12. Hard Days on the McCulloch

April 15, 2011

Though segment 12 starts on a bucolic Washington farm, it goes on to describe some very harsh shipboard conditions. Hayes describes signing on with the US Navy Cutter McCulloch and the abusive treatment that later caused him to desert the ship. However, it is the description of conditions on whaling ships told to him by other sailors that is particularly hard to read.

I’ve just received a package of some other materials written by Hayes. From museum records, I had known that two long manuscripts, one on Alaska another on Africa, existed but this is the first I’ve seen them. Thank you Michael! Tim, you will be very happy to know that also in the package was a list, with dates, of every ship Hayes traveled on.  As far as I know this document is not in any of the museums.  I had no idea it existed.  It contains a good deal of detail not mentioned in the diaries.  I will get to posting it when school and farming aren’t so pressing.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

View Segments 11-20 Without Popups. Google maps won’t let me put more than 10 segments on on map or I’d post segments 1-20 there.

View the first twenty segments without popups on Google Earth If you click this button it will offer a google earth download.  You will need to have Google Earth Installed.  This is by far the best way to view all his trips to age 25.

View the first twelve segments with popups on Google Earth This will mean a download again.  But it’s worth it.  Because…  when you have it up in google earth you can close the windows, then open them in order to see his progression.

Here and There Synopsis:

12.1 Farmhand South of Colfax

September 7, 1899

Judging from the speed of travel out to Washington from Coloardo, Hayes must have returned by rail. Though the harvest is nearly done, he finds work with a “gruff sort of farmer” in the same region he had worked the previous summer. Food is plentiful: apples, plums, cherries, and “garden truck” grow well in these rich volcanic soils.

The change from the wild-west boomtowns in Colorado could not be more stark. Here in rural Washington, farm wives define social castes as rigid as any in the fine cities. A farmhand sleeps in the stable and may usually eat at table with the farm family but no more. Heaven forbid a farm girl marry beneath her station – that is to say, to anyone with less money than her father.

September 20, 1899

The farm work dries up so Hayes drifts north to Colfax where he encounters many old workmates from the previous summer. He remarks that the local socialites disdain itinerant workers like him as “hobos and tramps”; he also says that without him and the rest of the riffraff drifting through every season the work could not be done.

12.2 Other Lands Down the Horizon Line

September 25, 1899

Driftng North to Oakesdale Hayes stumbles on a novelty just outside the town: a good job with short hours, good pay, and decent food, working for an educated man. He and the nephew of this “New England Yankee” stack grain to be harvested later. “It is a good place; one of the best I have ever had in the harvest fields.”

On a day off in town he meets Ed Oakes with whom he’d worked in Parkersburg Oregon the previous year. Ed is “badly gone” on Ethel, Hayes’ cousin, “who is now a beautiful girl of seventeen.” The two will marry even though Hayes thinks Ethel too good for Ed, “but one has to marry someone.”

October 4, 1899

Marriage? A tidy little farm in Washington? For Hayes Perkins? He seems to be turning over the option. The farm life is idyllic, all a man could want – but no – by now “wondering has me in its grip and means more than anything else this world holds for me.” Fully informed about the brutal life of a sailor, Hayes still longs for the sea. Not for the sea itself, but for the sea as an avenue to “other lands down the horizon line that need exploring, and to these I must go.” The choice is made; Hayes Perkins will wander – as a sailor because he has little money, and unmarried because… well, because he’s a wanderer.

12.3 A Man in Uniform

October 14, 1899

No remark about how Hayes got from Oakesdale to Portland, but the city on the Columbia seems like a familiar town by now; he takes right back up at Sullivan’s boarding house. When Jack Grant, who placed Hayes on the Austrasia, recognizes him, Hayes chastises Grant for lying about the advance money last time around. “We’ve got to live kid.” Hayes describes Grant as the worst man in Portland who “acts as pimp” for his wife’s high-class bordello under the protection of police and politicians when the business of cheating sailors falls slack. Nevertheless, it is through Jack Grant that Hayes must find work on a ship.

October 20, 1899

Despite Grant’s protestations, “You’re a damned fool kid!” Hayes signs on with a warship: the McCulloch, a “revenue cutter” recently returned from Manila. Grant knows that eighteen men have jumped ship since the McCulloch drew into port. To hear Grant, the hardboiled swindler, describing harsh conditions, poor food, and miserable pay is somber warning indeed. Right now, Hayes is “almost sorry he took her on.”

But Portland offers plenty to distract a newly uniformed sailor from these dark portents: country people clog the streets of the city where a fair is on and a uniform opens all doors. The bars won’t take money from a hand on the McCulloch, the first of Dewey’s fleet to return from the Philippines.  Even respectable women seek out the sailors and “show favors to them beyond the rules of convention.” It is a Sailor’s paradise.

USS McCulloch circa 1900

Admiral George Dewey

Boarding the ship though ends the idyll. Hayes immediately sees the darker side of discipline on a navy ship: every shackle in the brig of the McCulloch clamps to a wall some poor drunken sailor fed on only bread and water. As Jack Grant had warned Hayes, working the MuCulloch will be, “None of your easy going lime juice times while you’re there!”

12.4 Sizing up the Officers

October 27, 1899

The leg irons hang empty in the brig now that the sailors have all sobered up. In a blinding rain at Astoria some flapper girls attempt to vamp the sailors. No takers; the men are broke and exhausted from Portland and must work to prepare the ship for sea.

Hayes sizes up the officers as mostly bullies. The boatswain, “a Bluenose Yank,” yells constantly, even when immediately beside his object. “Worst among the officers is one At Lee … one of the five on board who was in the scrap at Manila,” who struts around as “a first-class fighting man.” Only the genial Norwegian master-at-arms, who also fought in Manila, is decent from among the officers.

12.5 The Worst Feature of This Boat

November 3, 1899

Rough seas down the coast bring the customary seasickness for Hayes. But eventually the McCulloch finds fair anchorage at Sausalito where the men can ferry to San Francisco every third day. “But it has been rotten.” The screaming, drunkards who command the ship have demoted the kindly Norwegian master-at-arms to the lowly post of coal passer. Common sailors fear to even raise their eyes to these bullying officers.

November 10, 1899

“The worst feature of this boat is the officers expropriate much of our food allowance and sell it to get money to dissipate on shore.” Sailors from all over the world man the USS McCulloch: German, Dutch, French, Italian, Greek, Canadian, Australian, Norwegian, even Japanese. Most know all there is to know about a ship but the abusive officers treat all as green “landsmen.” All hands will desert the ship if things don’t change. Hayes has been on board a month and is of the same mind.

12.6 Helping as Far North as Coos Bay

November 24, 1899

When rough weather rises, the McCulloch sails out to aid ships in danger. In November, the ship ventures as far north as Coos Bay on the Oregon coast looking for a schooner that has been 52 days at sea out of the Coquille River. They locate her 100 miles off the coast bereft of provisions with the crew eating seagulls to survive.

