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Title: Canoeing in Kanuckia - Or Haps and Mishaps Afloat and Ashore of the Statesman, - the Editor, the Artist, and the Scribbler
Author: Norton, Charles Ledyard, Habberton, John
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 "Canoeing in Kanuckia - Or Haps and Mishaps Afloat and Ashore of the Statesman, - the Editor, the Artist, and the Scribbler" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

Transcriber's Note:

 Obvious punctuation errors repaired.
 Italic text is denoted by _underscores_ and bold text by =equal signs=.
 Accentuation and spelling in French quotations has not been corrected.

  Page 11: Illustration Index;
  Page 11: '10. The local Small-boy'. Caption reads '10. The Local
    Small Boy'. Not changed.
  Page 11: '32. Wahu ei'. This illustration has been moved from Page
    104 to Page 103.
  Page 11: '50. Down the Rapids 171'. Should read 174. Repaired.
  Page 11: '51. No Ruins in America (Ruskin) 174'. Should read 170.
  Page 11: '52. Canadian Loaf, etc 171'. Illustration title reads:
    'Two Loaves--a Contrast'. Not changed.
  Page 11: '57. and 58'. These two entries reversed in original.
  Page 25: 'modern canoeing dates'. Double quotation mark added.
    '"modern canoeing dates'.
  Page 87: [Footnote 3:] The author has crossed out "Cook", "Cherub"
    and "Becky Sharp" and added above "Commodore", "Becky Sharp" and
    "Cherub" respectively.


         By the author of "Helen's Babies,"    $1 25

   II. BUDGE AND TODDIE. An Illustrated
         Edition of "Other People's Children,"  1 75

         VALLEY REST; or, Sketches of
         Everybody's Neighbors,                 1 00

   IV. THE BARTON EXPERIMENT,                   1 00

  _G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS, Publishers,_

                                 _New York_.

[Illustration: The Cook Jibes.]


























Melancholy as the admission must necessarily be to persons with
aspirations toward literary Art, the authors are forced to acknowledge
that most of the incidents recounted therein actually occurred during
a canoeing cruise to the Northward, in which they were participants;
that the localities described have a geographical existence, and that
the persons introduced and the experiences recorded are, with trifling
exceptions, true to the life. They frankly admit that they might not
have been so truthful had they suffered from lack of incident, but
their perplexities have arisen from too much good material instead of
too little. Departures from strict veracity have been made solely on
the ground of good fellowship.

The authors being blessed with ordinary human perception, it is
not strange that they fully realize their own superiority to their
companions in point of virtue, manliness, good-seamanship, personal
appearance, adaptability, etc., etc. They have thought it simply
honorable, therefore, to separate individual traits and experiences,
each by themselves, and redistribute them without prejudice or
partiality among the entire quartette.

As the effect of this generosity has been to cause some doubt on the
part of each member of the expedition as to his own personal identity,
it is certain that no one of them can be successfully reconstructed by
any outsider. How unalloyed a blessing the public thus enjoys, is not
for the self-renouncing authors to point out in detail.

       *       *       *       *       *

P. S. BY THE COOK. It has been found impracticable to prevent the
Commodore from causing to be inserted in the following pages certain
efforts of his own which he is pleased to denominate "Sketches." He is
apparently actuated by the hope that they will pass for professional
work. The real Artist of the expedition, however, being solicitous
regarding his own reputation, wishes it distinctly understood that he
is responsible only for those illustrations which are signed by him in
full, and has deputed the Cook to warn the public to this effect.



 INTRODUCTION                           15

 GETTING UNDER WAY                      21




 SUNSHINE AND SHADOW                    80

 MY NATIVE LAND FAREWELL                88

 GARRISON LIFE                         111

 THE BEGINNING OF ACADIA               129

 AREAS OF RAIN                         145

 ACADIA                                166

 SEVERAL OTHER DAYS                    181

 A CHANGE OF SCENE                     206

 SWIFT WATER                           212

 MORE RAPIDS                           223

 THE BEGINNING OF THE END              229

 APPENDIX                              249



  1. The Cook Jibes                        2
  2. The Authors                          20
  3. Mlle. Rochefort at home              22
  4. Chrysalis and Chrysalid              23
  5. The Twins                            24
  6. Kayak Birch, Rob Roy                 26
  7. Under full sail--Chrysalid           28
  8. Close hauled. Red Laker              30
  9. The Quartette                        32
  10. The local Small-boy                 33
  11. Coffee Pot before                   43
  12. Coffee Pot after                    44
  13. A Sporhungan                        46
  14. The Sanctuary                       48
  15. The Cook selects a Boom             50
  16. Gosh                                57
  17. The Vice's Boom toggle              58
  18. The Commodore's Sprit               59
  19. Island Camp                         61
  20. A Vigorous Pull                     63
  21. A little too vigorous               65
  22. Aquatic Leap frog                   66
  23. "His ship she was a wrack"          69
  24. The Cook's Tent                  77,78
  25. Green grow the rushes               83
  26. "But the Consul's brow was sad"     89
  27. The United States Garrison          93
  28. The Purser on British Soil          94
  29. A Canoe Seat                        99
  30. The Picturesque afar               101
  31. The Picturesque anear              102
  32. Wahu ei                            103
  33. Supper Table                       107
  34. An unknown Fortress                112
  35. The British Garrison               115
  36. The Sally Port                     116
  37. The Vampire Bat                    118
  38. The Commandant                     120
  39. The Commandant's Lady              122
  40. The Dock                           133
  41. Under the Elms                     139
  42. The Enchantress                    142
  43. Boat, Aristocratic                 146
  44. Boat, Plebeian                     146
  45. The Commodore Weather-bound        147
  46. Aux Armes Citoyennes               153
  47. Alone with his Conscience          159
  48. The Typical Church                 161
  49. Water Front                        168
  50. Down the Rapids                    174
  51. No Ruins in America (Ruskin)       170
  52. Canadian Loaf, etc.                171
  53. A Quiet Cove                       177
  54. A Charming Landscape               186
  55. A shock to the Commodore's Nerves  188
  56. Use Laundry Soap and be Happy      205
  57. In the Second Rapids               208
  58. Down the Race                      210
  59. The Vice sits for his Portrait     218
  60. Comparative Coffee Cups            226


"Go see her?--certainly I will!" said the Artist.

"So will I!" exclaimed the Scribbler, jumping to his feet and
rearranging his neck-tie; "if she is half as beautiful as you say, I'd
go every day to see her, even were the trip twice the score of miles
that it is."

"And I," said the Editor, replacing in his vest-pocket the
folding-scissors which he nervously fingered by force of professional

"'Tis done, then," said the Statesman, "she will be at my house
to-morrow evening and the winter through, but she is particularly
handsome and graceful just now, and there's no time like the present,
you know. Dine with me to-morrow evening: I'll give you a tip-top
spread, but when you see _her_ you'll forget it all."

"We will come!" shouted the Artist, the Scribbler and the Editor in
chorus, and when twenty-four hours later the trio fulfilled their
promise, they admitted that the half had not been told them. They
exhibited however, none of that unseemly jealousy which would naturally
be expected from a trio of admirers at sight of an almost phenomenal
beauty, for the object of their admiration was a canoe, and accepted
their attentions with an impartiality which would have been the envy
of any society queen. She occupied the study of the Statesman, and
covered almost as much space as if she were a lady with a train of the
first magnitude; she was in every line the embodiment of grace, and
her beauty was not entirely independent of paint and other cosmetics.
But here the parallel ceased. In visiting a canoe the visitor enjoys
certain liberties which are not admissible during an ordinary evening
call. A gentleman may speak in most enthusiastic praise of a canoe,
and right to her face, without being suspected of a desire to flirt;
he may criticise freely without seeming unmannerly; he may even talk
admiringly of other canoes without disturbing the outward or inward
complacency of his fair entertainer. He may even unlock his wits with a
good cigar without provoking a cough from the fair being, and without
compelling her to send her finer adornments to the bleachery next day,
or expose them on the family clothes-line, to the purifying breezes of
heaven. One may look fixedly by the hour at a beautiful canoe without
being guilty of ungentlemanly staring, and may thus call up all those
finer sentiments which far transcend the powers of expression, and may
thus elevate his own nature to a degree which is unattainable under
the restrictions of a fashionable call. He may without offence or even
discourtesy, touch her, though if he be a man of true character he can
not do so without a struggle with natural timidity, and without a new
sense of his own awkwardness.

The quartette gazed, and smoked, until the fair outline before them
became veiled in the soft haze which so enhances the glories of a
perfect form and a rich complexion. They talked, they mused, they
talked again; the Artist, the Scribbler and the Editor talked of
their own special darlings of the same genus. They mused again, then
they fell once more to admiring. The one blot upon the perfection of
the being before them was that her sole guardian had christened her
"Rochefort," but the Statesman, like statesmen in general, had his
weaknesses, and if men cannot be tenderly enduring of the weaknesses
of their friends, what statesman can live? At length the Rochefort's
protector broke silence by saying,

"Can you fellows gaze upon her, and talk of her rivals, and then refuse
to go on a cruise this summer?"

"Not I!" exclaimed the Editor.

"Refuse?" exclaimed the Scribbler, and then he betrayed his Hibernian
ancestry by adding, "I'd go alone, for the sake of having her with me."

"And I know just where to go," said the Artist. "I know of a
picturesque lake whose outlet is a placid river flowing through an
Acadia like that which Longfellow has pictured, and breaking at last
into wild rapids down which we can run like salmon in the fall."

"Is Evangeline still there?" asked the Statesman, with symptoms of
lively interest.

"She is every where," replied the Artist.

"Why," said the Statesman, examining his mental memoranda, "she died
two centuries ago."

"She is perennial," answered the Artist, and the Statesman inwardly
cursed his own literal perceptives.

"Let's take our sentiment when we are there," suggested the Editor;
"this is the hour for action."

The conversation which ensued need not be detailed here. It would
consume so much ink and paper as materially to raise the price of these
staples. It is sufficient to say that the quartette silenced forever
the calumnious statement that only ladies talk two or three at a time,
and that the necessary supplies decided upon for the trip exceeded in
bulk the cargo of that most capacious vessel, the Mayflower.


[Illustration: The Authors.]




All night the Statesman, the Editor, the Artist and the Scribbler had
been rumbling northward in a sleeping car, and as day dawned the steady
and quickened clank of wheels told that they were on a down grade
toward the Lake, and nearing the point where vacation was really to
begin. They had turned into their respective berths somewhere south of
Albany; they awoke and looked down from a precipitous hillside into the
clear Lake. Presently the train slowed and in another minute they were
questioning the station-master about their canoes, which had preceded
them as freight some days before.

"No, can't wait till after breakfast. Must see them now."

So the station-master rather reluctantly unlocked his freight room and
there in a row side by side lay the "Red Lakers" and the "Chrysalids,"
for all the world like two pairs of twins tucked in a big bed together.
For the station-master--bless him!--had thoughtfully spread a
tarpaulin over them so that only their darling noses were in sight.

[Illustration: Mlle. Rochefort at home.]

It should here be explained that the terms "Red Lake" and "Chrysalid"
designate certain models of canoes, the first being named for the
locality where the canoes are built, while the appropriateness of the
second must be evident from the accompanying sketch.

       *       *       *       *       *

Let the _Expeditionis Personæ_ now be introduced.

[Illustration: Chrysalis and Chrysalid.]

Behold the BECKY SHARP (flagship) and the CHERUB, commanded
respectively by the Editor and the Scribbler, and constituting the
"First Division." Behold also the "ROCHEFORT" and the "ARETHUSELA"[1]
forming the Second Division, and commanded by the Statesman and the

[Illustration: The Twins.]

Over the meeting between each man and his canoe a veil is delicately
drawn. Even the station-master considerately stepped out upon the
platform during the few moments when each metaphorically made his canoe
put out its tongue and answer questions as to its moral and physical
well-being. The interview was satisfactory to all save the Statesman,
who detected several minute scratches on the deck of the Rochefort and
declared that palpable demoralization had resulted from her enforced
association with Red Lakers.

The Artist having volunteered to stay by the boats while his companions
breakfasted at the neighboring tavern, was straightway beset by a
number of wayfarers who demanded full accounts of the canoes and of
canoeing in general. The Artist had been in the lecture field, and as
the spirit was strong upon him, he gave the assembled multitude (about
a dozen in all) a comprehensive account of the art. No reporter was
present, but his remarks are believed to have been about as follows:

"In the civilized acceptation of the term, gentlemen," (here the six
small boys who composed a fraction of the audience punched one another
in the ribs,) "modern canoeing dates back only a few years,--some
fifteen in England and half as many in America. Its acknowledged
progenitor is Mr. John Macgregor, an English barrister to whom was
vouchsafed the brilliant idea of crossing the canoe of the North
American Indian with the Esquimaux Kayak, for purposes of civilized
recreation, the product being a hybrid known as the Rob Roy model.
(Here the speaker seized the station-master's chalk and drew rapidly
upon the wall in illustration of his meaning.) Although the canoe
exists among all savage nations, it reached its greatest perfection for
inland and coast wise navigation among the North American Indians. The
'birch,' as it is familiarly called, is so nearly perfect for use on
forest streams that the Hudson's Bay Company, after various experiments
with wood and iron, settled down, years ago, to its almost exclusive
use for their vast transportation service extending throughout the
British American Possessions. The Kayak, built as it is of a light
frame with skin stretched over it, has less weight and more strength
than the birch, and as it is all covered over excepting a man-hole
amidships, it is evidently the more seaworthy of the two. It has,
however, no carrying capacity to speak of, beyond its crew of one."

[Illustration: Kayak--Birch--Rob-Roy.]

"A different craft from either of these is required for the use of the
civilized voyager. He wants a boat which will not, like the birch,
leak if it happens to touch bottom. He wants one which will retain its
buoyancy even when full of water; which at a pinch he can carry alone
across a portage; which is roomy enough to sleep in, large enough to
carry stores and equipments for a reasonable number of days, staunch
and seaworthy in any weather when it is pleasant to be on the water,
and readily obedient to his hand under sail or paddle.

"No doubt Mr. Macgregor drew his first inspiration from the two
barbarian models referred to. He designed a boat known as the
'Rob-Roy,' which was easy to paddle, which could be slept in, and in
which he made many long cruises. It was, however, decidedly faulty in
many particulars, being wet and uncomfortable in a sea-way, owing to
its lack of 'sheer;' it was also of small sailing capacity. In smooth
water, the 'Rob-Roy' has its advantages, but for general purposes the
'Nautilus' model is decidedly its superior. This was designed by Mr.
Baden Powell, another Englishman, who improved on Mr. Macgregor's model
by giving his boat greater 'bearings,' that is, a broader and flatter
bottom, that of the original Rob Roy being nearly semi-circular, and by
raising her lines at stem and stern so that it was nearly impossible
to drive her nose under in a sea-way. This made her very difficult to
manage under paddle with the wind abeam, so in subsequent plans the
sheer was considerably reduced, and the change proved to be a decided

[Illustration: Under Full Sail--Chrysalid.]

"The 'Chrysalids' (here the speaker indicated the Arethusela and the
Rochefort) are variations of the Nautilus type. You perceive at a
glance their great superiority in every particular over the 'Red Laker'
(pointing to the Cherub and the Becky Sharp) which lie beside them,
and which are merely elaborate copies of the Indian birch made of wood
and rigged for cruising. I will draw for you a Chrysalid under sail."
(The Artist turned again to his extemporized black-board and with a few
rapid strokes produced the sketch on page 28.)

Meanwhile the local population had dropped in one by one, until he
had a respectable audience, and the Scribbler, who had finished his
breakfast and drawn near, began to consider the expediency of taking up
a collection.

"You see how ship-shape she is in all respects, (applause, the Artist
bowing,) I will now, in order that my fellow voyagers may not accuse
me of partiality, show you also a Red Laker under sail." Again the
station-master's chalk was in requisition, and presently a sketch
something like this adorned the wall. As the Artist was proceeding,
a youth near the door, who, the Artist vows, had been bribed by the
Scribbler, checked him with, "I say, mister, that there Red Laker makes
the best looking picter of the two, don't it?"

[Illustration: Close Hauled Red Laker.]

The Artist had not compared his illustrations, and on
glancing at them, was obliged to explain that certain peculiarities
of outline assuredly did give a false impression in this
instance:--"However," he went on easily, resuming the imperturbable
manner which had become habitual with him in the desk, "as I was about
to say, having thus become Anglicized, it was merely a question of
time how soon the modern and improved canoe should be re-naturalized
in America. It was introduced in 1872 by Mr. W. L. Alden, founder and
senior member of the New York Canoe Club, an association to which the
boats before you belong, and which now has a fleet of about thirty
canoes, and a somewhat larger number of active and honorary members."

The Artist ceased and the Scribbler led off in a round of applause,
which was however, but feebly seconded.

Breakfast over, the quartette donned their blue flannels and sauntered
down to the shore, followed by a curious throng of the inhabitants. (N.
B. The throng of inhabitants is seen at the right.)

The Lake, which at an early hour had been placid as a anglican sermon,
was, by the time the fleet was ready to start, breaking furiously
against the wharf before a northerly breeze and the mariners were glad
to launch and stow their canoes under the lee of the railway bridge,
and the critical supervision of the local small-boy.

[Illustration: The Quartette.]

For six months the four comrades had made preparations for the
cruise, but the knowledge which worketh experience worked also
calamity, for the stores which were unloaded from steamboats and
express cars on the shore of the lake, would have justified each
captain of a canoe in chartering a steamer of moderate dimensions
as a tender. As such a course would have tended to the destruction
of the picturesqueness of the squadron under sail, it was given up
without a murmur, so the quartette, each man for himself, proceeded
to the exasperating duty of deciding what he best could spare and
return. The Statesman decided against carrying a tent, a tin pail, a
couple of hundred weight of canned goods, a life-preserver, a Bible
and a looking-glass which he had brought with him, but retained a
double-barrelled gun, a twenty-pound bag of duck-shot and a volume of
Tupper's "Proverbial Philosophy."

[Illustration: The Local Small Boy.]

"If your boat springs a leak, no earthly power can save her, with such
a cargo," said the Editor.

"I'll keep the shot where I can drop it overboard in such case,"
briskly replied the Statesman.

"What good will that do?" asked the Editor, "if the Tupper remains on

"The Tupper will make a capital anchor, though," suggested the
Artist, as he reluctantly laid upon a heap, to be returned, a field
easel, a camp-stool, a medicine-chest, a set of Shakespeare in three
volumes, and a demijohn, the latter, by some deplorable oversight,
having arrived empty. The Scribbler carefully inspected two bulky
portmanteaus, extracted therefrom a single change of underclothing, a
box of cigars, a tooth-brush and a comb, and returned the bags with
their contents. The Editor concluded that perhaps he might be safe in
Acadia without the copy of Webster's Dictionary which he had brought
thus far in several thicknesses of rubber cloth, and a mental survey
of the proposed route convinced him that he might dispense with his
faithful scissors and paste-pot, inasmuch as no newspaper was published
on either the Lake or the River, but he stowed in his boat a gold
headed-cane and a horse-pistol, explaining, as he did so,

"These are the interviewer's only faithful friends."

The individual property thus rejected, with the superfluous stores
which had been purchased _en bloc_ by the quartette, threatened for
a little while to cause a "corner" in freight cars, but a threat to
charter several steamers which were idle upon the Lake brought the
railway agent to his senses, and gave his Company an excuse to put upon
Wall Street a story of sudden increase of gross earnings. The rejected
cargoes were stowed, and then the Editor, calling his companions apart
from the immense crowd of gazers and listeners, said,

"Gentlemen, by virtue of long experience as a fighting editor, I
hereby assume command of this expedition, and propose to be obeyed
and respected accordingly. I detail the Statesman as Vice-commodore,
commanding the Second Division."

"Vice," murmured the Artist, "what an ideal title for a Statesman!"

The Commodore continued, "The Artist I appoint Purser--"

"What delicious sarcasm!" interrupted the newly appointed Vice; "the
idea of an Artist taking care of money! Judas and his bag are nowhere."

"And the Scribbler," resumed the Commodore, "will be Cook, a position
to which his experience in concocting literary hash most richly
entitles him. During the cruise all family, baptismal and social names
will be dropped, and the members of the expedition will be known only
by their nautical titles. Is every one ready to embark?"

"Ready!" replied the Vice, the Purser and the Cook in chorus; the
paddles were seized, and the Commodore was giving the command "Shove
off!" when the Vice exclaimed,

"Gracious! how could I have forgotten it?" Then he ran to the pile of
rejected material and rescued an immense brown paper parcel containing
something which seemed to be instinct with every angle and line known
to the student of conic sections. Hurriedly stowing it away in his
forward compartment, he shoved his boat from the beach.

"What is it?" shouted the fleet.

"It was a present to me from a constituent," roared he, at the top of
his lungs, the wind whisking away his words. "That's what it is."

This was accepted as a diplomatic and statesmanlike way of saying "None
of your business," so the rest held their peace, and gave themselves to
the serious work of making headway against the sea.

'Tis ever thus! Never have any of the Four started on a cruise without
having at the very beginning to tax their as yet unaccustomed muscles
by paddling straight in the teeth of an adverse gale. Of course the
canoes are at their heaviest and must be expected to leak more or less
after a fortnight's baking in a box-car. So when all are ready the
command paddles round through the draw, points toward a headland three
miles off dead to windward, and doggedly settles down to its work. It
takes nearly two hours to cover the distance, and the Chrysalids have
had to bail at frequent intervals under the protecting care of Red
Lakers. The headland is reached at last, however, and then comes the
bath for which all have been longing. If any future explorer finds an
unaccountable deposit of cinders and scoriæ off that point he may
ascribe them, if he likes, to prehistoric volcanic convulsions, but the
four voyagers know better.

It was now noon, and a substantial luncheon was followed by a long
siesta under the cedars, while lungs accustomed to inhale the
de-oxidized atmosphere of the city filled themselves with the first
draughts of ozone from the great paradise of spruce which stretches
almost unbroken from the Canada line to the Arctic circle. Grand
mountain forms rose against the sky, the city was far away; they were

The sun lacked but three hours of setting, when the squadron shook off
the delicious languor that succeeded its unwonted exertions, bailed out
the Chrysalids, now thoroughly soaked, and in a condition which their
owners were pleased to consider "tight," wiped up with a sponge the
few drops that had penetrated the seams of the Red Lakers, and paddled
merrily away toward an island blue in the afternoon haze, on which it
had been determined to camp over Sunday. The lake was by this time
ashamed of the boisterous welcome it had given to the fleet, and was
undergoing a burnishing process preparatory to serving as a mirror for
the sunset. By dusk camp was made in a lean-to left by some considerate
predecessors. The canoes were anchored in the lee of a shingly point,
excepting the Rochefort, which her commander carefully, and for some
inscrutable parliamentary reason, anchored to windward, and by nine
o'clock all, with one exception, were rolled in their blankets, and
sound asleep.

    [Footnote 1: The artist begs the authors to explain that this name
    is the result of a compromise between the friends of two domestic
    cats "Arabella" and "Methusela," neither of whom would consent to
    have the boat named exclusively after the other.]



As is the case in all well regulated families, the Cook was the first
person to greet the morning of the second day. He not only did so, but
he greeted it in its extreme infancy, an instant after his own watch,
had it been a repeater, would have struck midnight, and from this
moment onward he manifested the liveliest interest in the growth of the
new day. His impatience could scarcely be attributable to a desire to
see the sun rise, for at home the Cook habitually rose at dawn, and had
already an unequalled collection of sunrises in his mental portfolio.
In truth, the Cook was very cold. He had smiled pityingly as he saw
his companions retire each under a pair of woolen blankets, while
he himself stretched freely upon his rubber sheet, with no covering
whatever. Woolen blankets in July, when at midday the thermometer
stood at ninety degrees in the shade!--the Cook perspired anew at
the thought, and chuckled over the superior good luck which had led
him to forget his blankets when he left New York, thereby materially
reducing the bulk of his equipment. Woolen blankets might be necessary
to the city existence of the Statesman, the Editor and the Artist, for
each of the gentlemen represented professions which are notoriously
cold-blooded, but as for the Scribbler--well, all scribblers come early
in life to regard blankets as rarely attainable luxuries, and to depend
for warmth upon their own inner man.

But on this particular occasion the inner man of the Cook failed to
respond to the demand made upon it. The Cook would have encouraged
the inner man had he known where the expeditionary brandy was kept,
but no racking of memory elicited the information desired. He scraped
carefully among the ashes of his evening fire, hoping that some coals
might have remained alive to kindle a new one, but the fire had been
of wood too small to leave coals, and the Cook's matches were wet. He
might have had dry matches, brandy--yes, and a share in the blankets
themselves, all in an instant, had he but awakened either of his
brother officers. But the Cook's pride exceeded in greatness even his
discomfort, so he sought consolation in his own reflections, as men
are always possessed to do at just such times, when their reflections
are in the most shocking condition imaginable. The Cook paced the
sand, hugged himself, and tried to believe that there had been no
such day as yesterday, and that he had never left a blanket in New
York. Then he tried to draw his rubber blanket noiselessly from the
tent, to throw over his shoulders, but one side of the Purser rested
upon its extreme edge, and the Purser was of the conventional English
ponderosity. Then the Cook tried to revive his spirits with a song,
sung softly between his teeth, but these last named gateways of sound
were trembling so that the song itself became sadly demoralized.
The Cook had once written a convincing essay on "The Power of the
Imagination, as Exemplified by Physical Facts," and recalling this,
he soliloquized "Physician, heal thyself!" Honestly he endeavored to
obey the injunction, by imagining himself burrowing in a whole bale of
Mackinaw blankets, as he had once done in the far west when smitten by
an ague, but the warmth was as imperceptible in the former case as in
the latter.

The night wore on, to the extent of two or three thousand hours, and
reduced the chilling Cook at last to a single desire:--he wished that
before he froze to death he might have a thermometer, a pencil and
paper, and record for the benefit of coming canoeists this terrible
temperature--if, indeed, the thermometer could indicate it before the
mercury itself would freeze.

Then came that mysterious hour of the night in which night, itself
still regnant, trembles at the prospect of its own dissolution. It was
the hour in which sick men who are foredoomed to die generally accept
the inevitable: it was also the hour in which the Commodore, in his
home capacity of Editor, always left the office of the "Daily Tocsin,"
and walked home with a sedative cigar for company. The force of habit
being strong in the Commodore, he rustled uneasily under his blankets,
and finally emerged from the tent, filling a pipe as he came.

"Just the man!" exclaimed the Cook. "_I_ want to smoke, but I hadn't
the heart to awake any one to beg a dry match."

Both pipes lighted, the Cook remarked,

"D-d-don't you think it would be more cheerful to smoke by a f-f-fire?"

And the Commodore, with a very perceptible flavor of irony in his
tones, replied,

"I d-d-don't know but I d-d-do."

Five minutes sufficed in which to make a roaring fire: then the
Cook scraped up a ridge of sand a few feet from the blaze, allowed
it to heat, stretched himself against it and was asleep in an
instant. An experienced seaman, however, when in a position of grave
responsibility, never allows himself entire freedom from care. Hence
in the present instance the sailor-like instincts acquired by the
Commodore during long years of sedentary life, caused him some anxiety
as he once more lay down in the tent. The wind had freshened from the
southward, and he deemed it his duty to arouse the Vice whose canoe,
as has been stated, was anchored off a lee shore while the rest were
securely sheltered behind a point. The reply elicited by his appeal
was somnolent rather than respectful, and the Commodore resolving
upon disciplinary measures in the morning, once more arose and sought
the beach. Professional instinct had not been at fault. There was
the Rochefort full of water, rolling heavily in the trough of the
sea, and banging her cedar broadside against the stony shore. With
that devotion to the service characteristic of the true sailor, the
commanding officer laid aside at once his trousers and the dignity
of his station, and rescued, at the risk of wetting his remaining
garment, the vessel which the inexperience of a subordinate had
imperiled. In this connection it may be well to remark that a stone
which weighs twelve pounds out of the water weighs only about seven
beneath its surface. Ignorance of this simple mechanical principle led
a well-meaning and occasionally meritorious officer into the error of
using such a stone for an anchor.

Still the Cook slept when the Commodore returned from his labor of
love, and crept shiveringly into his blankets.

The hours passed, the sun arose and beat upon the Cook's face, and
still he slept. By the time the occupants of the tent awoke the sun had
performed his toilet so thoroughly that not a dewdrop remained visible.
But still the Cook slept, and when the Vice saw him he took in the
situation at a glance, and remarked:

"Methinks I remember a cruise in which the Alderman was temporarily
without blankets."

The Vice performed his ablutions, shaved himself, eyed the fire, walked
impatiently around the Cook, and finally exclaimed:

"Boys, I'm starving, but it's too bad to rouse that tired wretch. I'll
take his place this morning. He does well enough as a cook, but he has
some silly notions that I'd like to reason him out of. He always cooks
with hot coals; now I propose to show him that a bright blaze is just
as useful, and far sooner made ready. Besides I am the proud owner of a
utensil which is destined to revolutionize the art of coffee-making."
The others were fain to acquiesce in this arrangement, but the Purser,
with characteristic prudence, put some water to boil in the regular
way. The Statesman meanwhile burrowed among his stores and shortly
appeared bearing the brown paper parcel which had excited curiosity
at the beginning of the voyage. Tearing off the paper he exhibited a
structure of the general appearance depicted.

[Illustration: The Vice's Coffee Pot before.]

"Here," said he, rapidly resolving it into its component parts, "is the
receptacle for the coffee. And you fill this part--no, this one--with
water. Then you put it on the fire. As soon as it boils you turn it
bottom up. Let's see--no, it was bottom up before; you turn it right
side up and there you are. Coffee strained, not boiled." This last with
a contemptuous glance at the sleeping cook.

