eyes grow big with wonder at the
half-tropical panorama now unrolling before us.

I am writing this letter by bits as we travel. We are now on a straight
track, as from my improved handwriting you may detect. A stretch of
thirty-seven miles straight as the crow flies. We are past the smaller
fruit farms of the upper Sacramento Valley; we are out on the interior
plain that from here extends all down through California, a thousand
miles almost to Mexico. We are in the wonderful garden land of the
State. On either side of us stretches away, as far as the eye can see, a
flat, level plain. It is one monstrous wheat field, and fences only at
rare intervals mark it into separate holdings. On the east, far on the
sky line, extend the snow-tipped summits of the Sierra Nevada Mountains;
on the west, the Coast Range. We have passed out of the region of mists
and clouds, and are now in a clear, warm sunshine, the heavens an
arching vault of cloudless blue. As clear as on the Yukon almost, but
with many times the warmth. This is the region of the Mammoth Bonanza
wheat farms you have so often read about. And one feels that man
hereabouts does things in a big way.

In Oregon, they tell me, the climate is so equable that a single blanket
keeps you warm of night the year round. You need it in summer; you do
not need more in winter. Here, I fancy, you scarcely need any at all, so
much further south have we already come.

Even yet we are passing through the wide stretches of wheat lands, wheat
now milled in California and sent in many big ships to the Orient. The
Chinaman is just learning the joy of an American flap-jack or a loaf of
wheat bread--and he can't get enough.

Dusk has come down upon us before we have reached Carquinez Strait, over
which our train--a long train--is carried by a monstrous ferry boat, and
then, skirting San Francisco Bay, we are soon among the suburban
illuminations of Oakland. Across the five miles of water lies San
Francisco, its million glittering electric lights stretching several
miles and covering the hills on which the city is built, while far out
on the right flashes the intermittent gleam of the light-houses marking
the entrance of the Golden Gate. The ferry-boat taking us across is said
to be the largest in the world, and the Norwegian lass's big blue eyes
grow all the bigger as she looks about her on the multitude of
fellow-passengers. And then we are ashore and are whirling through
broad, well-lighted streets to our hotel, "The Palace," where now we



     LOS ANGELES, October 12, 1903.

We slept in the old, famous, and yet well-patronized Palace Hotel, and
on which the Fair estate has just renewed a mortgage for another term of

In the morning we essayed to have a look at the city, and so took a
long, wide electric car devoted to that purpose. A ride of thirty miles,
and all for the price of only "two bits"! We circled around the city, we
traversed its streets and avenues, climbed and descended its multitude
of hills, went everywhere that an electric car might dare to go, and
were given the chance to try the cable trams when the declivity was too
steep for anything to move that did not cling.

The sunshine was delicious, the watered lawns and watered flowers
superb, the unwatered, blistered sand spaces, vacant lots and dust-laden
winds dreadful.

The city pleased and disappointed me. It is an old city--half a century
old--old for the driving West, and mainly built of wood. Miles and miles
of small, crowded, two-story, wooden dwellings, sadly needing a coat of
paint, and mostly constructed thirty or forty years ago. A town once
replete with vigor, that has slumbered for several decades, and is now
reviving into life again. The vast mansions of the bonanza kings, the
railway lords on "Nob Hill," are now all out of date and mostly empty of
their former occupants. The Fairs, the Mackeys, the O'Briens are dead,
their heirs scattered to the winds. The Crokers, the Stanfords, the
Huntingtons are reminiscences. The street urchins know them no more.
Fashionable San Francisco has moved to another hill. The tenement
quarter of the town has crept to their very doors. But the business
section of the city has not moved as it has in New York. It stands just
where it always stood. The Palace Hotel, once the glory and boast of the
Pacific Slope, is still the chief hostelry of the town; and yet the city
is instinct with a new life. Its lively, hustling thoroughfares are full
of a new vigor; a new tide of Asiatic and Oriental commerce has entered
the somewhat somnolent city. All this, the magic result of the battle of
Manila Bay, and the new relation of the United States to the far east.
Where the Pacific Mail S. S. Co. sent a single monthly ship across the
Pacific five years ago, now six lines of great freight and passenger
steamships are unable to satisfy the increasing demands of trade. Now
twenty steamers and a multitude of sailing craft come to deliver and
take cargoes, where few or none came six years ago. On the land side,
too, there is progress. The A. T. & Santa Fe Railway has broken through
the monopoly of the Southern Pacific Railway Company, so cleverly and
firmly fastened by Huntington and his friends; and there are hopes that
other lines may yet establish independent relations with the city. Along
with this new growth of commerce have come a new throng of energetic
men, and new fortunes are being made--and more widely distributed. The
city, the commercial center, the ocean port, are all growing at a
steadier, healthier gait than in the ancient feverish days of bonanza
kings and railroad magnates. For awhile, San Francisco was "in the
soup," so to speak. Its rich men were leaving it, did leave it; its
sand-lots proletariat threatened to gain the upper hand; its middle
class, the people making and possessing only moderate incomes, were
doubtful of a success that to them had not yet come. To the north,
sleepy Portland had wakened up; Seattle and Tacoma had been born; and in
the south, Los Angeles had risen, like a phoenix, from the torrid
sands. But San Francisco did not stir. Then Dewey sank the fleet of
Montejo; the nation quickened with a consciousness that she was a
world-power; that the trade and commercial dominance of the Pacific
lands and isles and seas were rightly hers, and in a night San Francisco
found herself re-endowed with new life.

After the tramway ride, we spent an afternoon strolling about through
the business streets and along the docks and wharves, viewing the many
new shops, splendid modern stores, quite equaling, in the sumptuous
display of their wares, the great trading centers of New York and
Chicago, and noting the volume of wholesale traffic on the down-town
streets, the jobbing center, and the busy stir along the waterfront
for several miles.

No finer sight have we seen than when we stood near the surf-washed
rocks, famous as the home of the sea-lions, and, turning our gaze toward
the wind-tossed billows of the Pacific Ocean, beheld eight or ten
full-rigged ships and four-masted barques converging on the narrow
entrance of the Golden Gate, coming in out of the west, laden with the
teas and silks and commerce of the Orient, their multitudinous sails all
set before the breeze, like a flock of white-winged sea birds, while
slipping among them a steamer from Honolulu and another from Nome came
swiftly in.

Another day we were ferried five miles across the wide bay toward the
north, to the pretty suburban residence section of Sausalito, and there
taking an electric road were brought to the foot of Mount Tamalpais, and
then changing to a climbing car were pushed ten miles up near 4,000 feet
into the air, to the top of a volcanic cone that rises out of sea and
bay, and dominates the landscape for many miles. Below us, at our feet,
lay the great Bay of San Francisco and the city itself, with its green,
garden-like suburban villages, the many islands, the ships of war and of
commerce, the narrows of the Golden Gate; and, westward, the Pacific
Ocean, with the distant Farallon Islands, outposts of the Orient, while
far to the east, peeping above the clouds, gleamed the snow-capped
summits of the Sierra Nevadas.

Another day, we visited the Presidio, and rejoiced to see the blue
uniform of Uncle Sam after the many weeks of red coats upon the Yukon.
Say what you may, it quickens the blood to catch a glimpse of our boys
in blue. I well remember how good it seemed when we met them in command
of the fortress of El Moro, at Havana, two years ago.

We also spent a night in Chinatown--or part of the night--for we were
bound to see its horrors and its joys. The opium dens--a picture of Hop
Sing and his cat, the beast also a victim of the habit--I bring home to
you; the theatre, where the audience and the actors were equally
interesting; the Joss house or temple; the lady with the tiny feet, one
of whose midget shoes I took off and have to show you; the barber shop
where they shave the head and scrape out the ears and nose; the many
handsome shops and almost priceless curios; and the swarms of
bright-eyed, laughing, friendly, gentle children.

[Illustration: A BIG REDWOOD.]

While the Chinese upon the Pacific Coast, and in San Francisco more
particularly, have been greatly lessened in number the last few years,
it is interesting to note how many of the more progressive Japanese are
now to be seen in all of the great cities along the Pacific coast. In
Vancouver, all of the bell boys and elevator boys in the large Hotel
Vancouver were bright-eyed Japs. Keen, intelligent, wide-awake little
fellows, speaking good English, dressed in American style, and seeming
to know their business perfectly. We saw them at Seattle and Tacoma and
Portland, and now we find them in large numbers in San Francisco. They
get along well with the white man. They dress like him, eat like him,
walk like him, and try to look as much like him as possible. They seek
employment as servants, as day laborers, and are also getting
extensively into trade in a small way. They keep prices up like a white
man and join labor unions like the white man, and sympathetically act
with him to a degree that eliminates the prejudice that hedges in and
drives out the Chinaman. The Japanese seem to supply a genuine want in
the Pacific slope. I learned, also, that Japanese capital is now coming
into California and making substantial investments, the expenditure of
their money giving employment to American white labor.

Coming down the Sacramento Valley the other day, I noticed that all the
labor gangs employed by the Southern Pacific Railroad were Greeks,
dull-looking Greeks who could speak no English. It seemed to me as I
looked into their semi-Oriental faces, that they gave less promise of
satisfactory American citizenship than did the up-to-date, alert,
intelligent Japanese. The one represented a semi-Oriental country, whose
greatness was destroyed by Rome two thousand years ago; the other
expressed the awakened intelligence of the new Orient, the new Japan
whose great modern navy to-day ranks first upon the Pacific.

That night when we first crossed the bay toward the long line of
glittering city, the tall Norwegian said to me: "I have sailed all about
this world and visited many cities, but San Francisco suits me the very
best of them all." And his black-eyed Tartar wife from Moscow exclaimed:
"Ah, I will never leave here till I die." All who visit San Francisco
feel this subtle charm. There is a certain something in the air that
soothes as well as stirs. Its lawns and flowers where water is applied;
its sunshine, never too hot, for it is tempered by the breezes from the
sea; no winter, rarely a dash of snow; no torrid sun; an atmosphere
almost gentle, yet not destroying energy.

Leaving San Francisco, we took the little narrow-gauge railway that
leads out south of the city, skirts the bay and climbs the Coast Range
through the famous grove of immense redwood trees that comes down to the
sea at Santa Cruz. A pretty village among gardens and orchards of prunes
and apricots and almonds, famous for its flowers and its fish. On the
long pier we watched the Italian fishermen mending their nets and
loading them into their lateen-sailed boats. Here the rainbow-hued
Barroda is caught in the deep sea and shipped to the city; while,
sitting all along the pier, were old folks and young catching smelts
with hook and line. An old man with long, white beard said to me, as he
took off a smelt and put it in his creel, "If a man has nothing to do
but just to live, this is the most salubrious spot along this coast.
I've tried them all."