Behind At Lee, an officer named Gould, a protégé of the new commander Thompson, ranks as second worst officer on board. Some examples of his perfidies: The cosmopolitan crew divides evenly over the Boer War – half for the Boers, half for the British. Sometimes it comes to fisticuffs, sometimes just a lively row. During one “friendly quarrel,” Gould threw a heavy club into the crowd of men without ordering them to disperse. Worse yet, Gould stole seventy pounds of sugar from the crew’s provisions and now the men have to pitch in from their salaries to get enough to eat. Gould and the other officers use money stolen from the crew to bring prostitutes right on board the ship setting up house with the girls in the officer’s quarters aft. “This we can see through the fiddley hatch nightly.”

12.7 The Horror of Whaling Ships

December 3, 1899

The McCulloch has no shortage officers to detest. When one Thurber curses Hayes without cause, “I came back at him.” In reply, Thurber blasts Hayes with a firehose, a retort Hayes considers light punishment; officers routinely strike sailors who have no recourse to any form of redress.

The savagery on the McCulloch is, however, nothing compared to conditions Hayes describes on the whaling ships the McCulloch protects at sea. The eighty or so ships owned by the Pacific Whaling Company based in San Francisco are away from port “from nine months to four years.” Experienced sailors avoid the whaling ships but are sometimes kidnapped following “beer well spiked with knockout drops (chloral)”.

Conditions on these whalers are barbaric beyond contemporary imagination: “All these men … are roundly abused. Hanged up by the thumbs for hours, constantly flogged with a rope’s end or with fists or else kicked forward and aft with heavy ship’s boots. They may be marooned on an ice cake, or else chained down in the hold of the ship for months or even years on end.” At the end of a long brutal voyage, sailors often end up in debt to the ship for food, clothing, and supplies purchased against their share of the catch. However, by law every sailor is required payment of at least one dollar at journey’s end.

A particularly vivid example of the cruelty on these whaling ships scandalizes all of San Francisco just now. A year ago, Tommy Hart, a “pale faced boy” came from Yreka to see San Francisco where agents kidnapped him for a whaler headed for the Bering Sea. Tommy escaped at St. Michaels but was caught and sold back to the ship for $2 by some beachcombers. Back on ship, an officer repeatedly kicked Tommy from one end of the deck to the other and gave him three weeks hard labor: twenty hours on deck, four hours below, with nothing but bread and water to eat. He survived only because the captain’s wife snuck him extra bits of food.

December 9, 1899

Tommy’s story so inflames the indignation of San Franciscans that legal authorities launch an investigation – but it comes to nothing – the Pacific Whaling Company “shanghaied” all the complaining witnesses and sent them in deep water ships around the Horn to Europe. With no one to complain, no investigation can proceed. However, in what Hayes sees as divine retribution, the ship’s captain dies in agony from a ruptured bowel at the Palace Hotel.

12.8 Talk of Desertion

December 21, 1899

As a cheerless Christmas approaches, Hayes and all the men talk of deserting the ship. Hayes claims that American ship’s officers count on their sailors jumping ship because the men are paid only at the end of a tour. The money saved on deserters goes to pay the girls from the Barbary Coast gracing the officer’s quarters.

Amidst all of this misery on the McCulloch, a little levity: Two Italian fishermen in a “new fangled gasoline boat,” drift by the larger ship dead in the water “as is the usual thing in such craft.” How does a fisherman find a gas leak? With a candle of course. Both men survived the explosion and a nearby French bark saved the hull of their craft as well.

One more gruesome whaling story, this time from an American ship the Bowhead: Up near the Bering sea the Bowhead was pinched between two ice floes off Point Barrow. With plenty of time to lower the boats and row out some leads in the ice, the captain loaded all boats with supplies and “calmly rowed away, leaving fourteen men behind.” When the ice separated a bit, the crushed ship sank leaving the fourteen sailors stranded on a free-floating chunk of ice. Miraculously, the steamship Thrasher rescued the men, but not before “every man had lost fingers, ears, feet, or some part of his body.” One young eighteen-year-old who had lost both feet nearly to the knee particularly moves Hayes. None of the men have any legal case against the ship or its captain.

12.9 Desertion

December 26, 1899

Hayes and a mate named Lewis enjoy a Christmas feast – even if it is only the scraps left from the officer’s dinner. Lewis swears he will desert and revenge himself on Gould and the rest of the ship’s officers. Just last night, David Stockton, a seventeen-year-old boy, escaped the ship by jumping from the whaleboat and out-swimming the coxswain. Hayes plans his own desertion by taking his things off the ship – wearing several suits of clothes on every shore leave, then stashing them with a friend dockside so “I’ll have little in her when time comes to get clear.”

January 2, 1900

On the morning after “a deal of whistling” in the night celebrating the new century, the crewmen of the McCulloch completely forget the holiday because Lewis comes on board announcing major victories for the Boers in South Africa. This news touches off a wild celebration by the Dutch sailors – which provokes the Brits – and then, “we had a grand scrap until someone thought of the New year.”

But that wasn’t Lewis’ revenge. On the second day of the new century, Lewis went over the side into a small launch but not before tossing all Gould’s possessions, even family pictures, out through a port into the bay. “He also swiped three automatics from the armory, At Lee’s belt he had worn at the Battle of Manila, and anything that looked good to him.” He owed money to everyone on the ship (repaying only the $10 borrowed from Hayes), nevertheless, “The crew are openly delighted at this turn of affairs.”

January 5, 1900

Hayes narrowly passes the keen eye of Captain At Lee for shore liberty and it’s the last the McCulloch will ever see of him. By now the desertions from The McCulloch and two other cutters based at San Francisco, the Bear and the Rush, leave all three anchored without crew enough to sail. Hayes knows he is wrong to desert, but given the conditions aboard ship, one can well understand his decision.

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11. Cripple Creek and Victor

April 10, 2011

The map below shows the path of the previous chapter 10 across the Atlantic in blue, the current Chapter 11 in orange with popups in Colorado, and the next chapter 12 out to the west coast in Yellow.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

View Segments 11-20 Without Popups. Google maps won’t let me put more than 10 segments on on map or I’d post segments 1-20 there.

View the first twenty segments without popups on Google Earth If you click this button it will offer a google earth download.  You will need to have Google Earth Installed.  This is by far the best way to view all his trips to age 25.

View the first eleven segments with popups on Google Earth This will mean a download again.  But it’s worth it.  Because…  when you have it up in google earth you can close the windows, then open them in order to see his progression.