[Illustration: The Vice's Coffee Pot after.]

The Vice piled wood upon the fire, and while it blazed up fiercely he
hastily filled the wonderful coffee-pot half full of water, and set
it in the midst of the flames. Five minutes later the Cook awoke from
a dream of hearing a tin peddler's wagon upset on a stone pavement.
Rubbing his eyes he beheld the Vice, with a long hooked stick, rescuing
various pieces of tin from the fire, and dropping them upon a boulder
near by.[2] The flame had resolved the wonderful coffee-pot into its
dozen or more original fragments, and as the Vice made a final dive for
the spoutless, handleless, topless vessel, the Cook drawled:

"Some people cook over coals, and some prefer a blaze."

"Why," spluttered the Vice, as he blew upon a burned
finger, "the Alderman always made coffee over a blaze."

"Then he did it in a coffee-pot with a bail which hooked on, instead
of being fastened by solder. And besides he suspended it over the fire
after this fashion."

The Vice walked away to his boat in disgust, while the rest seated
themselves about the unprofessional breakfast which had been made
ready. Presently he sauntered boldly among them with what he was
pleased to term a coffee-cup in hand, looking rather red in the face,
but sturdily demanding his breakfast.

"Some of that potted salmon, Purser. Pass us the bread, Commodore. I
say, Cook, isn't that coffee ready yet? Commodore, this thing won't
work. If fellows are going to shirk their share of the drudgery, the
service will go to the dogs. What I want is my coffee, and I want it
NOW, do you hear, Cook?"

But the Cook was magnanimous, for he had a coffee-pot of his own, and
though the Vice contended that the coffee made therein had not the
aroma peculiar to that made in the one which he had loved, and lost, he
revealed the hollowness of his plea, (or his stomach) by drinking twice
as much as any one else did.

The Flag officer deemed the moment a fitting one to administer, firmly
but kindly, a merited rebuke to the subordinate whose heedlessness had
on the preceding night imperilled the safety of a valuable vessel.
On being asked if he had anything to say in his own defence, the
disgraced officer replied with unblushing effrontery that he was warm
and comfortable when the Commodore waked him; he was sleepy, and he
knew the Commodore would get up and do what had to be done anyhow, and
he didn't want to get up in the cold and--

[Illustration: A Sporhungan.]

Here the Commodore broke in with an authoritative "Silence, Sir,"
but as the rest of the fleet went off in convulsions of irreverent
laughter, he thought it best to let the matter drop.

Saturday is a good day to begin a canoe-cruise. The unwonted exercise
induces weariness which the first night in camp does not wholly remove,
so that a day of rest and a second night of more refreshing sleep, are
usually acceptable to all. Opposite is what the voyagers looked at from
their camp, throughout that peaceful Sunday.

At this camp too, the regular details were permanently and formally
arranged. The Scribbler having confirmed the Commodore's judgment, and
evinced a decided genius for cookery, consented to serve permanently
as _chef_, the rest taking turns on successive days as foragers,
woodcutters, and dish-washers.

    [Footnote 2: In order to protect themselves against prosecution for
    libel the authors would state that the coffee-pot in question is an
    admirable one under proper conditions. Such conditions, however,
    are not afforded by an open fire of driftwood.]


[Illustration: The Sanctuary.]



As the squadron turned out and took its matutinal swim, soon after
sunrise, the lake was dimpled by a favorable breeze, and after
breakfast orders were issued to make sail.

"I've got to make a spar first, Commodore," exclaimed the Cook, "my
main boom is gone, or hasn't come, I don't know which."

"Find another at once," said the commanding officer, and the Cook
seized the hatchet, and started into the timber, returning presently
with an elm pole weighing twenty pounds, nearly half the weight of his
boat, his original boom having been a piece of bamboo weighing a scant
half-pound. By dint of hard work with hatchet and knife, he worked this
log into a makeshift for a boom.

"I wonder," remarked the Cook, as he dropped his knife for a moment,
and caressed the blistered palms of his hands, "why all you fellows
insist on having decks. I don't wonder that you two Chrysalids,"
referring to the Vice and the Purser, whose boats were of that famous
model, "I don't wonder that you two Chrysalids do it, for the builder
of your boats stupidly decked them before you bought them, but the
Commodore, who, like me, was sensible enough to buy a Red Lake boat,
wasn't satisfied to leave it free and open as he found it, but has gone
and stretched rubber-cloth over it fore and aft. It's as bad as sailing
in a coffin, to sail in any of them."

[Illustration: The Cook selects a Boom. (Below is the one that was

"I'd as lieve sail in a coffin as in a bath-tub," replied the Vice,
who, having commanded a blockade-runner during the late unpleasantness,
had a natural fondness for tight decks and plenty of them.

"A well-covered bath-tub," remarked the Commodore, "is fully as
seaworthy as a mahogany-topped coffin, and far less suggestive of
canoeing on the Styx. But for a cover of some sort, I confess an
affection. It keeps things dry; if a man capsizes--"

"A canoeist has no business to capsize," interrupted the Cook, who had
learned canoeing on a Western river, and in a "dug out," which could
only be turned over by the united efforts of at least two men, "and a
canoeist has no right to have 'things' lying so loosely as to drop out."

At length the squadron set sail. The wind had freshened, and the white
caps were as numerous and agitated as in a large female seminary during
a night alarm of fire. The Commodore, the Vice and the Purser were
all experienced sailors, so they shortened sail, but the Cook, having
never handled a boat under sail before, possessed his soul of the
nautical bliss that comes of ignorance. Shorten sail? He would show
those fellows what a fearless sailor and a good boat could do, when
the wind was disposed to aid them. The Cook experimented nervously for
a few moments to learn where the sail should really be to catch the
most wind, but when he learned he made full use of his knowledge, and
his boat, the Cherub, seemed literally to fly. It passed the Becky
Sharp, (the flagship) so rapidly that the Cook had not time to study
the Commodore's face long enough to know how that official liked it; it
passed the Rochefort, causing the Vice to scowl as if the unoffending
Cherub were a member of the party which the whilom statesman hated;
it threw for an instant the shadow of its great white mainsail on the
Arethusela, darkening the blonde complexion and golden locks of the

Then the Cook began to enjoy his boat and himself. A pistol which he
had in his pocket to be ready for a shot at some passing water-bird,
chafed him somewhat, and he laid it in the bottom of the boat, where
it would be equally handy and less troublesome. He had heard that a
canoeist should always be barefooted, so he kicked off his shoes. He
pitied his comrades who sat upon the hard bottoms of their boats as
they sailed, while he sat upon the many folds of a large tent. All the
inner lines of his beautiful canoe were before his eye, instead of
being hidden by decks, as those of his companions were--if, indeed,
there were any beautiful lines any where about their boats.

The Cook was happy; he fastened the sheet of his mainsail to a cleat,
softly whistling, as he did so, "A Life on the Ocean Wave," neither
thinking nor caring that the ocean was really several hundred miles
away. He was astonished and delighted that sailing was so easy an art
to acquire, but pshaw--sailors, like poets, are born, not made. Had not
one of his ancestors sailed with Drake when that hero interfered with
the sailing directions that had been delivered to the Spanish Armada?
What might he not have achieved himself, had cruel fate not ordained
that ink should be his only fluid element? Just here the Cherub made
such astonishing speed that the Cook determined roughly to "time" his
boat, so he estimated a mile of distance by the trees upon the shore,
opened his watch and laid it in the bottom of the boat, before his

But Solomon said that pride must have a fall, and when there is any
unpleasant saying of Scripture to be fulfilled, a conceited canoeist
is as good as any one else that can be selected for the purpose.
The squadron was approaching a point beyond which its course would
be changed. The Commodore shouted "Ready about!" and the Cook's
self-confidence disappeared as rapidly as if it had been the conscience
of a congressman after an interview with a "subsidy" lobbyist. "Jibe!"
shouted the Commodore. The Cook, almost in despair, looked astern, to
see what the others did. He saw their masts straighten, their sails
flap irresolutely for a moment, and then fill on the opposite side. How
was it done? Accident came to the Cook's rescue: a wretched steersman
at best, he had almost forgotten his helm as he looked astern, and an
unintentional turn of the wrist of his steering hand turned the boat's
head from the wind. Around came the new boom; the Cook had never before
seen a boom come around on his own boat, and he had no idea of how
close the same would come to the plane occupied by his own head. But
the time occupied by an industrious boom in jibing is not sufficient
for prolonged meditation, and while the Cook was wondering what to do,
the boom attended faithfully to its own business. The elasticity of a
green elm log is an unknown quantity; the Cook's dome of thought was
equally inelastic, so the Cook soon heard a heavy thud, as when one
throws a mighty stone at a well-laden chestnut tree. Then the Cook
heard a splash, and he was not allowed to remain in doubt as to the
object which caused it. All the terrible stories he had heard about men
who had been carried down by the sails and rigging of capsizing boats
came hurrying into his mind, and he swam so vigorously to escape a
similar fate, that his boat had time to turn leisurely over and adjust
itself to its new condition before he dared to pause in his mad career.
(_See Frontispiece._)

Then the Cook swam to his boat, and resting an elbow upon her
keel, gazed pensively around him. Something that seemed to be a
peculiarly-shaped dark fish, a little way below the surface in front
of him, proved to be the slowly sinking form of one of his shoes,
going to join its mate. A black bundle, consisting of most of the
Cook's personal effects wrapped in a rubber-blanket, was rescued by
the Commodore just as it seemed discouraged by the difficulty it
experienced in floating. The Cook's hat, one of the paddles, a covered
tin pail containing butter, a worthless bit or two of board, and sundry
other articles of little value, were picked up by other members of the
expedition, but the indisposition of watches, pistols, and even wet
tents to wander aimlessly about on the bosom of a lake is known to all
students of comparative specific gravities. The Cook groped for the
painter of his own boat; his other hand he rested upon the stern of
the flagship, and thus the demoralized couple reached the shore. The
remainder of the squadron had already disembarked, and the Purser made
haste to extend the hospitalities of a private flask, but he robbed
the draught of its flavor by asking, as he passed it,

"Shall I explain to you why canoes are usually decked?"

And the Cook was so absorbed in contemplation of his bare feet, that
he did not even look up. At length he inquired as to the depth of the
lake; the Vice obligingly paddled to the scene of the disaster, took
soundings, and reported fifty feet. To go through fifty feet of water
to cover two feet not over dry was not to be thought of, but what hope
was there of replacing lost shoes in a wilderness--even when Acadia was
reached, the natives probably made and wore only wooden sabots.

The overturned boat was righted, and the Cook emptied his portmonnaie
and laid his money on a sheltered rock to dry, while he should change
his clothing and restore his boat. Then the Commodore, consulting a
chart, discovered that there was a village only ten miles distant
on the border of the lake, and it was large enough to justify a
hope of shoes: the squadron should put in there. The delighted Cook
proposed an immediate start, particularly as a force of small boys was
approaching. The village was reached, the Cook found a pair of shoes,
but on attempting to pay for them he remembered having left his money
on a stone to dry. And that stone was ten miles away, it could only be
reached by paddling against a head wind, and when last seen the ground
containing the stone was occupied in force by boys! The Cook, as he
walked back to his boat, was in a savage frame of mind, and wanted to
hurt somebody or something, but no one would laugh at him, or offer
sympathy. Suddenly his eye fell upon the extempore boom; a moment later
and that faithful spar which had done only its honest duty, sank deeply
in the lake. The Cook's credit was good, however, and he succeeded in
borrowing from the Statesman enough money to pay for the shoes and a
blanket, and buy a bamboo fishing-pole from a casual youth who angled
on the adjacent wharf. This was speedily converted into a boom of
proper size and weight.

"The rest of us may as well go booming, too," remarked the Commodore,
who had been strongly stimulated by the exhibition of spirit in which
the Cook had indulged. By this time there had gathered about the
squadron quite a crowd. It was, however, a crowd of great conservatism;
each man seemed to have in his pocket a valuable something, which
required the unremitting contact of his hands, as well as something in
his mouth which would escape were he to part his lips. Occasionally,
however, one would release a hand long enough to test the weight of
the Vice's canoe, which was the only one that had been drawn entirely
out of the water, and as each of the sixty odd men present did this at
least once, gravely uttering, as he did so, the monosyllable "Gosh!"
the Vice was extremely delighted. The expletive recalled the days of
his innocent youth.

[Illustration: Gosh.]

"It is plain to see," said he, "that living right on the edge of
monarchical institutions as they do, these poor fellows have never
before seen a boat of any lightness and grace."

"Don't forget, please," remarked the Cook, "that my canoe, which is
lighter and faster than yours, was made in Canada."

Having repaired damages, the squadron proceeded, paddling side by side
along the shore in search of favorable camping ground.

[Illustration: The Vice's Boom Toggle.]

"How does the Alderman toggle his boom, Vice?" asked the Purser, who
during the day had his own private troubles with that important spar,
and was beginning to have some misgivings as to rig.

"Same as I do mine, with a brass collar for the mast, and a screw and
bolt arrangement to make the boom fast. See?" And the Vice exhibited
his boom where it was attached to the mast.

"That's just like mine," said the Purser, "and I don't altogether
like it. I believe simple jaws and lashing, such as you see on any
sail-boat, are more convenient."

[Illustration: The Commodore's Sprit.]

"No true canoeist will sacrifice style, merely for convenience,"
replied the Vice sententiously. "Now, there is more style about a
Chrysalid than about a Red Laker, and that more than compensates
for their inferior speed, and carrying capacity, and so on. Every
man should have his boom rigged in the most complicated manner. Now
look at the Cook, and the Commodore. See their booms, (The Commodore
accommodatingly held up the foot of his mast for inspection,) or
sprits rather. They are not properly booms. Now, that rubber band
passed through a ring, and over a cross-head or a notch on the end
of the sprit, undoubtedly keeps a light sail flatter than any other
contrivance I know of, but there's nothing ship-shape about it.
'Twouldn't be allowed for a moment in the navy. You want something
that it takes some skill to manage."

"Thanks," said the Purser, "I see the thing in its true light now," and
he went to work when camp was reached and fitted jaws to his boom, and
even threatened to adopt the leg-of-mutton sprit-sail before he went
cruising again.

"I don't see," commented the Cook, "why the india-rubber arrangement
should not be adapted to a boom as well as a sprit. It only requires a
little ingenuity, and would keep the sail quite as flat as does your
present rig."

Rounding a promontory the fleet sighted a wooded island three-quarters
of a mile from shore, and as such an island is for several reasons
preferable to the main land for camping, they made for it at once and
found it all that their fancy had painted. The fleet with one exception
was hauled upon the beach, but the Vice, anxious to retrieve his
reputation for seamanship, made fast the painter of the Rochefort to a
stone which he could hardly lift and hove her short under the lee of
the point. The flag-officer silently noticed these preparations, but
said nothing, resolved not to interfere again between the Rochefort and
her commander.

Here again it was found that former generations of campers-out had
sojourned, leaving their lean-to, scientifically constructed of poles
and bark, standing for the accommodation of posterity. As the sun sank
black bass began to break the glassy surface of the lake in search of
their evening meal.

[Illustration: Island Camp.]

"Would that the Alderman were here," remarked the Vice, as he watched
the circles widen on the water, and heard the inspiriting splash as the
fish flashed up in the sun's rays, "he would catch us a string of bass
and show the cook how to fry them, in less than half an hour."

But the Commodore had been putting his rod together, and having in the
course of the day killed a large bull-frog, he now lashed a portion
of its hind leg to a hook with fine thread and quietly launching the
flagship, stood up in her amidships and made a cast as far out toward
the feeding ground as possible. A vigorous pull rewarded his effort and
almost as soon as the Alderman could have done it he had two thumping
bass and a good sized chub, or dace, which the Purser and Vice cleaned
and the Cook fried to a turn for supper.

"The Alderman would not have stood up in his boat to catch these fish,"
said the Vice with a crisp "second cut from the tail" on his plate,
"that kind of thing isn't regular."

"No; it would be decidedly irregular in some boats," remarked the Cook.

"I'll bet you cigars for the crowd--my choice ones, that I've preserved
carefully in my water-tight,--that I can throw a line from a Chrysalid."


[Illustration: A Vigorous Pull.]

The Arethusela had nothing aboard, so the Vice borrowed her and
the Commodore's rod, and pushed out a few yards from the beach. Then
rising gingerly to his feet he made one or two gentle casts with great
circumspection and was about to claim his wager, but thinking to
perfect his claim, made a third cast, which was a thought too vigorous.
(_Result shown on page 65._)

The flag ship was still afloat, and the Commodore being anxious about
his rod, sprang aboard and pushed off to the rescue, but the Vice
sternly waved him back.

"You may take your rod, if you like," said he, "though I could manage
that too well enough, but I'll show you another point of superiority in
a Chrysalid."

The Commodore took the rod and backed off to a respectful distance.
The Arethusela had righted herself instantly after discharging her
occupant, and floated full of water, but still buoyant from the air in
her large water-tight compartments. The Vice picked up his paddle, and
put it aboard and then swam to the stern, which he grasped with both
hands, and managed by a sudden and judicious effort to mount.

Then, hitching carefully along, leap-frog fashion, he was soon seated
amidships, bailing the water out with his hat, the canoe still floating
with considerable buoyancy.

"That is well done," was the general verdict. "A Chrysalid's
water-tights are more efficient than those of a Red Laker provided she
has any to bless herself withal."

[Illustration: A little too Vigorous.]

"I want to take a bath," said the Commodore, "before turning in, and as
a long enough time has now passed since supper to reasonably warrant
exemption from congestion, I think I will test my water-tights if the
Vice will permit me so to denominate the bags which serve in that
capacity on board the flag ship. At any rate, I will prove to you that
I can climb aboard a Red Laker without upsetting. I take precautions,
you see, against wetting my toggery."

[Illustration: Aquatic Leap-frog.]

So saying the Commodore stripped, embarked, and when in deep water
jumped overboard, climbing on board just as the Vice had done, and with
about the same ease. Then he sat on the gunwale and upset his boat,
filling her with water. She floated, but by no means so buoyantly as
had the Arethusela, and the task of climbing on board was somewhat more
critical as the power of flotation was so much less. However, the water
being perfectly smooth, it was accomplished, and it is probable that
the Commodore could have bailed her out without going ashore, if he had
given time enough to the operation, and darkness had not come on. As it
was, he prudently and laboriously paddled the water-logged flag ship
ashore, where all hands performed their evening toilettes, and sat
down around the camp fire to enjoy cigars, which the Vice had promptly
handed over to the Cook, remarking that he did so under protest and
stipulating that no precedent should thereby be established: "For,"
said he, "I laid a wager that I could throw a line while standing in
the boat, and no fair-minded man can say I didn't do it."

With the moan of a rising gale in their ears, the members of the
expedition soon dropped off to sleep.




At dawn the Purser arose and woke the camp with the blood-curdling cry,
"The Rochefort is gone!" The rest, as soon as they could rub their
eyes open, scanned the lake to leeward, but no trace of the missing
canoe could be seen. The sky was grey with low driving clouds and the
lake repeated the sombre hue, save when it broke into white before the
southerly gale.

With ill concealed reluctance the Commodore offered to lend his darling
Becky to the bereaved Statesman, who protested that the loss of an
election was as nothing in comparison with his present affliction. It
must be admitted, too, that his remarks as to going in a Red Laker to
the rescue of a Chrysalid, were not altogether gracious. However, the
Purser volunteered to go with him in search of the runaway, each man
following one side of the lake which was here only about two miles
wide. Under the shortest possible sail, then, they set out, each
standing across the wind at first, so as to close in with the shore and
then follow it down with the wind astern. They went merrily off riding
the white caps like ducks, and turning to follow the dark wooded shores
to the North.

Presently the Purser was observed to broach to, and after a short time
he went ashore, unshipped his mast and proceeded under paddle. It
subsequently transpired that the sea wrenched off one of the "gudgeons"
which held the rudder, and he was thereupon disabled for sailing
purposes. The wind, however, was dead astern, and he progressed almost
as easily and as fast as if he had not lost his helm.

[Illustration: "His Ship she was a-wrack."]

Meanwhile the Vice proceeded, anxiously scanning the coast, and at
length had the pleasure of discovering the runaway some three miles
down the lake, full of water, and with the sea, in dear old Robinson
Crusoe's immortal words, "making a clean breach over her." That she was
not stove into match-wood speaks well for her builder's workmanship.
She had carried her anchor with her all the way, having been hove so
short that she gradually worked off the steep beach as the wind and
sea rose, and had not even cable enough out to anchor her off the lee
shore on which she finally brought up.

As the Vice approached her, the buoyant Red-Laker rising cork-like
with him on the white capped waves, he could not but be struck by the
ship-shape appearance of the wreck. As has been intimated, the Vice is
distinguished for elaboration of equipment, and he had anchored his
canoe the night before with her sails beautifully furled, and every
strand of her multitudinous running rigging exactly in position. Now
she looked for all the world like a miniature frigate cast away on a
rocky coast, and the solitary spectator half expected to discover a
crew of pigmies clinging to her hatch-combings, as he drew near.

The first thing to be done however, was to signal the Purser, who was
coasting the opposite shore. To beach his borrowed boat with such a
sea running, and where there was not any beach but boulders, was a
problem which might easily have floored the greatest statesman, but the
Commodore is glad to certify, that the task was accomplished with due
regard for the welfare of the flagship, and this while the Vice's own
beloved Rochefort was perhaps banging herself to pieces on the boulders.

By dint of firing his revolver and waving his dandy, unshipped for the
purpose, he succeeded in attracting the Purser's attention, and saw
him change his course. This done, he waded to the stranded Rochefort,
expecting to find her hopelessly broken amidships, but on getting
her off the rocks, she floated as well as ever, showing that her
compartments were still uninjured; so, anchoring her in waist-deep
water, with her head to the sea, the Vice proceeded to bail.

Why this amber hue of the water? Alas, the Vice carried the coffee
of the fleet and it was not in a water-tight box. Why this slight
saccharine quality? Alas again, the Vice carried the expeditionary
sugar. The coffee did not prove a total loss. Persistent boiling
extracted from it a passable beverage, which served until a market town
was reached, but the sugar was past redemption.

By the time the Purser had reached the scene of disaster the wreck was
pumped dry, and careful inspection showed that she was wholly uninjured
save as regards a few bruises. So the Vice unshipped her masts, and
rightly judging that the Becky Sharp would be the easiest to tow, made
fast her painter, and started on the long paddle against the wind back
to camp.

To the rest of the fleet this escapade argued poor seamanship on the
part of the Vice, but to him it only proved the moral obliquity of his
boat. In order to shield his own reputation, he ruthlessly alleged
against her the most abominable nautical crimes, and would never trust
her alone thereafter, unless she was tied to a large tree or a huge

The Purser, meanwhile, noting the shoreward trend of the waves,
instituted a successful search for his lost rudder, which he found
ashore in a quiet cove. On returning to camp, he and the Vice admitted
that there are certain advantages connected with a steering oar, which
do not belong to a rudder, and each resolved thereafter to carry a
suitable row-lock, so as not to be entirely disabled for sailing in
case of accidents. Nevertheless, while a rudder holds, it is certainly
more convenient than a paddle to steer with, but at the same time it
necessitates an awkward amount of stern-post, which renders the boat
hard to turn, and has usually to be shipped and unshipped in changing
from sail to paddle. For this reason the Vice is accustomed to remark,
that it is always well to have another fellow at hand in a Red-Laker
to render aid in emergencies. Of course it was necessary to dry the
Rochefort before proceeding, and it was afternoon before the Purser had
repaired his steering gear, and everything was in readiness. There is
always enough to do however, so all hands busied themselves in sundry
tinkerings until after dinner, when, as the sky had cleared and the
wind had somewhat moderated, the order was given to make sail, and the
pretty island was speedily left behind, the fleet skimming along the
wooded shore like a flock of white sea gulls.

Now whatever advantages a Chrysalid may possess over and above
a Red-Laker, she is nowhere in point of speed on a free wind.
Consequently the first division invariably ran away from the second,
and was obliged every little while to lie by and wait for it to come
up. After his first experience in jibing, the Cook had been content
for awhile to trust to a spruce breeze, and indeed there had been since
his overturn no favoring wind until now. He soon acquired commendable
skill in laying a straight course. He no longer zig-zagged over the
lake as at first. Evidently, however, something weighed upon his mind,
for as with his companion boat he entered a bay to wait for the second

"Commodore," said he.


"I say, what _is_ tacking anyhow?"

"Why it's working to windward."

"Yes, I know, but how do you do it?"

"O, I see. You don't understand the theory of sailing a boat. Well, I
must own you're a plucky one. And you've done mighty well too."

Then the Commodore made his companion lie to, while the flagship worked
past him to windward by short tacks. The Cook with his usual aptitude
soon caught the idea and satisfactorily put it in practice. Then,
as the breeze was moderate, there followed lessons in "jibing" and
"wearing," with explanations of the circumstances under which each was

By the time the second division rounded the point, the Cook's spirits
had risen, and he began once more to prate of his piratical ancestry
who knew no home but the ocean.

"What were you two benighted Red Lakers doing in the bay this side of
Black Point?" asked the Vice as the party sat by the fire that evening.

"Merely a little discussion as to merits of rig, and the best way of
handling a boat, with practical illustrations," said the Cook, who
clung frantically to the remnant of his reputation for seamanship, and
trusted to the Commodore's magnanimity not to expose him.

"O, that was it, eh? And what conclusions did you reach with your Red
Lake monstrosities?"

"We had plenty of time to reach any conclusions, and have them
illustrated and published, and sell a dozen editions before you came
along," retorted the Cook.

"We were trying experiments," said the Commodore adroitly, "in going
about, and we concluded that the best way was to come up into the wind
as sharp as you like, hauling in a little on the dandy sheet to help,
and then as soon as the mainsail shivers, give her one or two strokes
with the paddle, let go your dandy sheet, hold your boom over till the
mainsail fills, and her head falls off, shift your paddle to the lee
side and there you are."

"Yes," said the Vice, who is a devoted adherent of a "sliding gunter"
rig with full boom and gaff, standing lug, dandy, jib and flying jib,
as distinguished from the two leg-of-mutton sails carried by the Red
Lakers. "Yes, there you are indeed with your steering paddle and other
unseamanlike contrivances. Now let me show you how a Chrysalid goes
about. We will suppose this log to be the canoe."

"Parallel exact, so far," broke in the Cook, "Go ahead." Taking no
notice of the interruption the Vice proceeded, seating himself astride
the log.

"We will suppose the canoe to be under full sail on the port tack,
with everything drawing. Order is given 'ready about,' crew spring
to stations. Helmsman gives her a good full, passes port tiller-rope
over his shoulder, takes it in his teeth and has his paddle handy.
Let go flying jib halyards, and in with your down haul. Let go main
sheet, and if you get a chance, haul in a little on the dandy. Round
with your helm. When the mainsail begins to shiver, top your boom or
lift it clear while she swings. If she don't come round, help her
with your paddle. Let go dandy sheet if you hauled in on it. Let go
topping lift, slack away weather jib sheet as soon as she is pointed
on starboard tack. Bowse in flying jib halyards, letting mainsail take
care of itself, make all fast, haul in main sheet, and there you are
all ship-shape."

"And hull down astern of the Red Lakers," added the Commodore.

During this explanation the Vice had, after his own enthusiastic
fashion, gone through all the motions, as he described them, and when
he appealed to his auditors to know if it was not a far more artistic
performance than that which the Commodore described, no one had a word
to say.

"Just tell us, Vice," said the Cook, "how many ropes have you to attend

"O there are only a few," responded the Vice, curiously enough not
seeing the trap into which he was falling, "There are the dandy
halyards, sheet and brail, that's three, main halyards--peak and
throat--sheet, brail, and topmast halyards, that's seven, jib halyards,
down haul, outhaul and sheets, that's twelve. Flying jib ditto ditto,
that's seventeen. Tiller ropes and painter, that's all, total twenty.
Oh, yes, and there's the signal halyards, that's twenty-two, or
twenty-three if you have a pair on your topmast."

"He does get ahead of us, that's a fact, Commodore," drawled the Cook.
"Now I can only make out two halyards, two sheets and a painter, five
in all, unless I count my fish-line, and he has twenty-three. I give it

"Yes," said the Vice musingly, "when you are in a Chrysalid canoe,
properly rigged, you have a sense of completeness, not to be attained
elsewhere." Then suddenly changing the subject:

"I thought," said he, as he helped himself to an eighth slice of toast,
"that I was lucky when the Cook kindly volunteered to carry my tent
as a seat, and thus relieve my boat from a certain amount of weight,
but now I am wondering under what cover this expedition will sleep
tonight." It so happened that the expedition had not yet felt the loss
of their tent, having at the different camps chanced upon lean-tos and
other adequate substitutes.

"When you lack information on any matter connected with canoeing,"
said the Cook, "come to me." The Cook emptied his third cup (pint) of
coffee, unrolled a pack in his boat, and displayed a piece of stout
sheeting, five yards long and two and three-quarter yards wide, with
four rope loops at each end for tent pins, and a row of button-holes, a
foot apart, along each edge. He also displayed two triangular pieces of
the same material, at the bases of each of which were three loops for
pins, and along the other two sides a row of buttons.

[Illustration: The Cook's Tent.]

"Button these together properly," said he, "set the whole affair up
on poles, and cross pole, or across a rope strung tightly between two
trees, and you have a larger and better ventilated tent than the one I
left in the lake; it won't weigh half as much, either. Except in very
cold weather or driving rain, the end pieces will not be necessary.
Indeed, it can be set over a canoe, so as to cover all the open portion
of the boat."

[Illustration: The Cook's Tent.]

The whole supper table gazed admiringly, until the Commodore asked,

"Why have the holes, instead of the buttons, on the main piece?"