From Santa Cruz we went over to the quaint old Spanish town of Monterey,
once California's capital, now the barrack sanitarium of Uncle Sam's
soldier boys, and upon whose quiet main street still dwells the
Mexican-Spanish beauty to whom Tecumseh Sherman once made love, and in
whose garden yet grows the pomegranate he planted in token of their
tryst. She has never wed, but treasures yet the memory of her soldier

Near Monterey is that marvelously lovely park, surrounding the great Del
Monte Hotel, built by Crocker and Stanford and Huntington in their days
of power, and where, among groves and lawns and gardens, winds the
seventeen-mile drive of which the world has heard so much. Imagine the
parks of Blenheim and Chatsworth and Windsor all combined, but filled
with palmettos and palms and semi-tropical verdure--giant live oaks and
Norfolk pines and splendid redwood, with all the flowers of the earth,
with ponds and fountains, and you will have some faint conception of the
beauty of Del Monte, an object-lesson of what the landscape gardener may
do in California. We regretted leaving this superb place, but were glad
to have had even a glimpse of it.

All the day we now hastened south on the flying "Coast Limited," bound
for Santa Barbara. First ascending the broad valley of Salinas River,
the Coast Range close on our right, a higher range of mountains on our
left, until, converging, we pierced the barrier by a long tunnel and
slid down to San Louis Obispo and then to the sea. Many monstrous fields
of sugar beet, miles of prune and almond and apricot trees, thriving
orchards all of them; then mile after mile of wheat stubble, stacks of
wheat straw, piles of sacked wheat at the by-stations; then herds of
cattle and many horses as we reached the head of the valley. A rich and
fecund land, held originally in big estates, now beginning to be cut up
into the smaller farms of the fruit growers.

Toward the end of the afternoon we were skirting along by the
breaker-lashed coast of the Pacific. A clear sky, a violent wind and
tempestuous, foam-covered sea. We sat with the windows open, not minding
the heat of the sun. The tide was at ebb, and upon the sand we saw many
sea birds, gulls in myriads, snipe, plover, yellow-legs, sand-pipers in
flocks, coots and curlew. We also passed a number of carriages driving
close to the receding waters.



[Illustration: THE SEA--SANTA BARBARA.]

[Illustration: THE SEA--SANTA BARBARA.]

The country grew constantly warmer, the soil responding to cultivation
with more and more luxuriant crops; among these, fields of lima beans,
miles of them, which are threshed out and shipped in enormous quantity.
It was dark when we drew in at Santa Barbara, and we did not know what
hotel to go to, but, tossing up, chose the Potter. Many runners were
calling their hostelries; the Potter porter alone was silent. As we
drove in his 'bus through the palm-bordered streets, a cozy home showing
here and there in the glare of an electric street light, we
wondered what our luck would be. Imagine our delight when we drew up at
the stately portal of a modern palace, built in the Spanish style and
right on the borders of the sea. The moon was almost full, the tide near
flood, the sunset breeze had died, the sea air soft and sweet, and the
palace ours! A new hotel, two millions its cost, no finer on the Pacific
Coast. And in this off season the prices were most moderate. Nowhere yet
have we been so sumptuously housed. In the lovely dining-room we sat at
supper by a big window looking out over the moonlit sea.

In the morning we wandered far down upon the beach, watching the
breakers beyond the point, and later went up to the famous old
Franciscan Monastery, a mile beyond the town. A shrewd yet simple father
in brown monk's robe who asked many questions of the outside world,
showed us all about, and in the garden stood for his photograph, quite
pleased at the attention. No more charming wintering spot have we yet
come to than Santa Barbara.

In the late evening we entrained again and took the local for Los
Angeles. For quite an hour and a half we ran close to the ocean, the
perpetual breaking of the crested waves upon the shore sounding above
the roar of the moving train. A yet greener land we now passed through,
everywhere watered by irrigation, everywhere responding with seemingly
greater luxuriance. It was just dusk as we turned inland, and quite dark
when we came through the big tunnel into the head waters of the Los
Angeles Valley. Just then a bright young fellow sat down beside me, and,
talking with him, I was pleased to find him from West Virginia. A. Judy,
from Pendleton County. A few years ago the family had come to this
southern land and all have prospered. He was full of the zest of the
life that wins.

Presently we came to many lights among shade trees, mostly palms, then
houses and more lights, wide streets showing themselves. We were in Los
Angeles, the metropolis of Southern California, the furthest south that
on this journey we shall go.



     LOS ANGELES, October 13, 1903.

We slept in Los Angeles with our windows wide open and felt no chill in
the dry, balmy air, although a gentle breeze from seaward sifted through
the lace curtains all night long. The sun was streaming in when at last
we awoke to the sound of New England church bells. We breakfasted on
plates piled high with big, red, sweet strawberries, dead ripe, evenly
ripe, but not one whit over ripe. A ripeness and sweetness we have never
before tasted, even in Oxford. In Seattle and Tacoma we met the royal
crab of the Puget Sound, and found him big and bigger than the crabs of
England and of France--big as dinner plates, all of them, and now we
find in the great, luscious strawberry of Los Angeles another American
product as big as those that grow in the gardens of merrie England.

Los Angeles! How can I tell you of it and of the lovely region of the
American Riviera all round about it? My ideas of Los Angeles had been
indefinite. I had only heard of it. I only knew that up in Dawson and in
Alaska the frost-stung digger for gold dreams of Southern California and
the country of Los Angeles, and when, during his seven long months of
winter and darkness, he assures himself of his stake and his fortune,
he talks of the far south and prepares to go there and to end his days
among these orange groves and olive orchards and teeming gardens. And
when he dies--so it is said--every good Yukoner and Alaskan has no other
prayer than to be translated to Southern California! So I had imagined
much for this perhaps most charming of all regions of the semi-tropics,
within the immediate borders of the United States. But I had not yet
conceived the fine, modern city among all of this delight of climate and
of verdure. A city with broad, asphalted business streets, built up on
either side with new, modern sky-scrapers far exceeding in bigness those
of San Francisco. The edifices bordering Market Street in San Francisco
are fine, but old in type--most or all erected thirty or forty years
ago--while the many huge blocks of Los Angeles are as up to date as
those of New York. It possesses two hundred miles of modern electric
tramways, and H. E. Huntington has sold out his holdings in the Southern
Pacific left him by his uncle, C. P. Huntington, and has put and is now
putting his millions into the electric tramway system of Los Angeles.



During the morning we rode some thirty miles upon the tourist's car,
seeing the city, its many fine parks, its public buildings, its business
blocks, its extraordinary extent of imposing residences. And when we
might ride no longer, we strolled on through Adams Street and Chester
Place and St. James Place, and among those sections of the residence
quarter where no tramways are allowed to profane the public way. And
here among these modern palaces, perhaps, we learned to comprehend the
real inwardness of Los Angeles' astonishing growth, for many of these
superb homes are not built and owned by the business men making fortunes
out of the commerce of the city, but are built and owned by those who
have already acquired fortunes in other parts of the United States and
of the world, and who by reason of the genial climate of Southern
California, have come here to live out the balance of their days. Their
incomes are derived from sources elsewhere than in California, and they
spend freely of those incomes in the region of their new homes. The
exquisite lawns, the flowering shrubs, the tropical and semi-tropical
palms and palmettos, all kept and cared for by means of the constant use
of water and expert gardeners' skill, give to the city a residence
section of marvelous charm. Water does it all, and man helps the water.

Los Angeles possesses many fine churches and schools and two flourishing
colleges. One run by the Methodist Church; the other under the control
of the State. From a city of twenty-five thousand in 1890, Los Angeles
is now grown to one hundred and twenty-five thousand, and is still
expanding by leaps and bounds. It is the center of the gardens and
orchards and citrus fruit trade of Southern California, and is the Mecca
toward whose environs comes in perpetual procession the unending army
of the world's "One Lungers," and their friends.

Of an afternoon we rode out to Pasadena in the swift, through electric
train. Once a separate community, now already become a suburb of the
greater growing city. "The finest climate on the earth," they say, and
mankind from all parts of the earth are there to prove it. A large town
of residences, each standing apart in its own garden; many surrounded by
oranges and pomegranates and figs. Lovely homes and occupied by a
cultivated society.

We did not tarry to see the celebrated ostrich farm, which is one of the
famous sights of Pasadena, but went on toward the mountain chain beyond
and north of Pasadena to the base of towering Mount Low, and climbed
right up its face a thousand feet on an inclined plane steeper than any
of Kanawha's, and then another thousand feet by five miles of winding
electric railway. A wonderful ride into the blue sky, with a yet more
wonderful panorama stretching for many miles beneath our feet. All the
valley of the Los Angeles, the innumerable towns and villages and farms
and groves and orchards and vineyards stretching far as the eye could
see until bounded by the mountains of Mexico to the south, and the
shimmering waters of the Pacific to the west, and to the north and east
a limitless expanse of scarred and serrated volcanic mountain ranges,
like the gigantic petrified waves of a mighty sea. Below us the perfect
verdure of irrigated land, the patches and masses of greenness
everywhere threaded and interspersed by the irrigating ditches and pools
and ponds whereby the precious water is impounded and distributed when

Los Angeles lies very near the center of an immense cove, whose sea line
marks the great indenture on the southwest of the United States, where
the coast bends in from Cape Conception and curves southeastward to the
borders of Mexico, a total coastal frontage on the Pacific Ocean of near
three hundred miles.

On the north, the mountains of the Coast Range, and the westward jutting
spurs of the Sierra Nevada come together and form a barrier against the
cold northern airs. Eastward their extension forms a high barrier
against the colder airs of the Rocky Mountain region. Los Angeles lies
at about the point where these protecting mountain ranges recede to near
sixty miles from the sea, itself some twenty and thirty miles from the
twin ports of Santa Monica and San Pedro, and is the commercial center
of this rich alluvial and sheltered region, of which Santa Barbara, on a
lovely bay, is the chief northern center, and San Diego, one hundred and
fifty miles to the south, upon the second finest harbor in California,
is the most southern port and trade outlet. A vast "ventura," as the
Spaniards called it, upon this fertile plain and rolling upland anything
will grow if only it has water. For three or four months in the year,
from early November to March, the skies pour down an ample rainfall, and
the world is a garden. During the other eight months, man--the active
American--now irrigates the land with water stored during the rainy
season, and thus a perpetual and prolific yield is won from the fecund
soil. Here the famous seedless orange was discovered, perpetuated, and
has become the most coveted citrous fruit. Fortunes have been made from
the raising of these oranges alone. The immense and fragrant
strawberries ripen every month the year round. Figs and pomegranates
abound. Apples, pears, olives and grapes yield enormous and profitable
crops. No frosts, no drouths. Last year Los Angeles and its contributing
orchards shipped twenty-five thousand carloads of citrous fruit. This
year they reckon to do yet more. Their capacity is only limited by the
markets' demand, and both seem boundless.

The air is dry like that of the Yukon Valley, and similarly, extremes of
temperature are easily borne. It is never unpleasantly hot in Southern
California, they say, just as the Yukoner vows he never suffers from the
cold. "Only give us water to wash our gold;" "water to irrigate our
crops," cries each, "and we will become richer than the mind of man can
think." But the types of men and women are somewhat different in the two
extremes. A sturdier race wins fortune from the soil in the Klondike
land; there the children have rosier faces and are more alert. On the
crowded streets of the southern city the pale presence of the "one
lungers" is at once remarked. But for this, the people might be the

We left this gracious garden land, with its gentle climate, by the
midday train, this time leaving the coast and following the interior San
Joaquin Valley route. Just at the outskirts of the city our train halted
a moment, and, looking from the window, I saw a most astonishing
spectacle--an extensive enclosure with a large, wide-roofed building in
its midst, and enclosure, roof and air all thick with myriads of
pigeons. Here is the greatest pigeon roost of the world, where an
enterprising bird lover raises squabs by the thousands, cans them in his
own factory, and sends them all over the earth to the delight of the
epicure. Just why such myriads of birds should not fly away, I do not
know, but there they were covering the ground, the roof, and filling the
air in circular flights, and seemed rarely or never to leave the borders
of the enclosure.