Requested photo places

I think I’ll quit making specific photo requests.  The photo people can decide for themselves whether or not to send and from where

Here and There Synopsis:

11.1 Boom Times at Cripple Creek

April 15, 1899

Only a rich gold strike could draw so many prospectors to the cold rarified air of the Rocky Mountains. Ten thousand men working for low wages scrape as much as $12,000,000 dollars gold in one year for the owners of the Cripple Creek mine; thousands more work at Altman, Victor and Independence. Hayes’ lingering influenza from the Bergenland prevents him from immediately starting heavy work in the mines, but the rooming houses and eateries offer lighter work for those who will do it.

Cripple Creek typifies mining towns all over the western Untied States: “gambling houses, red light district and dance halls.” Hayes can see that something more is growing: the big strike at Cripple Creek bought a respectable business section on Bennett Street and a large hotel “equal to those in big cities,” but most of the town caters to the rough entertainments of the miners: booze, gambling, and women all designed to separate the miners from their wages as rapidly as possible.

11.2 Flirting with the Salvation Army

May 2, 1899

A man named Charley the German knocks at Hayes’ door in the middle of the night looking for a warm body to help out at his rooming house in Victor, so Hayes takes the job. He says that he and Herman, the American cook, “haul well together,” and the money isn’t bad. This will do for now.

In his spare time, the Monarch casino and the Dewey dance hall draw his attention. He knows they are wrong – and even boring, but the rough town offers little else by way of diversion. Compared to the excitement of Cripple Creek in 1899, war in the Philippines rates only a one sentence comment: Dewey is a hero to all.

Hayes has not been to church for five years. Sitting in the Monarch trembling all over to restrain himself from a sure-fire scheme for “doubling up on the red or black,” he hears the story of a foreman from the McKinney mine who lost his all at roulette, walked home and shot himself. Hayes runs from the casino right into the midst of the Salvation Army preaching in the street. Their talk draws him powerfully; he wonders if this “friend of sinners” talk applies to him as well – but no, “I won’t chance them.” Instead of a visit to their modest church, he went on to the Dewey to watch the girls fleece the drunken miners.

11.3 Independence Mine

May 10, 1899

During his time off, Hayes walks the area seeing the big mines. Stratton developed the Independence Mine and is now the richest man in the area.

Winfield Scott Stanton
Independence Mine

Ore at the Independence assays at a dollar a pound; so rich, that the miners earn more from “high-grading” the ore than from their wages. They sneak it out in lunchboxes and specially designed jackets with hidden pockets. John Fuller, a pal to Hayes, claims he pulled a wagon up alongside a freight car and drove off with a load of high-grade ore. Hayes will seek this work when stronger – but he’ll work for the wage, not for the stealing.

11.4 Portland Mine

May 10,1899

Walking down to see the Portland Mine, Hayes can see that tighter security prevents the men from stealing ore at this mine. Stratton, owner of the Independence Mine, winks at miners high-grading ore – though any who tried to steal a crust of bread would find a jail cell – in Stratton’s mind, any worker who picks up the ore has some unspoken right to it. However, Stratton’s lax policies will soon change; Hayes says Stratton is scheduled to sell the Independence Mine in August to an English company for $11,000,000. The thrifty Brits know how to punish a pilferer.

11.5 Strong Mine

May 10,1899

Security is high at the Strong Mine too. Hayes enjoys these long walks away from the squalid towns. For him, a ten or twenty mile hike through the mountains describes a pleasant day off.

11.6  Cripple Creek

May 16, 1899

Back at work in the eatery in Victor, Herman the cook has quit Charley the German to open his own place in Cripple Creek. Hayes signs on with Herman. “Better pay too, paid every night.” Herman sends Hayes regularly to Victor on some errand where he “improves the time” stopping round to listen to the Salvation Army preachers.

Church is a breath of fresh air after the debauch of Herman’s place that is located right in “the center of the sporting district on Myers Avenue, and is patronized by the men and women who live the sporting life.” While serving the women, Hayes cannot help but overhear their conversations; all loathe their lives and themselves. They “fling their money as freely as their bodies,” seeking solace for remorse not entirely killed by the life. Hayes hears one woman musing to another that the two might find escape by way of the Salvation Army Rescue Mission. Her “washed-out blonde,” companion cynically replies that they’ll never let a woman forget where she came from. She’ll be scrubbing floors and eating scraps. Better to stay with the business where at least there is money.

One of the men in camp brags that his uncle is the famous gunfighter Jesse James. If the bragging is true, Jesse would not be proud of this nephew, who is known in Cripple Creek as, “Slaughter-house Mike,” a prize-fighter who makes his living selling peanuts when he returns to consciousness after being knocked out every time he fights.

11.7 Redemption at Victor

May 20, 1899

No longer able to stomach the depravity at Herman’s, Hayes walks out of the place leaving money, clothes, everything he owns behind. He prays to God and flees back to Charley the German in Victor, who asks, “Shorge, mein poy, does you want your old chob back?” So Hayes is working for Charley and has the light of Jesus in his heart. “Life seems bright again.”

May 25, 1899

Hallelujah! Herman too has walked away from his bawdy “chop house” bringing three girls Hayes knew from Cripple Creek along to try the mission. Herman is back at work alongside Hayes and Charley the German beams to have his two best workers back. Hayes notes that Herman’s effort to rise, are somewhat suspect as he is living with one of the girls “without benefit of the clergy,” but he sees also that Herman is genuinely sheepish about his “venture in Cripple Creek.”

June 12, 1899

A number of Hayes’ mates from around the area: John Fuller, Howard Speke, John Daniels, and Fred Sidler, all came over to the mission as well. Daniels joined the army to fight in the Philippines. Sidler still drinks heavily, but they are good lads. Hayes believes that no one likes the dissipate life of the camps but all follow the herd and are afraid of ridicule should they try for better.

July 4, 1899

None in this rough town has ever seen measles before, so when Hayes’ comes down with a case, a smallpox panic ensues until the doctor can have a close look at him. While in the hospital recovering, a young nurse scolds Hayes for infecting her with measles making her miss the town dance celebrating Independence Day.

11.8 Violence in Victor, in the Ring and the Union

July 4, 1899

Nothing in the bible enjoins against watching a prizefight on the day celebrating a nation’s independence. Kid McCoy is the most graceful boxer Hayes has ever seen, but two clumsy welter weights nearly kill each other – seven knockdowns in the final round – and, bible or no, Hayes has seen enough of prize fighting.

Charles “kid McCoy
1899

July 15, 1899

With few dollars in his pocket, Hayes longs for the sea again. His once-redeemed friends John Fuller and Howard Speke are back to stealing ore, and one of the girls left the mission for a gambler.

Because all the mineworkers are unionized, Hayes ponied up the dues without realizing a bribe was expected as well. He won’t pay a bribe, so is always passed over for mine work. On top of the graft, a couple of local organizers Bill Haywood and Harry Orchard lead the workers in violent strikes. “They make no bones about having blown up the station at Independence, where twenty–three people were killed , most of them non-miners and even some women and children.” Hayes remarks, “I don’t think much of unionism, if that is what it means.”