"So that you may affix the ends either from the inside or outside. The
latter is the easier way, but occasionally the wind blowing from the
front, will come in very freely between the fastenings outside, so that
the canoeist who drops asleep with a head full of pleasant dreams, will
awake with a head full of neuralgia."

"And if it rains, what is to prevent this tent from leaking like a
sieve, and distributing shower baths impartially among the clean and
the unclean?"

"Two things--a steep pitch or a neat coat of oil," said the Cook.

"The water-proof of the pudding is in the eating," remarked the
Commodore, who had begun to yawn. "Set the tent at once."

The tent was set on a line between two trees, the front remaining open,
and half an hour later there lay within it four men who were beginning
fully to realize how delicious weariness may become, when it is earned
by the body instead of the brain. With sand for mattresses, and a
rubber blanket each for sheets, they slept more soundly than they had
ever done at home upon springs and between linen. The only visitations
they experienced were heavenly ones. Venus glided past the open front,
but saw no one there over whom her fastidious gaze cared to linger.
Saturn peeped suspiciously in, but passed on contentedly, assured that
in the presence of such sound sleepers his rings were as safe as if
they were Indian Rings at Washington. Mars glared in with his great
red face, but the quartette had been all day on the water, under an
unfamiliar sun, so there were four fiery faces to Mars' one, and the
blazing old fellow went off in a huff and got behind a little cloud to
hide his mortification.



If the reader has watched with any interest, the development of what
may perhaps without offence be termed canoebial character, he must have
been pained to observe that however fair minded the average canoeist
maybe in other respects, neither his judgment nor his statements can
be trusted where his own boat is concerned. Of this fact each member
of the expedition became convinced in the course of the first day
out, and the authors deem it their duty to warn the public against
indiscriminate belief in the virtues ascribed to different canoes by
their respective owners.[3] The Statesman, who has associated to some
extent with sporting men, says, that he has observed a like trait in
owners of horses, dogs and yachts, and all know that every mother
discovers in her own children beauties and virtues which no other
living being is able to perceive. Why then, should a trait which is
beautiful in one case be scoffed at in another? The authors hold that a
sublime faith in one's own canoe, is one of the noblest sentiments that
can animate the human breast.

Morning opened with the usual brisk breeze ruffling the lake from the
south, and the fleet made all preparations to continue the voyage under
sail. Hardly, however, were they clear of the land when the wind fell
suddenly, and in a wonderfully short space of time the lake was like
a mill pond. An occasional puff of wind however, justified keeping
sails set, and so alternating from paddle to canvas, a broad expanse
was passed, and the "narrows" neared where mountains seemed trying to
shoulder one another into the lake, and where, as if they had fallen
off in the scuffle, several rocky, wood-crowned islands floated double
as it were, on the glassy water. By the time the shadow of the woods
was reached, all hands were glad to stop until the declining sun should
make motion a little more endurable, so a cool and shady nook was
selected where several hours were spent in meditative contemplation of
as lovely a panorama as ever rested the eyes of leisurely voyagers.

This _laisser aller_ fashion of cruising is the only really enjoyable
plan. Your restless spirits will push on and make their twenty-five
miles a day, rain or shine, but your philosopher is content it may be
with five or six, and recks not if he be obliged to cut his journey
short at its latter end. So the hours drifted slowly by until the
mountains threw their shadows across the lake, and a gentle breeze once
more invited action.

It took only an hour or two to run out from the shadow of the mountain
range, and see stretching out toward the north the low lying hills
which characterize the broad St. Lawrence Valley, for thitherward tend
in the Canadas all waters that run down hill. The lake, too, spread
out again, its edges bordered by extensive shallows whereon grew tall
graceful bulrushes, each of which rose six or eight feet or more above
the water, tapering beautifully and smoothly from near an inch in
diameter at the base, to a needle-like point at the top. Sometimes
when the wind was fresh, the cruisers would run in among them. There
was something peculiarly fascinating in thus flying through vast green
stretches of rustling, bending reeds. The breeze was almost wholly
checked near the water, but the peaks of the sails caught it above the
supple rushes, and the canoes went whistling through them, their sharp
bows dividing the green stems as they flew along, and a broad swath
bowing under the booms as they swung out to leeward.

Now and then a startled marsh hen, or wild fowl of some sort, would
rise almost from under the gunwales and go scuttling off, frightened
half to death at the unwonted invasion of her retreat. The solitude was

[Illustration: "Green grow the Rushes, oh!"]

The canoeists could see nothing of one another when separated by a
few yards. Any one might have upset and been left far behind, before
the rest could have discovered his loss, and then the chance of ever
finding him would have been as one to a hundred. However the water
was only two or three feet deep, so that there was no actual danger.
Along such tracts as this the fleet coasted this afternoon, and there
was no apparent prospect of getting beyond, or through the reeds to
find a camp. The lake was wide, and it was not expedient to cross it
so near nightfall, and with a threatening sky. So sails were prudently
furled and the four cruisers paddled along hoping to find, somewhere,
an opening through which the land could be reached. The sky grew dark.
Rain began to plash around, and suddenly night shut down, with a cold
driving mist and not a glimmer of light to show the bearings, save
an occasional momentary gleam from one of the little light-houses
away off toward the north. The fleet had drawn out into the lake in
order to get a better sight at the coast line, and here it rode with
the heaving water all around, and no means of steering to a place of
safety. The Vice had taken the bearings with his compass, but now as
fast as a lantern was lighted to steer by, the wind blew it out, so
there was nothing for it but keep together, and steer by the sea.
After a somewhat anxious time, with startling suddenness, a long dark
wall seemed to rise through the rain and drive straight forward over
the lake. "Hold all" was the word for a moment, but there was no roar
of surf, only a whistling murmur as of a million wings. Then the dark
wall opened and the reeds were recognized as old friends. The course
in which the fleet was heading, had been entirely problematical, for
the wind was very gusty and variable, but it was certain that among
the countless slender stems was safety from the fiercest gale that ever
blew. Pushing inward for a hundred yards or so, the boats were moored
side by side, to sheaves of reeds, and their occupants proceeded to
make themselves as comfortable as was possible under the circumstances,
feeling, as the Cook remarked, better able than ever before to
appreciate the early experiences of Moses.

Now, if ever, was the time to try the Purser's "Rob Roy cuisine."
He had imported it at great outlay of treasure from England and had
repeatedly explained its beauties, but having received it just on
the eve of departure from New York, he had never practically tested
its virtues, and the professional prejudices of the Cook were so
obstinately in favor of a wood fire, that he could never be persuaded
to use a substitute. This "cuisine" is a canoeing device invented by
Mr. Macgregor, the father of modern canoeing. In external appearance
it is a circular box of plated copper. The main part of the box is
used as a stew-pan, the top as a frying-pan. Moreover it contains,
compactly fitted, an alcohol blast-lamp, and a multitude of little
cooking contrivances which are admirable under circumstances like those
in which the command was now placed. The Purser knew by heart the
theoretical rules for managing the cuisine, but as has been stated, had
never put them in practice.

By the light of the little lanterns, he now took out the compact
apparatus, opened it, filled the lamp, placed the standard on his
forward deck, struck a match and applied it to the aperture. An
innocent, bluish flame appeared, flickered for a moment, gathered
strength, burst into a roar, shot upward three feet, shook itself,
and prepared seemingly to consume the entire fleet. The Purser shrank
backward as far as the narrow limits of his Chrysalid would allow, and
glared helplessly at the vicious little engine, while he made abortive
efforts to reduce it to decorum. The rest shipped their cables and
hauled off, leaving him to his fate.

"Kick it overboard."

"Put your hat on it."

"Blow it out."

"Douse that glim," were some of the directions shouted, as muskrats
skurried away into the darkness, and an owl and one or two bats
swooped within the circle of light to see what was up. But the Purser
remembered the bill he had paid, and resolved to risk his life rather
than lose his "cuisine."

As the roaring continued without abatement and with no disastrous
results, it presently occurred to the Cook that here was a splendid
heat going to waste. In a trice he had the coffee pot in position,
and in a marvelously short time more each man had a cup of hot coffee
and a rude sandwich, cut hap-hazard from a half soaked loaf. The Rob
Roy cuisine was unanimously voted a success, where for any reason an
ordinary fire cannot be lighted.

It is not pretended that a remarkably comfortable night followed this
episode, but it was much better than driving aimlessly before the wind
on the lake, and most of the party managed to get some sleep under
their rubber blankets. At any rate the expedition was safe, and its
members could listen without concern to the gale that roared a few feet
over their heads, but touched them not.

    [Footnote 3:

    NOTE.--The Cook wishes it to be understood that
    all his statements
                            Becky Sharp
    Becky Sharp regarding the Cherub are strictly truthful, but
    really when
       Cook                    Cherub
    Commodore says that the Becky Sharp--Well, space
    will not admit of specifications.

         *       *       *       *       *

    Hurray! I had the last look at _that_ proof.





Morning dawned on a somewhat forlorn set of castaways. Every man was
more or less damp, not to say wet, and the Vice with his bedraggled
mutton-chop whiskers presented a peculiarly lugubrious appearance as he
exasperated the Americans of the party by singing in the pitch of an
Irish "keen" the old Southern air "Maryland, My Maryland."

The day promised to be a fair one, and by sunrise land had been
reached, a fire built, dry clothes extracted from bags and water-tight
compartments, and amiability once more asserted its mild and benignant
sway over the depressed spirits of the command. This was the last day
on the lake, although its lower end was on a small scale what the
geographers might almost term a lacustrine river. It was broad, that
is, and at times nearly currentless. The nominal division between
lake and river, however, was marked by a railway bridge and here
it was understood the fleet must stop for official recognition by
her majesty's representative before crossing the Dominion line. The
town lay low along the lake shore, and under the shelter of a wooden
breakwater the fleet successfully effected a landing. The Commodore,
after a few moments spent in making himself look as respectable as
possible, set off on his official visit to the British Consulate. As he
departed, the Vice asked if the needed stores were not to be purchased
at this point, and before the expedition entered alien if not hostile

[Illustration: "But the Consul's brow was sad."]

"Of course not," said the Cook. "You can buy better things for half the
money in Canada."

"Under a monarchical government," added the Purser.

"That is undoubtedly the best plan," said the Commodore.

"Now look here. I'm a citizen of the United States," began the Vice,
but, the Purser, the Cook and the Commodore fled in as many different
directions and left him gesticulating solus upon the lonely shore.

Presently the Commodore returned, followed shortly by the British
Consul, who wished to assure himself that the squadron was not the
advance guard of a Fenian expedition. The Vice begged the right to
receive him officially in the Commodore's stead, and this favor
being granted, the Consul was treated to half an hour of impassioned
eloquence upon the rights of man.

Meanwhile the breeze freshened and inflated itself to the size of a
gale. Sloops and sail boats began to huddle together behind the little
breakwater. The custom-house officer kindly offered to find a trusty
guard for the canoes while their officers should go ashore, but the
suggestion was declined with thanks. The Purser longed to be on British
soil once more, the Vice was impatient to pat his own love of country
on the back, by observing how much more miserably England's subjects
exist than do those of his own happy land, the Commodore saw a fort
in the distance, which he and the Cook, having once been soldiers,
were impatient to inspect, and the Cook pined for Canada, because he
understood that the expeditionary butter pail might there be more
cheaply refilled. Then the humane custom-house officer appealed to
their sense of personal safety, to their regard for the friends and
creditors who might miss them if they were drowned, as they surely
would be if they ventured out in such a storm. But the eye of Britannia
was gazing upon the expedition from under the pith helmet of the
Consul, so the Commodore roared,

"Prepare to pass bridge! Strike standing rigging! Club and private
signals fore and aft!"

"One minute, Commodore," shouted the Vice, who was dancing frantically
about his boat, "where shall I display the flag of Our Country?" And
the Vice reverently drew a small American flag from his bosom.

"Display it in your pocket," replied the Commodore, rudely. "Forward!"

The Vice glared angrily, and got as far with a reply as to shout, "The
Alderman always--" when the sight of the Cherub, the Arethusela and the
Becky Sharp, dancing vivaciously on the big waves as their respective
commanders plied their paddles rapidly, each with the intention of
being the first to pass between the piles of the bridge and cross the
Dominion line, caused the Vice to become inspired with the strongest
sentiment acquired in the practice of statesmanship, namely, that
nothing is so disastrous as to be left behind. The wind being directly
abaft, there could be no possible doubt as to the fate of any commander
or boat that might be dashed against the piles, particularly if he
first got into the trough of the sea, and was cast up broadside. Each
man braced himself, leaning warily forward, each paddle performed
wondrous and unexpected gyrations in air, and the colors vanished and
darted up again like guidons in a cavalry fight. The commodorial helmet
was blown off at this juncture, and in recovering it the flag ship had
fallen some distance to the rear. Noting this with some disgust, the
Commodore successfully executed a tactical movement which redounded
greatly to his own glory. He shouted,

"On, first division, deploy column. Squadron into line; Guide Right,
March! (when manœuvering the squadron, the Commodore was everlastingly
bothered by unbidden reminiscences of army tactics, which led him to
enunciate orders applicable to the handling of a battalion instead of a

The effect of this command was to subject the squadron to the moral
influence of discipline; it was also to arrest for an instant the
progress of the three boats which had distanced the Commodore's, for
it was the flagship itself that was at the right, and upon this the
squadron was to align itself. The principal effect was to give the wily
Commodore the advantage of a boat's length. The Vice comprehended the
trick only when it was too late, and the gnashing of his teeth could be
distinctly heard above the whistling of the gale. But if distanced by
trickery, he at least could console himself with patriotism, which is
the last refuge of a Statesman.[4] Wildly he snatched the flag of his
country from his pocket; proudly he waved it aloft as the nose of his
canoe shot safely between the piles. Gloriously the holy rag fluttered
in the air for an instant; then it wrapped a fold about a huge oak
splinter of one of the under-timbers of the bridge, which nearly
dislocated the Vice's shoulder in passing. Then it concluded to remain
where it was, and there it flutters to this day, to show to timorous
mariners where the gallant Vice passed the bridge. As for the Vice
himself, he dropped, his paddle as he emerged, several lengths behind
every body else, into the comparatively still water behind the bridge;
then he rubbed his agonized shoulder, and remarked, "Patriotism always
_did_ play the devil with Statesmen."

[Illustration: The United States Garrison.]

The squadron now drifted under the granite walls of a United States
fort, which commanded the approaches from Her Majesty's dominions. It
bore the marks of neglect usually seen in an unoccupied and unfinished
fort, but as the canoes drew near, signs of life manifested themselves
about the sally-port, and in less time than it takes to write it the
entire garrison had embarked and was advancing to reconnoitre the
approaching fleet. A parley ensued to the mutual edification of both
parties, and then the race for the Dominion line was resumed and easily
won by the Purser, who paddled into water so shoal that the mud was
visible just below the surface. He turned his boat on her centre as
rapidly as a man could do with a canoe of the Chrysalid pattern; then
he arose and exclaimed, as the Vice and the Cook drew up,

[Illustration: The Purser on British Soil.]

"Gentlemen, this is the first time in eight years that I've stood
upon British soil. 'God save the Queen!' say I, and three cheers"--

"You're not on British soil," interrupted the Vice; "you're on British
water." But the Purser, unmindful of the interruption, had got as
far as "hip, hip!"--when the motion of raising his hat destroyed his
equilibrium, and a second later he was more than knee deep in a hummock
of greyish-blue mud.

"Now you're on British soil," continued the Vice; "how do you like it
as far as you've got?"

But the unchanged ecstasy of the Purser's patriotic face banished from
the hearts of his companions any memories of '76 and 1812 that might
have been hiding there, and the three cheers were heartily given with a
supplementary "tiger," which was fully as noisy as if it had been one
of the tigers native to the royal lady's own Indian Empire.

The Purser extracted himself with some difficulty from his native clay,
and all paddled to a shelving beach for the noontide rest, the Cook
and the Commodore striking up "God save the Queen," out of compliment
to the Purser. The others joined in and the notes of the noble old
anthem rang far across the water until it was noticed that the Vice was
patriotically roaring the words:

    "My Country 'tis of thee
    Sweet land of libertee,"

instead of the original. The other two Americans, although they were
old United States soldiers, could not brook this gratuitous affront
to their English companion, so they vigorously attacked the Vice with
their paddles and spattered him till he was fain to cry "quarter."
Then the bows grated on the sand, and springing lightly ashore, the
Vice mounted a boulder and delivered himself as follows, while the
rest, dumb with amazement, sat in their boats to listen and applaud:

[5]"Far be it from me fellow-citiz--mariners, to disturb the harmony
of this joyful occasion. We are gathered tonight almost upon the very
spot where Chartreaux and Champlain and Vanjohn and Rouget Noir fit
the Injuns and made them knuckle to the Jesuit Fathers, with none to
molest nor make them afraid. Here subsequently Lord Howe and Commodore
Vanderbilt marched their squadrons and manœuvered their battalions,
and spliced the main brace, and shivered their timbers according to
the dictates of their own consciences. Did any of them ever go back on
their environment? No; contrariwise they harmonized, and shall we their
successors fail to do likewise? Never, gentlemen, never. It has been
hurled in our faces by the honorable gentleman from England, that the
great republic is rotten with corruption--that our highest officers
are not above peculation. Let me ask that honorable gentleman and his
allies (here the Statesman indicated the Commodore and the Cook,) if
any president of the United States ever stole corn meal and had his
disgraceful act perpetuated in his country's literature? I pause for a
reply. None? Then none has ever done such a deed. And yet, gentlemen,
it is recorded of one of the most exemplary of English monarchs that
he not only stole the then current equivalent of corn meal, but caused
it to be used on the royal table. I invite you to join me in singing a
song to the glory of Old England--one, two, three; sing!

    (Air Auld Lang Syne.)

    When good King Arthur ruled this land,
      He was a goodly king.
    He stole three pecks of barley meal,
      To make a bag-pudding.

    A bag-pudding the Queen did make,
      And stuffed it well with plums,
    And in it put great lumps of fat,
      As big as my two thumbs.

    The King and Queen did eat thereof,
      And noblemen beside,
    And what they could not eat that night,
      The Queen next morning fried.

  (Great applause.)

"Can anything more clearly indicate a low moral sentiment than the
existence, and acknowledged popularity of this song? Fellow citizens
(carried away by the tide of eloquence the Statesman forgot to say
shipmates) and you, sir, whose alien friendship I am proud to own,
although the unfortunate accident of a foreign birth (for which I
cannot blame you,) opens a chasm between us--fellow citizens, I have
done. My native land is behind me. I now appeal for protection to
the Queen of England, and for the time being repudiate the American
Eagle--though with all his faults I love him still."

Amid thunders of applause the Vice jumped down and inquired why
luncheon was not ready.

After an hour's rest and refreshment in a sheltered nook, the squadron
proceeded on its way under paddle, the wind having died out, making
for a heavily wooded island visible several miles distant, on which it
was surmised there would be good camping ground. Islands indeed proved
to be the most satisfactory camping places that were found during the
expedition, and were invariably selected when practicable.

The squadron paddled socially along, side by side, until the Cook
stopped his stroke and fell behind. As he seemed to be engaged in
making some not very satisfactory arrangement of his luggage, the
Commodore ranged alongside and asked what was the matter.

"I can't fix my seat so as to be comfortable."

"Thought so."

"How do you fix yours?"

"Why this way," and the Commodore, vacated his seat, turning round and
sitting on his forward thwart, so as to afford an unobstructed view.
The two other canoes had now drawn near.

"Look at that," said the Vice. "He can stand up and turn round without
upsetting in that old tub of his."

"So can I," said the Cook, suiting the action to the word.

"So cannot we," said the Purser, and the Vice. "But what are you
looking at?"

It is a characteristic of Chrysalid canoeists that they never notice
anything outside of their own boats until they bring up all standing,
as it were, against it. Hence the Commodore's seat was a novelty to
them, and they gazed upon it with mute admiration.

[Illustration: A Canoe Seat.]

The blocks in which the cross-pieces rest, are screwed to the inside of
the canoe. The cross-pieces are ash sticks about an inch in diameter.
They are fourteen inches apart. Over and around them is passed a piece
of fourteen inch canvas, with grommets for lacing on the under side.
The seat should have a slight slope aft and should be so placed that a
back-board will rest conveniently against the after thwart or bulkhead.
If the cross-pieces spring too much, two bits of wood cut to fit
between them on either side of the canvas will make the whole structure
very firm and elastic. A simpler arrangement is a movable thwart made
of half-inch pine, with cross-pieces tongued and grooved across the
ends to prevent splitting. If made eighteen inches wide, such a thwart
may be used for a lee-board, as the canoeist should sit on or near the
bottom of his craft when under canvas.

"There are some advantages about Red Lake canoes," said the Vice.

"Very plebeian though," said the Cook, satirically; "their principal
mission is to go cruising with Chrysalids in the capacity of tenders."

"Yes," said the Vice, "I admit their carrying capacity."

"And their superior speed," said the Cook.

"And their great stability," added the Commodore. So with cheerful
chaff the fleet went on its way, and in a couple of hours was making
camp on a pretty island, evidently a resort for picnickers and which
was playfully called "Murderer's Isle," from an unpleasant episode of
early days.

The Commodore, having noted an abundance of drift lying about,
detailed himself to procure fire-wood, and stretched at full length
upon the dry sand, leisurely tossed fragments of wood toward the spot
where the Cook was engaged in the soothing attempt to light a fire with
damp paper and wet matches, and the Purser was scraping, within the
water's edge, a hole to be used after supper as a dish-pan, when the
expedition suddenly obtained its first foreign view of the picturesque.
From the shore of the main land there crept out something which at
first bore itself somewhat as indicated on the next page.

[Illustration: The Picturesque afar.]

It finally resolved itself into a strange craft which seemed to be a
generous pig-trough remodelled by one with yearnings after the art of
the undertaker. Standing, yet bent nearly double, in the stern was
a slight, short old man, clothed in raiment utterly unlike anything
which any member of the expedition had ever seen at home. The old man
paddled his boat at a surprising rate of speed directly toward the camp
of the expedition, and as he did so the gazers gradually lost their
enjoyment of the picturesque in the realization of a dread duty about
to devolve upon them for the first time during the cruise. The old man
being a Canadian, it naturally resulted that he must be a Frenchman,
and incapable of English. Who was to converse with him? The Cook, who
had picked up some French among the Louisiana creoles, but had not for
ten years heard or spoken a word of the beautiful language, modestly
retired behind the Commodore's broad shoulders. The silence began to be
terrible, but it was bliss compared with the sensation with which the
group shuddered when the strange craft slid noiselessly and darkly up
the beach, and her crew partially undoubled himself and remarked,

"Wahu ei hoo mi eh ha ma?"

[Illustration: The Picturesque anear.]

Three mariners involuntarily dropped back a pace or two; the fourth
(the Cook) felt secure in his inconspicuousness until he discovered
that he had been dropped to the ground by the Commodore's backward
movement, and that the Commodore was nervelessly sitting upon him. At
length the Vice, whose admiration for the French Commune had caused him
to immure himself many a night with some ex-Communists who had escaped
to America, asked in faltering tones,

"Q'est-ce-que vous voulez?"

"That's it," gasped the Cook, as he endeavored to reanimate the
Commodore's spinal cord with the sharp end of a quill toothpick, "make
the ancient mariner explain himself."

But the Ancient Mariner only shook his head with a vague look, and said,

"O hyu wuh oo mi en?"

[Illustration: Wahu ei hoo mi eh ha ma?]

Then the Commodore, who had lived a year in Paris, and was familiar
with the polite phrases there in vogue, said,

"Voulez-vous pourboire?"

The old man shook his head, scrutinized the party closely, read the
names of the boats, and exclaimed,

"Haw hihi."

Then the Purser, who before he left Oxford had made a French
translation of the "Antigone" of Sophocles, which competent judges
pronounced superior to that of Voltaire, stepped a pace to the front to
hide his blanched countenance, and said,

"Nous ne comprenons pas."

And the old man replied,

"Haw hihi, hahu?"

By this time the Cook, who had extricated himself from beneath the
ruins of the Commodore, was discreetly and rapidly seeking the leafy
coverts of the forest, but the Vice detected him and dragged him back.
The Cook put on an air of bravery and exclaimed,

"It's no use, boys; I'm convinced that he's a Basque, who has strayed
up into France, and somehow got over here. I speak half a dozen
languages, but there are no affinities between the Basque and any
other known dialect. It will be just as well to talk English to him as
anything else, so here goes. Say, old friend, we don't know what you're
driving at, but"--here a happy thought struck the Cook, "say it over
again." And while the Cook listened attentively, the old man repeated
his first inquiry,

"Wahu ei hoo mi eh ha ma?"

"Certainly!" exclaimed the Cook briskly, "how much do you ask for them?"

"Hihi heh," replied the old man with great animation.

"It's a bargain," said the Cook; "Purser, please give the ancient
mariner half a dollar?" And then the Cook, with the air of a man who
comprehended the wisdom of the ages, explained to his astonished
auditors. "Gentlemen, our visitor is not a Frenchman at all; he is an
Irishman whose palate has departed, and he wants to know if we will buy
two pike and a bass--'hoo mi eh ha ma,'--you know." The old man in the
meantime hurried to his boat, paddled off to a crate anchored on the
edge of the channel, and returned with a string of fish in the full
vigor of life.

The three linguists sat deliberately down upon the sand, and their lips
remained closed until coaxed from their obduracy by the mingled odors
of coffee, fried fish, buttered toast and canned peaches. The Vice was
heard to mutter, "French I can talk and most patois I can understand,
but Basque complicated with loss of palate throws me." Presently
however he began to exhibit symptoms of his accustomed loquacity.

[Illustration: Supper Table.]

It so happened that the supper table was sustained by resting against
the cut-water of the Cherub, and it gradually dawned upon the Vice that
there was something peculiar about her construction, something, that
is, different from the construction of a Chrysalid which is built in
the orthodox style, known as lap-streak or clinker, the planks being of
quarter-inch white cedar, and the timbers of well seasoned oak. Said
he, addressing the owners of the Red Lakers:

"Why don't the joints between your planking show?"

"Because the boats are not built in that way," said the Cook.

"But that's no way to build a boat; the seams can't be made tight
unless the planks over-lap. Look at the Rochefort."

"Very true," said the Commodore, "but our boats don't seem to leak so
very much more than yours do, for all that."

"How are they built any how?" and the Purser and the Vice
simultaneously arose and examined the Red Lakers by moonlight and

Mention has already been made of the characteristic indifference of
Chrysalid owners to all canoes which are not Chrysalids until some
chance occurrence forces them to make examination.

In this respect they strikingly resemble certain ecclesiastical sects,
which rest serenely ignorant of other denominations, until they
stumble upon information inadvertently, which startles into respectful

"Why they are perfectly smooth inside and out,"--"no timbers at
all,"--"what lots of rivets," were some of the remarks.

"Certainly, haven't we told you so a dozen times," said the Cook, "and
you never looked at them before."

"How do you suppose they are made?" asked the Vice.

"I am informed," replied the Commodore, "that thin strips of white
cedar are steamed and bent transversely over an exact model or "last"
of the intended canoe. The edges are straight so that they fit closely
against one another. When all these are in place, a longitudinal
outside sheathing of cedar or other wood, butternut in the case of
our boats, is copper-fastened to the inner lining, the nails being
driven through both thicknesses at short intervals, and clinched on
the inside. The ribs and sheathing as used by the builder are each a
quarter-inch thick, so that the total thickness is half an inch. The
canoe is perfectly free from ribs inside, and from the raised edges
outside, and cannot leak while she remains sound. Her strength is
necessarily immense from the way in which she is put together."

"I think," added the Cook, "that we get a good deal of speed out of
this model from the absence of the over-laps which are unavoidable in
clinker built boats. These necessarily hold the water to an extent
which must be appreciable in so light a craft. Moreover, the fore and
aft curve of the bottom line rids them of a deal of what builders call
'skin-friction.' Recent experiments indicate that a shape like the bowl
of a spoon offers the least resistance in passing over the surface of

"Your boats approximate to the spoon shape, that's a fact," said the

"Look at those rivets," remarked the Vice, "they make her look as
though she were freckled."

"Granted," was the Cook's answer, "but are not freckles beautiful when
they indicate a sound constitution?"

"The rib-and-batten, and the paper boats are quite as smooth outside,"
the Commodore admitted, "but, they all have internal projections which
are sometimes inconvenient, as for instance when you wish to sleep on
board, or when you are trying to sponge out sand and so forth."

The Purser and the Vice closed the dispute by proving that their
lap-streak cedar boats when empty were somewhat lighter than the
others, and the Commodore and Cook were fain to be content with
asserting that if lightness were the only object, Red-Lakers could be
built lighter than Chrysalids by using thinner stuff.

    [Footnote 4: This was not the noun used by Dr. Johnson in his
    famous definition of patriotism.]

    [Footnote 5: Reported in full on the spot by the Editor.]



The Vice and the Purser, having boats of the Chrysalid model, were so
long in stowing their cargoes that the Commodore and the Cook started
in advance of the remainder of the squadron and made a brisk run to
a British fort, the outline of whose parapet was discernible to a
military eye, on an island some miles distant. When built during the
last war, this work was far beyond the range of Yankee guns, but now
the two forts might exchange cards with some chance of doing execution,
albeit they are out of sight of one another.

Doubting what reception they might meet at the hands of a British
garrison, the voyagers resolved themselves into two divisions, one of
which approached the water-gate, while the other ran behind a stockade
which flanked the work. No sentries being visible upon the parapet,
the two officers disembarked and having learned in former days never
incautiously to approach an earthwork, they advanced up the glacis
and along the counterscarp with due circumspection. Suddenly the Cook
paused, seized his companion's arm; struck a dramatic attitude and
exclaimed, "Behold the garrison!"