For a few hours we retraced our way and then turned eastward across the
edge of the great Mojave Desert. Crossing the barrier of the San
Fernando Mountains on the north, through a mile-and-a-half-long tunnel,
we left the greenness of olive grove and orange orchard behind, and came
out into a continually more and more arid country. Cactus and yucca
began to appear and to multiply, the dwarf shrunken palmetto of the
Mexican plains grew more and more plentiful, and then we came through
dry, parched gulches and cañons, out onto a dead flat plain stretching
away toward the eastern horizon as far as the eye could see--sand and
sage brush and stunted cactus; a hundred miles or more away a faint
blue mountain range showing in the slanting sunlight against the eastern
sky. Dry and arid and hopeless to man and beast. A terrible waste to
cross, or even to enter, and lifeless and desolate beyond concept.

During the night we crossed over the high, arid Tehachapi Mountains and
descended into the San Joaquin Valley, traversing that wonderfully
fertile garden land until in the morning we were at Oakland. We then
crossed the five miles of wide harbor and took our last breakfast in the
city of the Golden Gate.

After night had fallen and I sat with my cigar, I chanced to fall in
with an interesting young Jap, "R. Onishi," on his first visit to
America, correspondent of the "Jije Shimpo," Tokio's greatest daily
newspaper. He had come over to investigate the growing rice plantations
of Texas, with a view to Japanese capital becoming interested in
development there. He had been much impressed with the opportunity there
offered, and should report favorably on the proposed enterprise. Not to
use Japanese labor, but for Japanese capital under Japanese management
to use American labor. So does the opportunity and natural wealth of our
country begin to attract the investment of the stored wealth of Asia as
well as of Europe. Like the rice dealer I met on the "Kaiser Frederich,"
crossing the Atlantic two years ago, Mr. Onishi said that American rice
brings the highest price of any in the markets of the world, and he
looks for a large export trade to Asia of American rice, as well as
wheat. And America, how vast and rich and hopeful a land it seemed to

I have now seen almost the entire Pacific Coast of our Northern American
Continent. From Skagway, from Dawson to the sight of Mexico. Its old and
its new towns and cities, its ports and trade centers have I visited,
and greatly has the journey pleased and profited me. The dim perception
of our future Pacific power that first dawned upon me at Vancouver has
now become a settled conviction. We are just beginning to comprehend the
future dominance and potency of our nation in Oriental trade, in
commerce, in wealth, in enlightened supremacy. And it fills the
imagination with boundless sweep to contemplate what are the
possibilities of these great Pacific States.

Among the cities of the future upon the Pacific Coast, Seattle and Los
Angeles are the two that impress me as affording the wider opportunity
and certainty of growth, wealth and controlling influence in trade, in
commerce, in politics. If I were a young man just starting out, I should
choose one of them, and in and through Seattle I believe there is the
larger chance. Or if I were on life's threshold and, say, twenty-five
and vigorous, I would pitch my tent within the confines of the continent
of Alaska, and by energy, thrift and foresight, become one of its
innumerable future millionaires.



     SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH, October 14, 1903.

We left San Francisco on the "Overland Limited" train, taking the ten
o'clock boat across the bay to Oakland and there entering our car. It
was a lovely morning; the sky, blue, without a cloud; the sun,
brilliant, and not so hot as at Los Angeles. The city, as we receded
from it, lay spread before us, stretching several miles along the water
and quite covering the range of hills upon which it is built. Many great
ships were at the quays, many were anchored out in the blue waters
awaiting their turn to take on cargo, and among these several
battleships and cruisers of our navy and one big monitor. Above the city
hung a huge black pall of smoke, for soft coal--very soft--and thick
asphaltic oil are the only fuels on this coast. We had come to San
Francisco by night, and marveled at the myriad of electric lights that
illumined it; we now left it by day, and yet more fully realized its
metropolitan and commercial greatness.

The ride, this time, was not along the northern breadth of the
Sacramento Valley, but by the older route through the longer settled
country to the south of it. Still many immense wheatfields, hundreds of
sheep browsing among the stubble, and yet more of the orchards of
almonds, prunes, apricots, figs and peaches. A monstrous fruit garden,
for more than one hundred miles; and everywhere fruit was drying in the
sun, spread out in acres of small trays.

At Sacramento, we crossed the river on a long iron bridge, and noted the
many steamboats along the wharves--the river is navigable thus far for
steamboats--boats about the size of our Kanawha packets, and flows with
a swift current.

After leaving San Francisco, we began that long ascent, which at last
should carry us over the passes of the Sierra Nevada Mountains some
6,000 feet above the sea. The grades are easy, though persistent, the
track sweeping around mountain bases and along deep valleys in wide
ascending curves. All the day, till evening, we were creeping up, up,
up, following one long ridge and then another, the distant snow summits
always before us and seemingly never much nearer than at first. The
lower slopes were, like the Sacramento Valley, everywhere covered with
well-kept orchards, and everywhere we noted the universal irrigation
ditches of running water, constantly present beside us or traversing our

As we climbed higher we began to see evidences of present and past
placer mining, many of the mountain-sides being scarred and riven by the
monitor-thrown jets of water.

Just as the shadows began to fall aslant the higher valleys, we
commenced that long and irksome journeying through the snowsheds that,
for so many miles, are necessary on this road. Coming over the Canadian
Pacific, we met few snowsheds through the Rockies, and not more than two
or three of them in the Selkirks, but here they buried us early and held
on until long after the fall of night.

This road, you know, was originally the Central Pacific, remaining so
until swallowed by its stronger rival of the south, the Southern
Pacific, which now owns and operates it.

As we rode along, I could not help recalling its early history, the
daring of its projectors, Huntington, Crocker, Stanford and Hopkins, and
how it never could or would have been built at all but for the aid of
the thousands of Chinese who, under their Irish bosses, finally
constructed it.

This morning, when we awoke, we had long passed Reno in Nevada, and were
flying down the Sierras' eastern slopes through the alkali deserts of
the interior basin, and all day long we have been crossing these plains
of sand and sage brush and eternal alkali. We read of things, and think
we are informed, but only when we see the world face to face do we begin
to comprehend it. Only to-day have I learned to comprehend that Desert
and Death are one.


On the Canadian Pacific Railway we had beheld the great Columbia River
plunge between the facing cañon cliffs of the Rocky Mountains and the
Selkirks where they almost touch, the very apex of that vast interior
arid basin that stretches thence all across the United States and on
into Mexico. At Yakima, in Washington State, we had crossed the Cascade
range and found the arid valley made to bloom and blossom into a
perpetual garden by means of the melting snows that there fed the Yakima
River and adjacent streams. Now we were again descending from the crests
of the Sierra Nevadas, down into this same vast basin where no Columbia
cuts it through and no Yakima irrigates its limitless and solitary
aridness. For more than three hundred miles have we now been traversing
this expanse of parched and naked waste. No water, no life, no bird, no
beast, no man. Two thousand miles and more it stretches north and south,
from Canada into Mexico. Five hundred and forty miles is its narrowest
width. We beheld a spur of it the other evening when we crossed the edge
of the Mojave desert in Southern California; we should have traversed it
two days or more if we had taken the Southern Pacific route through
Arizona. As wide in its narrowest part as from Charleston to New York,
or to Chicago! What courage and what temerity did those early pioneers
possess who first ventured to cross it with their lumbering
prairie-schooners or on their grass-fed bronchos from the Eastern
plains! And how many there were who perished in the attempt! Yet water
will change even these blasted wastes, and, at the one or two stations
where artesian wells have been successfully sunk, we saw high-grown
trees and verdant gardens.

Late in the afternoon we began to approach high, barren hills and
mountain spurs, all brown and sere, save the sage brush. No cactus or
even yucca here, and after climbing and crossing a long, dry ridge, we
found ourselves descending into flat, sandy reaches, that bore even no
shrubs or plants whatsoever, save a dead and somber sedgy grass in
sparse, feeble bunches, and while the land looked wet we saw no water.
Then far to the southeast glimmered a silver streak, so faint that it
seemed no more than mist, and the streak grew and broadened and gleamed
until we knew it to be, in fact, Utah's Great Salt Lake. Later, we came
yet nearer to it for a few miles, and then lost sight of it again. But
the face of the land had changed. We saw cattle among the sage brush;
cattle browsing on the sweet, dry grass that grows close under the
sage-brush shadow on the better soils. Then we came to an occasional mud
dugout hut and sometimes a wooden shack, and the country grew greener,
grass--buffalo bunch grass--became triumphant over the sage brush, and
then, right in the midst of a waste of sere yellowness, was an emerald
meadow of alfalfa and a man driving two stout horses hitched to a
mowing-machine cutting it, two women raking it and tossing it. We were
in the land of Mormondom, and beheld their works. Now, the whole country
became green, irrigating ditches everywhere, substantial farmhouses,
large, well-built barns and outhouses, and miles of thrifty Lombardy
poplars, marking the roadways and the boundaries of the fields.

[Illustration: THE MORMON TEMPLE.]

At Ogden, where we were three hours late, our sleeper was taken off the
through train to Cheyenne and attached to the express for Salt Lake
City. We made no further stops, but, for an hour, whirled through a
green, fruitful, patiently-tilled landscape, whose fertility and
productiveness delighted eye and brain. Many orchards, large,
comfortable farmsteads; wide meadows, green and abundant, as in Holland,
with cattle and horses feeding upon them; stubble wheatfields, with
flocks of sheep; great beet fields and kitchen gardens in full crops;
and water--water in a thousand ditches everywhere! Big farm wagons,
drawn by large, strong horses, we saw upon the highways; and farmers, in
well-found vehicles, returning from the city to their homes.

Then, far away, towering above all else, loomed a group of gray spires,
like the distant view of the dominating pinnacles of the minsters and
cathedrals of England and of France, and of Cologne. They were the
spires of the great towers of the Mormon temple, that strange, imposing
and splendid creation of the brain of Brigham Young.

It was dusk when we reached the city. Electric lights were twinkling
along the wide streets as we drove to our hotel. We have not yet seen
the city, except for a short stroll under the glaring lights. But
already it has made an indelible impression on our minds. Only two
cities upon this continent--cities of magnitude--have ever been created
and laid out, by systematic forethought, before being entered and
occupied by men. One, Washington, laid out according to a comprehensive
and well-digested plan; the other, Salt Lake City, the creation--as all
else here--of Brigham Young.