July 27, 1899

Cripple Creek, this roaring boomtown, draws some distinguished names including James Jefferies, world boxing champion, and William Jennings Bryan, Democratic candidate for president. After the carnage at the McCoy fight, Hayes passes on Jefferies. He listens to Bryan impressed by the magnetism but not the logic.

James Jackson Jefferies

William Jennings Bryan

11. 9 “It’s All Over.”

July 27, 1899

Jimmy Doyle’s Portland mine produces $90,000 a month. Much goes for booze to his cronies. Winfield Stratton’s money from the Independence goes to “spiritualists and other strange ideals.” Still, though, Stratton is a kind man and tries to do well.

August 11, 1899

Hayes’ friend Fred Sidler sticks with the mission but still wrestles with the bottle. Many of the unreformed in the “sporting life” use stronger drugs to calm their broken nerves. A steady hand at the table exacts a high toll the next morning and the descent is swift. “It doesn’t take long for them to reach bottom. Those who have the nerve end it with a bullet or with poison, but many cling to what remains of life to the very end. These are pitiable in the extreme, especially the women.”

September 1, 1899

“It’s all over.” Victor has burned to the ground. A “dance hall siren in the Dewey” knocked over the heater for her hair curler and “eleven and a half blocks went up in smoke.” At the Gold Coin mine, in the center of the fire, the last man out tied the whistle open and let it blow until the boiler exploded in the flames. The damage estimate is $2,000,000. Hayes saved all his possession overlooking only his razor strap. Fred Sidler rescued all the chairs and the organ from the mission then drowned his sorrows with a rowdy bunch mourning amidst the ashes.

Victor Fire 1899

The fire provides a good excuse for Hayes to leave. He plans to go first back to the harvest fields of Washington… then maybe to Australia… or to Paris for the World’s Fair… Maybe.


10. London to Philedelphia

April 1, 2011

I’m sorry Peter; he thinks Liverpool is a drab city.  Brian, I have been in Philadelphia – it’s a lovely city – he’s in a hurry to get to Cripple Creek, Colorado.

The map below shows the path of chapter 9 in pink, chapter 10 in blue with popups, and the path of chapter 11 in Orange.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

View the first twenty segments without popups on Google Earth If you click this button it will offer a google earth download.  You will need to have Google Earth Installed.  This is by far the best way to view all his trips to age 25.

View the first nine segments with popups on Google Earth This will mean a download again.  But it’s worth it.  Because…  when you have it up in google earth you can close the windows, then open them in order to see his progression.

Requested photo places (see About Photo Requests):

– Scilly Islands
– Cap Grinez
– Spurn Head
– Hull, England
– London, England (any of the sites mentioned)
– Liverpool, England
– Queensland, England
– Philadelphia PA

Previous photo requests

Here and There Synopsis:

10.1  Scilly Islands, Racing a Freighter

March 4, 1899

Only Tom the Australian, Tom the negro, Riley and Hayes could resist the “colleen”; all the other men are broke and will have to sign on with other ships in London. Fagan has a dozen pair of green socks with embroidered shamrocks to remind him of the old country.

Passing the Scilly Islands, the Austrasia caught a fair wind and ran the “Longships,” a narrow strait between the islands and land’s end. In the brisk winds of the strait, the skipper ordered every sail aloft as their sailing ship drew alongside a steam driven freighter. As long as the wind held, the Austrasia flew past the great ship, but once past the islands the wind fell light and the freighter left them wallowing.

Another prank from Hayes: In these cold northern waters, he and Fagan had taken to slipping into the officers’ locker “during intervals between bells”. The hated Bews locked it to keep out the riffraff. So Hayes drove a piece of teak wood into the lock. The carpenter broke a reamer off trying to fix it and now the officers are locked out of their own locker. The captain has offered a pound for the culprit. The men know who did it but none will tell.

10.2 In the Throat of the Channel

March 7, 1899

In this confined channel, short waves break constantly over the ship drenching all. Hayes counts 105 trawlers fishing the channel at one time. Europe lives off the sea.

Some French fishermen from Cap Grinez board the ship with red wine to trade for old clothes. The giant boatswain, who would trade his soul for a drink, and the giant Dublin ransack their scant store of clothing looking for something to trade for this “belly wash.” The Frenchmen are clad only in light undershirts seemingly heedless of the cold.

10.3 Paid off at Hull

March 13,1899

A sturdy tug tows the Austrasia past Spurn Head upriver to Hull where the men are immediately paid off. Only Tom the Australian, Tom the Negro, Wally Lawrence and Hayes have funds for a trip to London. Fagan, the Montana cowpuncher, Baker and several others are wondering what to do – perhaps they have enough to go at least to Cardiff in Wales with the Boatswain.

All the apprentices must stay with the ship for their term of four years before becoming officers. They are a decent lot and Hayes will miss them.

10.4 At the Sailor’s Home in London

March 13, 1899

After paying passage to London, Hayes, the two Toms, Wally and Arthur McCoy, who is drunk already, take rooms at the Sailor’s Home right in the heart of the worst slums of London. To be safe, Hayes banks his earnings at the office of the Sailor’s Home. With eyes popping at the sum Hayes deposits, the proprietor thinks Hayes must be a robber. From now on Hayes will be the rich Yank at the Home.

In the short time Hayes takes to deposit his earnings, all his companions are now “sodden with drink.” While writing his usual two-paragraph lament for the plight of the prostitutes thronging the port district, Hayes admits his own moral shortcomings while wishing better from himself. The tone of his description of the district is not particularly condemning, more heartsick at the way of the world: Watching barefoot children who’ve never had a decent meal in their lives, “rushing the can to the pub,” is more than his world-weary twenty-one year old soul can bear. “Even the tiny children drink.”

March 20, 1899

Leaving his friends behind in the squalor of the riverfront, Hayes walks the more prosperous districts of London on a poor man’s sight seeing tour: The Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, the zoo, Kensington Gardens, the museum of Natural History at South Kensington, Barnum and Bailey Circus at the Olympia (“a breath of the homeland”), Westminster Abbey, St. Paul’, the naval observatory of Greenwich, and the wild animals at Regent’s Park which enchant him the most.

After nine days in London, even the sailors who had resisted “bumboat Mary” and her colleen are now broke and looking for ships. Tom the Australian, Arthur McCoy, and Wally depart for Cardiff where they will catch a ship to Australia. Hayes would like to go with these “good mates” but the time is not now so he must say goodbye.

March 24, 1899

A visit to Madame Tussaud’s wax museum underscores for Hayes the sharp distinction between the wealth of the West End and the poverty of the East End. Rich philanthropists who pay their help, “sailors for instance,” starvation wages to amass a great fortune see their likeness cast in wax but beware the workingman who steals a crust of bread; it’s prison for such as him.