[Illustration: An Unknown Fortress.]

The couple, who had walked as they conversed, had reached one of the
bastions, and as the Cook spoke, the two men beheld, between the
gabion-lined walls of an embrasure, three children with uncovered heads
and saucer-like eyes.

"'Grim-visaged war hath smoothed his wrinkled front,'" said the Cook.

"'And thus be it ever,'" quoted the Commodore.

By this time the Purser and the Vice had made the island, and joined
the first arrivals, who carefully and with professional pride inspected
the outward defences of the fort, using technical military terms with
a fluency which humbled their civilian companions into comparative
silence. At length the Vice, noticing the rotting stockade, the weedy
ditch, and other signs of inattention, ventured to let the eagle scream
a note or two.

"Just like everything else, that is subject to the decaying influence
of monarchical institutions," said he. "How quickly a handful of our
brave fellows would take possession of it!"

"Perhaps," admitted the Commodore, "but I'd prefer to risk my chances
from the inside."

The Purser immediately patted the Commodore on the back, while the Vice
opened his eyes and demanded an explanation.

"Some forts," remarked the Commodore, "are like singed cats; they fight
better than they look. This fort is in better condition now, than half
the forts were that have become historic."

"But in case of sudden war," said the Vice, "there's nothing at hand to
repair a broken-down fort with, is there?"

"Yes; living men; they make and unmake forts," said the Commodore

"It's the same way with conventions and caucuses," remarked the Vice,
regaining his self-respect as he imagined himself once more the
Commodore's equal.

"You've been a soldier," said the Purser to the Cook, "and I am longing
to see once more the uniform of my native country. Tell me how to gain
admission to the fort."

The Cook replied,

"Go around to the sally port, which you will be sure to find opening
away from the neighboring republic, and fire your pistol. The guard
will hurry out and make you its prisoner; then the Commodore and I will
come around and intercede for you, on the ground of your ignorance."

The Purser looked disdainful; "And think you," said he, "that Britain's
laws are so fitful as to waver under the persuasions of a brace of

"When Yankees can't persuade Britishers," remarked the Vice, "they
usually proceed to"--

"Pack a High Court of Arbitration," interrupted the Purser.

The quartette straggled through the tall weeds, which prevented farther
chaff, and reached the sally port. The heavy gates hung aloft, their
duty being discharged by deputy in the shape of long rails resting
edgewise in two posts, and with "No Admittance" painted upon a board.
The garrison, moving on interior lines, gradually massed itself
behind the board, its forefingers taking wary positions within its
respective mouths. Behind, and in the centre of the terreplain, towered
an enormous haystack. "Behold," said the Purser, "the ingenuity with
which the garrison has placed the haystack just where riflemen can take
shelter behind it, and command the entrance to the fort, picking off
infatuated Yankees who venture upon the drawbridge."

[Illustration: The British Garrison.]

"True," retorted the Cook, "the idea is not unlike that of General
Jackson, who used cotton-bales at New Orleans, but I believe it was not
Yankees, who were picked off." The contrast between the ideal and the
real was so absorbing, as the four stood at the bridge-head, that some
time elapsed before they realized that clouds had gathered heavily, and
begun to drop their contents.

"My main hatch is open!" shrieked the Vice, as he hurried off to his

[Illustration: The Sally Port.]

"My tobacco--and it's a rare Brazilian article--is lying in the bottom
of my boat!" shouted the Cook, as he followed the Vice.

"The Vice and the Cook will tow up the other boats," ordered the
Commodore, "while the Purser and I construct temporary shelter."

Several hundred yards from the fort was a group of trees and a board
pile, and to this the commanding officer and the Purser hastened. The
trees seemed to have been a favorite resort of cattle, and the contents
of the board pile were rotten, but it was not a time to be particular,
so a beam was stretched between the limbs of two trees, and boards
slanted against it to shed the rain. Fortunately a platform of boards
happened to be just where the extempore shed would cover it. When the
Vice and the Cook returned, the latter considerately bringing dinner
material with him, it was discovered to be noon-day, so the party
did justice to bread and butter, cold tongue, and a can of apricots.
Suddenly the Vice remarked,

"I suppose these boards beneath our feet are the floor of some late
military structure. I can't help noticing how perfectly they are
combined for drainage, sagging, as they do, at the centre."

The Commodore had not before noticed the peculiarity alluded to, but
now his mathematical eye saw that the depression in the boards was
lower than the surface of the surrounding ground. Extracting a trolling
line from the Vice's pocket, he lowered a sinker cautiously in a crack
between two boards, unrolled considerable line, withdrew it, and

"I have the pleasure of informing the squadron that during military
occupation of the fort, the inmates of the hospital, the ruins of which
we behold in front of us, had an abundant supply of cool water from a
very deep well, which well is at the present moment directly under us,
while the boards which cover it are slowly breaking."

Every one sprang to his feet. While at his home occupation of
statesmanship, the Vice never beheld disaster impending over his own
party without speedily traversing the whole distance between his own
party and the opposition, so on this particular occasion, his instincts
impelled him to dash through rain, mud, and thistles toward the ruins
of the hospital, whose wall offered the most distinct shelter within
view. The Vice wore a helmet, his long whiskers fluttered behind him
on the breeze, his shoulders and body were covered by a black rubber
blanket, his trowsers were rolled high above his stockingless calves,
and he wore a huge pair of carpet slippers, which were nearly as wide
as they were long. His figure and attitudes, as he ran, were so full
of suggestion that the artist preserved them in a series of sketches,
severally entitled.

[Illustration: The Vampire Bat.]

"The Flight of Cain."

"Scotch Laird enjoying His Favorite Weather."

"Study of the Bottom of a Bear's Foot."

"Rip Van Winkle chased by Dogs."

"Mephistophiles Triumphant."

"Election Returns from a Rural District."

"The great Vampire Bat."

The absence of the Vice left his late companions in possession of
additional elbow room, but on a rainy day there are blessings more to
be desired than elbow room. Among these is a pipe of tobacco, and four
walls between which to smoke it. The Cook's precious Brazilian tobacco
was wet, the Commodore and the Purser had left their pouches in their
boats, but each man had a pipe in his pocket, and it was known that
the Vice had in his possession a bag of delicious weed. So dispatches
were sent him during a slight lull in the storm, and the Commodore
and Purser made a reconnoissance in the direction of the fort. The
garrison being invisible, the storming party dashed over the bridge and
beneath the temporary portcullis, putting to flight a large body of
chickens who were carelessly resting upon their arms in the guard-room.
These alarmed the commander of the fort, who at once emerged from
headquarters, with an axe upon his shoulder, and himself in dishabille.

The Commodore saluted the commandant, and asked, with due formality,
the courtesy of shelter for himself and companions, and for permission
to walk about the fort when the rain should cease.

"Is it wantin' to be out av the wet ye are?" asked the commandant;
"come straight into the kitchen an dhry yerselves."

"There are two more of us, yet to come," explained the Commodore.

"Ah, niver ye fear," quoth the old man; "isn't the kitchen in the
casemate that held the biggest gun, in the good ould times, an' hasn't
a whole company av the Rifles been in there to wanst many's the time."

[Illustration: The Commandant.]

The casemate proved of generous size, as was also the cooking-stove
that stood in the midst of it. The commandant's wife and children made
haste to place chairs, while one child was detailed to bring in the
Vice and the Cook at the double-quick. Soon the quartette sat about
the refilled stove, and though the month was July, no one thought
to push back his chair. Gradually there stole over the party that
delicious drowsiness which is peculiar to a man who has been acting as
clothes-horse to a wet suit--a drowsiness

    "That resembles slumber only
    As the mist resembles rain"--

a drowsiness which demands not sleep, but smoke. In short, each member
of the expedition was dying for a pipe, but he would have prolonged his
sensation of dissolution to its logical end rather than have got out
of his chair on the one hand, or, on the other, have ventured to smoke
in an apartment which was apparently the host's parlor as well as his
kitchen. But the Vice, the Statesman, the moulder of men, came at the
critical instant to the rescue of his companions and to that of

    "A nearer one
    Still, and a dearer one"--


"You must find it quite lonesome here at times," he remarked to the
commandant of the fort.

"Thrue for yez, an' I do," responded her Majesty's representative.

"Still," continued the Vice, "I suppose you can once in a while take
some comfort out of a drop and a smoke?"

The commandant of the fort winked profoundly. The Vice passed his
half pint flask stealthily to the custodian of Britain's honor, and
the old man, first prudently sending his wife out of the casemate for
something, drained the flask with the greatest courtesy and enthusiasm.
Then the Vice remarked,

"I suppose you get very good smoking tobacco in Canada, as there is no
duty on it, but permit me to leave you a fine pouch of it, as a slight
remembrance of your courtesy to us."

The commandant accepted the token of esteem, and smiled his thanks
from every line of his wrinkled visage. Then he opened the pouch, and
advanced his ancient nose, first cautiously, then critically, and
finally with a sniff of decided approbation.

[Illustration: The Commandant's Lady.]

"Try it at once," said the Vice, with ill-dissembled eagerness. "Don't
hesitate on our account--we are old smokers."

The commandant acted at once upon the suggestion, first courteously
passing the bag to his guests. Within three minutes these traditional
enemies were smoking the pipe of peace together, nor was lovely woman
missing from the circle, for the commandant's lady filled and lit, not
exactly a yard, but a "lady-finger" of clay herself, and puffed thereat
with great satisfaction.

The rain ended, the party went out to look at the fort, and discovered
that what from the outside had appeared a mere earthwork was really a
very carefully built fort, with stone quarters, galleries, casemates
and revetments, and easy of defence to a mere handful of men.

Just as the party was bidding adieu to their kind entertainers, there
occurred an accident which displayed to an unexpected degree the
_esprit de corps_ of the expedition. The commandant had offered the
Commodore some milk for the expedition, if some one would wait an hour
for it--the cows were quite a way off, he said. To wait inside a grim
fort while the sun shone brightly outside, and four canoes needing
inspection on account of damages by rain, was a duty to chill the
ardent soul. Just then, however, when the Commodore was wondering if he
could safely forget his own morning detail of himself as fleet milkman,
and assign this duty to some one else, the commandant's older daughter,
heretofore invisible, and of about eighteen or twenty summers, appeared
from an adjoining room.

"_I'll_ stay, Commodore," shouted three manly voices in unison. The
Commodore was so affected by this devotion to the interests of the
fleet that he felt shamed into a determination to remain true to his
self-appointed duty, but when he beheld the Purser's pleading eyes,
more eloquent than any words could be, human sympathy overcame soulless
discipline in the Commodore's rugged breast, and the brotherhood of man
asserted itself.

The wind and the shower died together, and as each captain of a vessel
had some special reason to wish himself farther on his journey, it was
agreed that the squadron should proceed under paddles, and camp for the
night at a point which the Vice knew all about, having camped there
during a previous cruise with the Alderman. This plan was accepted with
expressions of the liveliest satisfaction.

As the Purser rejoined the command with his milk pail, the three
Americans were seriously conversing about garrison life, as it exists
in the British service.

"I have often read," the Vice was saying, "of the exalted social tone
which pervades the British army, and I confess that I am glad to have
been admitted even for so short a time into society so select."

"I have always understood," said the Commodore, "that the commandant
of an English military post is sure to be a gentleman of high social
position at home."

The Cook remarked that "it was pleasant to have the notions of the
simple and unaffected manners of the English aristocracy, as derived
from contemporaneous literature, so pleasantly confirmed by an actual

"But you know that there isn't any--" put in the Purser.

The Cook went on serenely with his remarks, in the same vein and was so
ably seconded by his fellow citizens, that the Purser finally embarked
and paddled away, stopping a few yards from shore to shout defiantly

"It was all Gladstone's doings, you know. But for him there would have
been a regular garrison there, and may be you wouldn't have been so
cordially received."

To be out of doors and at liberty for ten days is, to men without
physical vices, wonderfully exhilarating, and enforced confinement by a
few hours of rain only intensifies physical spirit and alertness. Every
nerve and muscle seems to demand something to do, a mountain to climb,
an untamed horse to ride, a locomotive to drive, a regiment to lead
into a battle, or--as was the case with the Vice on this particular
afternoon--a good, close, vicious political canvass to dash into. To
gratify and utilize this sensation, there is no sport superior or equal
to that of paddling a canoe. Rowing may lessen the physical disquiet,
but while the canoeist sits upright in his boat, voluntarily working
only with his arms, and learning of unsupposed physical availability
and grace with every motion, the oarsman sways to and fro like the
deserted half of a melancholy hinge, which wavers helplessly about
in air, always longing for something to attach itself to, but never
finding it. Besides, the paddler faces his water and his goal, instead
of fixing his eyes unceasingly upon the fleeting past. The oarsman's
duties are confined to steady pulling, while with every stroke of his
paddle, the canoeist pulls and pushes also, discharging these duties
with alternate arms as he works upon the opposite sides of his boat.
The exercise is not passive, like that which one takes on horseback,
nor does it partake of that mental strain which a man experiences when
he takes the helm of his own yacht. It is superior, by far, in physical
benefit, to that most exhilarating experience that comes of driving
a canoe under full sail and before a brisk breeze. And if, after an
hour's work at the beginning of a cruise, the canoeist finds himself
the owner of two handfuls of blisters which nobody cares to borrow, he
finds himself at its end in possession of a fund of strength, spirits,
and clearness of head and heart that are far too precious to lend,
although they may have been bought very cheaply.

The paddles used by the modern canoeist are like that represented on
the cover of this book. They are very light, being made usually of
spruce, an inch and a half in diameter at the largest part of the
shaft. For a wide canoe a nine foot paddle is desirable, but for
narrower craft one seven and a half feet or even seven feet long is
sufficient. A common ferule joint in the middle facilitates close
packing. Two joints dividing the paddle in three parts, do not work
well in practice. Rubber rings, or the two halves of a three inch
rubber ball cut to slip over the shafts prevent the water from dripping

The squadron had sailed thus far without beholding any of the
picturesque which is peculiarly French, but now it hoped that at
landing, the essence of Acadia would be visible. It seemed for a few
moments as if this hope was about to be realized, for as the boats
approached their prospective landing, two quaintly dressed boys stood
observantly and quietly upon the bank, instead of dancing and hooting
like savages, or casting stones and objurgations at the squadron, as
almost any brace of boys in the United States would have done under
similar circumstances.

"Note the respectful ways engendered by monarchical institutions,"
observed the Commodore.

"Rather the absence of the spirit which the heavy hand of despotism has
crushed out," replied the Vice.

As the boats were beached, the boys timidly approached them. The Vice,
forgetting his first encounter of the picturesque, accosted them in
French, and was somewhat confused by their replies until he learned
that the youths were of English parentage, and that they lisped.

The boys were soon reinforced by their father, a tall, modest, but
self-reliant looking man, who eyed the camping preparations of the
party with an interest which was greater than curiosity, and which was
explained afterward by the discovery that he had been of the Argonauts
of '49.

The Vice, in his capacity of Statesman, knew the honest farmer as a
type, only as the principal element of mass-meetings which he sometimes
addressed; the Commodore, when in his editorial chair, knew him
principally as a subscriber to be secured; the Cook, when playing
scribbler, found the farmer-type useful to contrast with other types,
and the Purser, when in his studio, knew him only as an occasional
adjunct to a pastoral composition.

But after the self-contained, hard-working, rather lonely and diffident
farmer had lounged about the camp for a couple of hours that evening,
the party learned, as the city-bred man needs sorely to learn about
many another farmer, that the old man could see something in a sunset
besides tints reducible into pigments, more in a book than its writer's
art, that he knew more of the essentials of politics than the editor
and statesman combined, and stranger still, that he cared neither to
edit a newspaper nor to run for office.

After a good supper and a cheerful pipe or two, the Commodore, who had
been extremely quiet for a few moments, announced that he considered it
the proper thing for canoeists to sleep in their boats instead of tents.

"Then," said the Commodore, "if the river rises suddenly, you will be
in your boat, instead of having it drift away from you."

"And if you turn over in bed, in such case," remarked the Vice, "you'll
never know what drowned you."

The Commodore did not reply, for the real object of suggestion was
to emphasize one point of superiority of the Red Lake model, after
which his own boat and the Cook's were built, over the Chrysalid model
affected by the other two mariners. But the Commodore's will was law,
and that night the four men slept each in his own canoe, a rubber
blanket thrown across a line extending from mast to mast affording
protection from dew and possible rain.




On the morning of this day, two canoeists arose from their nautical
couches with that satisfied air which betokens a night of peaceful
rest, but the Vice and the Purser arose only after many a premonitory
groan, and even then they strongly resembled a couple of rough logs
from which a single slab had been sawn, so flattened was one side of
each. The Commodore eyed them with manifest satisfaction, called the
attention of each of them to the appearance of the other, and exclaimed,

"Observe the effect of sleeping in a canoe with ribs and a bottom
board! I was curious to see how the experiment would result."

"I wish, then," grunted the Vice, as by vicious pinches he sought
to restore animation in his flattened side, "I wish--ow--that your
devotion to science had prompted you to try the experiment upon
yourself, and borrowed my canoe to do it in."

"Thanks, thanks," rejoined the Commodore, briskly, "but I had an
experiment of the same sort to try in my own boat, which has a smooth
concave bottom. I beg you will observe how my outlines preserve their
habitual shapeliness."

The flat-sided sufferers retired for a bath, and speedily forgot their
sorrows. If the morning bath in a city bath-tub is a washer-away of
fragments of slumber, and a merry awakener, how much more delightful
is the same exercise in an ever-replenishing body of water half a mile
wide and hundreds of miles long, enclosed only by blue sky, green trees
and brown earth, with no close dining-room and conventional breakfast
to be descended to, no morning paper to be read, no vile horse-car to
go to business on, nor any hard pavement to tramp over, and no brother
man to find fault with, except in that cheerful banter which always
comes back to bless the giver. Thus thought the Cook as he stood waist
deep in the clear water, and thus he might have continued to think for
a long time had his foot not impinged upon the riparian rights of an
honest mussel with slightly parted shells.

The Commodore had already been out for provisions, and returned

"Another proof of the superiority of monarchical institutions," said
he. "Instead of the prices we have been accustomed to heretofore, I pay
twelve cents a-piece for chickens, ten cents per pound for butter, and
three cents per dozen for eggs."

"And you are pleased to regard this cheapness as a virtue?" asked the
Vice. "Is no one but the buyer to be considered?" How do you suppose
people live who sell the products of their industry at such starvation
figures? But monarchists and imperialists have but a single idea--to
crush the poor."

The Commodore shrunk an inch or two in length and breadth, but soon
recovered himself, donned a vicious smile, and announced with assumed
cheerfulness that the time had come to "sling the healthy," whereby
monarchists, imperialists and republicans would suffer alike.

"What's that?" asked the Cook.

The Commodore grinned sardonically. "He wants to know what, slinging
the healthy, is," said he. "Well, he'll know before dinner. It means
paddling--paddling in earnest, young man--paddling a ten or fifteen
mile stretch, instead of a leisurely half mile."

There seemed no alternative, for the river was as smooth as glass.
The sun noted the mirror-like surface of the water, and his natural
vanity caused him to rub up his face until its brightness could not
be increased. Just by way of refreshing the pleasurable sensation of
beholding his face in the water, he dropped his gaze quite frequently
upon the blue-shirted backs of the canoeists, until each man imagined
that he must have caught some sparks from the camp-fire. Then it seemed
as if there must be rain falling from the cloudless sky, for the Cook
felt water-drops coursing steadily down his back. The Purser was sure
his boat must be leaking, for water was gradually soaking the small
canvas cushion on which he sat in the bottom of his canoe. The Vice's
slippers grew clammily moist, and the Commodore's eyes filled with
water which was not an accumulation of remorseful tears. But no man
would debase himself so far as to be the first to cry for mercy.

But the Vice, the Statesman, was true to his profession. To have
suggested a rest would have been merely a straight-forward act which
even an idiot might have performed. The Vice preferred to gain his
point by an exercise of intellect. Half a mile down the stream was a
small pier; to this the Vice called the panting Commodore's attention,
and exclaimed,

"That, by gosh,[6] is the identical dock where the Alderman and I
went swimming. I assume that all such important precedents are to be
respectfully observed?"

"They _are_," said the Commodore, almost fainting with the ecstasy of
the transition from despair to hope.

Within ten minutes the boats were beached, and four perspiring
canoeists, after an interval of rest, made haste to disrobe and take
headers from the pier into the refreshing water.

From this pier the Commodore called the attention of his companions to
a glittering spire which shot heavenward a mile down the river, and

"There begins Acadia. Every spire we see hereafter will be of that
precise pattern--they are as unchanging as the beautiful faith which
our sister Church of Rome maintains."

[Illustration: The Dock.]

"Have we a Ritualist among us?" whispered the Vice to the Cook, with a
face full of horror.

"Ye--es," replied the Cook, reluctantly, "but don't think too hardly of
the poor fellow. Editors _must_ have some sort of religious belief, you
know--they're human, like the rest of us--and how can they reconcile
their practice to any thing but a religion of mere forms? What would
religion be, if it did not provide for every man's own peculiar

The Vice eyed the Commodore with abating horror, nevertheless he began
to talk Baptist doctrine to him. He even, to arouse his faculties to
the utmost, strode up and down the shore warbling to himself (so the
Purser declared) something like this:

    "Baptist, Baptist is my style,
      Baptist born was I.
    I've been baptized in the Baptist way
      And Baptist will I die."

But the Commodore was obdurate, and intimated that the Vice's
experience in upsetting from a canoe had something to do with his
denominational preference; things had to go according to law in
newspaper offices, he said; the newspaper was the highest embodiment
of human intellect, and so he reasoned, analogically, that men had
no higher model to which to conform religion. The Vice sighed and
determined to convert the Commodore--at a more convenient season.

The calm and heat continued, and no one was rude enough to make
suggestions to the Commodore about starting. Indeed, the Purser
remembered that he had brought a hammock, which until now he had
forgotten. It was one of the most remarkable hammocks in the
world--woven of silk by an Italian sailor--wouldn't the Commodore just
try it? The Commodore accepted the proffer in gracious spirit; then
the Cook remembered that the Commodore had never tried the wonderful,
the priceless Brazilian tobacco, and there could be no fitter place
than a hammock in which to sample it. The general result was that the
Commodore occupied the hammock until the Cook announced dinner, and
even then he arose with noticeable reluctance.

After dinner the breeze sprang up again, and as it wafted clouds of
dust into the eyes, faces and hair of the expedition, as well as upon
their garments, still damp with honest sweat, every one hailed with
joy the order to sail. Besides, the dinner had been a mere lunch, and
as the largest town on the river was but a few miles distant, the
Cook suggested that an excellent dinner might be procured there at
a quaint little French inn which he had visited in other days. This
suggestion led to a lively race, which as usual in such cases was won
by the Cook.[7] Whether beating or beaten, however, the pleasure of
spreading all sails and making the best possible time in a good wind,
was more than sufficient reward for all the effort put forth. With a
boat fourteen feet long, and weighing, all rigging, spars, personal
property, stores, etc., included, a scant hundred and fifty pounds,
yet carrying fifty square feet of canvas, the canoeist has to exert to
the uttermost his clearness of vision, nicety of touch (at the helm)
weather wisdom, and balancing ability. He is himself his own ballast
and the principal portion of the cargo. The shifting of five pounds
of weight would compel a capsize, and the slightest flaw, carelessly
caught, would even more certainly induce the same undesirable result.
To keep all dead weight as far as possible below the water line, the
navigator sits in the bottom of his boat, his back resting against a
small board which, in turn, bears upon the after thwart or bulkhead.
In one hand he holds the sheet of his mainsail; if he steers with
a rudder, he holds one tiller rope in the same hand, and the other
in the remaining digits. If he steers with a paddle, which is for
several reasons the preferable mode, he holds the paddle with the
hand unoccupied by the sheet; there is thus a steady strain upon both
arms, and this strain is also a perfect brace. Some canoeists work the
tiller with the feet, and this when properly carried out is a very
convenient mode, but not every one who has tried it succeeds in making
it work. The time which intervenes between the coming of a flaw and
the full fruition of a capsize, is usually about three seconds, but
one of these suffices for prevention, if the sailor promptly lets go
his sheet or allows his boat's head to go into the wind. In practice,
however, a flaw seldom strikes a close-hauled sail; the pilot's ear
detects it coming several seconds before it strikes, and so, before it
appears, the mainsail is as innocent of the possibility of abetting
disaster as if it were the proprietor of a gambling saloon, who had
been forewarned by some sympathetic police captain of an impending
raid, or a skilful insurance president who knows that the state
inspector is coming. How the canoeist's ear detects the coming flaw
is the mystery and despair of the novice, though several hours of
practice make this wisdom seem an acquisition some centuries old. When
the "green" canoeist experiences a flaw, he generally seeks safety by
letting go his sheet and at the same time steering "into the wind".
Safety is at once assured, but when the boat again takes the "course,"
the other boats, if sailed by experts, are already too far away to
be available if one wishes to borrow an æsthetic idea or a pipe of
tobacco. The experienced sailor lets his sheet go sufficiently, but he
knows to a breath when the flaw is sufficiently spent to allow him to
"haul close" again, and he holds his course to a point all the while,
saving some wind by throwing his weight well to windward. If he has a
satisfactory family, but lacks as much life insurance as he desires,
he will prefer to try a good wind over water not more than five feet
deep, (and such water is a hundred times as plentiful as deeper water)
but the chance of capsizing a sober canoeist of a week's practice is
less than that of falling dead in the street at home; it is as easy
to avoid as if it were the risk of stepping over a precipice in full
view, for in the former case the catastrophe is as easily foreseen as
in the latter. And while the boat is flying (literally, for her bottom
barely touches the water, and she can sail at a respectable speed over
tide-mud barely glazed with water,) its occupant has every pleasure
experienced by the owner of a twenty-thousand dollar yacht. He has the
same glorious wind whistling in his ears, the same sharp remonstrance
of the waters divided by the bow, the same murmurs of recognition and
complaint by the same waters as they reunite under the stern-post, the
same sense of triumph over one element, of compulsion of another, which
if it had its own way would be only a fitful ally, the same glorious
_abandon_ of health and spirits revelling in pure air and in endeavor
unconstrained by age, sex, or previous conditions of social or business
servitude. And when the sail is over, or the season itself is ended,
the delightful memories of the cruise are not, as in the case of the
yachtsman, palled by recollections of the frightful expense of the
crew, or the extortionate charges of ship-builders for repairs. And
while the yachtsman lays up his boat for the winter, and bemoans the
wasting interest upon her cost, and the various charges for dockage,
keeping, etc., the canoeist quietly puts his boat upon his back, or,
at worst a cart, carries it to his house, and puts her down in the
cellar or up in the garret (after an unsuccessful attempt to have her
wintered on top of the piano in the parlor) in either of which places
he may visit her as frequently as he pleases, in any weather, and
refresh any memories that may seem laggard when recalled.

[Illustration: Under the Elms.]

The party went into camp in the shade of some grand old elms which
stood in front of what had once been her Majesty's barracks. During the
political changes which had turned the British spear into the Canadian
pruning-hook, the barracks had been diverted from their original
purpose into homes for the friendless poor; the shore of the river in
front of them was, therefore, full of the discarded crockery and broken
bottles peculiar to a certain phase of poverty, and as the Vice and the
Purser stepped barefooted into the water to carry their boats ashore,
the soles of their feet testified to the truth of the scriptural saying
"The poor ye have with you always."[8]

As the expedition landed, weary, foot sore, hungry, unshaven, and
covered with the dust of their last camp, the sight of a busy town,
full of brisk well-to-do people, caused them to experience to the
uttermost the sensations peculiar to the vagabond and the pariah.
A marvelously good dinner at a marvelously low price comforted the
material part of their inner man, but their mental parts remained ill
at ease. So uncomfortable were they that the party took pattern after
the vulgar who wish to appear as gentlemen--they purchased and smoked
the best cigars in the town. Returned to their camp, the spectacle of
a number of well-dressed, sprightly children playing under the trees
reminded them strongly of home, where changes of clothing were more
numerous than on board canoes, and where whatever bath tub may be
available, is not paved with scrap tin and broken glass and crockery.

[Illustration: The Enchantress.]

Suddenly an unexpected, an unhoped for influence appeared upon the
scene. A young lady, who apparently had a nephew or niece among the
children, strolled toward the water's edge a little way from the boats,
and amused herself with the gambols of a huge water-dog. The parlor
critic would scarcely have called her beautiful--probably at the Court
of Jove there were goddesses more beautiful than Juno, nevertheless
Juno ruled men as no rival beauty did. The lady with the dog noticed
no member of the expedition, but it was impossible for the mariners
to be as unconcerned in return, for maidens who are embodiments of
health, strength, grace and modesty are not seen often enough even
where maidens most do congregate. The Commodore sat down and leaned
against a tree to hide the dusty back of his shirt; the Purser made
haste to don a blue jacket which he had fortunately brought with him;
the Vice, who, apparently with malice aforethought, had shaved himself,
sat in his canoe, adjusted his statesmanlike glasses, and took full
satisfaction out of the ennobling spectacle, while the Cook, with
characteristic modesty, crept within the tent, where he might behold
and yet remain invisible. When the lady departed, as unfortunately she
did, the quartette debated whether she went on wings, or floated off on
one of the clouds that were hovering about, or was wafted away by the
fortunate breezes which could express their admiration without being
suspected of forwardness or flattery, or, whether she was suddenly
translated to a better world, as the Vice enthusiastically declared
was no more than her desert. And yet, the material optics of every
member of that expedition knew that the lady walked away upon her own
feet, as any ordinary mortal would have done, for each of them had
gazed industriously after her as long as her form was visible. The
difference of opinion led to no dispute, however, for the manners of
the expedition had noticeably improved within an hour, and though no
canoeist had modified his apparel in any way, each man had something in
his face which made him more presentable.