The streets of Salt Lake City are all as wide as Pennsylvania Avenue.
The blocks, of ten acres each, immense. But these streets--the chief
ones are perfectly asphalted; running water flows in every side gutter;
great trees, long ago planted, shade every wide sidewalk; the electric
tram-cars run on tracks along the middle of the thoroughfare; and the
two wide roadways, on either side, are quite free from interfering wires
and poles. Many great blocks of fine buildings now rise along the
business sections, and the stores present as sumptuous displays of goods
and fabrics as anything we have seen in San Francisco, Los Angeles, or
New York. The town bears the marks of a great city. Great in its plan,
great in its development, great in its destiny. Truly, a capital fit for
the seat of power of the potent and comprehending Mormon church.


[Illustration: THE MORMON "LION HOUSE."]

All the morning we have been viewing concrete, practical Mormondom, and
the sight has been most instructive. High above the buildings of the
city tower the imposing spires and pinnacles of the Temple, the most
immense ecclesiastical structure on the North American continent. Thirty
years was it in building, all of native granite, and costing more
than four millions of dollars. It stands in the central square of the
city, surrounded by a high adobe wall, and a Gentile may view only the

Then we visited the famous Tabernacle beneath whose turtle-shaped roof
10,000 worshipers may sit, and whose acoustic properties are unrivaled
in the world. You can hear a whisper and a pin drop two hundred feet
away. In it is the immense organ possessing five hundred and twenty
stops, which, like the two great structures, was conceived and
constructed by the genius and patience of the Mormon architects. We were
shown about the grounds of the ecclesiastical enclosure--though not
permitted to enter the Temple--by a courteous-mannered lady whose black
eyes fired with religious enthusiasm as she explained the great
buildings. "My son is a missionary in Japan, giving his life to the
Lord. He preaches in Japanese, and is translating our holy books into
the Japanese tongue," she said, turning to an intelligent Japanese
tourist who was of our party.

We also bought some Mormon literature in the fine, modern sky-scraper
buildings of the _Deseret News_, and the bright young man, selling us
the books, showed us with evident pride the stores of elegantly printed
and bound volumes, all done here in Salt Lake City. They print their
books in every modern tongue, and their missionaries distribute them all
over the world.

Later, we viewed the fine college buildings where higher education is
given to the Mormon youth. We also saw the famous "Lion House," over
whose portal lies a sleeping lion, once the offices of Brigham Young,
now occupied by the ecclesiastical managers of the church. And also we
viewed the "Beehive House," where once Brigham dwelt; the Tithing House,
where is received and stored the ecclesiastical tithe tax of ten per
cent. of all crops raised and moneys earned by the devoted Mormon
believers; and the great bank run in connection with it.

All these evidences of practical, organized, devoted religious world
zeal have we beheld gathered and centrally grouped in the great city
founded and raised by these curious yet capable religious delusionists.

I asked about Mormonism of a Gentile stranger from another State, and he
replied in deferential tones: "No man in his senses now throws stones at
the Mormons; they are among the most industrious, most thrifty and most
respected people of the West."

To wander along and through the residence section of the city is also a
thing to surprise. Street after street of fine private dwellings, each
mansion standing in its own garden, upon its own lawn. Many of them very
modern, and many of them far exceeding in cost and imposing elegance any
residence Charleston, West Virginia, can yet boast--equal to the most
sumptuous homes of Pittsburg and St. Louis--and most of them owned and
lived in by cultivated families of the Mormon cult. And how the zeal
and faith and religious ardor of this strange sect even now to-day
burns in the atmosphere of this their Holy City! It is the same spirit
that we met in Holy Moscow, Russia's sacred capital--but more
enlightened, more practical.

And Mormonism is already a political as well as religious power in the
West. In Idaho, in Colorado, in Nevada, in Arizona, the Mormon vote is
to be considered and even catered to. In Alberta, the Mormon settlement
is said to be the most prosperous in the province. In Mexico, the Mormon
settlements, their astonishing productivity and fertility, are already
teaching the wonder-struck Mexican what irrigated agriculture may do.
And as I beheld this and the evident success of a religious sect which
mixes fanatical zeal with astute practical management, I asked myself
what is the real secret of their accomplishment and their power! Is it
the theory and practice of polygamy. Did or does polygamy have anything
to do with the unquestioned success and prosperity of the Mormon people?
I think not. Polygamy has been merely an incident, and the disappearance
of polygamy has in nowise lessened the formidable growth of Mormon
power. The secret, I think, is the secret of the amazing growth and
spread of early Christianity, the putting into actual practice the
Christian doctrine of the brotherhood of man--with them the brotherhood
of the Mormon man in particular. Once a Latter-day Saint, and all other
Saints are ready to lend you a hand, and the organized and ably
administered mechanism of the church lends the new Saint a hand as
well, and those hands once extended are never withdrawn except for
powerful and well-merited cause. The Mormon farmer feels that back of
his success is the ever helpful and protecting eye of his church in
material as well as spiritual things. The Gentile farmer may succeed or
may fail, and who cares; but the Mormon must succeed. If he do not
himself possess the innate power and force of character and judgment to
get on, then men will guide and aid him who do possess that power, and
so he gets on even in spite of himself. In a certain sense, the Mormons
practice the doctrine of collective socialism, and that collective unity
is the secret, I think, of their wonderful accomplishment.

The creed of the brotherhood of man, and of man within the Christian
pale, has been the secret of Christianity wherever it has won success.
The failure to heed it and obey it is the cause of failure to every
religious movement that has come to naught. And so long as the Mormon
Church adheres to this fundamental principle, just so long will it
continue to be a power, and a power of increasing weight.

And this cardinal principle is also the secret of their missionaries'
success. All over the world they are, in every State of the Union, in
nigh every land, and they serve without recompense, without pay even, as
did the early missionaries of the Christian Church.

[Illustration: GREAT SALT LAKE.]

There is and always has been a good deal of cleverness in the leadership
of the Mormon Church. It is an old adage that "The blood of her
martyrs is the seed of the church," and the Mormon leaders have
comprehended this from the start. Not only have they cultivated the
Christian socialism of the early church, but they have also never fled
from, but they rather have greatly profited by, a real good case of
martyrdom. The buffets and kicks of the Gentile world have helped, have
been essential in welding the Mormon believers into that political,
religious and social solidarity so much sought by the leaders. They were
driven from New York, from Ohio, from Missouri, then from Nauvoo. They
have been shot, stoned, murdered by scores. They have been imprisoned
and harried by the federal laws (very justly, perhaps). But the effect
of all this has been only to make them stand together all the closer.

Just now the attack upon Senator Smoot is profiting them immensely. He
sits by and smiles. He has only one wife. He is no more oath-bound to
his own church than is every Roman or Greek Archbishop vowed to his. A
matter of conscience only. The effort to oust him will probably fail,
but it's a good thing for the church to have him hammered. The more
martyrs, the fewer backsliders. The faithful line up, stand pat, the
church grows.

On the streets of Salt Lake City we have noted the very few vehicles of
fashion anywhere to be seen, and, on the other hand, the many
substantial farm wagons which generally seem to be driven by a woman
accompanied by one or more children, more usually a half-grown boy. The
men would seem to be working on the farms, while the women come into
town with the loads of produce. The faces, too, of these women were
generally intelligent and contented.

In our own country we frequently hear the Mormons denounced as
polygamists. In Utah and the neighboring States you hear nothing about
polygamy, and, upon inquiry, I was told that while once this tenet of
the church had been urged and practiced, yet that under modern social
conditions, which have come in with the railways, the younger Mormon of
to-day finds that one woman is all that he can take care of, and shows
no disposition to load himself up with the burden of half a dozen. To my
observation, the strength and danger of Mormonism is not in polygamy,
but rather in their social and political solidarity, the Mormon
president of the church wielding political influence over his followers
similar to, although in nowise so vast as, that of the Roman Pope.

Be these things as they may, it is at any rate worth while for a modern
Gentile to visit this center of the Mormon power, and gather from ocular
evidence of its vital, living, forceful presence such lessons as he may.

This afternoon we took a little railway and journeyed twelve miles to
Saltair, the Atlantic City or Virginia Beach of this metropolis, and
there we bathed in the supersaturated brine. I could swim on it, not in
it, so buoyant was the water, and my chief difficulty was to keep my
head out and my feet in. The lake is sixty miles wide by ninety miles
long, with several islands of high, barren hills. A few boats ply on it.
No fish can live in it, and the chief use of it is to evaporate its
waters for supply of salt. After dipping in it we came out quite
encrusted with a white film of intense salt.

To-night we go on to Denver, through the cañon of the Grand River.



     GLENWOOD SPRINGS, October 16, 1903.

We left Salt Lake City by the express last night over the Denver & Rio
Grande Railway, starting three hours late. When we awoke, we were coming
up the canyon of the Green River, one of the head streams of the
Colorado, and had passed through the barren volcanic lava wastes of the
Colorado Desert during the night. The Green River flows between sheer,
naked volcanic rock masses, not very high, but jagged, no green thing
growing upon them. But the scanty bottom lands were often green with
alfalfa meadows and well-kept peach and apple orchards, the result of

From the valley of the Green River we crossed, passing through many deep
cuts and tunnels, to the Grand River, the eastern fork of the Colorado,
and followed up this stream all day. Very much the same sort of country
as before. The bare, ragged, verdureless cliffs and rock masses, dry and
plantless, only the red and yellow coloring of sandstone relieving the
monotony, and everywhere upon the scant bottom lands the greenness and
agriculture of irrigation. The aspen and maples, all a bright yellow,
but not so splendid a golden hue as the forests of the valley of the

Just before coming to Glenwood Springs, about noon, I had wandered
beyond my sleeper into the smoking-car, thinking to have a view of the
sort of men who got in and out at the way stations, and, seating myself
in a vacant place, picked up a conversation with my neighbor. Imagine my
surprise when I found him to be a fellow West Virginian, from
Clarksburg, taking a little summer trip in the West, himself a Mr.
Bassel, nephew of the well-known lawyer, John Bassel, of upper State
fame. He was going to stop off at Glenwood Springs to see one of
Colorado's most popular sports, a "broncho-busting" match, where were to
be gathered some of the most eminent masters of the art in the State. I
consulted my time-tables, ascertained that we might spend the afternoon
there and yet reach Denver the next morning, and when the train pulled
into the station, we were among the expectant throng who there

The little town was all astir. A pile of Mexican saddles lay on the
platform, and a crowd of big, brawny men in wide felt hats, leathern
cowboy leggings and clanking spurs, were shouldering these, their
belongings, and moving up into the town.

The streets were full of people come in from the surrounding highlands,
where, high up on the "mesas" or plateaus above the valleys, lie some of
the finest cattle ranges in the State. Big, raw-boned, strong-chinned
men they were, bronzed with the sun and marked with a vigor bespeaking
life in the open air. The ladies, too, were out in force, well dressed,
not much color in their cheeks, but, like the men, possessing clean-cut,
clear-eyed faces. And up and down the wide streets were continually
galloping brawny riders, evidently arriving from their distant ranches.