At St. Paul’s cathedral, dressed neatly but as a sailor, Hayes asks a parishioner how he might “find salvation from the sins that so constantly beset him.” The worshiper regards Hayes disdainfully – as he would a beggar asking for money. After a little music and the reading of the first chapter of Joshua Hayes “left the place disappointed.”

10.5 Liverpool, a Drab City

March 27, 1899

Hayes pays full fare for 204 miles by rail from London to Liverpool through rural country of neat cottages with thatched roofs, gloomy castles, and vast country estates. The countryside is beautiful in contrast to the redbrick monotony, smoke, and chill along the docks of Liverpool.

No ship bound for America will sign a Yank sailor only to have him jump ship once across the Atlantic. Hayes turns down a Norwegian bark bound for Brazil electing instead to pay passage back to the States. As he is “half dead with cold,” and near the end of his stake, the good wages he made mining turn him back toward the American West.

10.6 Loading Immigrants at Liverpool

March 29, 1899

The S.S. Belgenland, an old Red Star boat of 3,000 to 4,000 tons headed for Philadelphia, carries mostly Russian and Polish immigrants crammed into quarters “horrible beyond description.” Amid the babble of so many languages, each passenger wears a tag identifying his or her nationality showing callous sailors down which shoots to herd these human cattle.

March 31, 1899

At Queensland another great hoard of Irish immigrants shoves on board, every one “ignorant of what lies ahead.” In the long rolling seas off Cape Clear, Russians, Poles, and Irish huddle miserably on deck sick in body and spirit, longing for homes all across Europe in this, “frightful ship that may sink at any minute.”

10.7 Rough All the Way Across the North Atlantic

April 3, 1899

The ship sails a great circle route to shorten the trip and seas remain rough this far north. The Russians have regained strength on the ship’s food which Hayes hears called by various names: “burgoo” at breakfast; “Mulligan” at noon; “lamb stew, haricot mutton, sea pie, haricot veal, or Irish Stew [for supper]; and at last when it will no longer hang together hash.” He notes however that each name describes exactly the same meal.

10.8 Philadelphia, all roads have their end

April 10, 1899

Hayes and all other ship’s passengers face a formal physical examination as the ship draws into port at Philadelphia. Many of the Irish, enfeebled by the journey, fail inspection and now face the same rough, cold journey right back to where they started. Hayes too is down with influenza and barely makes it into the country himself.

Without dallying for even a day in Philadelphia, Hayes boards a train (paying fare) bound for Colorado where he hopes the pure Rocky Mountain air will clear his lungs. Sick and worked nearly to death at sea, his spirits ebb: as he passes the heads at Capes May and Henlopen he wonders if he’ll ever see “the cold, grey sea” again.


9. Around the Horn

March 26, 2011

Anyone have a friend in Tierra del Fuego?  The Falklands?  How about Cobh Ireland?

The map below shows the path of chapter 8 in red, chapter 9 in pink with popups, and the path of chapter 10 in blue.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

View the first twenty segments without popups on Google Earth If you click this button it will offer a google earth download.  You will need to have Google Earth Installed.  This is by far the best way to view all his trips to age 25.

View the first nine segments with popups on Google Earth This will mean a download again.  But it’s worth it.  Because…  when you have it up in google earth you can close the windows, then open them in order to see his progression.

Requested photo places (see About Photo Requests):

– Tierra Del Fuego
– Cobh (Queenstown) Ireland
– Falkland Islands

Previous photo requests

Here and There Synopsis:

9.1 Latitude 57.13

December 25, 1898

On Christmas day the Austrasia sails off the pitch of the Horn but not close enough to sight land. The ship wallows nearly bare-masted in these heavy seas and fierce winds. Mountainous waves break constantly over the ship deluging the crew with brine. Still there is much work to be done aloft with an elbow hooked around a spar too cold to grip with a numbed hand. A long climb to the royals hugging footropes warms the blood. Neither royals nor “to’gan’sals” are set but constant attention must keep them from tearing away in the gale. Snow falls on the deck laced with lifelines far below.

The skipper orders duff to celebrate the day, “only there are no plums in it, only currants.” George “a negro from Barbados” caught a couple of albatrosses for Christmas dinner. It was fishy “but none have died as yet.”

9.2 Wet in All the Word Means

January 5, 1899

The seas off Tierra Del Fuego remain heavy for two weeks with waves breaking through the forecastle drenching clothes, blankets, everything. No one can remove even an oilskin awaiting the next call for “all hands on deck.” Moss grows on the always-wet decks making treacherous footing for sailors clutching lifelines shouting to be heard past ferocious winds.

The ship makes 287 miles one day, then 310 the next, “steamboat time for a good liner.” But the captain is always on deck scanning the scant sails and taut rigging to see that nothing is blown afoul. Salt horse and potatoes fortify the men for the cold heavy work.

9.3 Latitude of the Falklands

January 14, 1899

As they sail in warmer weather on calm seas for a day at least, excited chatter from the other men calls Hayes on deck to witness a “marvelous scene.” A glimmering sheen of plankton coats a sea filled with thousands of whales blowing past the Austrasia driving from the Northwest to Southeast as fast as flukes can push. Old Jack, a seasoned whaler, says they are finbacks and blue whales. For many hours, far into the night, the giant sea mammals swim by heedless of the ship often so close the captain swears one will breach their thin hull. To Hayes, their spouting sounds “like a steam exhaust,” and all have halitosis.

The unpopular ship’s second mate, Bews, is glad of the warmer weather. On the Pacific side of the Cape, to wake Baker, a sleepy headed sailor, Bews had taken to breaking buntline stops on the royals and sending Baker aloft for repairs. In retaliation Baker threw Bews’ oilskins overboard and Bews has “had the experience of running the Horn latitudes under bare poles.” Bearing the ordeal without complaint redeems Bews at least a little in Hayes’ estimation.

9.4 Pampero off Argentina

January 28 1899

Off the coast of Argentina a freak storm tears off eleven sails before anyone can react. For a full day, no one thinks of a watch below as the ship nearly founders. But, “the Austrasia is a strong and a good ship, so we rode it out.”

A few days short of his twenty-first birthday, Hayes wonders if he isn’t “going bad.” He has overheard two of the Negro seamen, who think of him as still a boy, remark on his foul cursing and wonder what will become of him when he is a man. Hayes’ wistful hope to become a better man is immediately followed in the diary by a paragraph reporting that he was chosen from all the men on his watch for special day work cleaning the ship for return to port.

If second mate Bews was already unpopular, his tattling to the skipper about the stolen wheat can only make it worse.  The captain’s reply?  “It is customary for the men to broach cargo in these homeward bounders.”  Now even the Boatswain has it in for Bews.