Meanwhile the little clouds which had been previously acting, each
for itself, gathered in convention, resolved that in union there was
strength, and then proceeded to business. The merry children, with
juvenile trust in nature, suspected nothing until they felt it, and
then protests were of no avail. But the Commodore took charge of the
entire party, and massed it within the expedition's tent, where the
children had a glorious time while the navigators strolled about
outside and made-believe enjoy the heaven-sent shower-bath. Then the
shower departed and so did the children, the shades of night were
drawn, and behind these the expedition hid itself while it changed its
soaked clothing. Then it lit its evening candle and prepared for bed,
the Vice and the Purser insisting that the evening couches should be
within the tent instead of the boats. While in the preliminary stages
of a discussion, however, a vivacious small dog announced the approach
of visitors, and then ushered to the front of the tent a gentleman,
a lady and a small hand-wagon. The couple proved to be the parents
of one of the children who had been sheltered by the tent during the
afternoon, and they had called to express their thanks, some of which
were from the tongue and heart, while others were from the hand-wagon,
and consisted of bottles of excellent ale, a huge loaf of cake, some
dainty preserves, etc. The gentleman proved to be an ex-officer of a
famous Canadian regiment, so the Commodore and the Cook talked military
affairs with him; he knew all about Dominion politics, so he and the
Vice found a point of contact; he was also of English birth, and when
the Purser learned this, he monopolized him, and the couple talked
church and agriculture, Gladstone and Melton-Mowbray pork pies, while
the lady exhibited a degree of tact and vivacity which prevented the
other gentlemen from remembering that the place was not a parlor, and
that they themselves were not within their respective funereal dress
suits. Then several citizens with aquatic tastes dropped in, one by
one, and offered various generous hospitalities, and the result of it
all was that the expedition thought no more of its shabbiness than if
this condition had suddenly gone out of existence.

It was not until an unprecedentedly late hour that the last visitor
departed, and the members of the squadron retired with a faint notion
that rain was again beginning to patter upon the leaves overhead.

    [Footnote 6: The Vice was from an eastern rural district.]

    [Footnote 7: Note by the Cook.--Contradictions of this statement
    have been received from the Vice and the Purser, but they are
    couched in language unfit for publication. The proof-sheet of this
    page has been carefully kept from the eye of the Commodore.]

    [Footnote 8: As boats of the Chrysalid model have prominent keels,
    and stern-posts that are merely ornamental, they cannot be beached
    by a gentle tug at the painter, such as is always sufficient with a
    Red-Lake boat.]



Sleep was sedulously courted this morning by the entire squadron, for
not only did the late hours and social dissipations of the preceding
night have a soporific effect, but a steady rain had set in during the
small hours, and not even the Cook felt any disposition to arise and
shine. The tent was rather close quarters for four, so the Commodore
had slept in his canoe, and for him rising meant stepping out of a dry
nest into a steady down-pour. After a while, however, voices began to
issue from the tent and a desire for breakfast soon asserted itself.
As the camp was in the outskirts of a town, no wood was to be had save
through purchase, so the Rob-Roy cuisine was resorted to with eminent
success, and a wandering small boy who spoke nothing but Kanuck of the
most rudimentary description, was persuaded to fill an order from the
maternal larder.

Breakfast was at last finished, and numerous pipes were smoked to
kill time until the rain should cease, but still it poured down with
such steady persistency, that it had its effect even upon the buoyant
spirits of the quartette. The sole objects of interest which presented
themselves were boats laden with hay which drove past the tent-door
down the river before the wind. These the Commodore sketched with the
adjoining result, and then relapsing into a state of demoralization was
maliciously portrayed by the artist on page 147. At length the showers
became intermittent, and the two division commanders sallied forth in
different directions to collate information regarding the rapids.

[Illustration: Aristocratic.]

[Illustration: Plebeian.]

"One charm of the character of your true rural," remarked the
Commodore, on their return to compare notes, "is that he is
unconventional. When you have learned the opinions of one, upon matters
about him, you are not justified in accepting them as those of the
community at large."

[Illustration: The Commodore Weather Bound.]

"Very true," said the Vice. "I have spent two hours in interviewing
the honest villagers near the waterside, to ascertain if the rapids,
which begin a short half mile below, are passable, and from no two of
them did I get the same reply. One said yes, another said no, a third
looked doubtful, a fourth encouraging, number five was dumb, and from a
dozen or two others I obtained enough of shrugs, gestures, and facial
contortions to supply the clown of a pantomime. So little recks your
true rural of what doesn't particularly concern him that one fellow,
who works in a flour-mill, informed me that there were no rapids
whatever, any where in the river."

"Proof positive that he doesn't pay taxes upon property," said the
Commodore. "The tax-collector is the grand educator upon local
geography: hence, the most intelligent nations of Europe are those
which are taxed heaviest."

"The Turks, for instance," suggested the Vice. "I accept your theory,
however, for the sake of offering it back to you as proof positive that
we Americans are the most intelligent people on the face of the globe."

"The exact bearings of taxation upon the passability of rapids," said
the Commodore, "may be clear to a statesman's mind, but the editorial
brain fails to record any impression regarding it. The question is, are
we to run the rapids or pass around them by canal? I propose first to
listen to the counsels of my captains, and then to act according to my
own. Officers will speak in reverse order of rank. Cook?"

"Run the rapids by all means," promptly replied the Cook, who had no
nautical reputation to lose, but might gain an immense amount without
exceeding the demand.

"Purser?" said the Commodore.

The custodian of the fleet's treasure tossed his auburn locks gaily
behind his ears, and replied,

"As well ask the bird if it would soar heavenward, the imprisoned soul
if it would yearn for light, the poet if he would seek his ideal!"

"Or a duck could he swim," put in the Vice.

"Do you mean that you prefer to run the rapids?" asked the Commodore.

"Certainly," replied the Purser.

"Say so, then," said the Commodore, with editorial sternness, "Vice?"

"The one delight of a canoe cruise," said the Vice, "is to run rapids.
I don't know of another joy that compares with it, unless it be that of
a Presidential campaign full of personalities."

"I decide in favor of the canal," said the Commodore. "My duty to
society demands it. Moreover, I encountered this morning a large number
of natives, all of whom without a single exception assured me that
the rapids could not be run. Running unknown rapids is attended by
considerable danger, and while the loss of a Statesman, an Artist or a
Scribbler might be a blessing to suffering humanity, an Editor cannot
be spared. Editors are born, not made, and are consequently very rare."

"Which fact, like that of the crocodile destroying its young," remarked
the Vice, "is a proof of the merciful interposition of Providence to
save the human race from what might otherwise be a terrible scourge."

As the natives had missed neither spoons, poultry nor any other easily
secreted property during the night, they viewed the departing fleet
with kindly eyes, and pressed sundry favors upon it. The expedition
attempted to advance in column under sail, but it speedily became
involved in difficulties with sundry saw-logs and slightly submerged
ropes, until all available seamanship was called into exercise to avoid
humiliating disaster. When the entrance to the canal was reached, the
navigators discovered that the water was spanned, at short intervals,
by bridges not only so low as to compel the striking of masts, but
also to necessitate the striking of signal staffs fore and aft, and
the temporary assumption, by the various commanders, of a physical
attitude most truly devout. As the fourth bridge was approached by the
expedition, it was also reached by an industrious shower, and no one
made haste to pass from under the cover afforded by the structure.

"Think of the poor sailors on the broad ocean, with no bridge to
shelter them," remarked the Cook, as he improved the opportunity to
light a peaceful pipe. Just then a small stream of water, in search
of its final level, meandered between two planks of the bridge, and
trickled into the Cook's pipe, producing a sizzle which seemed to
greatly titillate the nerves of those who were not smoking. Then
another stream struck the helmet of the Vice and broke into what would
have been a graceful cascade had not its perfect curve been broken by
the official nose. The Purser bowed his head to avoid showing unseemly
merriment at the expense of his superior officer, when another stream,
heavily charged with the soil which wagons had deposited upon the
bridge, insinuated itself between his shirt and his skin. Then began
a magnificent but ineffectual struggle of mind against matter. Given,
a bridge the planks of which were not more than ten inches wide, and
several men whose shoulders exceeded in width any two of the planks,
and whose depth of chest, with its environment, also exceeded the
distance between any two cracks, and the reader will perceive, more
freely than by any logical form of demonstration, the utter futility
of free will in a contest against destiny. The best that man can do
in such an unequal conflict is to prepare himself as well as possible
for the blow, and this the Commodore did by throwing a rubber poncho
(a square sheet with a hole in the middle) over his head, the ends
dropping outside the gunwales of the boat, and shedding the water into
the canal. The wooden decks of the Chrysalids kept water from dripping
into the boats except amidships, the oilcloth decking of the flagship
served a similar purpose, but the inside of the Cherub was soon
deplorable in the extreme.

In time the sun banished the shower, and under its beams the canoeists
brightened sufficiently to drop into song, beating time with their
paddles. As they approached one bridge, and recurred to the reflection
that civilization has its penalties as well as its pleasures, the
keeper of the bridge good-naturedly opened it.

"By Jove!" exclaimed the Commodore, "no one but a Frenchman would have
been civil enough to do that. Let's sing the 'Marseillaise' for him,
and remind him of his far distant home. Now!

    'Allons, enfants de la patrie.
    Le jour de gloire est arrivè.'"

The song was given with spirit, and with that confidence of accent
which song somehow inspires. The squadron, in perfect line, and keeping
a rhythmic stroke as of one man, reached the bridge just as they struck
the refrain,--

    "Aux armes, citoyens!
    Formez vos battalions!
    Marchez, marchez, qu'un sang impur,
    Abreuve nos sillons."

The bridge-keeper raised himself from the leaning position which he had
at first assumed, his eye brightened, a flush of red showed under the
dark brown of his cheek.

"That's a magnificent song," he shouted in French. "What do you call

[Illustration: Aux Armes Citoyennes.]

Four paddles stopped abruptly in mid-air, four men stared blankly at
each other, then the Commodore sank back into his cockpit as nerveless
as Salvini in the finale of "La Morte Civile." In a moment he recovered
himself enough to gasp,

"True enough; the ancestors of these French Canadians came over a
century before Rouget de Lisle was born!"

"What?" exclaimed the Vice, hastily backing out of line and turning his
boat, "and that poor fellow knows nothing of the glory of his race, of
the rights of man, and things? I'll go back and enlighten him."

"Let him alone," said the Purser. "He knows enough to be polite
and sympathetic--to volunteer extra labor that others may be saved
annoyance, so he knows more of the rights of man than you can teach

The Vice meekly drew back into line, merely asking if it was not
nearly dinner-time. As one bank of the canal was heavily covered with
weeds, and the other was being frequently traversed by tow-horses,
the noon-day meal was taken in the boats, the four being temporarily
lashed together that the various viands might be passed back and forth
without danger of being dropped overboard. The leisure consequent upon
dining enabled the squadron to observe critically the crews of the
various barges that passed, and to learn that although the spirit of
trade has not altered the French canal-boatmen of Canada from their
national model, the environment of circumstance has made the rider of
the canal-horse like unto his brother navigators of all climes. The
remarks which these gentlemen volunteered as they passed the squadron
were all couched in the French tongue, but the accent was that of the
Erie canal, the Delaware and Hudson, and all other watery highways upon
which the motive power is equine or mulish.

These canalers indeed, as was quickly evident, were of cosmopolitan
or at least of republican habit, for so personal did their remarks
become that some means of retaliation or self-defence was manifestly
necessary. Dignified silence is all very well, but your modern canaler
does not appreciate it in the traditional fashion, and when a quiet
professional gentleman is invited to "come out of that and have a
head put on him" by a burly ruffian, it is apparent that the policy
of silence is not always that of wisdom. Under these circumstances it
occurred to the Vice, who had been a "Son of Malta," that portions of
the extinct ritual might be made available. The Cook was accordingly
instructed to hang the expeditionary frying-pan over his forward-thwart
and provide himself with a short baton, wherewith to beat it after the
manner of a Chinese gong. The next "Bargees" that we encountered opened
the usual conversation, inquiring where we were from, and where bound,
all which questions were answered with due civility. Then the chaff
element cropped out.

"Say, Boss, whar did you get that hat?" The remark was addressed to
the Commodore who headed the line. In a resonant voice that officer
repeated: "He asks where did I get my hat."

Then the Vice, "He asks where did he get his hat?"

Then the Purser, "He asks where did he get his hat?"

Then the Cook, "He asks where did he get his hat?" and then lifting his
bâton he proclaimed in a stentorian voice RECORDED! and mightily smote
the frying-pan till it rung again. The invariable sequence of this was
a momentary pause, during which the squadron usually passed out of
ear-shot. Sometimes however, the canalers attempted a continuation of
the attack, as for instance:

"Now then," (but really this part of the sentence can only be
represented by blanks) "Come out o' that, and I'll learn yer."

_Commodore._ "He calls us scions of a noble race."

_Vice._ "He calls us scions of a noble race."

_Purser._ "He calls us scions of a noble race."

_Cook._ "He calls us scions of a noble race. Recorded! WHANG!!"

"The recorded answer turneth away chaff," said the Vice somewhat
irreverently after the success of the experiment was established, and
so it was, for the profane resources of the most fluent mule-driver
failed him in the presence of the frying-pan.

Soon after dinner the squadron approached a lock, and the Commodore
went ashore to exhibit the passes of his command. As the collective
measurement of the boats did not reach ten tons, the four had been
included in a single pass, the cost of which was twenty cents, and
this sufficed for the dozen locks which were to be passed before the
smooth water of the river could again be reached. It was probably a
realization of the small amount of money which their labor represented
which made the various lock-keepers so solemn of mien as they labored
over their gates to let the Liliputian squadron through. The walls of
each lock were substantially built of huge blocks of grey stone, and
as the water subsided rapidly the Artist imagined himself being let
down into a dark dungeon. He hastily drew his portfolio from a locker,
and proceeded to sketch a study for a "Prisoner of Chillon," hugging
the shady side of the lock as he did so. The sketch proceeded to his
satisfaction, and then some loose earth behind the stones ejected
through a crack some of its superfluous moisture in a parabolic curve
over the Artist's shoulder, and upon the sketch, putting in some half
tints which gave the picture an air of extreme realism and antiquity.

Reaching at length a long stretch of canal upon which no boats were
visible, the squadron disembarked and washed its respective faces
with soap, an operation rendered necessary by the drippings it had
encountered under the bridge, and during the various showers. An hour
later, the face of the Vice looked as if it had been liberally but
carelessly patched with court-plaster. Fragments of skin fluttered
aimlessly from his cheeks and brow, while his Roman nose was as
picturesque as the brown shoulders of a tramp who had lately begged
a very ragged white shirt. The Vice became conscious that he was
attracting attention, and a pocket-mirror, furtively consulted,
revealed to him the cause. He passed his mirror to the others, and the
merriment of the party came to a sudden stop, for every one else was
displaying symptoms of impending trouble of the same sort. Not one of
them had experienced an hour of sunshine a day for months; their faces
had been burning steadily for days, and the alkali of the soap had
destroyed the last bond between the burned cuticle and that beneath.
The Purser suggested that cold cream, being peculiarly a French
production, could doubtless be found in the next village, but the Vice
said him nay.

"Frenchmen who don't know the Marseillaise when they hear it," said
he, "can't be expected to know anything about the appliances of modern

The morning's rain, the late start and sundry delays had hindered the
fleet more than it realized, and the sun was setting before the canal
was half-way passed. It became necessary therefore to camp on the
canal bank, but this was no great hardship, as a smooth strip of green
sward opportunely presented itself on the side away from the tow-path,
as shown at the left of this sketch. A moral title is appended to
this illustration because the Vice went off by himself after supplies
and came back thoroughly sobered, as he intimated, by the sublime
immensity of the canal, which, he said, stretched away before him
like the narrow path which he remembered as depicted in the "Pilgrim's
Progress" of his boyhood.

[Illustration: Alone with his Conscience.]

Indeed there was a pastoral beauty about this canal which one is not
apt to associate with artificial waterways. It was but a few miles in
length and skirted a lovely valley, rich in historic association and
beautifully diversified by wood and meadow, hill and stream. Beyond
the lowlands, as shown in the sketch, rose a commanding and somewhat
isolated mountain range which caught the last rays of the setting
sun, and welcomed him again in the morning in such charming fashion
that it was simple luxury to exist within the range of its influence.
Since crossing the line, too, minor incidents of daily recurrence
recalled the fact that this valley was first penetrated by emissaries
of "Mother Church." On every side the little tin covered spires, one
just like the other, arose, and at sunrise and sunset, the matin and
vesper bells sent their notes far and near, reminding all within range
that the priest was at the altar holding aloft the sacred emblems
and repeating the angelus. The members of the expedition were all
Protestants by birth and association, but there was not one of them
who had not a tender spot in his heart when the bells rang out and he
knew that hundreds of fellow beings, far and near, paused a moment at
their tasks to repeat the prayer that the church had taught them to
say. These little churches, of which this may serve as a type, form a
charming feature of the Acadian land. You may walk into any of them at
any hour, and some are very quaint, and in a strange fashion touching,
in their interior design and adornment. It seemed as though the prayers
of generations of simple minded folk were imprisoned there, willing
and ever anxious to get up to heaven, if that were possible, and yet
hampered somehow so that they did not make it out. Often as one or
another of the quartette strolled into a village church and sat down
in the suggestive silence, a man or woman would come in and kneeling
repeat a prayer. To say that the act is mechanical and heartless is
not to the purpose. It may be both mechanical and heartless, but it is
not meaningless, and through it and other like observances, the church
retains a tolerably strong hold upon a very considerable fraction
of Christendom. Would that the home-feeling could be as successfully
cultivated by some of our Protestant sects as it seems to be by the
church of Rome. Perhaps however the home feeling as it there exists is
incompatible with advanced thought, and the liquefaction of gases, and
Boston Monday Lectures.

[Illustration: The Typical Church.]

So at least the Vice was remarking when he suddenly became aware that
a canal-propeller was coming down his recent straight and narrow path,
towing behind her an endless chain of lumber barges. Anxiety for the
boats banished every other sentiment. The Red Lakers were confidently
trusted to take care of themselves by their commanders, but Chrysalids
must be carefully tended and held off shore, lest the swell should
dash them against the stone facing of the embankment. Considering
what the Rochefort had been through on her various lee shores, this
solicitude seemed rather superfluous. Furthermore, no perceptible swell
was caused by the passage of the tow, and the only notable result was
that the Purser, in his anxiety to hold the Arethusela off shore with a
boat-hook, lost his balance and took a ducking, much to the amusement
of spectators on the canal boats.

An exquisite moonlit night was this on the canal. The tent stood white
against the grassy bank, the canal glittered, from far away could be
heard the hoarse roar of rapids, and farther still the blue mountain
range rose flat against the sky as if it had no irregularities save
those which marked its outline. Only one anxiety marred the serenity
of the fleet.

Ever since "the Enchantress" arose upon its horizon, one member of
the command who shall be nameless, had not been quite in his right
mind. While passing along the canal, he had evinced a preference for
such airs as "Annie Laurie" and "The Girl I left behind Me," while the
"Mulligan Guards" and the Marseillaise failed to stir his soul as was
their wont. This evening he passed walking up and down the canal bank
in the moonlight, apart from the rest, and he was even suspected of
declaiming poetry _sotto-voce_. There the squadron left him when it
turned in.

After a long interval of quiet, no one knows what the hour was, the
sleepers were softly awakened by the enthusiast, who by the straggling
moonbeams was seen with a finger on his lips as an injunction of
silence, while with the other hand he pointed toward the remains
of the camp-fire in front of the tent. Each man arose noiselessly;
one softly cocked his revolver, another grasped a boat hook, while
a third clutched two empty beer-bottles, stole out of the tent, and
peered warily about, in the shadows of the trees. Each man saw that
the boats were safe, and as all cargoes had been removed to the tent
before nightfall, the nature of the danger which impended could not
be imagined by any one. The demented man threw several twigs upon the
smouldering embers, thus making a bright light; then he squatted near
the fire, motioned to the others to take similar attitudes, and spoke
thus to his mystified auditors:

"Gentlemen, for years I have endeavored to formulate a definition of
the phrase 'pretty girl;' not to give a mere literal description,
but one which should be artistic as well as truthful, and have the
virtue, peculiar to all true art, of suggesting more than it says. At
last I have fully succeeded; or, rather, a glorious inspiration has
enlightened me. Before disclosing this marvel of truth and poetry,
I beg you to give me your own definitions of the same precious
phrase--they will be useful by way of contrast."

"I can better tell you what a pretty girl is _not_," answered one of
the party promptly. "She is not an imbecile who rouses people at dead
of night for the idiotic purpose of revising standard lexicography."

"Nor is she," quoth another, who, being a very light sleeper, sprang
to his feet, in a violent fit of trembling, on being aroused, "nor is
she a being who will in cold blood frighten an honest fellow almost to

"Nor a person whose literary musings disturb the slumber of any one,
unless, haply, he be editor of a paper containing a poet's column,"
said the third.

"Listen, then," replied the lunatic, his look of scorn giving place
to a lambent light from within, which irradiated his pale features.
"A pretty girl is a person from whose glass you are willing to drink,
after she is done with it."

For several moments there was dead silence, then somebody asked in the
iciest of tones,

"And you aroused us only for the purpose of imparting this."

"I did."

"Have I offered you a single affront since the cruise began?" asked
another. "I certainly have tried hard to do my duty, and have never
discriminated knowingly against any one."

"You are guiltless," was the reply.

"I suppose I am the guilty one," groaned the third. "I gave him a cigar
to-day which was not what it should have been. But how out of all
proportion to the offence is the punishment!"

The object of these denunciations, remaining unchanged of mien, began
again to pace the bank beneath the moonbeams, while his companions
returned to their blankets and failed miserably to devise any vengeance
commensurate with his shameful act.

At length the wisest of the trio, raising himself on his elbow,
exclaimed "I have it--make him marry one."



At length the voyagers seemed really in Acadia. A large village at the
lower end of the canal exhibited in charming profusion the red-tiled
roofs, white stuccoed cottages, and verandahs peculiar to French
village architecture; all signs over the shop-doors were in French, and
nearly all of them indicated that spirituous liquors were sold there;
the native stare was of short duration and respectful, instead of long
drawn and insolent, as it would have been at any canal terminus in
the United States, and the village dogs did not respond to whistles
delivered in the American manner. A single new house with Mansard roof
had intruded itself in the village, but the Cook promptly suggested
that it must belong to some fugitive American statesman, so it could
not be considered as part of the village proper.

At this suggestion the Vice became pensive and was presently
discovered questioning a resident as to the personal appearance of
certain American sojourners. His curiosity was pardonable as he had
been conspicuous in breaking up a famous metropolitan Ring, and knew
personally some of its fugitive fragments.

No factory reared its horrid front aloft, so the village maidens were
meek-eyed and healthy, and the young men did not congregate at street
corners with hands in pockets. Two or three score of men stood upon the
walls of the final lock, to look at the boats, but they displayed none
of the officious curiosity which any able-bodied American citizen would
have considered necessary under like circumstances. To the Commodore,
the Purser and the Cook the change from the restless activity with
which they were familiar was inexpressibly delightful, but the Vice
regarded everything with cold suspicion.

"The natural result of monarchical rule," was his incessant comment
upon whatever he saw. "There is waterpower enough going to waste,"
said he, pointing to the rapids, "for a manufacturing city such as the
world has never seen. Capital would be attracted, labor would follow,
facilities for navigation would increase, farmers would have a home
market for their produce, real estate would increase in value, and
local politics would become a science. But see it as it is! Why, I
doubt if it has a board of aldermen, or even a mayor!"

"Then it is Acadia indeed," murmured the Purser, raising his head from
a sketch he had hastily made of a sweet-faced girl who was gazing
wonderingly yet modestly from a window.

[Illustration: The Water Front.]

From the river below the lock the expedition saw the foot of the
rapids, and near them a ruined fort. A double invitation to view the
picturesque was not to be declined, so every one paddled up as far
as the rapids would allow. The fort bore date of 1711, and tradition
said that it had been constructed for defence against the Indians, in
the days when Canada was still New France, from which it was safe to
infer that the North American savage was not in the habit of rounding
rapids by canal when he disported himself in his light canoe. The
work had been stripped to its bare walls, not by relic-hunters but by
searchers after seasoned fuel, and its water-wall had fallen in, but
enough remained to show the plan of the work. The Commodore and the
Purser broiled in the sun at the gateless sally-port and endeavored to
reconstruct the work in the interest of romance. They filled it with
picturesque men-at-arms, gallant officers, and venerable priests, and
took care not to omit the occasional Indian maiden, while the Vice
calculated the cost of transforming the work into a distillery, and
the Cook, who had climbed to a sealed loophole overhead in search
of reflections which did not appear, gently led the thoughts of the
romancers back to the real by an occasional shower of partly pulverized

It presently occurred to him, however, that the stock of bread was
running low, only one loaf being left from the supply laid in beyond
the line. He accordingly made a requisition on the Purser for the
necessary funds and paddled off to the village. In a few moments he was
seen returning, partly concealed behind something which he had placed
on the forward deck. As the bow touched the sand the mysterious
object was seen to be merely a loaf of bread beside which, for the sake
of contrast, the Cook had laid the remaining loaf of the United States

[Illustration: No Ruins in America (Ruskin).]

The Vice regarded the two with a puzzled air. "Why," he asked, "should
forty millions of people living in a free republic, be content with
loaves of such diminutive size when the subjects of a despotic monarchy
are provided with bread on a scale so truly magnificent?"

[Illustration: Two Loaves--a Contrast.]

"The loaves are to one another in an inverse proportion to the
population which they represent," said the Cook.

In quality and price, this loaf compares favorably with that of the
American baker, but in size and shape it is unlike anything that
elsewhere exists under the same name. Its shape is that of a cloven
mountain, and its size--well, if such loaves were used in Judea
eighteen hundred years ago, the miracle of the feeding of the five
thousand would not seem so very wonderful after all. A single loaf
materially increased the draft of the Cook's boat, and had he bought
four, as he had expected to do, it would have been necessary to have
chartered a store-ship.

As the party sat in the shadow of one of the water bastions and viewed
the rapids in their changing forms but changeless beauty, the Vice fell
into gloomy reverie.

"It's always so," said he. "We've paddled through a straight cut
canal for ten miles, been drenched with water and wind, jeered by
mule-drivers, and in French, too,--loosened the skin from our faces,
caused heaven only knows how much inward profanity among lock-keepers,
lost a whole day and ten miles of scenery, and all because we were
afraid to run the rapids, which would have brought us here in an hour.
It's the same way in politics; caution means labor and trouble, but if
you dash ahead in spite of every thing and every body, you're sure to
come out all right. The Alderman always said--"

"It isn't too late yet," interrupted the Commodore. "I am so desirous
of seeing some one run those rapids that I will be one of any two to
carry your boat as far up the stream as you like, if you will run down
in her."

"Agreed!" shouted the Vice, "but--" here he prudently admitted to
himself the defects of the model of _his_ boat, "I wonder if the Cook
wouldn't rather do it in the Cherub--you will find it far the easier to

"Certainly," replied the Cook; "besides, she is far safer, faster and
more manageable than your craft. She has no keel to catch upon a rock
and tip one over, and her peculiar construction makes it impossible to
start a leak, no matter how hard you may strike a stone with her."

The Cherub was promptly unloaded and carried up the stream half a mile,
when the Cook seeing an almost unbroken line of rocks crossing the
river, stopped her bearers. He then divested himself of all clothing
except such as is technically denominated "gents underwear." The boat
was placed in the water, heading up stream, and the Cook embarked,
bracing his back against the amidship thwart, and his knees against
the sides. The painter was thrown in, and he started to paddle out
into the stream, but the current was in the habit of working its own
sweet will upon floating bodies, and it promptly signified as much to
the Cook by whirling him around so rapidly that the force of rotary
motion almost deprived him of his scalp and whiskers--his helmet he had
thoughtfully left ashore. Then the boat danced merrily along, saluting
each inviting rock with a long soft caress, yet obeying the paddle with
an alacrity of which no Chrysalid canoe could ever be capable. The time
occupied by the trip seemed so great to the Cook, that a thousand years
added or subtracted would have had no perceptible influence upon the
total; according to the Commodore's pulse, however, (all watches having
stopped) rather less than four minutes had elapsed since the start when
the Cook paddled the Cherub up to the smooth beach below the rapid,
and found that she had not shipped a drop of water, nor started, in
striking the rocks, anything more important than varnish.

[Illustration: Down the Rapids.]

The four sat for a while longer under the shadow of the main gateway,
and then proceeded on their way in order to reach a camping ground not
in the immediate vicinity of any village.

Upon the broad basin into which the river spread below the fort, the
sun shone with a fierceness which set at naught the vulgar theory that
solar heat decreases as one goes northward. The voyagers decided,
without a dissenting voice, that the isothermal line which reached this
portion of Canada was that of the Desert of Sahara, and the Vice, whose
scientific ideas were rather vague, suggested that it had probably
passed through several blast-furnaces and a ratification meeting on its
way north. A gentle breeze finally came to the relief of the party,
and at the same time there came certain of the natives to inquire
about the speed, etc., of the boats, and as the river at this point
was very wide, and the canoeists were not averse to displaying their
seamanship, the boats were soon doing the picturesque to the delight of
all beholders. Suddenly, however, the breeze took offence at something
and vanished, leaving the boats a mile or two from shore. Paddles were
manfully plied, the nearest shade upon the banks being several miles
away. As no one but a denizen of the abode of the finally impenitent
could realize what the heat of that afternoon actually was, it is
extremely unlikely that the tale will ever be told, but the Purser
solemnly declares unto this day that the sleeve of his blue flannel
shirt was scorched by the sun.