The crowd stuck to the sidewalk and seemed expectant. We did not know
just what was going to happen, but stuck to the sidewalk, too, and well
for us it was that we did so. There were rumors of a parade. A number of
ranch maidens, riding restive bronchos, some sitting gracefully astride,
drew their horses to one side. The crowd was silent. We were silent,
too. Just then a cloud of dust and a clatter of hoofs came swirling and
echoing down the street. A troop of horses! They were running like mad.
They were bridleless, riderless; they were wild horses escaped. They ran
like things possessed. No, not all were riderless, for behind them,
urged by silent riders, each man with swinging lasso, came as many
cowboys hot on the chase. Had the wild horses broken loose? Could they
ever be headed off? We wondered. Was the fun for the day all vanished by
the accident? Not so, we found. This was part of the game. Every broncho
buster, if he would take part in the tests of ridership, must first
catch a wild horse, that later an opponent should master. And the way
those lassos swung and reached and dropped over the fleeing bronchos was
in itself a sight worth stopping to see. Then, as each rider came out
of the dust and distance leading the wild-eyed, terrified beast by his
unerring lasso, great was the acclaim given him by the hitherto silent
multitude. Every loose horse was caught before he had run half a mile,
and thus haltered--the lariat around the neck--was led to the corral
near the big meadow, where the man who should ride most perfectly would
win the longed-for prize--a champion's belt and a purse of gold.



Many famous men were met there to win the trophy--the most coveted honor
a Coloradan or any ranchman may possess.

There was Marshall Nuckolds, of Rifle City, swarthy and black as an
Indian, who had won more than one trophy in hard-fought contests--his
square jaw meaning mastery of any four-footed thing that bucks. There
was Red Grimsby, long, and lank and lithe as a Comanche, with a blue eye
that tames a horse and man alike. There was big, loose-limbed Arizona
Moore, a new man in Glenwood, but preceded by his fame. He it was who
won that cowboy race in Cheyenne, not long since, when his horse fell,
and he underneath--dead, the shuddering audience thought him--and who
shook himself loose, re-mounted his horse and won the race amidst the
mad cheers of every mortal being on the course. He rode a fiery black
mustang, and was dressed in gorgeous white Angora goat's hair leggins, a
blue shirt, a handkerchief about his neck. Handy Harry Bunn, of Divide
Creek, was there too, a dapper little pile of bone and sinew, whom
broncho, buck as he might, never yet had thrown. And Freddy Conners,
solid and silent, and renowned among the boys on the ranches all 'round
about. And the two Thompson brothers, of Aspen, home boys, the youngest,
Dick, the pride of Grand River, for hadn't he won the $100 saddle in the
big match at Aspen last year, and then carried off the purse of gold at
Rifle City on the Fourth of last July! Slim and clean-muscled, and quick
as a flash he was, with a piercing black eye. The crowd on the streets
were all betting on Dick, and Dick was watching Arizona Moore like a
hawk. The honors probably lay between the two.

The big meadow in the midst of the mile track was the place. H---- sat
in the grandstand, my field-glasses in hand. I was invited to the
judges' stand, and even allowed with my kodak out in the field among the
judges who sat on their horses and followed the riders, taking points.



Swarthy Nuckolds was the first man. He came out into the meadow carrying
his own saddle and rope and bridle. To him had fallen a wiry bay,
four-year old, never yet touched by man. First the horse was led out
with a lasso halter around its neck, then, when it came to a standstill,
Nuckolds, with the softness of a cat, slipped up and passed a rope
halter over its head, which he made cleverly into a bitless bridle, then
he stealthily, and before the horse knew it, hoodwinked it with a
leather band, and then when the horse could not see his motions, he
gently, oh, so gently, laid the big Mexican saddle on its back, and had
it double girt fast before the horse knew what had happened. Then he
waved his hand, the hoodwink was pulled off by two assistants, and
instantly he was in the saddle astride the astonished beast. For a
moment the horse stood wild-eyed, sweating with terror--and then, and
then--up it went like a bent hook, its head between its legs, its tail
down, its legs all in a bunch, and down it came, stiff-kneed, taut as
iron, and then up again, and so by leaps and bounds across the wide
field and back again right through the scrambling crowd. All the while
Nuckolds rising and falling in perfect unison with the mad motions of
the terrified horse--his hat gone, his black hair flying, his great whip
and heavy spurs goading the animal into subjection. At last he rode it
on a trot, mastered, subjugated, cowed, up to the judges' stand. The
horse stood quietly, trembling, sweating, wet as though having swum
Grand River. Wild were the yells that greeted Nuckolds. He had but added
to a reputation already made.

"Grimsby next," was the command. His horse was a short-backed,
spindle-tailed sorrel, with a sort of a vicious gait that boded a bad
temper and stubborn mind. Again the halter was deftly put on and made
into a bitless bridle, the hoodwink slipped on, the saddle gently
placed, and man and horse were furiously rushing, bucking, leaping,
rearing across the meadow, and right straight at the high board and
wire fence. The horse, if it couldn't throw him, would jam and scrape
him off if it ever reached that merciless mass of pine and barbed wire.
Could Grimsby turn him, and without a bit? Great riding that was, and
greater steering, for just before the seeming inevitable crash, the
horse swerved, turned and was bucking across and then around the field
again. Grimsby never failed to meet every wild movement, and sat in the
saddle as though in a rocking-chair. The horse, at last conquered, stood
quiet as a lamb, and the cheers for the sturdy rider quite equaled the
plaudits given his raven-maned predecessor.

Now the crowd had its blood up. Two native champions had proved their
grit, what could the Arizonian do against such as these? "He's too big
and awkward," said one onlooker. "He's not the cut for a King buster,"
grunted another. "The h--l he ain't. Ain't he the man who won that
Cheyenne race after his horse fell on him?" exclaimed one who knew, and
the scoffers became silent.

[Illustration: ARIZONA MOORE, UP.]

[Illustration: ARIZONA MOORE.]

Arizona Moore strode clumsily under the weight of his big saddle, but
his black eye shone clear and masterful, and I felt he was sure enough a
man. His horse was a dark blood bay, well knit, clean limbed,
short-barreled, full mane and tail, a fighter with the grit of a horse
that dies before it yields. I stood quite near with my camera. It was
difficult to get the rope bridle on, it was more difficult to put on
the hoodwink, it was nigh impossible to set and cinch the saddle. But
Moore did it all, easily, deftly, quietly. The hoodwink dropped, and
instantly the slouchy, awkward stranger was riding that furious,
leaping, cavorting, bucking, lunging creature as though horse and man
were one. I have never beheld such riding. He sat to his saddle and
every muscle and sinew kept perfect time to the fiery, furious movements
of the horse. And he plied his whip and used his spurs and laughed with
glee, as though he were on the velvet cushions of a Pullman car. The
horse was stronger, more active, more violent than the two before. It
whirled 'round and 'round until you were dizzy looking. It went up all
in a bunch, it came down spread out, it came down with stiff legs, it
reared, it plunged, it ran for the fence. Nothing could mar the joy of
the rider nor stir that even, easy, tenacious seat. "You've beat 'em
all." "Nor can the others beat you," roared the crowd, as he rode the
conquered animal on a gentle trot up to the judges' stand and leisurely
dismounted. It was the greatest horsemanship I have ever seen, nor shall
I again see the like for many a day.

Bunn rode next. His horse was in full and fine condition. It leaped, it
bucked, it raced for the fence, it reared, it even sat down and started
to roll backwards, a terrible thing to happen, and often bringing death
to an incautious rider. But Bunn never lost his seat, nor did the horse
stay long upon its haunches, for, stung by rawhide and spur, it sprang
to its feet and tore across the meadow, actually leaping clean and sheer
the impounding fence. And Bunn, vanquishing at last, walked his quiet
horse peacefully up and dismounted.

The Thompson boys each covered themselves with glory. Dick's first horse
was tamed so quickly--a big, bright bay--that they brought him a second
one to ride again--a long, lean, dun-colored, Roman-nosed cayuse, with
scant mane and tail. A mean beast, the sort of a horse that other horses
in the bunch scorn to keep company with and hate with natural good horse
sense. He stood very quiet through bridling, hoodwinking and saddling.
He had seen the others in the game. His mind was quite made up. And when
Dick vaulted into the saddle, he at first stood stock still, and then,
as I set my kodak, I could see nothing but one great cloud of
dun-colored dust and Thompson's head floating in the upper levels of the
haze. The horse was whirling and bucking all at the same instant, a
hump-buck, a flat buck, an iron-legged buck, a touch-ground-with-belly
buck, and a swirling-whirl and tail-and-neck twist at one and the same
moment. Enough to throw a tender seat a hundred feet and crack his bones
like pipe stems. And then, like the flight of an arrow from a bow, that
dun-colored devil bolted straight for the wickedest edge of the fence. I
thought Dick would be killed certain, but there he sat and drew that
horse down on its hams three feet from sure death. It was a long battle,
vicious, mean, fierce, merciless--the beast was bleeding, welts stood
out on flanks and shoulders, its dry, spare muscles trembled like leaves
shaken by wind.


[Illustration: THE DUN-COLORED DEVIL.]

The boy hero of Aspen was hero still, and the dun horse walked quietly
up to the judges' horses and allowed himself to be unsaddled without as
much as a flinch, and he, too, was drenching wet, as well as bloody.

I did not see the last rider, for my train was soon to leave, and I
barely had time to get aboard. But I got some fine kodak photographs,
and have promised to send a set to the old, gray-headed rancher who
stood near me and who almost cried for joy to see how these men rode.
"I've seven boys," he said, "and every one of 'em's a broncho buster;
even the gals can bust a broncho, that they can."

I have not learned who got the coveted prize belt, but I should divide
it between Arizona Moore and Dandy Dick.



     DENVER, October 19th.

After leaving Glenwood Springs we wound up the gorge of the Grand River,
the castellated, crenelated, serrated, scarped and wind-worn cliffs
towering many thousand feet into the blue sky. The valley narrowed
sensibly and the sheer heights imposed themselves more and more upon us
as we approached the tunnel at the height of land 10,200 feet above the
sea, and where part the waters of the Gulf of Mexico from those of the
Pacific. On the Canadian Pacific Railway, the interoceanic divide
between the waters of Hudson Bay and the Pacific is only some 5,300 feet
above tide level, so now we were nearly a mile higher in the air. Yet
the long journey of 2,000 miles from San Francisco, the crossing of the
Sierra Nevada and Wasatch ranges, had brought us to this final ascent
almost unperceived.

Traversing the divide and coming out from the long tunnel which bows
above the continental height of land, we diverged from the main line and
crept yet higher right up into Leadville, where the air was thin and
keen and as chill as in December. Thence we descended through the
wonderful cañon of the Platte River that has made this journey on the
Denver and Rio Grande Railway famous the world round.

We came to Denver early in the morning; the metropolis of the middle
West, the chief railroad center west of the Missouri, the mining center
of all the Rocky Mountain mineral belt, and now claiming to be equally
the center of the great and rapidly growing irrigated agricultural
region of the inter and juxta mountain region of the continent.
Essentially a business place is Denver. Its buildings are as elegant as
those of New York City, many of them almost as pretentious as those of
Chicago, as solid as those of Pittsburg, and as new as the fine blocks
of Los Angeles. She is altogether a more modern city than San Francisco,
is Denver. Her residences are also up to date, handsome, substantial.
The homes of men who are making money. Her one hundred and eighty miles
of electric tramways are good, though not quite as good as the two
hundred miles of Los Angeles. Her schools are probably unexcelled in the
Union. Denver is new, and in the clear, translucent atmosphere looks yet
newer; she is neat, she is ambitious, and she is gathering to herself
the commerce, the trade, the manufacturing pre-eminence, the mining
supervision of all that vast section of our continent from Canada to
Mexico, from the great plains to the snowy summits of the Cascades and
Sierra Nevadas. All this is Denver, while at the same time she is the
capital of Colorado, a State four times as big as West Virginia, though
with only half the population. And Denver is so fast seated in the
saddle of state prosperity that no section of Colorado can prosper, no
interest can grow nor develop, neither the gold and silver mining with
its yield of forty millions a year, nor the iron and coal fields--30,000
square miles of coal fields--nor the agriculture and grazing interests,
worth eighty millions a year (now exceeding the value of the gold and
silver produced twice over), none of these can grow and gain, but they
immediately and permanently pay tribute to Denver.