The complaint of starvation seems not much of an exaggeration. Hayes and Fagan have been stealing rations from the officers. When this is not enough, Fagan even eats the captain’s canary.

9.5 Past the Equator

February 4, 1899

Neptune’s rowdy court need not convene when the ship sails across the equator on the Atlantic side as all on board are now initiates. With the North Atlantic approaching the crew prepares the heavy-weather sails and the Austrasia gets a new face: masts are painted and the deck is “holystoned,” rubbed with a rough piece of sandstone until new wood appears for oiling. The ship has to look presentable for its owners upon arrival in England.

9.6 White Squall in the North Atlantic

February 14, 1899

The second mate Charley Bews sinks even lower in the eyes of the skipper after failing to see a white squall blowing up in the night to snatch seven of the ship’s best sails. The men saved the bolt ropes and leach lines but the sails are burst into ribbons. In these cold waters all are hungry, weak and shivering in their threadbare clothing.

9.7 Near the European Coasts

February 17, 1899

As the Austrasia approaches the European coasts, ships began to appear. For fifty-two days sailing down the Pacific side of the horn the ship sighted no other sail.

Fagan is sick from overeating.  As Hayes is the only trusted boy on board, the captain orders him to clean out the officer’s quarters.  Under the pretext of breaking up some old boxes, Hayes knocks open the crates holding the officer’s tins of fancy meats.  Half the haul goes to his accomplice Fagan who is now sick in bed from overindulging.

9.8 Queenstown, Ireland

February 27, 1899

Hayes calls Queenstown (which returned to its historical Irish name Cobh in 1922) a charming little harbor known to seamen all over the world. Returning from her trip entirely around the globe, the Austrasia is larger and more battered than any of the other boats in port.

On the way into port, the men are treated to a good feed as the skipper invites “bumboat” Mary and “an alluring red cheeked Irish girl” on board. Mary sells clothing and knickknacks to the returning sailors; the young “colleen” with “her delicious Irish Brogue” chats up the merchandise to these men who haven’t seen a woman in months; and the skipper takes a “good rake-off” from the profits. Ignoring Hayes’ restraining counsel, Fagan plunges for the girl along with Baker and a Montana cowboy in the port watch who spend their last dimes on trinkets.


8. To Sea

March 19, 2011

The map below shows the path of the previous chapter in orange, chapter 8 in red with popups, and the path of chapter 9 in pink.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

View the first twenty segments without popups on Google Earth If you click this button it will offer a google earth download.  You will need to have Google Earth Installed.  This is by far the best way to view all his trips to age 25.

View the first eight segments with popups on Google Earth This will mean a download again.  But it’s worth it.  Because…  when you have it up in google earth you can close the windows, then open them in order to see his progression.

Requested photo places (see About Photo Requests):

–  Portland OR
–  Astoria OR

Previous photo requests

Here and There Synopsis:

8.1 Portland

Oct. 9, 1898

When not chasing about Portland looking for a ship, Hayes records his familiar critique of the bars – where men are welcome to carouse bawdy until the money runs out – and of the friendly prostitutes whose lives and beauty are so short. He tells one particularly disturbing story of a young woman sitting on the sidewalk with a bad gash on her abdomen – cut by her own mother when their pimp transferred his affections to the more comely daughter.

Oct. 13, 1898

Hayes is hailed on the street by “a fine looking chap” who offers him a ship with the assurance that when the seas get rough around the Horn that’s when the crew all goes below for a smoke. He signs on knowing this is the only way he’ll ever get to Africa and takes up temporary residence at the “Home for Sailors and Farmers” until the ship sails.

Four Masted Barque circa 1892

8.2 Outfitted at Astoria

Oct 17, 1899

The ship’s crew is about half seamen and half green hands. The former are paid $25 per month the latter $20. All are assessed two months pay before the voyage begins for:

Two cheap cotton suits of underwear
Two suits of dungarees,
A cheap suit of duck for oil skins,
A 35 cent blanket,
A 10 cent straw tick,
Some tobacco (which Hayes doesn’t use), and
A couple pairs of socks.

Tom, an Australian; Riley, a Welshman; and Arthur McCoy, a New Zealander, are among the able seamen from whom Hayes can learn. The green hands are picked mainly for the brawn they’ll need handling the sails in the rough seas off Cape Horn. One is Dublin whose real name is Paddy O’connor – the biggest man in the ship and a bully of whom Hayes is immediately wary.

Some of the men are scoundrels. Hayes knows enough to remain silent when Liverpool, an experienced Welsh seaman, steals one of the two pairs of underwear just issued Hayes. The long voyage will offer some opportunity for a reply in kind.

Modern Tall Masted Schooner.
Photo by David Such
>

8.3  300 Miles Due West of the Mouth of the Columbia
October 24, 1898

Far out at sea. Hayes reports that he is seasick – “of course.”

The food is poor: “Lob scouse,” a glue-like mess made of potatoes and scraps of meat; “burgoo,” which is a pasty mess of unseasoned corn meal; weak coffee; and either soggy bread or pan tiles that threaten to break the teeth.

Hayes’ mates on the second watch are Fagan, a Frisco Irish boy, and Baker, a New York kid. All learn to jump without looking to another when a seamen calls for a hand to leap aloft.

8.4 Sailing South; Weather Getting Warmer

October 30, 1898

The men are now changing the heavy weather sails for lighter fair weather canvas. Handling the heavy sails is hard, dangerous work, but at least Hayes does not suffer dizziness as do some of the other boys and he likes being aloft.

At noon each day the men receive a pannikin of “pound-and-pint in regular lime juice,” to keep scurvy away and “to keep the passions in check.” Hayes reports that the poor food was enough for the latter.

8.5 Toward the End of the Trades

November 7, 1898

On leaving Portland, the bully Dublin had seen Hayes tuck some money into his waist belt. When he confronts Dublin about an attempted theft, Dublin threatens a little nudge one night when both are high up in the rigging. Now Hayes always takes the side closest to the mast on any spar and swears he’ll drag the big Irishman off with him should it come to a fight.

As the trade winds falter, the men are constantly aloft chasing “catspaws of wind.” On these sailing ships any man like Hayes who has never crossed the equator anticipates a rough initiation from the experienced sailors when Neptune comes on board. All are looking forward to a jolly time.

8.6 Neptune’s Visit at the Equator

November 20, 1898

When the initiates are locked in the boatswain’s locker to await Neptune, Dublin elects to fight for it. The seven or eight experienced sailors who finally subdue the big man deliver him an extra coating of tar from head to toe for their trouble.

At Hayes’ turn, Tom, a “genial negro,” makes a big flourish but pastes Hayes with only a little tar. His shaving is with a two-foot wooden razor and some pills made of chicken excrement and soap follow. Hayes mouths the pills before spitting them over the rail but Fagan isn’t quite so clever and swallows the lot.