The fresh meat purchased at the end of the canal having succumbed to
the heat, the expedition went out in a body, on making camp, in search
of animal food. The nearest house seemed miles away, so the Vice took
to his favorite pastime of trolling for pickerel, the Purser went into
the forest with the Vice's gun, and the Commodore and the Cook started,
with boat-hooks, to secure bullfrogs for a fricassee. The Vice caught
nothing, as men universally do when they troll, the Purser got nothing
but a bruised shoulder, while the Commodore and the Cook, having failed
to secure so much as a single batrachian, lost what little character
they had for perseverance under difficulties, and swore roundly that
the French inhabitants had hunted the frogs till they were too shy to
be successfully harpooned. The voyagers fell back upon their canned
provisions, made a tolerably satisfactory supper and straightway
engaged in a discussion on the kinds of wood available in that most
important branch of industry, the construction of canoes, and their

American white-cedar, they concluded, is undoubtedly the best of all
woods for building light boats. It is now exported for this purpose
to all parts of the world where artistic boat-building is practiced.
Its structure is such that a blow or scrape, such as boats are likely
to receive, merely indents without splintering or splitting. It is
moreover very light. It has no special beauty of grain but takes
varnish well and has an agreeable color, which improves with age.

[Illustration: A Quiet Cove.]

Oak is handsomer in appearance, but is too heavy and splinters badly
at the edges when exposed to wear and tear. It is usually the best
available wood for keels and timbers.

Spanish cedar splits too easily to be used for planking, but makes a
handsome deck, and is strong enough when properly supported by carlines.

Butternut is a little heavier than cedar, but is somewhat harder and
tougher, and is far more beautiful in color and grain. In point of
texture and toughness there is small choice between the two. If one is
willing to paddle a pound or two of additional weight for the sake of
appearances, let him choose butternut. If not, white cedar is best.
Clear butternut can be had in longer and wider strips than cedar.

For stem and stern posts hackmatack is given the preference, by nearly
all builders. For the timbers, carlines, and interior braces of all
sorts, tough, nonsplitable woods are used, different builders having
different favorites.

The masts technically denominated the "main" and "dandy," may be
of white-ash, spruce or pine--the last being lightest and weakest.
They should be carried up without any taper, a short distance above
the deck--say three feet for the main and two for the dandy. This
is not very essential, it merely makes them bend more symmetrically
under sail pressure. Ash is heavier than spruce, but more slender and
graceful spars may be made from it, owing to its greater strength. The
Commodore having tried both, rather prefers ash. Some members of the
New York Club have used bamboo for masts with satisfactory results; for
its weight it is certainly the strongest of spars, and in appearance it
is all that can be desired, except that it does not taper quite enough
at the top to suit a fastidious eye. This objection might be overcome
by using a topmast of pine or spruce.

It is almost always convenient to have the masts of a canoe jointed, so
that they can be readily stowed below decks. The simplest and cheapest
way is to place the mast so that it shall be an inch and a quarter or
less at the joint, that being the largest regular size of fishing-rod
ferrules. Such joints have been fully tested and are strong enough. The
device known as the "sliding gunter" is a brass fitting which holds
the main topmast and slides up and down the mainmast, operated by a
halyard. It works very well when in perfect order, but is apt to give
trouble when the parts get wet. Moreover it necessitates a clumsily
large lower-mast, since this part must be deeply grooved to receive
the topmast-halyard _over_ which the "gunter" slides. The Vice who has
tried the sliding gunter rig has decided to adopt a simple nine-foot
mast with a mainsail like that shown in the illustration on page 107,
and a ferrule joint. The sail runs up and down on rings as do those of
the Red Lakers, and having throat and peak halyards attached to the
gaff, the peak can be dropped or raised without lowering the sail.
This has the effect of reefing and shaking out without the bother of
tying the reef-points shown in the sketch referred to, on the lower
part of the mainsail.

The Red Lakers, by the way, are reefed by means of a small brass S.
hook carried at the peak of each sail. The sail is lowered away and
this hook passed through any one of the rings on which it runs. When
hoisted again the sail is of course correspondingly reduced in area.

It was ten o'clock before the squadron had settled all this and was
content to turn in.




The disgust of the voyagers on the next morning, when they found
themselves reduced to breakfasting on bread and coffee, was provocative
of vigorous paddling, and a large town was soon reached. The voyagers
passed en route a small Indian camp, in which were exhibited some of
the positive results of civilized environment, for one of the men had
a beard, and the only visible squaw wore an apron with pockets. As the
town was one at which the expedition expected many letters, there was
a movement in force upon the post-office, which consisted of two cigar
boxes upon the table of a sitting-room; one of these contained letters
received, and the other mail matter to be transmitted; one contained,
after the expedition had received its letters, a single postal card,
and the other, when the voyagers deposited their home and business
correspondence, was so full that the pleasant lady in charge was
visibly affected by the sudden increase of business. There were several
streets of very old and very quaint cottages, and a church, externally
a duplicate of every other church on the river, and containing an
odd yet touching assortment of votive offerings. Among these was a
huge model of a full-rigged ship; this swung aloft from the centre
of the ceiling, and doubtless kept nervous worshippers from the pews
directly beneath it. The value of such an object of contemplation must
be inestimable for the adolescent portion of the congregation, that
is if the Acadian fancy is as much given over to dreams of piratical
adventure on the high seas, as is that of American youth.

Three women were upon their knees in the church; two were utterly
oblivious to the entrance of the outlandish foreign quartette, but
the third kept alive the faith of man in womanish curiosity, for she
stared at the party as long as it was visible. The four sailors walked
around the side aisles past the "Stations of the Cross," more, it must
be admitted, from longings artistic rather than devout, and were about
to leave the church, when two bright looking youths of seventeen or
eighteen entered the organ loft, and sang several hymns, accompanying
themselves with the organ which was presumably blown by a third. The
Vice interviewed them and asked what portion of the service they had
been conducting, and learned that they had been singing merely for
amusement. Fancy two healthy young Americans going into church during
business hours, and singing hymns for purposes of personal diversion!
Their associates would promptly cut their acquaintance, their employers
would discharge them for laziness, and their parents, if truly
affectionate, would hasten to call a physician skilled in treating
the victims of mental aberration. The quartette concluded that their
fond imaginings regarding the uses of aerial ships had been at fault.
Maritime adventure can have no place in the Acadian mind.

A careful survey of the picturesque little hamlet showed that it was
infested, though not infected, by a railroad; from this the whole
village shrunk away, so that a modern "Railway Hotel," which stood near
the station, stood alone, in unrelieved ugliness. The Vice, with his
prejudice against every thing foreign, insisted upon the expedition
dining at this hotel, because it reminded him of home, and within half
an hour he endured the worst meal that had ever been set before him.
The Cook, who had been detailed to watch the boats while his associates
dined, sank into a peaceful slumber in the Cherub, and became an
object of interest to several natives and many hundreds of flies. The
former, though somewhat curious, were too polite to arouse the sleeping
watchman, but the latter being evidently summer visitors from the
States, had neither conscience nor modesty, so the slumberer awoke and
devoted some moments to drowsy sympathy for the defunct Pharaoh and
his people who suffered under the seventh plague. Then he paced the
river-bank, looking about for the picturesque, and was rewarded by a
glimpse of the old, old story, which went down the river road between a
bashful young man and a comely maiden.

Near this point the river contained several beautiful islands, and
to one of these the squadron made its way after dinner. The distance
was small--a mere matter of five miles--but the fact that it had to
be traversed by paddle and under a blazing sun, caused the trip to
seem fully long enough for an afternoon voyage. A delightful camping
ground was finally reached, however; a narrow grassy plateau spreading
itself under a belt of thick trees, with lovely outlooks up and down
the river. It was the Commodore's tour of duty for forage, and after a
lesson in Canadian French from the Vice, who had it at second hand from
the Alderman, he paddled over to the mainland. The substance of his
instructions was that milk instead of being "lait" was "lât," sounding
the final "T," also that the final "S" was in most cases sounded. He
tried the nearest house.

"Bon jour, Madame. Avez vous du lât, à vendre?" Glances exchanged among
the members of the household with frequent repetitions of the word

"Comment, M'sieu?"

The Commodore repeated the sentence. Same effect.

"Ne comprens pas."

Another trial with some changes of structure and pronunciation.

"M'sieu, we no speak Anglais."

The Commodore went his way to the next house, half a mile distant,
and protected by a black dog of great apparent enterprise. Interview
substantially duplicated.

At the third house the discovery was made that the Alderman's
information as to the pronunciation of "lait" was erroneous.

Pronouncing the word in usual manner he was readily understood, but
there was no milk to be had. So he paddled over to the island again
and approached the somewhat "swell" mansion of the proprietor, which
had been shunned in the first instance because the occupants of such
mansions not infrequently scorn the advances of canoeists in the
direction of supplies. Ascending a footpath from the landing, the
Commodore found himself before a square brick house standing in the
midst of forest trees, many being superb specimens of spruce and
balsam, which sent their perfect spires of green sixty or seventy
feet upward. The underbrush had been cleared away, so that a somewhat
broken lawn spread from the house to the edge of the bluff, and through
the tree-trunks there opened an expanse of rich meadow-land dotted
with cottages crossed by lines of dark coniferous woods, and backed
by the blue Belœil range. Lost in the contemplation of the delicious
landscape, the Commodore was for a time merged in the love of nature,
but a rude interruption was in store for him. No sign of human life
had been visible when he turned his back upon the house and became
absorbed in the contemplation of the beautiful, but a sudden bark rang
upon the air and was instantly taken up, as it seemed from all parts of
the island. The case of James Fitzjames and the ambuscaded Highlanders
flashed through his mind as a parallel one:

[Illustration: A Charming Landscape.]

    "Instant through copse and heath arose
    Bonnets and spears and bended bows."

He turned from the scene which the Artist has depicted and beheld what
is shown on the following page. The apparent relative dimensions of
himself and the dogs are faithfully preserved.

On they came, but by this time the Commodorial soul had returned from
its æsthetic wanderings. If there is one thing of which he is less
afraid than another, it is dogs. Consequently when the leader, a shaggy
brute of great external ferocity, reached him, he remarked in a low
tone of voice, "One moment, old chap. You are making a great mistake.
It is all right. I am going to the house for milk." "Major," for that
turned out to be his name, accepted the explanation with perfect
courtesy, told his followers that it wasn't the fellow he thought,
and would they hush their noise, and so all fared along together with
occasional growls from still suspicious members of the cortége, and
turned the corner of the house, where were seen two seemly maidens of
the peasant class, sitting on a verandah with their needle-work.

"Bon jour, Mesdemoiselles," said the Commodore, raising his helmet.
"Nous sommes campé la-bas, et nous avons besoin de lait, de pain et
de beurre." The last few words had a reassuring Olendorfesque sound,
which, as it were, set the speaker on his pins.

The girls looked at one another doubtfully, "Il parle Allemand, n'est
ce pas, Louise?" said one.

[Illustration: A Shock to the Commodore's Nerves.]

"Mais non," said the other, "Je crois que c'est l'Anglais."

The Commodore seated himself on the steps and buried his head in his
hands. One of the dogs whined and poked a cold, sympathetic nose
against his cheek. It presently occurred to him that the silence,
which was becoming embarrassing, was in danger of being broken by the
irrepressible laughter of the young women, who continued their work
with mischievous glances at their discomfited visitor. The Commodore
is a bashful man, and it has always seemed to him that the laughter
of girls is particularly and peculiarly derisive. However, by dint
of frequent repetitions of "pain" "beurre" and "lait," he at length
succeeded in making himself understood.

The two girls bestirred themselves to procure the desired articles,
which by the way proved to be of excellent quality and of absurdly low
price. Meanwhile the dogs had become so friendly as to be troublesome,
and the two biggest were actually fighting for the privilege of
receiving personal attention.

On hearing of this experience, the Purser, who is very fond of dogs,
was anxious to be detailed for milk at once, and the Vice, who is,

    "Steel amid the din of arms
    And wax amid the fair,"

longed to air his French in connection with the girls, whom the
Commodore represented as possessed of rare charms and engaging manners.
It was evident that there would be no trouble about the milk detail at
this camp. Indeed a rivalry sprang up between the Purser and the Vice
which was only kept within bounds by the necessity of a co-partnership,
one being as hopelessly embarrassed in canine society as was the other
in that of young women. It followed as a natural result that they
invariably went for milk in company and were a long time in getting it.
The Vice's French was cultivated to a degree which left him without
a rival in the fleet, while the two always came back to camp with a
retinue of dogs which nearly drove the Cook crazy by investigating the
expeditionary stores.

On the grassy plateau before mentioned, the four graceful boats lay
side by side, and in them as the fire burned low, the four voyagers
composed themselves to rest, and the Cook and Purser were lulled to
slumber by the tones of the Vice who pointed out the constellations,
and discoursed learnedly of the precession of the equinoxes. The
Commodore, who chanced to be somewhat wakeful, feigned an interest in
astronomy, which he had never before displayed, and evinced such an
appetite for sidereal nomenclature that he presently had the Vice out
of bed, so to speak, and shiveringly endeavoring to discover certain
hypothetical stars whose locality the Commodore carefully described,
but which could not be seen from the recumbent position occupied by his
companion. Having for a sufficient space indulged in this justifiable
revenge for certain insubordinate acts on the part of the Vice, the
Commodore suddenly became sleepy, and left the astronomer to discover
the ruse at his leisure.

The next day was Sunday and sunny, and a canvass of commanders showed
that the squadron was Sabbatarian to a degree which would almost
satisfy a Pharisee. This feeling was so strong in the Vice, whose day
it was to be scullion, that he volunteered to leave until Monday all
dishes needing washing, but the Purser, who succeeded him with the
dish-cloth, declined to exact any such extreme test of the Vice's
fidelity to the fourth commandment. A suggestion, by the Cook, that the
officers should attend divine service in a body, was voted down, on the
ground, that the nearest church, whose spire was plainly visible down
the river, was distant more than a Sabbath day journey. (N. B. There
was no wind, and to paddle back from church would be to paddle against
the current.) But the Cook was determined to go to church. He shaved
himself, sponged his uniform into some semblance of neatness, oiled
his shoes until they lost some of their rusty look, emptied the baggy
breast-pockets of his shirt, unloaded his boat, and sponged out the
inside. Then he washed and smoothed a white handkerchief, the latter
operation being performed by folding the kerchief, "four double,"
placing it between two folds of a sail, and sitting determinedly upon
it for the space of half an hour. Then the Cook carefully disposed
the handkerchief in his pocket, so that some inches of white corner
should show against the dark blue of his shirt; he bade his slothful
companions a reproachful farewell, shoved his boat from shore, and
started for the sanctuary. The distance was at least five miles, the
sun very hot, and the hour uncertain, but regarding the latter the Cook
had some experience in guessing time rudely by the apparent altitude of
the sun, so he paddled briskly along, and though he perspired freely,
the fact led him to compare himself, with considerable satisfaction,
with the early American settlers who endured so much discomfort
rather than remain away from church. That he had no prayer-book, and
was rather unfamiliar with the Mass except as a verbal accompaniment
to some of his favorite music, did not distress him greatly, for in
truth he was not as intent upon worship as he might have been. He had
gone to church in French-American settlements in other days, and had
seen how the worshippers cast off the dingy garments of the farm and
shop, and appeared in bright and costly raiment, so the Cook was now
going to church principally in search of the picturesque. At the end
of half an hour's paddling he saw that opposite the church he was
aiming for there was another, which had been hitherto hidden by the
foliage upon a small island. The sacred edifices, with their dependent
villages, seemed to be of equal size, and the Cook was distraught with
uncertainty as to which to visit. Then along the road of one bank he
saw many vehicles passing at the trot and full of people. Couldn't
be?--yes, it was true--that the service at one church was over. The
Cook hastily took a racing stroke, and made for the other church,
which was still a mile away, but suddenly a procession of carriages
appeared from that direction. The Cook dubiously paused in mid-stream,
endeavored to estimate the two lines of vehicles to ascertain which was
most promising; then he ran his boat ashore and scrambled up the bank.
A bramble claimed his handkerchief, but he did not pause to contest the
claim; he dashed across the dusty road, seated himself on the top-rail
of a fence, and rigidly inspected the occupants of the vehicles until
of vehicles there were no more. Then with a sigh he descended from his
perch and started to paddle back, against the current, to his camp
and the hungry men for whom he had to prepare dinner. Even his small
measure of Sabbatarian virtue had its reward, however, for just then
there came along a tug towing a barge load of lumber; under its shady
side the Cook found a convenient place to tie his own boat, while from
the cabin-window of the barge, the Captain's black-eyed, black-haired
wife, leaned and, taking the Cook for an innocent scull-racer from
Montreal, warned him impressively against "the cheats, the hogs of
Yankees," who would make his life miserable if he went on to the States.

On reaching camp the Cook found the Commodore and the Vice engaged in
varnishing their somewhat tarnished boats, one using brown shellac, and
the other, coach varnish of the costliest description.

"Shellac," the Commodore was saying, "is certainly inferior to your
varnish in beauty of finish, but it dries in fifteen minutes, and
stands water, for all that I can see, quite as well."

The Vice admitted disappointment in that the varnish which he had been
at such pains to procure, turned a bluish-white color, when exposed to
wet, recovering its lustre, however, on drying. This was certainly an
objectionable feature, and marred the complexion of the Rochefort in
a way that was highly exasperating to her owner, especially when his
companions jeered him on the number of coats with which he had covered
his boat.

"Look at my varnish," said the Cook finally after the others had
somewhat exhausted the topic. "It is not shellac, neither is it coach
varnish, yet the Cherub is arrayed in a coat which retains its lustre
better than either of yours."

"What is it?"

"Even 'Pellucidite.' I know not the process whereby the lac is
dissolved, which forms its basis, but it stands water better than any
other that I know of, and is no more expensive than the ordinary kinds."

In fact after duly weighing the matter, the cruisers concluded that
Pellucidite is the best varnish known to them for general use on
canoes. It appears to be less affected by constant exposure than any
other that they have tried.

"Varnishing," said the Vice, as he lay in the shade and contemplated
the Rochefort glittering in the sun, "is perhaps the most ennobling
way for a canoeist to spend his time after he has received his boat
from the builder. Every coat you put on adds so much to her beauty. I
believe I've gone over my boat in parts thirteen times."

"That's one thing that I don't like about a Chrysalid," said the
Commodore. "Half your original outlay goes for fittings which it
is much better fun to make yourself, and you have no recourse but
to varnish and re-varnish. Now you get a Red Laker clear fore and
aft--excepting two and a half feet of decking, at bow and stern,
and you go to work and contrive and experiment in a manner highly
stimulating to a properly organized mind, until you get her decked or
covered over with a removable covering of wood or water-proof cloth,
and rigged to suit you. I admit, though, that some people would rather
pay more money and have less tinkering to do. Nevertheless I hold that
tinkering is essentially a higher order of intellectual employment than
is mere varnishing, admirable as that may be when used in moderation."

"There is enough to do in all conscience," replied the Vice, "about
a Chrysalid. Look at my hatches. They consumed an enormous amount of
brain force in the preparation."

As has been already stated, the Chrysalid boats have rather more than
four feet of bow and stern devoted to water-tight compartments, which
of course occupy a great deal of space, but are extremely useful in
case of accident. These spaces the Vice had made available for light
articles, such as extra clothing, etc., by cutting hatchways in his
deck, and fastening them down by means of thumbscrews, the seams
being rendered water-tight by strips of india rubber used as packing.
Red Lakers, on the contrary, have all the room they want, but their
water-tight compartments, if they have any, are only large enough
for the purpose of flotation. Their owners therefore are fain to be
content with water-proof bags or sheets for the protection of their

The charms of the natural scenery about the island finally lured
the Vice away from the annotations which he was preparing for a new
edition of "Jefferson's Manual," and he went with the Cook to explore
a beautiful creek which emptied opposite the camp. Its charms were
many, and its ways as devious as those of a woman about whom romancers
write, so the couple followed it as a matter of course, until the
declining sun warned them to return to their camp, but as they turned
their boats' heads homeward they paddled only with leisurely strokes,
so loth were they to leave the beautiful alternations of sunny hillside
and shady grove, solitary giants of trees, and thickets full of birds,
mats of lily pads, and bars covered with just water enough to enhance
the brilliancy of their shining sands. The Cook heaved a deep sigh, and

"What a pity that this fair spot is where it is, among a set of
peasants who are blind to its true value."

"Indeed it is," said the Vice. "There never was a finer bit of ground
for a beer garden, and such a place would call for a brewery; this, in
turn, would bring out an opposition establishment, and malt and hops
would look up, while coopers would find steady employment."

"Mercy!" murmured the Cook imploringly, "mercy!"

"Or," continued the Vice, "it would make a beautiful park; not large
to be sure, but there is enough forestland to clear, and enough bare
land to plant with forest trees, to occupy a great many voters along
about election time. Then the grades are such that the roads could be
constructed only by an immense amount of work, and as there's no stone
near by, the contract for road-filling would amount to a handsome
thing. Properly managed, such a park would hold a party together for
twenty years, unless some set of old fogies happened to impose a
landscape gardener and architect upon the commissioners."

The Cook made haste to quit the creek and return to camp, and that
same evening he experienced a severe bilious attack. As the Purser was
already ill from a surfeit of rice and maple syrup at dinner, and the
Vice was rapidly succumbing to the same viands, the Commodore charged
himself with preparing a supper which should have for its principal
feature an entirely new dish--to wit, fried frogs' legs. He had devised
a beautiful method of taking the musical batrachians. He baited a
very fine fish-hook with a bit of red flannel and affixed it to an
eighty-foot trout-line. Then joining a fourteen foot rod he walked
along the shady shore, and cast his line. Should the fisher for trout
sneer at such outlandish fishing, and pot-fishing at that, he should
know that to catch a bull-frog with hook and line requires a better eye
and more skillful hand than are sufficient to successful trout-fishing.
The frog never "rises" to the bait; the latter must be let gently down
before his eyes and nose, and then, as he leisurely opens his jaws, be
dropped into his mouth. The slightest breath of wind, or tremor of arm,
causes the bait to graze the cheek of the game, and then an angry foot
is lifted to brush it away, and a goggle eye rolls back reproachfully
at the disturber. When the bait is taken, the frog seems to realize
but slowly that anything unusual has occurred, and the sportsman is
likely to accuse him of lacking the proper spirit of a game fish (or
beast, or bird, whichever he may please to call it), but when the truth
dawns upon the frog's mind he gives a leap, to view which would drive a
kangaroo into mortification and suicide, and then goes for deep water
with an alacrity which causes the reel to buzz merrily. Having tested
the length of the line, however, his method changes to that of a goat,
and he pulls stubbornly in a single direction while the sportsman reels
him in. The Commodore illustrated this operation but once however, for
after landing his first frog he was unable to find another to try his
wiles upon. A few moments before, the creatures sat numerously along
the water's edge, blankly blinking, and as reserved and unsympathetic
as a body of officeholders at a civil service reform meeting; the
spectacle of the suspension of one of their own number, however, was
one which they were quick to see and take warning by.

Later in the evening the quartette received a call from a fine looking
old farmer and his wife, both arriving in one of those peculiarly
rotten old skiffs which, when one sees them in use, seem strong
arguments in favor of a special Providence interposing to protect
human life. The lady was curious to see the culinary outfit of the
party, while her husband led conversation slowly but surely toward the
subject of the late war in the States. When he learned that some of
the party had seen military service, he manifested great satisfaction,
and told of his own experiences, which the military and political
exigencies of France had caused to be of varied but stirring nature.
The Vice listened with a sympathy born of his recollections of the
blockade-running service, but when he learned that the old fellow,
when a soldier, had once fraternized with the revolutionists and
fought beside them behind a barricade, he shouted, "Liberté, Egalité,
Fraternité," and tumultously embraced the grizzly old warrior in true
French fashion.

The next morning found the expedition still in camp upon the island,
and not caring to depart. Scenery so diversified it had not been the
fortune of any of the party to have seen elsewhere. Every hour of the
day revealed some new beauty, and every change of light discovered
new charms in those which had been seen before. The Cook, who had
become so enamored of the view that he occasionally forgot his official
duties, arose at dawn one morning to enjoy the scene by sunrise. The
air was chilly, so he kindled his fire and soon had a fine bed of
coals behind which he stretched himself, with his face to the east.
The dawn had doffed its bluish-grey night-robe and was putting on
a morning-dress of soft pink, but doing it as leisurely as if this
were not an age of action, and as if time were not money. Then its
complexion slowly but steadily brightened under the influence of
atmosphere unpolluted by factory chimney, and undisturbed by rumbling
omnibus or rattling milk-wagon. It glanced kindly down into the
farmer's barnyard, and received murmuring acknowledgments from the
cattle and fowls; it peered between the young trees on the steep bank
of the opposite shore, and each of them seemed to stand a little
straighter than before, while each leaf gazed down into the watery
mirror beneath and made its most elaborate toilet. The river saw it
coming, and, ashamed of its own leaden complexion, hastened to throw
over its face a misty veil which should prevent too close a gaze until
the river's only valet should arise from his couch behind the dawn,
and brighten the heavy countenance. The birds greeted cheerily the
acquaintance who came every day, and whose only fault was that it never
remained long enough; the tiny blossoms beneath the trees began to peer
forth at it; a million daisies turned their yellow eyes toward it, and
with each new attention bestowed it blushed more and more. It sent the
politest of zephyrs to beg the river to remove its veil; it lavished
its own charms upon the river until the stream seemed to have emerged
suddenly from the fountain of youth; the most subtle and delicious
perfumes diffused themselves every where, and the Cook breathed them
in with a feeling that he was absorbing Nature's own sweet self.
Then there floated through the air an odor more pronounced and less
fragrant, and the Cook discovered that a large fold of one of his baggy
trouser legs had succumbed to the attentions of the neighboring fire,
and disappeared like the baseless fabric of a vision and left but a rag
behind. Just then the Purser, who at home was a philosopher as well as
an artist, emerged yawning from his couch and proceeded to the river
and his ablutions.

"Purser," said the Cook; "you believe in the conservation of force;
tell me now, I pray you, in what potent form the lost fabric of my
trouser leg will reappear?"

"In a tailor's bill," replied the Purser, and the Cook, a wiser and a
sadder man, sauntered off to fill the expeditionary coffee-pot.

"The squadron," remarked the Commodore, as he drained his second pint
of coffee and laid aside his emptied plate, "will now prepare itself
for the reception of a plain but startling statement. I call upon you
all to bear witness that I did not in the least discourage the little
ebullition on the part of the Cook which led him to run the rapids at
the fort through the humiliating device of getting his boat carried
up stream, so that he could float down. I wish now to inform the fleet
that real rapids are before us. (Sensation, the squadron well knowing
that naught in the nature of rapids intervened between them and the St.
Lawrence.) You all know, by report at least, that the river a few miles
below is crossed by a railway bridge. This railway traverses a rough
section of country and shortly touches the head-waters of a wild river
where they break from one of the largest of our mountain lakes. Over
this road I have secured transportation for the fleet, and in two days
at the latest I hope that the "Becky Sharp" will show the expedition
the way down the "Horse Race" at Lake End. The stream to which I refer
falls into a navigable river which in its turn joins the St. Lawrence
within easy reach of transportation to New York. I have prudently kept
this contemplated change of plan to myself until I could be reasonably
assured of its feasibility. The letters received at the fort gave me
the desired information, and I now submit my proposition to the fleet."

"We don't want to reach any where," said the Purser. "Wherever we are
is paradise."

"No, we don't want to reach any where," said the Vice. "We must in some
way distinguish ourselves from the tramps to whom we outwardly bear
so faithful a resemblance. I'm in no hurry; my canvass for the fall
elections don't begin for a month. Besides, on expeditions like this I
believe, with the Alderman--"

"Wherever we are may be paradise," remarked the Cook, "but I never
heard of manna being found except in the wilderness, and in my official
capacity I would state that the manna of this expedition is reduced to
one pair of frogs'-legs, and that these, having been gathered on the
Sabbath, are, in short, spoiled."

Immediately every man began to stow his boat, and in a short time
the expedition was paddling over the line of the Cook's Sabbath-day
journey. At the first village touched by the squadron the Purser,
who went ashore for stores, discovered that in spite of the distance
from great centres of thought, the rights of woman had gained full
recognition. The store was managed by a woman, who left a loom to wait
upon the customer, while her husband smoked calmly in his chair and
exhibited no sign of disapproval.

Nor were there lacking sufficient indications of the universal
brotherhood of man. The village was as destitute of shade-trees as if
it had been for years under the charge of a New Jersey road-board,
and all forest trees had been as carefully removed from the broad
expanse of farming land as if they had been noxious weeds. A stone pier
which extended a little way into the river had cracked and settled as
thoroughly as it could have done under the fostering care of a dock
commission, and some people living in a house close to a large stagnant
pool bewailed, as a direct visitation of Providence, the serious
illness of a member of their family.

At this point the expedition admitted the advisability of obtaining
from mid-stream all water for drinking and culinary purposes. They saw
numerous small floats, extending fifty or more feet into the river, and
at the end of each of these, (the day being Monday) bent a woman over
a washtub, while at the landward end of the float a fire of driftwood
burned under a kettle, and sturdy daughters of the family were engaged
in tending the fire, wringing the clothes and hanging them on the
bushes to dry. The beautiful simplicity of all these arrangements so
impressed the Vice, that no sooner had the expedition camped on a
verdant point than he remarked that he did not see why men should not
wash as well as women, and extracting some articles of apparel from
their hiding place, he shortly presented the appearance depicted on the
following page, and now and then expressed his surprise that the fleet
was not as much interested in watching his proceedings as it had been
in those of the Canadian _blanchisseuses_ along the water side.