Yet this very up-to-dateness of Denver robs it of a certain charm. You
might just as well be at home as be in Denver. The people look the same,
they dress the same, they walk the same, they talk the same. Just a few
more of them, that's all.

There are none of the lovely lawns and gardens of Los Angeles and Tacoma
in Denver, nor can there ever be. Roses do not bloom all the winter
through, nor in Denver does the turf grow thick and velvety green as in
Seattle, nor can they ever do so--only a few weakly roses in the
summer-time and grass--only grass when you water each blade with a hose
three times a day. And then, too, men do not go to Denver to make homes;
they go there the rather to make fortunes, and, if successful, then to
hurry away and live in a more congenial clime.

Denver is not laid out with the imposing regalness of Salt Lake City,
nor can it ever possess the dignity of that place. It is just a big,
hustling, commercial, manufacturing, mine-developing center, where the
well man comes to work and toil with feverish energy in the thin air;
and the sick man--the consumptive--comes to live a little while and
die--"One Lungers" do not here hold fast to life as in the more tender
climate of southern California--nor can they survive long in Denver's
harsh, keen air.

The loveliest, grandest part of Denver is that which it does not
possess. It is the splendid panorama of the Rocky Mountain chain that
stretches, a monstrous mass of snow-clad summits, along the western
horizon, eighteen to thirty miles away. Across a flat and treeless plain
you behold the long line of lesser summits, and then lifting behind
them, towering skyward, the splendid procession of snow-clad giants,
glittering and flashing in the translucent light of the full shining
sun. The panorama is sublime, as fine as anything in Switzerland, and of
a beauty worthy of a journey--a long journey--to behold. In Canada, the
Rockies come so slowly upon you that they seem almost insignificant
compared with their repute. But here, one realizes in fullest sense the
dignity of this stupendous backbone of the continent. And the pellucid
atmosphere of the mile-high altitude, gives renewed and re-enforced
vision to the eye. The gigantic mountains stand forth with such
distinctness that the old tale of the Englishman who set out to walk to
them before breakfast--thinking them three instead of thirty miles
away--is likely enough to have more than once occurred.

The great "Mountain Empire State" of Colorado is vastly rich in deposits
of gold and silver and lead and antimony and copper and coal and iron,
yet very few there are, or ever can be, who do or may amass fortunes
therefrom. Her coal beds exceed in area the entire State of West
Virginia nearly twice over, yet thousands of acres lie unworked and are
now practically unworkable. Her oil fields are promising, a paraffine
oil of high grade, yet no oil producer has made or can make any great
stake out of them. Her agriculture and grazing interests already exceed
the enormous values of her gold and silver, yet few farmers or cattle
men make more than a living. Colorado is rich, fabulously rich, yet the
wealth that is wrung from her rocks and her pastures and her tilled
fields passes most of it into hands other than those who produce it.

The great railroad corporations get the first whack. It has cost
enormously to build them; they are expensive to maintain; they are safe
from competition by reason of the initial cost of their construction.
They are entitled to consideration, and they demand it and enforce it to
the limit. The freight rates are appalling, and so adjusted as to
squeeze out of every natural product the cream of profit it may
yield--sometimes only very thin skim milk is left. The passenger fares
are high, usually four cents to ten cents per mile. The cost of living
is onerous in Colorado; all freights brought there pay excessive tribute
to the railways. So much for the general conditions. With mining it is
yet more serious. The Rockefeller-Gugenheim Smelter combine now controls
mercilessly all the smelting business of the State, and, as for that, of
the mining country. And unless you have an ore that "will yield more
than $20 per ton, you might as well not go into the mining business,"
experienced mining men repeatedly observed to me.

Colorado boasts enormous agricultural and grazing wealth. She claims
that the present values of her herds of cattle and horses, and flocks of
sheep, of her orchards and irrigated crops already exceed that of her
gold and silver and mineral production. This may be so, and yet after
the cattle and sheep and horses are transported to distant markets and
converted into cash, after her farmers have paid the enormous irrigation
charges to the private corporations that control the water springs, the
man on the soil makes little more than a bare living, the fat profits,
if any there be, having passed into the capacious pockets of the water
companies, of the transportation companies, of the great meat-packing
and horse-buying companies. The farmers and grazers with whom I have
talked tell me that if they come out even at the end of the year, with a
small and moderate profit, they count themselves fortunate. Here and
there, of course, a fortune may be amassed by an unusual piece of good
luck by the man who raises cattle or fruit, or crops, but as a rule the
undoubted profits of these industries are absorbed by the great
corporate interests at whose mercy they lie.

Just what will be the outcome of these crushing industrial conditions it
is difficult to forecast, but we already see the first expressions of
popular dissatisfaction in the extensive labor strikes now prevailing in
the Cripple Creek region, and threatening to spread to and include all
of the mining camps and operations of the State and adjoining States.
Corporate greed and unscrupulous selfishness arouse opposition, and then
ensues corresponding combination, and too often counter aggression quite
as unreasonable and quite as inconsiderate in scope and action. Men are
but mortal, and "an eye for an eye" is too ancient an adage to have lost
its force in this twentieth century.

Just how these transportation, mining, agricultural and industrial
problems will be finally solved I dare not predict, but we will trust
that the ultimate good sense of American manhood will work out a
reasonable solution.



                October 20, 1903. }

We left Denver upon the night express over the Burlington Railway
system, and all day to-day are flying eastward across flat, flat

At dawn the country looked parched and treeless; expanses of buffalo
grass and herds of cattle. Here and there the course of a dried-up
stream marked by straggling cottonwood trees and alders, their
leaves now turned a dull yellow brown. A drear land, but yet less
heart-sickening than the stretches of bleak and barren landscape we have
so often gazed upon through Nevada, Utah and Colorado. Despite the dry
and parched appearance of this immediate region, it is yet counted a
fine grazing country, and the cattle range and thrive all the year round
upon the tufted bunches of the sweet, nutritious buffalo-grass that
everywhere here naturally abounds.

By middle morning we are entering the more eastern farming section of
the State, though still in western Nebraska. The land is all fenced,
laid out in large farms, the fences and public roads running north and
south and east and west. The farmhouses are neat, mostly, and set in
tidy yards with groves of trees planted about. Large red barns, many
hay and wheat stacks, illimitable fields of thick-growing wheat stubble,
and miles of corn, the stalks bearing the large ears yet standing in the
hill, while, as a general thing, the roughness has all been gathered
in--the Southern way of handling the corn crops. No shocks standing like
wigwams in the fields.

Fall plowing is also under way. We have just passed a man sitting on a
sulky plow, driving four big horses abreast, his little six-year old
daughter on his knee. A pretty sight. There are many windmills, one near
each house and barn, some out in the wide fields, all pumping water,
turned by the prairie winds that forever blow.

We are passing many small towns. All just alike. The square-fronted
stores, the steepled churches, the neat residences, rows of trees
planted along either side of the streets. "That dreadful American
monotony," as foreign visitors exclaim!

The country looks just like the flat prairie section of Manitoba,
Assiniboia and Alberta, in Canada, that we traversed in August, except
that this is all occupied and intelligently tilled, while the most part
of that is yet open to the roaming coyote, and may be yet purchased from
the Canadian Government or from the Railway Company, as is rapidly being
done. And this country here looks longer settled than does northern
Minnesota and North Dakota through which we passed.

The planting of trees in Nebraska seems to have been very general, and
along the roadways, the farm division lines, and about the farmsteads
and in the towns are now multitudes of large and umbrageous trees. And
sometimes large areas have been planted, and are now become veritable

At the town of Lincoln, Mr. W. J. Bryan's home city, we have stopped
quite awhile, and in the distance can see the tall, white, dome-hooded
cupola of the State Capitol through the yellow and brown foliage of
autumnal tinted cottonwood.

Sitting in the forward smoker and falling into conversation with a group
of Nebraska farmers, I found a number of substantial Democrats among
them, admirers but no longer adherents of Mr. Bryan--"Our crops have
never been so good and gold never so cheap and so plenty as during the
last few years," they said. And they were not surprised when they saw by
the quotation of silver in the Denver morning paper that silver had
never risen to so high a price in the open market as it holds to-day,
sixty-eight cents per ounce. And they spoke of Grover Cleveland with
profound respect. In Nebraska, they tell me, all possibility of a
recrudescence of the Bryan vagaries is now certainly dead, and that this
fine agricultural State is as surely Republican as is Ohio. The farmers
are all doing well, making money and saving money. They are fast paying
off such land mortgages as remain. Also, there are now few, very few,
unoccupied lands in Nebraska. The State is practically filled up, and
filled up with a permanent and contented population. As families grow,
and sons and daughters come to manhood and womanhood, the old farms must
be cut up and divided among them, or the surplus young folk must seek
homes elsewhere. And of this surplus some are among the great American
trek into the Canadian far north.

We reached Omaha, the chief city of Nebraska, late in the afternoon,
coming into the fine granite station of the Burlington Railway system.

While in the city we were delightfully taken care of by our old school
and college friends, to whom the vanished years were yet but a passing
breath. We were sumptuously entertained at a banquet at the Omaha Club.
We were dined and lunched and driven about with a warm-hearted
hospitality which may only have its origin in a heart-to-heart
friendship, which, beginning among young men at life's threshold, comes
down the procession of the years unchanged and as affectionately
demonstrative as though we were all yet boys again. It carried me back
to the days when we sat together and sang that famous German student
song: "Denkt Oft Ihr Brueder an Unserer Juenglingsfreudigheit, es Kommt
Nicht Wieder, Die Goldene Zeit."

Omaha, a city of 100,000 inhabitants, forms, together with Kansas City
on the south and St. Paul, and Minneapolis on the north, the middle of
the three chief population centers between St. Louis, Chicago and
Denver. It is the chief commercial center of Nebraska and of South
Dakota, southern Montana and Idaho, and controls an immense trade.

In old times it was the chief town on the Missouri above St. Louis and
still maintains the lead it then acquired. I was surprised to find it
situated on a number of hills, some quite steep, others once steeper,
now graded down to modern requirements. Its streets are wide and fairly
well paved, and its blocks of buildings substantial. The residence
streets we drove through contain many handsome houses, light yellow-buff
brick being generally used, while Denver is a red brick town. The parks,
enclosing hill and dale, are of considerable natural beauty, here again
having advantage over Denver, where the flattened prairie roll presents
few opportunities for landscape gardening.