After Dublin is subdued a second time, things settle down and Fagan begins wiping off his tarring on some oakum swabs. To Hayes, that silken scarf Liverpool (the underwear thief back in Portland) purchased in Shanghai seems better for wiping tar. Clean hands return the newly decorated scarf to its place in the forecastle.

8.7 Getting South Rapidly

November 27, 1898

When Liverpool finds his scarf, a volcano breaks loose. He has the gift of tongues acquired wandering the world in deepwater ships with “all the cuss words of every tongue jumbled together.” Liverpool and Dublin have a longstanding feud, so of course Dublin is blamed.

Their row of accusations and denials escalates until the skipper finally calls all hands on deck to watch Dublin and Liverpool fight it out. At dogwatch, with the jeering men circling the brawl, the giant Irishman thrashes his more compact Welsh opponent in a “rare scrap.”

Later, Hayes tallies Liverpool’s beating as just retribution for the underwear stolen in Portland.

British ships are notorious for both the poor quality and quantity of food. The men catch fish and seabirds and steal wheat from the cargo which, mixed with seawater, makes a kind of bread “hard as iron.”

8.8 Headed away for the Horn

December 3, 1898

With his experience of more than a month at sea, Hayes describes their ship, the Austrasia, as a “splendid sailer” with a “clean bottom.”

Stiff gales blow around the horn requiring bad weather sails. To ease the hard work hauling heavy canvas aloft, the men gather on the foredeck on Sundays to sing. Baker has been in the music halls in New York and knows all the latest show tunes. Hayes shares songs learned in the timber and mining camps now so far to the north.

Liverpool and Dublin are now best of friends, Liverpool sad only because “his judy” will not receive her silken scarf.

Technical information on the Austrasia linked by Tim Bell

8.9 The Roaring Forties

December 14, 1898

Throughout his life and all his travels Hayes remains conflicted about religion and morality. On the one hand, he is convinced, “All men are evil, the worst liars those who profess highest.” Still though, he remains haunted by his observation that all the men have at least some quiet faith in God. For now, the best he can muster is, “As for me, I don’t know what to think.”

On the side of practical morality, the men would starve if they weren’t stealing wheat from the cargo. The skipper will not allow them a scrap more than the regulated ration. Stealing wheat weighs heavily Hayes’ conscience and the skipper apportions justly according to British law of the sea – but the men are starving. In the push, Hayes always trusts his own inner voice. Ultimately he knows who to trust, but he can never quite let go his wish for a better world.


7. Spokane to Portland

March 12, 2011

On the Map below, Chapter 7. Spokane to Portland is orange with pop-ups; the yellow line is the previous chapter 6. Hico to Spokane; the red line west from Portland is the beginning of chapter 8. To Sea, Hayes’ first trip working as a sailor around The Horn.

View All Segments Published to Date on Google Maps As the diary progresses, the entire journey becomes increasingly amazing.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

View the first twenty segments without popups on Google Earth If you click this button it will offer a google earth download.  You will need to have Google Earth Installed.  This is by far the best way to view all his trips to age 25.

View the first seven segments with popups on Google Earth This will mean a download again.  But it’s worth it.  Because…  when you have it up in google earth you can close the windows, then open them in order to see his progression.

Requested photo places (see About Photo Requests):

–  Milan WA
–  Walla Walla WA
–  The Dalles WA
–  Colfax WA
–  Penewawa Canyon
–  Steptoe Butte
–  John Day River
–  Deschutes River

Previous photo requests

Here and There diary Synopsis:

7.1 Logging in Milan

May 2, 1898

After a 25 mile walk up to a logging site in Milan, Hayes finds work cutting and hauling logs to the Little Spokane River for floating to the mill. He’s got some companions “Oregon Slim, Shorty, and Frenchy,” who “have some idea of the game,” and “the food is excellent,” but the pay not so good: $3.50 per week.

Oregon Slim likes to fight and constantly bullies Shorty, “despite the latter’s dislike for a scrap.” Everyone can see that trouble coming.

May 23, 1898

Enough of this logging, “the harvest fields will soon be working,” and Hayes will go south. The larger bully finally pushed once to far and, “Shorty licked Oregon Slim.” If your nickname is Shorty, a “hammer tied to a buckskin strap” goes a fair way to compensation. Shorty would have killed Slim had the others not held him off. Perhaps this explains how mild mannered men turn into “superkillers” as with Billy the kid.

7.2 Walked Back to Spokane

May 26, 1898

The world is already shrinking. Back in Spokane Hayes runs into Frank Davidson, an old friend from Bandon. As the two “did the Coeur D’Alene” gambling house – why! there’s a gambler Hayes knew from Randsburg. “This man is a shady homo-sexual, something I never heard of until some of the more worldly wise explained to me.” Hayes’ further remarks are disparaging in a kind of naively shocked manner.

A carpenter friend introduces Hayes to a new way to beat the railroads. The lines regularly send men out to work on the tracks. With a bundle they got “from a pawn shop for 35¢” the two pose as workers and plan jump the train at Walla Walla before it reaches the work site in the Dalles.

7.3  Breaking Into the Jail

June 1, 1898

When they jumped off the train at Walla Walla, the carpenter said he knew the way to a house they could stay in. Fumbling around in the dark, the two came to a giant gate, huge walls, and a stout lock. “Say, this is the Pen!” (Hayes’ quote) he whispered running off into the dark. He says the absent guards would have had a good laugh at “a couple of saps trying to break into the can.”

7.4  Hauling and Threshing in the Blue Mountains

June 16, 1898

Still not listening to Ed Abbot who said, “these gamblers are not in it for their health,” (Hayes’ quote) Hayes loses all his cash in a casino before leaving Spokane and has to sleep in straw piles for a couple of nights on his way to harvest work near the Blue Mountains.

Advertisements in the newspapers have drawn more than 3,000 men from the cities to this place. Only at the height of the season will there be work for so many. But Hayes catches a small job hauling wood. This is a beautiful, fertile land where, “living streams fall out of the ranges and water the charming estates and fields of wheat.”

July 1, 1898

He writes, “On a threshing outfit now.” Threshing machines of the period were hideously dangerous stationary steam-driven contraptions run by a gang of men to separate grain from the wheat and chaff. Hayes works in relative safety driving a “derrick for a fork that drags the stacked grain to the hopper of the machine.

Threshing Crew 1900

The work is long but the food is good and everyone remains healthy in the fresh mountain air. Perhaps a signature line for the entire diary: “When this job is done, I’m going to Portland and try for a ship. Always I have longed for the sea, and want to see what lies down the horizon line.” (italics added)

7.5  His First Grateful Man

July 20, 1898

“This is the first time I ever saw a man who was grateful.” Once back in Walla Walla, even though Hayes was nearly broke himself, he bought a man a meal. Now this same man turns up at Colfax with a good job and is “in town spending his stake.” Pulled along in the spree, Hayes says, “the town was mine if I wanted it.