It had needed but the stimulus of action to make the squadron forget
its lotus-life at the island where it seemed always afternoon, and
around the evening fire a healthful reaction set in favor of rapids and
the contemplated change of programme.

[Illustration: "Use Laundry Soap and be Happy."]



After breakfast the Commodore announced that as nearly as he could
estimate the town of St. Ursus was only about one hour's run from the
camp, and that thence the squadron was to be shipped across country, to
Lake End, a freight train being due about the middle of the morning,
and a passenger train following shortly after noon. With light hearts
the squadron paddled down a lovely stretch of river, past one or two
"swell" houses at which the Vice looked askance, as the probable abodes
of an "effete aristocracy." Two ladies, however, were encountered out
rowing in a boat, and as they gave pleasant greeting to the Vice who
happened to pass nearest them, his opinions underwent a marked change,
and he expressed himself as not averse to associating with peeresses in
their own right, as he declared these undoubtedly were.

In due time the bridge was reached; the little station at one end
thereof was enlivened for a time by the presence of four canoes and
their owners, the station-master showed a Montreal paper only a few
hours old, the freight train thundered up and away bearing the most
important part of the command, and after two or three hours of dining
and loafing about, the four inferior beings followed in a passenger
car. Thence an hour later they emerged and stood upon the platform at
Lake End, gazing southward through a rugged mountain gateway which
closed in steeply on the dark blue waters.

It was but a few minutes work to secure the services of a wagoner, who,
for fifty cents, transported the four canoes one by one to the water's
edge and deposited them ready for launching. By mid-afternoon the
Purser and Cook had bought a few necessary supplies and the Commodore
and Vice had reconnoitered the dam and scanned the rapids below, down
which it was intended to run before sunset.

[Illustration: In the Second Rapids.]

Very quickly the news spread through the little town that four Yankees
were going down the Race, and by the time all was ready for passing the
boats over a practicable part of the dam, the whole population, male
and female, including summer boarders in the bewildering toilettes of
the period, were ranged along the banks, with the exception of those
who came to lend a hand, and a squad headed by the local hotel-keeper,
who strove to dissuade the party from what he represented as a rash
venture. The hotel-keeper in fact was very kind, offering to provide
good rooms over night and send the boats round the Race in a wagon
in the morning. But the white water was all the while roaring its
invitation and drowning his arguments, and though a witness was
finally brought who, having only one leg, declared that he had "run"
the rapids, and that the squadron couldn't do it, the temptation was
too strong to be resisted, so one after another, with safe intervals
between, the cruisers paddled out into the flashing water, and then for
a few minutes, with every sense on the alert, every nerve strained, no
one had an eye for anything save sunken rocks, treacherous swirls of
the current, and the hundred indications which to the canoeist indicate
the deepest water and the safest channel. It seemed only a few seconds,
but the better part of a mile had been passed when the four waited
for one another in the first reach of quiet water that afforded us a
resting place. Each had grazed a few rocks in the first rapid, but all
had passed triumphantly and without visible mishap beyond the ken of
the hotel keeper, and the villagers, and were content. Half the Race,
however, was yet to be run, and there was barely enough of daylight
left for the undertaking.

                              "The stream runs fast,
    The rapids are near, and the daylight past,"

sang the Purser as he paddled the Arethusela out into the stream
to show the channel, the flagship following, the Cherub next, and
the Rochefort bringing up the rear--an order of sequence that was
presently effectually reversed. Just below the head of the next rapid
the Arethusela hung upon a rock, and in an instant her commander was
overboard and struggling in a fierce waist-deep current to keep his
footing, and retain a hold upon his boat. To add to his discomfiture
his paddle had come apart and half of it was floating merrily down the
stream. As the Commodore swept past, the discomfited Purser called on
him to save it; and two or three strokes brought him nearly within
reach, but at the same time deflected him from the only path of safety.
The next minute he, too, was in the water, which, before testing, he
supposed to be knee-deep, but which proved to be nearer neck-deep,
while the fugitive paddle, with a playful flourish of its blade, dived
under a log, disappeared for a moment from view, and then danced
cheerfully down the swift waters beyond. At this crisis the Cherub and
Rochefort appeared, and flashed past as, half swimming, half wading,
the two strove to reach a secure footing.

They shouted derisive inquiries for orders to the Commodore, and
presently disappeared around the bend below.

Speaking unofficially and strictly in a private capacity, the Commodore
admits that he had all he could do to avoid grievous wreck on the logs
beneath which his companion's elusive paddle had vanished. Wading and
swimming were alike irreconcilable with the conditions, for the bed
of the river was full of boulders over which the water boiled without
breaking. He tried the plan of holding on to his boat and floating; but
after being dragged and bumped for a few yards over the stones, he gave
that up and resigned himself to careful wading until he reached the
shallows, where he at length succeeded in re-embarking--no easy task,
by the way, in swift water--and soon joined the Cherub and Rochefort.

[Illustration: Down the Race.]

A camping spot was selected on a bank of sawdust near which was a
mighty pile of dry mill waste, and the three proceeded to light a fire
and make a somewhat needful change of clothing, before getting supper
and turning in for the night. After a long time the Arethusela came in
sight, her crew laboriously working a half-paddle--though why a spare
one stowed below decks was not used was never found out--and examining
the shores and channel for the lost property. This was happily
discovered close to camp, and presently a "lean-to," was covered with
the soaked tent, which made a reasonably comfortable shelter.

Sawdust is not so bad to sleep on when you have a boat or a
rubber-blanket under you, but it retains moisture badly, and is
seldom dry more than an inch below the surface. Moreover, the dry
part catches fire and burns in an exceedingly persistent and stealthy
manner, tunneling unsuspected in all directions and making itself very
disagreeable. The members of the expedition, however, knew its nature
and provided against its vagaries by wetting thoroughly in the vicinity
of the fire, where the Cook speedily had coffee and a tempting pan of
scrambled eggs ready for the evening meal.

The voyagers went to sleep this night with unwonted noises in their
ears, namely the close-at-hand roar of rapids rising and falling as
the mysterious and imperceptible changes of the evening air bore it,
now heavily, now faintly, through the thick forest of spruce. It was
a wilder region than that through which they had been passing on the
lake and its outlet, and the woods gave out sounds at night which often
aroused one and another with the pleasing and yet uncomfortable thought
of bears and lynxes in his half awakened brain.



Here, at the foot of "Rapid No. 2," the authors would say a word for
the benefit of the inexperienced. They are asked by cautious readers
if this kind of play is not dangerous. Certainly, just as coasting,
and travelling by rail, and crossing Broadway, and playing base and
foot-ball, are dangerous. In short, just exactly as life itself is
dangerous. They would not advise any but bold swimmers to undertake
the amusement; but where proper survey is taken to avoid possible
falls, a wetting is the worst that can ordinarily happen. During the
entire trip no mishaps occurred save those which came in as part of
the fun, and although the voyagers were wet and dry half a dozen
times a day, not one caught the slightest cold, or suffered any ill
effects from exposure. Hardly any woman, and not by any means all men,
can be expected to appreciate the fun of these duckings and other
uncertainties of canoe cruising. It may as well be admitted, however,
that no out-of-door recreation that is worthy the name, is wholly
without risk. The steadiest horses sometimes take fright and run away.
Without its rivalries and possible perils to heart and hand, croquet
itself would be but an insipid pastime. All excitement presupposes
risk of some kind, but it refreshes body and brain alike when taken in
reasonable doses and in a fashion that does not infringe on the rights
of others. Since the Saturday afternoons of their boyhood the authors
have experienced nothing so delightful as those long days on lake and

To certain members of the fleet the awakening in the chilly morning
air, with fog rising from the water and drifting through the slender
spires of balsam and spruce, was the reverse of inspiriting, and the
uncertainty as to the course of the river below did not tend to create
an irresistible eagerness for farther rapids and farther wettings. The
sun however, soon drove away the mist, dried the heavy dew from boats
and equipments, and gradually, as the river dimpled in the sunlight
and rushed brimming past in a swift deep current, it resumed its
attractiveness and, as soon as clothing was dry enough to put on, every
man was eager to begin the day's adventures, and get it comfortably wet

Single file should be the order of procedure in a rapid river where
there is any question as to the width of unobstructed channel. On
sighting a rapid whose foot cannot be clearly seen from its head, some
one should reconnoitre, and after noting the bearings of the current,
should lead the way, the rest of the fleet following at safe intervals
and taking prompt warning from his example in case he comes to grief.
As a general rule the water is deepest near the _concave_ shore. The
reason is obvious. Each general shore-line of a crooked stream is a
series of points and bays modified by a hundred varying conditions.
Every point tends to deflect the current toward the opposite shore, and
where the strongest current is, there is ordinarily the deepest water.
Where the stream breaks into rapids the same rule holds good, but is
liable to endless modifications from boulders and rocks of all shapes
and sizes. Nevertheless it may be assumed that it has been trying for
untold ages to shape its channel according to nature's rule, and it
will be found in most cases to have attained a reasonable success.
At the head of a rapid the white broken water is almost invariably V
shaped, the apex pointing down stream. Between the arms of the V the
water is comparatively smooth, and dark. Along the arms and below the
apex is white water, thrown up more or less into waves. It is generally
the safest course, barring casual rocks which may put in an appearance
anywhere, to head directly for the apex of the V, keeping in unbroken
water as long as possible. Then trust to luck and a quick eye and
hand to avoid the rocks which come too near the surface. Nothing but
experience can teach one to recognize these, and even recognition does
not always imply the ability to avoid disaster.

If a keel-boat hangs resolutely on an obstacle, there is nothing for
its occupant to do but to jump overboard, and the quicker the better,
if he wishes to keep his stores dry. In many cases such a boat may
swing free or be lifted clear by a powerful thrust of the paddle.
The canoeist's instinct is all that he has to tell him whether to
jump or thrust. With a keelless canoe the case is different as it
is comparatively rare that such an one will hang persistently to an
obstacle. It is often best however, to take to the water in order to
save the canoe from hard knocks and scrapes. In view of this necessity
for jumping overboard, some protection is necessary for the feet, and
there is nothing so good as the common canvas bathing-shoes with thick
soles of hemp or jute. An old pair of slippers is, however, far better
than nothing.

Upon the whole, the best policy is to sit as usual amidships and give
to rocks the widest berth possible. There is a pernicious doctrine in
some quarters, derived it must be confessed from English canoeists,
that in running rapids it is well to sit astride the canoe near the
stern, and lift her clear if she strikes by simply standing up on the
bottom of the stream, if it can be reached with the feet. The Purser
tried this once, purely out of patriotism, but did not make a very good
demonstration of its advantages, for he upset as soon as he ran out of
shoal water, or rather he took a ducking in order to save his stores
which would inevitably have been wet had he tried for an instant longer
to maintain his precarious seat. The rivers of Europe may admit of this
very unpicturesque mode of running a rapid, but those of America do not
take to it kindly.

The keels of the Chrysalids, are a decided disadvantage in this
phase of canoeing. They give the canoe additional draught, and hang
with provoking tenacity upon any rock or other obstacle which they
encounter. The Red-Lakers on the contrary slide with an inch or more to
spare over an obstacle which would bring a Chrysalid to instant grief.
They turn far more easily, and hence can much more readily be made by
a quick swerve to one side or the other, to avoid a threatened danger.
The blindest worshipper of the Chrysalid model can claim nothing for a
keel in swift water, save that it receives the hard knocks which would
otherwise have scarified the more fragile bottom planks. This argument
in their favor is not good for much, as the keel cannot protect more
than two or three inches on each side, unless the obstacle happens to
be broad and flat. Under these conditions, it was to be expected that
the Rochefort would select with excellent judgment a place whereon to
demonstrate the advantages of her keel. It may have been at the foot
of Rapid No. 9, at any rate it was at the head of a comparatively
quiet reach of water where three of the fleet had drawn out of the
current with a view to luncheon. The Vice was the last to arrive, and
was sweeping boldly down where the current was swift and deep, having
passed the white water, when suddenly he was observed to bring up all
standing, his boat swinging round instantly across the current, having
fixed a malicious grip upon a hidden rock, over which the water boiled,
but did not break. The Vice was unceremoniously plumped out on the
down-stream side into water that was neck deep and running like a
mill-race, but as he wore a life-belt he feels justified in maintaining
that he did not go entirely under. He succeeded in getting a hold upon
the rock by the aid of his boat hook, and seated himself thereon,
holding his boat by the painter as she floated, full of water and only
sustained by her air-tight compartments, a yard or two below him. The
picture that he presented at this moment was comical in the extreme,
and he was heartlessly kept sitting there,--he could not very well get
off alone with his boat to manage,--while the Commodore made a sketch.
The regular artist was too much concerned at his friend's critical
situation to pay any attention to the calls made upon him for a careful
study. The current was so swift and deep that efforts to reach the
Vice by swimming were unsuccessful, so it became necessary to wade out
a few rods below him and catch his boat, when he let her float down.
He easily swam ashore when relieved of this charge, and once more the
Rochefort had to be emptied of everything, and all lay by for two or
three hours, while her owner and his belongings were spread out on the
rocks to dry, he discoursing, the while, until all fell asleep, of the
innate viciousness of a boat which could thus deliberately bring her
commander to confusion and shame.

[Illustration: The Vice sits for his

It was in "Number 12" that all came nearest to utter discomfiture, that
is to actual overturns, and consequent wettings of things not intended
to be wet. Never had the Vice, whose turn it was to survey the route,
seen a more innocent-looking rapid. It swept down in a slight curve,
dancing in the sun and seemingly offering a clear channel. It was the
flagship's turn to bring up the rear, and in watching the descent of
the others the Commodore perceived that at a certain point each crew
of one became as it were demoralized, and struggled mightily with the
current until each turned at a right angle and went on its way into
the pool below. The reason was not apparent until he reached the same
point, when he suddenly became aware that the stream was bearing him
with great velocity directly upon a huge rock. To go to starboard was
certain wreck. The only safety lay in turning sharply to port, as his
predecessors had done. To all appearance this was utterly impossible,
and, while straining every nerve to make good his escape, the
flag-officer fully expected to be rolled over into twelve feet of water
in the most undignified manner, and in full view of the fleet. Just
at the last moment, when an overturn seemed inevitable, an unexpected
set-back from the rock caught the canoe and whirled her instantly over
a delightful little dip, hardly high enough to be termed a fall, into
the deep water below, where the rest of the fleet lay enjoying the
perplexity and relief through which each in his turn had passed. It is
quite impossible under such circumstances to shout advice, for the roar
of the water completely overpowers the voice. What would have happened
if any or all had struck the rock? Why, each and all would have been
spilled comfortably into deep water, to be sure, whence it would have
been easy to swim ashore and put things to rights.

After a day of exciting work of this kind it was not unpleasant in the
afternoon to paddle out upon the smooth waters of a little lake in the
midst of the forest. Along its gentle swelling shores were scattered
farm houses, beyond which the rough clearings crept up the hillsides.
Two or three huge water-oaks bent over the shore in a shady cove, and
here the squadron took shelter until the sun's rays should be less
vertical. Presently from a neighboring farm house there came down to
the water's edge a damsel who proceeded artlessly to rivet upon herself
the attention of the fleet by lighting a fire under a boiler, and doing
up the family washing at the lake-side. The artist filled a page or
two of his sketchbook with studies from the life, but refuses for some
reason to furnish them for publication. She was near enough, however,
to afford a fine opportunity, as the Artist said, to study the peculiar
French type of form and feature, as modified by several generations of
life in a foreign climate.

Presently the Commodore, under pretence of inquiring after eggs and
milk, approached _la blanchisseuse_. The Cook lounged respectfully
behind his commanding officer, while the latter addressed the woman in
alleged French to receive only a dismal shake of the head in reply.
He repeated his question, changing the phraseology, but with a
different result, while the Cook, to relieve the Commodore's evident
embarrassment, softly whistled the Thuringian "Volks-lied." A pleased
glance from the woman elicited a word or two from the Cook; after a
short but spirited conversation in which the Commodore took no part,
the Cook informed his companion that the desired supplies could be had
at the house, and the two men departed.

"Confound this French lingo!" exclaimed the Commodore, "there are as
many dialects in this region as there are towns, and I don't easily
pick them up; how do _you_ manage to do it?"

"My dear fellow," said the Cook impressively, "there is one rule to
be unvaryingly observed in conversing with these people: never speak
French to a woman who understands only the German language."

The Commodore dropped the milk-pail--fortunately it was empty--and
endeavored to swear the Cook to secrecy, with what success this
narrative doth show. But he derived some consolation from frequent
allusions to the Purser's professional studies of the "French type of
form and feature, as modified by a change of abode."

When the sun was low enough to cast the shadow of the hills upon the
lake, the fleet started and made its way toward a distant point which,
it was surmised, was not far from the outlet and would afford good
camping ground for the night. A more delightful three mile paddle can
hardly be imagined. The peculiarly sacred stillness of a forestland
at sunset was over all the scene; a silence that seemed absolute, and
was yet vocal with noises that did not break the spell. The plash of
leaping fish, the far off scream of an eagle, the occasional laughter
of a loon, the measured dip of paddles, none of these were discordant
with nature, and even the human tones that now and then floated from
the distant houses were so faint as to be inoffensive. The voyagers
hardly exchanged a word as side by side they slid through the reflected
hues of sunset, watching in silence the mighty mountain that rose
in dark purple against the west, and gathered around its summit a
night-cap of cloud that changed from red to grey just as the point
was reached and the tent pitched beneath a huge gnarled pine, that
towered above its fellows, and offered, as the Vice suggested, an
admirable mark for any nocturnal thunderstorm that might be wandering
in this direction. Only one thing aroused any apprehensions as to the
comfort of this camp, and that was the ceaseless roar (the word is used
advisedly in preference to "hum") of insects. They proved innocuous,
however, and sleep soon came down upon the tired canoeists.



Contrary to custom the camp had been pitched where the morning sun
would strike in upon it. This is undesirable unless an early start
is the order of the day, for breakfast in the level rays of a summer
sun is not so comfortable as in the shade of a natural screen. At a
tolerably seasonable hour, therefore, the squadron paddled around the
point and across the reach which still separated them by two miles
or so from the outlet. For variety the wind was dead ahead, but the
distance was soon passed and the flash of rapids at the very lip of the
lake announced that the stream maintained the character which it had
displayed in the earlier portion of its career. In a moment the four
pretty canoes were in line at ample distance apart and were dancing
down the swift current into a dark sweep of spruce-covered banks, with
four as light hearted vagabonds on board as ever left care behind them.

In retrospect it is hardly possible to recall any part of this romantic
river where a halt was not a luxury merely because of the picturesque
surroundings. Seldom could the eye reach more than half a mile up
or down stream, for the precipitous or forest-covered banks were
continually pushing out on the one side and receding on the other,
while between them the river curved and wound in a perpetual succession
of rapids, pools, and quiet stretches. The current even in its most
quiet moods was singularly swift and powerful, bearing the fleet onward
with hardly an effort, at the rate of six or seven miles an hour. When
clearings occurred they were on the points, as is always the case in
thinly settled countries. Naturally such points are formed in the
re-entrant angle of the stream, and become places of deposit for drift
and alluvium in flood time. The opposite bank is usually bold and with
soil enough in most cases to sustain only the wild forest growth. The
quiet reaches, however, are frequently broken where the river forces
its way through narrow passages, or over rocky ledges. There are no
dangerous falls until within a mile of the mouth, and there is only one
dam between the lake and the falls. This dam the voyagers reached a few
hours after leaving the lake; hours full of the pleasant, healthful
excitement of rapids and wild shifting scenery.

Striking the back-water of the mill-pond a mile above the dam, the
fleet paddled down and soon came in sight of the logs and crib-work
which indicate the presence of a saw-mill.

Drawing up alongside the boom, all hands walked across the dam and
considered the chances of running the race-way. Noon had passed
however, and while the question was still unsettled, children came
down from the mill-settlement with fresh raspberries, and butter made
in the French style, without salt, and thus reminded of luncheon, it
was decided, in view of an approaching thunder shower, to adjourn to
the shelter of the mill. Here an incident occurred which proved as it
had never been proved before the admirable discipline maintained in the
_personnel_ of the command.

In the early days of the cruise it became painfully evident to the
real canoeists who were connected with the expedition, that in one
particular at least an unseemly tendency toward effeminate luxury was
developing itself. The Vice and the Purser, on the first day out,
produced with an air of insufferable superiority, china plates, and
bowls which they were pleased to denominate coffee cups. The relative
size of these as compared with the legitimate tin-cups used by the
Commodore and the Cook is herewith shown. Of course the flag-officer at
once detected the ruse, and foiled the conspirators by issuing at the
first camp, Special Order No. 1 to this effect:

  The coffee ration will always be measured in the Cook's cup, that
  being the standard pint recognized at these headquarters.

  By order of the Commodore.

Possible infringement on the rights of individuals having thus been
provided against, it was only necessary to counteract so far as
possible the demoralizing effect of the daily sight of china upon
the morale of the expedition. This end was diligently sought by the
commanding officer by every means in his power, but to no purpose. He
personally supervised the daily measuring of coffee with the Cook's
cup, but by some means the china bowls were always filled, and their
owners never failed to remark upon the superior excellence of coffee
taken from such receptacles over that imbibed from barbaric tin. It
was evident that sooner or later a resort must be had to arbitrary
measures, but no fitting opportunity presented itself until the
squadron took refuge in the mill as narrated above.

[Illustration: Comparative Coffee Cups.]

The thunder storm proved to be of extraordinary violence, throwing down
trees, overturning buildings and playing the mischief generally.

Midway of the meal the wind so increased as to drive the rain in
upon the festive board. The Commodore saw that the time had come for
action, and acted with the promptitude which should always characterize
an able commander. "Prepare for a change of base," he shouted above
the roar of rain and wind. "_Purser_, coffee-pot and sugar; _Vice_,
devilled turkey and salt; _Cook_, bread and butter." Each man seized
the articles indicated and fled to a place of shelter. With a gleam of
triumph in his eye the Commodore collected the remaining dishes, and
taking his life in his hand, for the good of the service, sprang upon
a pile of logs that was awaiting the saw, and attempted to cross it at
a run. At the third step a log tilted. The Commodore went down, while
the spasmodic upward motion of the arms, under such circumstances, sent
the dishes aloft. They speedily came down, but it was in pieces that
did the Cook's heart good to see. The Commodore, it is true, might have
broken his leg, but he did not, and while he somewhat ruefully rubbed
his starboard shin, he watched with scarce concealed satisfaction the
gathering of the fragments. Not a bowl or a plate remained. The morale
of the expedition was saved!

After the storm passed, it became necessary to circumvent or run the
dam. It was a logging dam, some eighteen feet in perpendicular height,
and offered extraordinary inducements for running, but with a little
too much risk, so the boats were laboriously passed one by one over the
wing of the dam, and found themselves at the head of a superb rapid
which swept beneath and around a rocky cape, and quickly carried the
fleet beyond the ken of the little forest settlement lying around the

If possible the scenery below the mill was more picturesque than any
previously seen. At one point the woods were on fire, and for a few
hundred yards the smoke was so thick that progress had to be made with
extreme caution, as the current was swift and the channel full of
rocks. At another the stream wound slowly between wood-crowned cliffs,
whose geological nature severely taxed the scientific attainments of
the expedition, and tempted a long sojourn, while the Artist vainly
essayed a realistic sketch of the strangely convoluted strata, which
made the face of the cliff so wonderfully expressive of the elemental
strife and torture that must have shaped it in some by-gone age. So
with alternating reaches of swift and still water, the lovely stream
coursed downward, bearing the fleet only too rapidly toward its
junction with the larger river. One more night was passed among the
spruces of its rugged shores, and shortly after the next morning's
start it became evident that the forest stream was preparing to fulfill
its destiny in driving the saws of a great mill. Houses straggled
along the bank, and presently the fleet was feeling its way among
logs and booms to a landing place. A few hours sufficed to procure
transportation around the beautiful falls, and by sundown the squadron
was making camp as usual on the banks of a broad placid river, which to
all appearances was the same which it left a few days before. Here was
Acadia again, and something of a mental effort was necessary to realize
that it was another Acadia from that wherein the first æon of the
cruise had passed. The vesper bell sounded as before, the lumber laden
barges drifted as lazily as ever, and the villages named after unheard
of saints dotted the banks in close succession, and the roar of rapids
was no longer to be heard.



It had been something of a relief to stow masts and sails compactly
away for a few days, and now again it was an agreeable change to be
once more under canvas and see the slender masts bend and spring before
the breeze.

In the course of a day's sail the river narrowed perceptibly, as rivers
are wont to do as they near their outlets, and the various members
of the expedition, having noted the fact, proceeded, each in his own
way, to discover the cause thereof. A melancholy howl (learned from
Garibaldians in Italy) by the Vice, who was always in the rear, was
rightly construed by the occupants of the Red Lakers (in the advance)
as a sign that the Vice wanted to light his pipe, so the Cook, who by
virtue of his official position was custodian of the expeditionary
matches, lay to until the Vice came alongside.

"The river," remarked the Vice, between puffs, "is narrowing--every
mile. Suppose it--should keep on--doing it for--fifty miles more;
it--would close entirely before--it reached the--ow!--(here the flame
of the match reached the Vice's fingers)--reached St.--the devil, oh!"
for the Vice had dropped the still blazing fragment upon his bare foot.

"No such saint in any calendar but that of politics," said the Cook

"The St. Lawrence, I meant, of course," said the Vice: "the devil isn't
recognized by _any_ party at all."

"I suppose not," answered the Cook, who had dropped into a dreamy
reverie. "The true workers in this world are never recognized by those
who are most entirely dependent upon them."

"You're begging the question," exclaimed the Vice, examining his
scorched instep. "An apology in the shape of your flask of olive oil
will be satisfactory. How _do_ you explain the river's shrinking, any

"Why, it's growing deeper, and as there's only a given amount of water,
it can't occupy more space in one direction without narrowing in
another. It's a precedent you might safely follow in politics."

The Vice reflected for a moment; then a sweet smile irradiated his
features, his left eye closed, his right forefinger was slowly laid
athwart his nose, and he replied,

"I knew that long ago, my boy; it's the mainstay of the business--the
system, I mean. Let the party broaden, and 'Othello's occupation's

But the Cook, having relieved his mind of chaff which nevertheless
carried (unknown to him) a grain of wheat, determined to inflict upon
some one else the questioning to which he had been subjected, so he
speedily overhauled the other Chrysalid containing the Purser, and
demanded the reason of the river's narrowing. The Purser abruptly
ceased patching a sonnet which he had scribbled upon the blade of a
spare paddle, and answered,

"The water-drops, so long united, have a premonition of the doom of
separation soon to befall them, and they cling more closely to each
other, for a last fond interchange of sentiment."

"Water is not compressible by its own volition," promptly replied
the Cook, who loved cyclopedias, and never knew sentiment when he
encountered it. But the Purser, who hated questions so intensely that,
had he lived in the time of that vigorous old interrogation point
yclept Socrates, would have tramped a thousand miles for hemlock rather
than have left the sage unpoisoned, ran ashore to avenge himself upon
the Commodore, who had beached his boat to await the coming up of his
lagging fleet. To the commanding officer the Purser put the disturbing
question as to the cause of the narrowing of the river, and with the
following result:

"Rivers shrink toward their natural channel for the same reason that
capitalists take to government bonds--because their banks are slippery,
and suffer by the many rushes upon them."

The villages grew nearer together as rapidly as the shores did, and
ahead and aloft there were always in sight several church spires of the
unvarying pattern peculiar to churches along the river. Every spire
was metal-covered and bright, the latter perhaps because there were
no opposition houses of worship to cause that dismalness of aspect
affected by all churches in neighborhoods where religion tends more to
squabbling than to sanctity. At short intervals appeared the residences
of the priests, each indicated by a tall cross at the gateway. The
Commodore, with his peculiar regard for the church so near a sister to
his own, signified a half-intention to go ashore to confession, but on
being reminded that but a week remained for the cruise, and that no
such short time would suffice an editor in which to unburden his soul
of its manifold sins and transgressions, he forbore to make others
suffer for his own faults. It was noticed thereafter, however, that
he doffed his helmet respectfully whenever he sailed past a church,
and that when his own day for foraging came, he preferred always to
purchase milk from a priest's housekeeper.

About this time the Purser began to drop behind in a manner
inexplicable even by the known slowness of his boat; even the
slow-sailing Vice distanced him, so the Cook, not without a special
appreciation of the Purser's tobacco, went ashore to wait for his
comrade to come up. The bank of the river was high, and the Cook, who
had been hugging the shore for shade, had made company for himself by
roaring sundry staves, supposing that no one but his comrades were
within listening distance. Great was his surprise, therefore, when on
clambering up the bank he beheld a closely built village in front of
him. Had the locality been any but Acadia, even the river banks could
not have hidden the town, but here the dwellings are as modest of
mien as the natives. Few boast of a second story, nor is the floor of
the first very much raised above the level of the ground. In exterior
dimensions, most of the houses reminded the Cook of his chicken-house
at home, or of those suburban villas which cluster so thickly upon the
hills adjoining Central Park. But with size the last-named parallel
ceased, for the exteriors were painted, the floors, seen through the
open doors and windows, were clean, and no pig disported himself
about the door-step. Children clustered about them as thickly as they
always do about very small houses, but the matrons lacked that fagged,
heaven-hungry mien peculiar to their sisters in climes where the
Scripture is fulfilled by the greatest being the servant of all--all of
her own servants. Here one might speak of love in a cottage and not be
laughed out of society--hopeless, indeed, would be his fate were he to
desire any other sort of asylum for his affections.