The extensive stockyards and abattoirs of Armour, Swift and several
other companies have made Omaha even a greater center of the meat trade
than Kansas City. In company with W---- I spent the morning in
inspecting these extensive establishments. The volume of business here
transacted reaches out into all the chief grazing lands of the far West.
The stockyards are supposed to be run by companies independent of the
packing-houses, and to be merely hotels where the cattle brought in may
be lodged and boarded until sold, and the cattle brokers are presumed to
be the agents of the cattle owners who have shipped the stock, and to
procure for these owners the highest price possible. But, as a matter
of fact, the packing-houses control the stockyards, dominate the
brokers, who are constantly near to them and far from the cattle owners,
and the man on the range who once ships his cattle over the railroads,
forthwith places himself at the mercy of the packer--the stock having
been shipped must be fed and cared for either on the cars or in the
yards, and this takes money--so the quicker the sale of them is made the
better for the owner. Hence, inasmuch as the packer may refuse to buy
until the waiting stock shall eat their heads off--the owner, through
the broker, is compelled to sell as soon as he can, and is compelled to
accept whatsoever price the packer may choose to offer him. So the
packing companies grow steadily richer and their business spreads and
Omaha increases also.

The other chief industry of Omaha is the great smelter belonging to the
trust. Incorporated originally by a group of enterprising Omaha men as a
local enterprise, it was later sold out to the Gugenheim Trust, whose
influence with the several railroads centering in Omaha has been
sufficient to preserve the business there, though the smelter is really
far away from ores and fluxes.

These two enterprises, the cattle killing and packing and ore-reducing,
together with large railway shops, constitute the chief industrial
interests of Omaha, and, for the rest, the city depends upon the
extensive farming and grazing country lying for five hundred miles
between her and the Rocky Mountains. As they prosper, so does Omaha; as
they are depressed, so is she. And only one thing, one catastrophe does
Omaha fear, far beyond words to tell--the fierce, hot winds that every
few years come blowing across Nebraska from the furnace of the Rocky
Mountains' alkali deserts. They do not come often, but when they do, the
land dies in a night. The green and fertile country shrivels and
blackens before their breath, the cattle die, the fowls die, the things
that creep and walk and fly die. The people--the people flee from the
land or die upon it in pitiful collapse. Then it is that Omaha shrivels
and withers too. Twice, twice within the memory of living man have come
these devastating winds, and twice has Omaha suffered from their curse,
and even now Omaha is but recovering her activity of the days before the
plague, forgetful of a future that--well! men here say that such a
universal catastrophe may never again occur.

And the handsome city is prosperous and full of buoyant life.

We now go on to St. Louis and thence to Cincinnati and so home.



     CHARLESTON, W. VA., October 23, 1903.

Our journey from Omaha to St. Louis was down the valley of the Missouri,
a night's ride. We crossed the mighty river over an enormously high
bridge and then followed the crest of an equally lofty embankment across
several miles of wide, rich bottoms to Council Bluffs, in the State of
Iowa. "Nobody dares fool with the Missouri," a man said to me in Omaha,
as he pointed out where the voracious river was boldly eating up a wide,
black-soiled meadow in spite of the square rods of willow mats and tons
of rocks that had been laid down to prevent it. "When the Missouri
decides to swallow up a bottom, or a village, or a town, she just does
it, there is no escape." And even the citizens of Omaha do not sleep
well of nights when the mighty brown tide fumes too angrily. Hence the
extraordinarily high bridge and enormous embankment we traversed when we
sought to cross over to dry land in Iowa. The waters of the Missouri are
as swift as those of the Yukon, but the river flows for a thousand miles
through the soft muds of the Western prairies, instead of through the
banks of firm gravel, and it eats its way here and there when and where
it chooses, and no man can prevent. Hence the railways, while they
traverse the general course of the great valley of the Missouri, do not
dare follow too closely the river banks, but they rather keep far away
and have just as little to do with the treacherous stream as they may.
So it was we did not see much more of the Missouri, but sped into wide,
flat, rich stretches of alluvial country until darkness fell upon us and
night shut out all suggestions of the river.

When morning dawned we were among immense fields of tall corn, corn so
high as to quite hide a horseman riding through it. The farm-houses were
large and substantial. The farmstead buildings were big and trim. The
cattle we saw were big, the hogs were big, the fowls were big. And over
all there brooded a certain atmosphere of big contentedness. We were in
the State of Missouri, and passing through some of its richest, most
fruitful, fertile farming lands. A rich land of rich masters, once
tilled by slave labor, a land still rich, still possessed by owners
well-to-do and yielding yet greater crops under the stimulus of labor
that is free.

When we had retired for the night our car was but partially filled. When
we awoke in the morning, and I entered the men's toilet-room, I found it
full of big, jovial, Roman priests. Our car was packed with them. They
had got in at every station; they continued to get in until we reached
St. Louis. The eminent Roman prelate, the Right Reverend Archbishop of
St. Louis, Kain, once Bishop of Wheeling, had surrendered his great
office to the Pope, and the churchly fathers of all the middle West were
gathering to St. Louis, to participate in the funeral pageant. A couple
of young priests were talking about the "old man," while a white-haired
father spoke of "His Eminence," and I learned that Cardinal Gibbons, of
Baltimore, was expected to also attend the funeral ceremonies.

We breakfasted on the train, and in the dining-car sat at table with two
brother Masons wearing badges, and from them I learned that they were
also traveling to St. Louis, there to attend the great meeting of the
Grand Lodge of the State of Missouri. The city would be full of Masons,
and the ceremonies of the Masonic Order and of the Roman Church would
absorb the attention of St. Louis for the next few days. And so we found
it, when we at last came to a stop within the great Central Railway
Station--next to that of Boston, the largest in the world--where we
observed that the crowd within it was made up chiefly of men wearing the
Masonic badges, their friends and families, and the round-collared
priests. A strange commingling and only possible in America. In Mexico,
a land where the Roman Church dominates, though it no longer rules, the
Masons do not wear their badges or show outward token of their fraternal
bonds. In England, where the king is head of the Masonic Order, there,
until the last half century, the Roman Catholic subject might not vote
nor hold office. Here in St. Louis, in free America, I saw the two
mixing and mingling in friendly and neighborly comradeship.

I do not know whether you have ever been in St. Louis, but if you have,
I am sure you have felt the subtle, attractive charm of it. It is an old
city. It was founded by the French. The old French-descended families of
to-day talk among themselves the language of La Belle France. For a
century it has been the Mecca of the Southern pioneer, who found in it
and about it the highest northern limit of his emigration. Missouri was
a slave state. St. Louis was a Southern slave-served city. The
Virginians, who crossed through Greenbrier and flat-boated down the
Kanawha and Ohio, settled in it or went out further west from it. Alvah,
Charles and Morris Hansford, the Lewises, the Ruffners, made their
flatboats along the Kanawha and floated all the way to it. St. Louis
early acquired the courtly manners of the South. She is a city to-day
which has preserved among her people much of that Southern savor which
marks a Southern gentleman wherever he may be. St. Louis is
conservative; her French blood makes her so. She is gracious and
well-mannered; her southern founders taught her to be so. And when the
struggle of the Civil War was over, and the Union armies had kept her
from the burning and pillaging and havoc and wreck that befell her more
southern sisters, St. Louis naturally responded to the good fortune that
had so safely guarded her, and took on the renewed energy and
wealth-acquiring powers of the unfolding West. The marvelous
developments of the Southwest, and now of Mexico, by American railroad
extension, has built up and is building up St. Louis, just as the great
Northwest has poured its vitalizing energies, its boundless wheat crops,
into Chicago. Corn and cattle and cotton have made St. Louis, and
Spanish is taught in her public schools. Chicago may be the chief of the
cities upon the great lakes; St. Louis must forever remain the mistress
of the commerce and trade and wealth of the great Mississippi basin,
with New Orleans as her seaport upon the south, Baltimore, Newport News,
Norfolk on the Chesapeake Bay, her ports upon the east. St. Louis is
self-contained. She owns herself. Most of the real estate in and out of
St. Louis is owned by her citizens. Her mortgages are held by her own
banks and trust companies. Chicago is said to be chiefly owned by the
financiers of Boston and New York. The St. Louisian, when he makes his
pile and stacks his fortune, builds a home there and invests his hoard.
The Chicagoan when he wins a million in the wheat pit or, like Yerkes,
makes it out of street railway deals, hies himself to New York and
forgets that he ever lived west of Buffalo.

Hence, you find a quite different spirit prevailing among the people of
St. Louis from Chicago. This difference in mental attitude toward the
city the stranger first entering St. Louis apprehends at once, and each
time he returns to visit the great city, that impression deepens. I
felt it when first I visited St. Louis just eleven years ago, when
attending the first Nicaragua Canal Convention as a delegate from West
Virginia. I have felt it more keenly on every occasion when I have

The Great Union Depot of St. Louis is the pride of the city. It was
designed after the model of the superb Central Bahnhof of Frankfort on
the Main, in Germany, the largest in Europe, but is bigger and more
conveniently arranged. In the German station, I noted a certain
disorderliness. Travelers did not know just what trains to enter, and
often had to climb down out of one car to climb up into another, and
then try it again. Here, although a much greater number of trains come
in and go out in the day, American method directs the traveler to the
proper train almost as a matter of course.

From the station we took our way to the Southern Hotel, for so many
years, and yet to-day, the chief hostelry in the city. A building of
white marble, covering one entire block, with four entrances converging
upon the office in the center. Here the Southern planters and
Mississippi steamboat captains always tarry, here the corn and cattle
kings of Kansas and the great Southwest congregate. The politicians of
Missouri, too, have always made the Southern a sort of political
exchange. Other and newer hotels, like the Planters, have been built in
St. Louis, but none has ever outclassed the Southern. We were not
expecting to tarry long at the hotel, nor did we, for after waiting
only a short interval in the wide reception-room, a carriage drove up, a
gracious-mannered woman in black descended, and we were soon in the
keeping of one of the most delightful hostesses of old St. Louis. Her
carriage was at our command, her time was ours, her home our own so long
as we should remain. And we had never met her until the bowing hotel
clerk brought her smiling to us. So much for acquaintance with mutual

The morning was spent visiting the more notable of the great retail
stores, viewing the miles of massive business blocks, watching the
volume of heavy traffic upon the crowded streets. At noon we lunched
with our hostess in a home filled with rare books and objects of art,
collected during many years of foreign residence and travel, and I was
taken to the famous St. Louis Club, shown over its imposing granite
club-house, and put up there for a fortnight, should I stay so long.

In the afternoon we were driven through the sumptuous residence section
of the city out toward the extensive park on whose western borders are
now erected the aggregation of stupendous buildings of the Louisiana
Purchase Exposition. This residence section of St. Louis has always been
impressive to me. There is so much of it. The mansions are so diverse in
architecture, so splendid in design. "Palaces," they would be called in
England, in Germany, in France. Here the plain St. Louisian says "Come
up to my house," and walks you into the palace with no ado. Evidences of
the material wealth of this great city they are. Not one, not two, but
tens and hundreds of palatial homes. Men and women live in them whom you
and I have never read about, have never heard about, will never know
about, yet there they are, successful, intelligent, influential in the
affairs of this Republic quite as much so as you and I. And the larger
part of these splendid mansions are lived in by men and women who
represent in themselves that distinctively American quality of "getting
on." One granite palace pointed out to me, is inhabited by a man and his
wife, neither of whom can more than read and write. Yet both are gifted
with great good sense, and he lives there because he saved his wages
when a chore hand in a brewery until at last he owned the brewery.
Another beautiful home is possessed by a man who began as a day laborer
and then struck it rich digging gold in the Black Hills. Calves and
cattle built one French chateau; corn, plain corn, built several more,
and cotton and mules a number of others. Steamboats and railways, and
trade and commerce and manufactures have built miles of others, while
the great Shaw's Botanical Garden, established and endowed and donated
to the city, came from a miserly bachelor banker's penchant to stint and
save. The incomes of the hustling citizens of St. Louis remain her own;
the incomes of the rent-payers of Chicago, like the interest on her
mortgages, go into the pockets of stranger owners who dwell in distant
cities in the East.

The extensive Fair grounds and Exposition Buildings were driven upon and
among. A gigantic enterprise, an ambitious enterprise. St. Louis means
to outdo Chicago, and this time Chicago will surely be outdone. The
buildings are bigger and there are more of them than at Chicago. They
are painted according to a comprehensive color scheme, not left a
blinding white, less gaudy than the French effort of 1900, more
harmonious than the Pan-American effects at Buffalo two years ago. The
prevailing tints are cream white for the perpendicular walls and
statuary, soft blues, greens, reds, for the roofs and pinnacles, and
much gilding. More than twenty millions of dollars are now being
expended upon this great Exposition show. For one brief summer it is to
dazzle the world, forever it is to glorify St. Louis. The complacent St.
Louisian now draws a long breath and mutters contentedly, "Thank God,
for one time Chicago isn't in it." The Art buildings alone are to be
permanent. They are not yet complete. I wonder whether it will be
possible to have them as splendidly sumptuous as were the marble Art
Palaces I beheld in Paris three years ago--the only works of French
genius I saw in that Exposition that seemed to me worthy of the
greatness of France. The Exposition grounds and buildings are yet in an
inchoate condition, and but for the fact that Americans are doing and
pushing the work, one would deem it impossible for the undertaking to
be completed within the limited time. As it is, many a West Virginian
and Kanawhan will next summer enjoy to the full these evidences of
American power.

In the late afternoon we were entertained at the Country Club, a
delightful bit of field and meadow and woodland, a few miles beyond the
city. Here the tired business man may come from the desk and shop and
warehouse and office, and play like a boy in the sunshine and among
green, living things. Here the young folk of the big city, some of them,
gather for evening dance and quiet suppers when the summer heat makes
city life too hard. Here golf and polo are played all through the milder
seasons of the year. We were asked to remain over for the following day,
when a polo match would be played. We should have liked to see the
ponies chase the ball, but our time of holiday was coming to an end. We
might not stay.

In the evening we were entertained at a most delightful banquet. A large
table of interesting and cultivated people were gathered to meet
ourselves. We had never met them before, we might never meet them again,
but for the brief hour we were as though intimates of many years.

All the night we came speeding across the rolling prairie lands of
Illinois and Indiana into Ohio. A country I have seen before, a
landscape wide and undulating, filled with immense wheat and corn
fields. The home of a well-established and affluent population. The
sons and grandsons of the pioneers who, in the early days of the last
century, poured in from all quarters of the East, many Virginians and
Kanawhans among the number. A country from which the present younger
generations have gone and are now going forth into the land yet further
west, and even up into the as yet untenanted prairies and plains of the
Canadian north.

In the morning we were in Cincinnati and felt almost at home. The city,
smoky as usual, marred by the blast of the great fire of the early
summer. The throngs upon the streets were just about as numerous, just
about as hustling as those elsewhere we have seen, yet there was a
variation. The men not so tall, more chunky in build, bigger round the
girth, stolid, solid. The large infusion of German blood shows itself in
Cincinnati, even more than in St. Louis, where the lank Westerner is
more in evidence.

It was dusk when the glimmering lights of Charleston showed across the
placid Kanawha. We were once more at home. We had been absent some
seventy days; we had journeyed some eight thousand miles upon sea and
lake and land. We had enjoyed perfect health. We had met no mishap. We
had traveled from almost the Arctic Circle to the sight of Mexico. We
had traversed the entire Pacific coast of the continent from Skagway to
Los Angeles. We had twice crossed the continent. We had beheld the
greatness of our country, the vigor and wealth and energy of many
cities, the splendor and power of the Republic.

[Illustration: ON THE GREAT KANAWHA.]

[Illustration: OUR KANAWHA GARDEN.]

[Illustration: MAP OF ROUTE IN U. S.]



     Agricultural and grazing wealth of Colorado, 305.

     Animal life, 121.

     An outlaw at White Horse Rapids, 178.

     A prospector's story, 203.

     Atlin, 75, 88.

     A wild night, 201.

     Banff, 30.

     Bathing in Salt Lake, 280.

     Bird notes, 28, 65, 131, 201.

     Bishop Bompas, 115.

     Bishop Bompas on the Coast Indians, 214.

     Blanket concessions from Ottawa, 145.

     Boyle, 146.

     British Columbia River, 40.

     Broncho-busting match, 283-299.

     Canadian Pacific Railway, 27.

     Canadian Rockies, 47.

     Caribou Station, 81.

     Cascades, 220.

     Chinatown, 234.

     Cincinnati, 324.

     Clarence Straight, 60.

     Climate of Oregon, 228.

     Cold of the north land, 186.

     Colorado and Denver, 300.

     Crossing the Rockies, 38.

     Dangerous navigation, 200.

     Dawson Charlie, 81, 115.

     Dawson City, 112, 132, 136.

     Dawson Horticultural Society, 150.

     Del Monte hotel at Monterey, 241.

     Detroit River, 13.

     Dixon Channel and Port Simpson, 59.

     Dogs--Malamutes and Huskies, 136, 180.

     Dog ranch, 149.

     Dr. Grant, of St. Andrews Hospital, 171.

     Edmonton to Dawson, 174.

     Fifty Mile River, 121.

     First glimpse of the Great Salt Lake, 266.

     Fort Selkirk, 128.

     Fort Wrangel, 65.

     Fraser River, 43.

     Frederick Sound, 66.

     Freezing of the Yukon, 193.

     French Canadian trapper, 173.

     Glacier Hotel, 43.

     Glenwood Springs, 283.

     Government of Yukon Territory, 87.

     Grand River, 282.

     Grand Trunk Pacific Railway, 35.

     Grayling, 82, 117.

     Green River, 282.

     Gulf of Georgia, 56.

     Hells Gates, 127.

     How the Government searches for gold, 195.

     Icebergs and whales, 66.

     Immigrants from the U. S., 30.

     Indian laborers in Washington and Oregon, 213.

     International boundary line, 76.

     Japanese on the coast, 234.

     Japanese rice planter, 258.

     Juneau, 69.

     Ketchikan, 59.

     Kicking Horse River, 39.

     Klondike, 154.

     Lake Atlin, 88.

     Lake Bennett, 76.

     Lake Lebarge, 121.

     Lake Marsh, 88.

     Lake St. Clair, 14.

     Lake Superior, 18.

     Lake Taggish, 93.

     Los Angeles, 249.

     Los Angeles to Salt Lake City, 260.

     Lynn Canal, 70.

     Luxurious living in Dawson, 165.

     Mackinac, 14.

     Miles Cañon, 116.

     Millbank Sound, 203.

     Mineral wealth of Colorado, 304.

     Mining on Bonanza Creek, 140, 154.

     Mining on El Dorado Fork, 157.

     Mining on Pine Creek, 94.

     Mining on Hunker Creek, 158.

     Minneapolis, 24.

     Mode of living at the diggings, 108.

     Mojave Desert, 257.

     Monterey, 241.

     Mormon literature, 273.

     Mormon Temple, 270.

     Mt. Shasta, 226.

     Narrow-gauge railway from Skagway, 75.

     Nebraska, 307.

     Northwest Mounted Police, 172.

     Ogden to Salt Lake City, 269.

     Omaha, 310.

     Otter Creek, 101.

     Our landlady at Dawson, 163.

     Peace River, 33.

     Pelly River, 128.

     Placer mining, 94.

     Portland, 219.

     Preparations for winter, 180.

     Presidio, 234.

     Ptarmigan, 101.

     Public school in Dawson, 172.

     Puget Sound cities, 218.

     Puget Sound crabs, 209.

     Queen Charlotte Sound, 56.

     Returning travellers from the Klondike, 207.

     Ride along the coast, 242.

     Ride to Portland, 216.

     Ride to Yakima, 215.

     Salmon, 60.

     Salmon at Ketchikan, 59.

     Salmon in the Columbia River, 220.

     Salt Lake City, 270.

     Salt Lake City to Glenwood Springs, Colorado, 282.

     San Francisco, 230.

     Santa Barbara, 242.

     Santa Cruz, 238.

     San Joaquin Valley, 257.

     Sausalito and Mt. Tamalpais, 233.

     Sault St. Marie, 17.

     Sawmill at Tacoma, 212.

     Seattle, 206.

     Secret of the success of Mormonism in Utah, 275.

     Silver Bow River, 30.

     Skagway, 70, 75.

     Spruce Creek, 102.

     Steamer "City of Seattle," 52.

     Steamer White Horse, 116.

     Stewart River, 128.

     St. Louis, 317.

     St. Paul, 20, 22.

     Sutton, geologist, 93.

     Tacoma, 210.

     The Five Fingers, 127.

     Thirty Mile River, 122.

     Treadgold, 146.

     Treadwell mines, 69.

     Trip to the Taku Glacier, 109.

     Upper Yukon, 122.

     Up the Yukon from Dawson, 180.

     U. S. Fish Commission, 82.

     Valley of the Willamette, 224.

     Vancouver, 48, 51.

     Victoria, 48, 51, 52.

     Washington State Fair at Yakima, 214.

     Wheat land, 26, 29, 34, 35.

     White Pass, 87.

     Wild sheep and goats, 101.

     Winnipeg, 26.

     Work in the diggings in winter, 192.

     Yukon above Dawson, 131.

     Zodiacal lights in winter, 192.

Transcriber's Note:

 Small inconsistencies in punctuation in the Index and captions of
 photographs have been resolved. Two 'N' entries in the Index
 ("Narrow-gauge railway" and "Northwest Mounted Police"), were
 misplaced, and have been moved to their correct positions.

 There were several other indexing errors:
    "Portland" was corrected to refer to p. 219.
    "Cincinati" was corrected to refer to p. 324.

  The following obvious printer's errors are noted, and where unambiguous,
  have been corrected.

  p. 70.  we are sor[r]ry                       Removed extra 'r'.

  p. 97   and blow it in [in] leisurely         Removed repeated 'in'.

  p. 110  the great [Llewellen] or Taku         _sic_

  p. 166  N. W. [N/M]. P.                       North West Mounted Police

  p. 196  so I [persume/presume]                Corrected.

  p. 238  the very best of them all.["]         Added.

  p. 279  they have also never fled from, but   Added.
          the[y] rather

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