The Cook longed for social intercourse in this real Acadia, but he
doubted the ability of his French to see him through; fortunately he
espied a shop, and therein he purchased sundry sticks of candy; with
one of these gravitating between his fingers and lips, he strolled
about, and within five minutes he had enchained in sweet bonds several
lapsful of dark-eyed children whose pure intuitions taught them that in
the great human search for sweetness and light it was never well to
decline a proffered half of the desirable whole.

When the Purser drew near, it was with a sketchbook loaded with
drawings of odd boats which had been passed at their moorings; and
the names of these, with those of their owners, which were painted in
antique letters astern, would have been of inestimable value to any
writer of a French romance. And he brought something dearer yet to the
eyes and heart of the Cook, and yet not wholly unpicturesque, it being
a pair of cockerels, handsomely spangled, which he had purchased of
a thrifty dame with whom he had exchanged some courteous words as he
lounged past her riparian laundry in his boat. The Cook hastily took to
his boat, distanced the Commodore and Vice, and an hour later announced
broiled chickens for dinner, the gridiron having been a few feet of
stout wire, which after use could be crumpled together into a thin
handful of old iron, yet extended, at need, to a two-chicken capacity.

After the expedition had dined, each member discovered, upon arising,
that the human side is not destitute of muscles, and that a steady
strain of half a day at rudder and paddle, can search these out in a
manner as uncomfortable as it is thorough. The Purser, who usually
made himself conspicuous, when ashore, by a broad red woolen sash,
apparently a muffler such as small boys wear upon their necks in
winter, was by far the most agile of the party, and his companions,
as they rubbed away the stitches in their sides, inwardly vowed that
the picturesque was not always ridiculously useless, particularly when
assumed on proper occasions, instead of being treated as of constant

As the wind was gaining in industry, the Commodore permitted an
overlong delay, to be improved physically, and while this was being
enjoyed there hove in view a craft peculiar to French-American waters,
but which would not be tolerated anywhere else. It was an immense
barge, considerably more awkward than a canal boat, and moved by two
great square sails, each with a mast to itself. The breeze which
bellied the canvas of this monster would have driven a canoe along at
the rate of twelve miles an hour, but the barge proceeded so leisurely
that a maiden sauntering along the road on the bank chatted with the
pilot for a mile or two without quickening her pace. Having both his
vessel and his sweetheart upon his mind, it is not strange that the
pilot did not perceive the four foreign craft beached a-starboard; the
maiden, however, with a woman's eye for color, caught sight of the club
signal which the Cook always flew at his masthead, instead of upon the
mainpeak, with which it would have been furled when sail was taken in.
Her figure, which had afforded so gracious a relief against the blue
sky behind her, disappeared with the unscientific effect of seeming
to leave a cloud behind, and as the unintentional listeners devoutly
thanked heaven for such knowledge of the French tongue as had enabled
them to overhear the artless affectionate dialogue which had been going
on, they saw, gazing at the pilot, how dark the Acadian complexion
can be when displayed in the face of a lover newly made lonesome.
Gladly would the swain himself have retired from sight, but the helm
of his boat was obedient only under greatest effort, so he strained
sullenly at the tiller, a figure at first amusing but soon pathetic.
The sentiment which keeps the world from growing old was not a stranger
to the canoeists, so the Purser murmured a bit from Jasmin and caught a
hint which for years he had tried to take from Jules Breton; the Cook
wished there might be a joint of chicken left to offer the poor fellow;
the Commodore hailed him heartily, and offered to carry him out a taste
of brandy in token of a professional and sentimental sympathy, and
the Vice sent him a good cigar; and it came to pass that five minutes
later the ere-while lovelorn helmsman was trolling a song of war and
slaughter as merrily as if love and Evangeline had never existed.

"Ah," sighed the Commodore, "the days are gone when rum and true
religion were the principal supports of fallen humanity. Smoke seems to
answer that fellow's purpose as well as religion."

"If my memory serves me rightly," said the Vice, as if in profound
reflection, "a great deal of the religion I have heard preached, was
well informed with a something from which smoke is a natural deduction."

"That," said the Purser, "is because in the universal fitness of
things a man recalls most readily that which he most urgently needs. No
one can wonder that a politician--"

"Language unparliamentary," interrupted the Vice, with a wry face.

"A statesman, then," resumed the Purser, "should recall most vividly
the only element by which he can effectually be purified."

"Sulphur is not to be used under the rays of the sun," interposed the
Commodore; "let's take to a more cooling element."

A few moments were devoted to extra-careful stowing, for there was a
likelihood that _terra firma_ would again be reached only on the shores
of the great St. Lawrence. The Vice, with the statesmanlike instinct
of saving himself by assisting his companions heavenward, endeavored
by fair means and foul to persuade the others to accommodate his
gun, shot-bag and the volume of Tupper, but regarding the latter his
failure was complete. At length he slyly tossed it into the branches
of an umbrageous ash, a picturesque old landmark of centuries. But the
Commodore saw him, and went handsomely to the rescue of the old tree by
knocking the book out with a boat-hook.

"There are trees enough being destroyed daily by coon-hunters,
road-boards, and other villains," said he, "and I won't stand quietly
by and see so splendid a specimen crushed beneath so relentless a

"But somebody may find the book," pleaded the Vice, who was already

"Thank heaven, the natives can't read English," replied the Commodore,
"so they won't be injured."

"But I supposed I might find it there when I came this way on next
summer's cruise," said the Vice.

"So you will," said the Commodore; "neither wind nor wave can move any
thing so heavy: when that book changes its base, there'll be nothing
left to cruise with, and nobody left to cruise."

The Commodore, for reasons which he would not explain, had ordered that
the St. Lawrence should be reached that day, even though there was not
a breath of wind, and the whole trip had to be made under paddle, and
the Cook knew full well that when a Commodore (or anyone else) issues
an order that sounds well and prints nicely, its success or failure
depends largely upon the digestion of those who are expected to execute
it. So the Cook prepared a meal as digestible as it was bountiful, and
within an hour the expedition had consumed enough of omelettes, stewed
potato, rice croquettes, cream-toast and coffee to have terrified their
respective wives into applying for divorces on the ground of inordinate
appetite.[9] It is barely possible that the meal was prolonged with the
hope that a breeze might spring up in the meantime, and do away with
the necessity not only of paddling, but of taking down and stowing away
all standing rigging, which in still water is likely to unfavorably
affect the time of the boat. But no breeze came, not even in reply to
some vigorous whistling on the part of the Commodore. So the expedition
took to its several paddles, and got into mid-stream to get all
possible assistance from the current, and then, just where the river
was widest, and the squadron furthest from shore, a brisk breeze came
down as unexpectedly as if it were a savings bank, and each man had to
paddle ashore again to re-step his masts so that he could set his sail.
Then the squadron ran rapidly down the river, wondering only if such a
breeze on so small a water could work a man up to so keen an ecstacy,
how they would be able to contain themselves when cruising upon the
almost shoreless St. Lawrence.

As usual,[10] the Cook, in the Cherub, soon took the lead, and rapidly
increased the distance between himself and his companions. There was
nothing to fear, for the Vice, who had previously been through the
river with the Alderman, had assured the party that there was not
another rapid between it and the St. Lawrence. And even if there
should be one which the Vice had forgotten, the Cook would be glad of
the geographical ignorance which would enable him to shoot it without
the attendance of three other boats, with their advisory counsels. So
he hauled his mainsail close and flew along through the water, his
steering-paddle keeping upon his wrist a strain more delicious than man
ever felt at the larger end of a trout-rod. He shouted, he whistled,
and finally, there being no critic within hearing distance, he sang.
And as his rather uncertain voice rose and fell, the wind seemed to
supply a deep bass, a foundation into which his wavering notes fitted
perfectly. He fervently thanked the wind, and the tall trees through
which it roared, for their sympathetic effort; he redoubled his own
vocal exertions, and the wind and trees, apparently touched by his
appreciation, seemed to assist more heartily than before. Suddenly the
Cook noticed that the east bank, from which direction the wind came,
was without trees at that point, and while he dropped into silence to
wonder how the sound could be created where the means were lacking,
the bass turned gradually to sub-bass. Suddenly he saw an irregularly
intermitting spout of water near the middle of the river, then he
noticed a troubled wrinkle across the river's entire front. He hastily
let his boat come up into the wind and run into what seemed a cove
on the east bank, and as she ran ashore there arose a loud shout of
applause from a dozen men congregated there.

"No one ever came so near before," said one, in French.

"Saved by a minute!" ejaculated another.

"Could he have meditated suicide?" murmured a third. "No; he looks not
like one who has been disappointed in love."

The Cook courteously but firmly demanded an explanation, and one of the
bystanders, a venerable man in the dusty coat of a miller, led him to
a slight elevation to obtain it. Then the Cook saw that a natural and
abrupt fall of about fifteen feet extended entirely across the river!
In an instant he vowed a handsome subscription to the campaign fund of
whatever candidate might run against the Vice in the autumn campaign.

The other boats approached in the order of their rapidity, the
Chrysalids coming last, and the Vice's admission that his boat,
with its keel, could never have escaped had it been in the Cherub's
dangerous proximity to the falls, so reacted upon the Cook's temper
that he alienated a portion of the intended subscription to the
opposition campaign fund, and expended it upon a dinner for four, for
which he gave the proprietress of an adjoining hotel--"_Le Hotel de la
Ville_"--_carte blanche_. And the landlady did her best. For an hour
she and several assistants hung over two stoves, while other assistants
scoured the neighborhood for delicacies. The dinner was appetizing, as
was all whereof the squadron partook in Acadia after they had learned
to avoid the railroad hotels. Finally after all else was disposed of,
an immense dish of raspberries was placed upon the table, and beside it
a small bowl full of what seemed to be buttermilk.

"There!" exclaimed the Vice, eying the bowl with manifest disgust,
"that's an illustration of the effect of monarchical institutions upon
physical habits. The dinner has been perfect, thus far, but now, just
when the climax should be attained, they offer us buttermilk!"

"Perhaps it's cream," suggested the Commodore.

"Cream?" said the Vice scornfully. "Oh no. I know cream. Cream is a
thin blue fluid. This is not like it in the least."

Here the Vice scooped a teaspoonful of the pasty fluid, and brought it
gently towards his fastidious nose. Suddenly he tasted it, straightened
rigidly, and exclaimed,

"Judas Iscariot! It _is_ cream!"

The Vice said no more until he had sampled the bowl to the extent of
a saucerful. Then he raised his face and displayed unwonted lines of
thoughtfulness and conviction, as he exclaimed,

"Gentlemen, if an English cow gave that cream, I have no hesitation in
saying that our independence wasn't worth fighting for!"

"Huzza!" shouted the Commodore and the Purser, as they fell into
each other's embrace and wept conservative tears upon each other's
blue shirt-collars, while the sternly patriotic Cook pushed the
seductive bowl afar and whistled the "Star-Spangled Banner," as a
counter-irritant. But when he asked for his bill, and found that it
was but thirty-five cents for each individual, he retired to the hotel
parlor where there was an asthmatic cottage-organ and penitently played
"Rule, Britannia," keeping, however, a cautious foot upon the soft
pedal lest his temporary lapse from national love should be discovered.

On returning to the boats it was discovered that the small boy who had
been engaged as watchman had accumulated half a hundred deputies. As
none of these expected any money, the fickle Vice fluctuated back to
his first love among the nations, and was rebuked by the Commodore for
judging all things by a financial standard.

The breeze had apparently been to dinner too, for it was amazingly
reinvigorated and marked about forty flaws to the hour. An order to
carry only "dandy" sails was protested against by the entire command,
and the Commodore, hoping that the coffin trade was not depressed in
the shipping port at the river's mouth, reluctantly gave way to the
wishes of his subordinates. The result was that extraordinary time was
made, and twenty-five miles were passed almost before the voyagers
realized that the afternoon was waning.

As they approached the close of their voyage, the considerable town
where their voyage was to end, it occurred to the squadron that its
personal and individual appearance was the reverse of prepossessing.
A halt was accordingly made, and for an hour assiduous attention was
paid to baths, soap, shaving utensils, and the carefully preserved
remnants of what had once been laundried articles of wear. The one
pocket mirror had long since disappeared, so that certain delicate
operations of the toilette were performed with some uncertainty. The
Commodore had reached the final touches, and was tenderly arranging the
thin locks which still cluster about his posterior cranial processes.
To this task he devoted for a time all the powers of his gigantic
intellect, but in the absence of the accustomed mirror, the result was
unsatisfactory. Dropping his hand at last, the Commodore sighed, and
looked around for assistance. The Vice, resplendent in a white shirt
and neck-tie, was unoccupied. To him the Commodore, tendering the
fragmentary comb:

"I say, Vice, part my hair, will you, please."

The Vice marveled, but mechanically took the comb, while the
Commodorial dome was bowed conveniently before him. Long he paused, so
long that the Commodore, losing patience, called out, "Why don't you go

"My dear boy," said the Vice, "So I would, but there's nothing in the
world to part."

The venerable mariner slowly straightened himself, looked blankly
for a moment into the face of his lieutenant, and passed his hand
reflectively over the smooth top of his head.

"I beg your pardon, boys," he said at last. "I had forgotten. This
cruise has made me so much younger that I thought I wasn't bald yet.
It's high time for me to be back at the office--'There'll be no parting

Of the remainder of the run, some five or six miles, no member of
the squadron is mentally fitted to give a correct account. Every one
wanted to be first in port, and the Vice, in anticipation of being the
fortunate man, had secretly extemporized a new star spangled banner to
carry at the peak of his mainsail. But both Red Lakers shot ahead of
the Chrysalids, and the Vice at last ignominiously took in his national
ensign because it wasted a certain amount of wind.[11] Finding there
was but one boat against him, the Cook assumed that he had himself
already won the race, so he began to compose a sarcastic address to
be delivered to his associates as one by one they rejoined him at
whatever landing-place he might select. While he composed he heard a
whiz, he saw a shadow, and the wind died (apparently) so suddenly that
he barely had time to adjust the trim of his boat to avoid capsizing.
Looking about him he saw the great sails of the flagship passing him to
windward, and he heard the voice of the Commodore, in tones which no
combination of type can express, shouting,

"Come to the best hotel and see me when you get in!"

So the Cook looked about for some excuse to make for what would be
his probable tardiness, and he soon found it. As he flew past a large
assemblage of rafts, he found their occupants, all Canadians, in an
extreme fever of curiosity to know how the boats were steered; the
wind being from their own bank, they could not see the steering-oar on
the opposite side. They also looked upon the Red Lake boats, built in
their own country, as utter strangers, which fact enabled the Cook
to moralize, by comparison, upon the ignorance of people about their
own neighbors, and upon the peculiar fancies which in such cases are
made to do duty as facts. The Cook explained to the full extent of his
knowledge and his French, and then, sighting the Chrysalids within a
mile he sheared away, and within five minutes a swell from a steamer
sent a wave of St. Lawrence water under his bows, and he saw the "Great
Lone River of the North," from the midst of as entangling an alliance
of steamers, barges, tugs, schooners, ferry-boats, yachts, fishing
boats and pirogues as any canoe was ever imperilled of, while the
Commodore lay under the lee of a decayed pier, and placidly smoked at
his subordinate's confusion.

The St. Lawrence was hailed with delight by the tardy Chrysalids when
they reached it, and then the party strolled to the post office,
debating whether to run up to Montreal, which course the wind favored,
or down to Quebec, with the current and an occasional tide to help.
All admitted that the cruise had but fairly begun; placid lakes and
beautiful rivers were all very well, but,

  "Give to them the roaring seas
  And the white waves heaving high,"

or as much thereof as was within the bestowal of a river many miles
across. Just then they reached the post-office, their change of course
deprived them of mail matter for several days. How it came about,
nobody knew; but within an hour the Commodore, his boat stowed for
return as freight, was on a train for New York, and his comrades were
mourning that they could not accompany him. That evening all the canoes
were stowed, and placed on board a south-bound canal-boat, while the
Vice, the Purser and the Cook sat in Christian garb upon the deck of
the Montreal steamer, smoked cigars instead of pipes, and discussed
dados, symphony concerts, the woman question, the railroad riots, and
the impending finance muddle as conventionally as if they had never
lived out of doors.

       *       *       *       *       *

A few days later they met at a canoe club dinner in New York, but
neither claw-hammer coat nor white tie could smother the fire within
them as they discussed the merits of their respective boats.

"The Chrysalids don't ziz-zag when they're paddled, as the keelless Red
Lakers do," observed the Vice.

"Nor do they keep within hailing distance in a breeze in which even a
dead log would run and be joyful," retorted the Commodore.

"They need no lee-board to keep them from drifting down the wind," said
the Purser.

"Nor more than three men to land them on a shore upon which a gentle
tug at the painter will beach a Red Laker," said the Cook.

"Give me a boat," said the Vice, "which steers in the ordinary
ship-shape manner."

"I," remarked the Commodore, "prefer one whose Commander don't have to
analyze a whole rope yard before he can get her into sailing condition."

"The idea of oilcloth decks for any sort of a craft!" exclaimed the

"Or of decks that make you imagine it's resurrection morn, and you're
crossing the Styx in your own coffin," said the Cook.

"Order, gentlemen," shouted the ruler of the feast; "if you've any
personal difficulties to settle, please retire to the ante-room, and
cease disturbing the club."

"Ze ante-room," remarked the caterer, "is full of ze Alderman an' ze
Judge, who fight about ze merits of ze Rob Roy boats an' ze paper

"Then I will settle the question myself," said the President, taking
from his pocket a copper cent of the fathers. "Heads signifies the
superiority of the Chrysalids, tails of the Red Lakers."

The coin spun in the air, and the quartette sprang to its collective
feet. It came down exactly edgewise into a bit of Fromage de Brie, and
so remained.

    [Footnote 9: NOTE BY THE COMMODORE.--The Cook's notoriously fertile
    imagination has misled him slightly in regard to this _menu_.
    But let it stand. The Commodore, however, wishes to state that
    salt-pork and hard-tack formed the staple of the repast so far as
    he was personally concerned.]

    [Footnote 10: Note by the rest of the Squadron--"As usual--Ha ha!"]

    [Footnote 11: The astute congressman who occasionally enables the
    eagle to scream may find a valuable precedent in this act of the


In the preceding pages the authors have introduced in a desultory
way some hints which it is hoped may prove of practical use to
inexperienced or possibly to experienced canoeists. There are some
questions however which are asked by every one who contemplates
engaging in this delightful recreation, and to a few of these questions
answers are now volunteered.

I. Where can I get a canoe?

The best answer is a list of builders. James Everson, Williamsburgh, N.
Y., W. Jarvis, Ithaca, N. Y., and George Roahr, Harlem, N. Y., build
excellent boats after the Nautilus model and its modifications. These
all build on the well known lap-streak or clinker plan, using cedar
planks and oak timbers. Mr. J. H. Rushton of Canton, N. Y., builds
after the Nautilus and Rob Roy models, also after a model of his own.
He has a peculiar method of construction, which makes his work very
strong and serviceable. Walters & Sons, of Troy, N. Y., build paper
boats after the Nautilus and Rob Roy models, D. Herald, of Rice Lake,
Ontario, Canada, builds canoes on a model of his own approximating to
the best type of Indian "birch." His method of building is described on
page 106. The model is admirable for speed, sea-worthiness and safety.
At Ottawa, Canada, is a builder named English whose boats are well
spoken of but the authors are not personally acquainted with them. J.
F. West, of East Orange, N. J., builds light and serviceable boats of
ash strips covered with painted canvas. He does not build for sale, but
will furnish information for those who wish to build for themselves.

II. How much does a canoe cost?

Seven dollars a foot is not an unfair rule whereby to estimate the
cost of a lap-streak, Nautilus model, including spars and rudder.
Some builders charge more, others less than this. The Canadian canoes
are cheapest of all, but to the first cost must be added the tariff
duty for importation into the United States (about thirty per cent
ad valorem). Herald's highest priced canoe, seventeen feet long, was
at latest advices forty-five dollars. This size is built under his
patent and copper fastened throughout. Built in the rib-batten style,
the price is ten dollars less and canoes of smaller sizes of both
kinds still less. The Nautilus models are largely decked over fore
and aft without extra cost, and are provided with ample water-tight
compartments which are invaluable in case of accident and may be fitted
with hatches which render them available for stowage. The other models
whose first cost is less, are not provided with these conveniences
except by special arrangement, involving of course additional expense.
A canoe may be purchased and fully rigged for less than a hundred
dollars if her purchaser is gifted with mechanical ingenuity. Or if
money is no object, the cost may be run up to almost any figure. The
ordinary price of a double-bladed paddle is in the United States five
dollars. All the builders make them. A specialist is Henry Mitchell, of
Bergen, New Jersey.

III. Miscellaneous.

For sails use the best unbleached heavy twilled cotton sheeting, double
width. Cut so that the selvedge will form the leach of the sail. Hem
half an inch wide, stitched on both edges. Strong laid cotton cord
about an eighth of an inch in diameter should be sewed along the luff
of the sail, and is by no means undesirable along the other edges,
loops for making fast being provided whenever needed. All these cotton
articles should be well soaked before being made up to prevent unequal
shrinkage. The plates entitled "Under full sail," and "Close hauled"
give a sufficiently accurate idea of the size and shape of sails. The
"Chrysalid," as drawn, is supposed to be fourteen feet long, and the
"Red Laker" seventeen feet. From this the size of the sails can be
easily ascertained. The flying jib shown in one of the cuts is of no
practical use, and no one is advised to rig one.

Laid or braided cotton cord of one-eighth-inch or a little more in
diameter is best for running rigging. For painter use braided sash
cord, or best Manilla hemp.

Probably the best varnish for canoes, spars, paddles, etc., is
"Pellucidite" Nos. 1 and 2, made by Seely and Stevens, of No. 32
Burling Slip, New York. The same house has "paste filling" which should
be applied before the varnish. The best brown shellac is very good
and possesses the inestimable virtue of drying in ten minutes. It may
be applied over the paste filling above mentioned. All varnishes are
better and clearer for being laid on and suffered to dry in the sun.

All metal work about a canoe should be brass or copper. If it is
nickel-plated, so much the better.

Decks or coverings of some sort are essential. These may be fixed
as in the Nautilus model, or movable, which is better for obvious
reasons. Canvas, rubber, or glazed cloth serve very well. A simple and
inexpensive device is to sew small rings in the edges and hook them
over small round-headed brass screws set along the gunwale. Let the
screws be either on top of the gunwale or under it. If set along the
outer edge they are sure to be knocked off. The authors, after a trial
of flexible covers, have decided in favor of wooden decks, fastened
along the gunwale with simple keys, staples, or buttons. If cloth is
used ridge-poles are necessary to make a watershed. Wooden decks should
be cambered or arched for the same reason. The open central space
should have a flexible cover available in rain.

Some of the open canoes have thwarts which are curved downward. This
makes them uncomfortable to sleep in, and the builder should be
directed to curve them upward. They can be easily changed if desired.

The masts should be stepped in fixed copper tubes, because these
relieve the canoeist from the often difficult task of feeling about
blindly for the lower step in the bottom of the boat, and because an
accidental starting of the mast may lift it clear of the step, in which
case, lacking the tube, it will inevitably split the deck. Suitable
tapered tubes known as hose-pipes are kept in stock by dealers in
copper tubing. The taper is an advantage as the mast cannot well be
stuck fast therein. Cost only a few cents.

Bags of cork-shavings, air-pillows, tin cans, or other like devices may
serve open canoes instead of the water-tight compartments of Nautili.

Melted candle grease rubbed into a crack will make it temporarily
water tight. White lead is more permanent, and gutta-percha softened
in warm water and pressed in is highly recommended. This last is not
vouched for personally.

Fine copper wire is very useful about a canoe for lashings, etc.:

Very light and easily working mast-rings may be made by stringing
wooden or glass beads on stout copper wire, which is then bent to
the desired size. Solid rings without beads (or "pearls" in strictly
nautical phrase) are apt sometimes to hang on the mast. The beads serve
as little wheels in running the sail up and down.

The "latteen" rig is very pretty, but very dangerous. It is not
recommended. The "standing lug" which is, in effect the latteen with
nearly all the dangerous part cut off, works very well.

A lee-board may be used to advantage in working to windward. It should
be hung over the lee-side a little forward of amidships. The simplest
way of making it fast is to pass a line through holes in its upper edge
so that turns can be taken over the cleats used for sheets. The strain
of a lee-board is quite heavy and all its connections must be made
strong. It has of course to be shifted from side to side as often as
the canoe goes about.

In paddling some sort of a cushion or elastic seat is necessary.
Abrasions and possibly more serious difficulties will follow a
disregard of this advice.

Do not undertake to be a canoeist unless you can swim easily and well,
and do not attempt to sail until you are well accustomed to your boat
under paddle.

To render cloth of any kind water-proof the following recipe may be
found useful:

Into a bucket of soft water put half a pound of sugar of lead and half
a pound of powdered alum: stir at intervals during a day or two until a
clear, saturated solution is formed. Pour off into another vessel, soak
the cloth therein for twenty-four hours and then hang it to dry in the
shade without wringing. By this process an insoluble salt is deposited
on the cloth fibres and the fabric will shed water like a duck's back.
Woolens such as good Scotch tweed, retain their water-proof qualities
indefinitely, cottons not so long.

A glue which is practically water-proof may be made by boiling
isinglass (Russian is best) in skimmed milk. The proper proportion
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A Dictionary of Dates, being a Chronological and Alphabetical Record of
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  THE WORLD'S PROGRESS, 1867-1877.
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=I. HANNAH THURSTON.= A Story of American Life.

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"If Bayard Taylor has not placed himself, as we are half inclined
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ideas the most opposite to his own, and lighted up throughout with
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="Mr. Hayard Taylor's book is _delightful and refreshing readings_, and
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any of his previous productions."--_N. Y. Evening Post._

"A tale of absorbing interest."--_Syracuse Standard._

=IV. JOSEPH AND HIS FRIEND.= A Story of Pennsylvania. 12mo, cloth, $2.
Household edition. $1 50

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"By far the best novel of the season."--_Cleveland Leader._

=V. BEAUTY AND THE BEAST and TALES OF HOME.= 12mo, cloth, $1.75.
Household edition. $1 50

       *       *       *       *       *


=ELDORADO;= or, Adventures in the Path of Empire (Mexico and California).
12mo, $2. Household edition. $1 50

"To those who have more recently pitched their tents in California, the
narrative of Taylor will have interest as assisting them to appreciate
the wondrous changes that have been effected in this region since
the days of turmoil, excitement, and daring speculation of which the
tourist speaks."--_Sacramento Union._

=CENTRAL AFRICA.= Life and Landscape from Cairo to the White Nile. Two
plates and cuts 12mo, $2. Household edition. $1 50

"We have read many of Bayard Taylor's readable books--and he never
wrote one that was not extremely interesting--but we have never been
so well pleaded with any of his writings as we are with the volume now
before us, 'A Journey to Central Africa.'"--_Binghamton Republican._

=GREECE AND RUSSIA.= With an Excursion to Crete. Two plates, 12mo, $2.
Household edition. $1 50

"In point of flowing narrative and graphic description, this volume is
fully equal to the previous works which have given Mr. Bayard Taylor
such an eminent place among modern travellers."--_Harper's Monthly._

=HOME AND ABROAD.= A Sketch-book of Life, Scenery, and Men. Two plates.
12mo, $2. Household edition. $1 50

---- (Second Series) With two plates. 12mo, $2. Household edition. $1 50

"This is one of the most interesting books that Bayard Taylor has ever
made. It is in a large measure autobiographical. Whatever has most
impressed him in any part of the earth is noted in some one of these
letters."--_Taunton Gazette._

"A volume from Bayard Taylor is always a pleasure. He not only
knows how to travel and how to enjoy it, but he excels in giving
entertainment by his narration to others."--_Bangor Whig._

=INDIA, CHINA, AND JAPAN.= Two plates. 12mo, $2.
Household edition. $1 50

"Of all travellers, no one pleases us more than Bayard Taylor. He sees
what we most desire that he should see, and he tells us that which we
most desire to know."--_New Bedford Mercury._

=LAND OF THE SARACEN;= or, Pictures of Palestine, Asia Minor, Sicily, and
Spain. With two plates. 12mo, $2. Household edition. $1 50

=NORTHERN TRAVEL.= Summer and Winter Pictures of Sweden, Denmark, and
Lapland. With two plates, 12mo, $2. Household edition. $1 50

"There is no romance to us quite equal to one of Bayard Taylor's books
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=VIEWS AFOOT;= or, Europe seen with Knapsack and Staff. 12mo, $2.
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"We need say nothing in praise of Bayard Taylor's writings. He travels
in every direction, and sees and hears pretty much all that is worth
seeing and hearing. His descriptions are accurate, and always reliable
and interesting."--_Syracuse Journal._

=BY-WAYS OF EUROPE.= 12mo, $2. Household edition. $1 50


A Familiar Letter to the Reader. A Cruise on Lake Lagoda. Between
Europe and Asia. Winter-Life in St. Petersburgh. The Little Land of
Appensell. From Perpignan to Montserrat. Balearic Days. Catalonian
Bridle-Roads. The Republic of the Pyrenees. The Grand Chartreuse. The
Kyffhauser and its Legends. A Week at Capri. A Trip to Ischia. The
Land of Paoli. The Island of Maddalena. In the Teutoberger Forest. The
Suabian Alp.

       *       *       *       *       *


=THE COMPLETE WORKS OF BAYARD TAYLOR.= In fifteen volumes. People's
edition, cloth, $30. Household edition. $22 50

=THE TRAVELS=, separate, ten volumes, $22.50. Household edition. $15 00

  [Asterism] _Sent post-paid, on receipt of
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       *       *       *       *       *

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