He hopped a train to get up here but finds riding the rails increasingly dangerous. Then too, he considers the morality, “ I suppose it is not right either, but everything in this world is wrong anyway.” Colfax has plenty of work around; he’ll rest for a day, then find something.

August 2, 1898

Hayes joins a group of men doing ranch work south of Colfax for low pay. Several of them plan to confront the boss, “Of course, as always, they have me for spokesman, but I will do it .”

August 5, 1898

On a trip to town from the farm, Hayes gets a ride and a threshing job offer at a 50¢ pay raise. He’ll take it, even though the food is poor and the work hours are barely believable. “This outfit works endless hours; begin at three in the morning and quit at nine at night.”

7.6  Itinerant work near Steptoe Butte
August 19, 1898

Threshing gangs move regularly from farm to farm processing the harvest. Some of the men in Hayes’ gang work as “tin horn” gamblers who are “able to clean up on the rural denizens of the Palouse.” Given their work schedule, one wonders how anyone can find time to gamble, but “jovial, good natured” Job Howard and his partner Slim can always scratch up a game. Job “realizes he’s wrong, but is satisfied with that.” The two gamble when they can and work when they have to.

Hayes considers these gamblers “no worse than these two bunco artists, Baker and Derr, who run the threshing machine,” with their endless promises of better food, shorter hours, and a better season next year. “Even the genial Job is growling.” Apparently the women, horses and booze cleaned out Job’s gambling stake; he now “handles the hoedown on the cylinder and has to breathe the dust for fifteen hours at least during every day.”

August 30, 1898

Hayes describes the eighteen-hour workdays as, “tough,” but he’s saving a little money and even thought about buying his own team for $60. Another entrepreneur outbid him at $65 and got a team that immediately balked under a new hand. Hayes counts himself lucky for once.

September 23, 1898

A thresher’s work schedule: rise at three AM; work until a half hour break for breakfast; return to work until an hour lunch break at mid-afternoon; return to work until dinner sometime after dark; then “we work by flares until nine or even ten.”

Hayes has been threshing on this schedule for more than six weeks – some of the men even longer. All are exhausted, so with the consent of the men who feed the threshing machine, “Job Howard tossed a hoedown into the cylinder,” destroying the machine and ending the work season for the entire crew.

7.7 Bad Influences

September 26, 1898

A thresher named Red Blythe owns his own team and wagon. Red, Hayes and “a Portland boy” named Bill, hitch up Red’s wagon for a leisurely autumn ride south – stealing whatever they need along the way.

A lovely peach orchard in Penewawa Canyon provides buckets of fruit for “college boys on vacation in the harvest fields … going home the cheap way to enter school again.” Hayes is “half-ashamed” that he “lied himself blind” to the “kindly old farmer,” whose name, J. F. Cram, haunts him to this day. Nevertheless, the three were not above taking chickens and a couple of sacks of grain for the horses from “that good old man.”

September 30, 1898

Walla Walla, Freewater, Milton, and Weston “with wheatfields on every hand,” roll sleepily by. Hayes and Bill walk the hills to rest the horses who are constantly tempted to run feral with the “cayuses, small pinto ponies, that run on the ranges and are as tough as horses ever get to be.” Coyotes pace the wagon, sheep graze quietly, “there’s no rush and we enjoy it all.”

7.8 Small Time Thieves

October 2, 1898

At the John Day River, the three travelers try to purchase alfalfa for the horses from a rancher. “He would sell us a few tons, but not enough to feed the team.” So they wait until after dark, steal a wagonload of alfalfa, and throw in “a couple bags of wheat for luck.” This “real stealing” bothers Hayes’ conscience, but he has a ready rationale: “everybody steals, so why not me?” And a lament: “Why did I ever come into such a world where one has to be a rogue to live?”

October 5, 1898

An axe from a country schoolhouse disappeared as Bill passed by. Now the small-time thieves have wood enough to reach the Dalles. Their last heist was a bucket of peaches from a “surly brute” who charged them 50¢ to cross the bridge at the Deschutes River.

“The Dalles” are falls in the Deschutes River where it meets the Columbia. Boats can navigate this far up the Columbia River, so the three bandits abandon their wagon and catch a steamer headed for Portland. “This is the most beautiful trip I have ever made” – The snows of Mount Hood; evergreen forests; industrious towns; scenic rock formations; and the grand river itself.

7.9  Parting Ways at Portland

October 5, 1898

Red said goodbye upon arrival at Portland but Bill and Hayes stick together for another few days in the city. Immediately upon arrival Bill must hunt up a priest to confess his “depredations.” Both Bill’s urgency to confess and his annoyance at having to do so strike Hayes as funny. Which then launches him into another of his dark tirades: “all men steal … to rob one’s neighbor before he robs you… if there be an honest man or woman in this world … every man for himself … devil take him who is last.” All this just three days after the most beautiful trip he’s ever made. The combination of a city and religion must have been too much to sustain his elevated spirit.

Nevertheless, cynical or no, Hayes is in Portland to find a ship and the search must begin. How else can an adventurer hope to travel the world?


6. Hico to Spokane

March 4, 2011

It looks like embedding the map on the blog page works fine there but the map doesn’t appear in the email notifications.  Try clicking to the blog or directly to the maps – you’ll like them.  He hasn’t gotten out of North America yet but he’s only twenty.

View All Segments Published to Date on Google Maps As the diary progresses, the entire journey becomes increasingly amazing.

View the First Ten Segments Without Popups This is a preview showing the path Hayes records in the diary up to age 22 without synopses.  Look at it in Google Earth if you can.

Requested photo places (see About Photo Requests):

– Kansas City, KS
– Salt Lake City, UT
– Seattle, WA
– Cascade Range WA
– Revelstoke BC
– Arrow Lake
– Sandon, BC
– Payne Mountain
– Noble Five Mountains
– Argonaut Mountain
– Kaslo BC
– Kootaney lake
– Spokane, WA

Previous photo requests

Here and There diary Synopsis:

6.1 War with Spain

April 23, 1898

The Spanish Sunk the Maine! Or somebody did. War fever grips all of Kansas City. Every packinghouse, mill, and train in town ties its whistle or siren full open for an hour in sheer relief from the tension built over the past few weeks. “Everyone is like a child, talking to the stranger next to him and planning on going to the war, wherever that may be.” In an earlier entry Hayes had remarked that this war will help heal the lingering scars from the Civil war. For now, it has united Kansas City at least.

Wreckage of the USS Maine
Havana Cuba 1898

All this comes to Hayes from outside as he lies in bed with the pneumonia shifted to his other lung. Having seen a doctor cure one side, he can save the fee and manage for himself this time: “A bella donna plaster, some aspirin and quinine seems to be working.”

6.2 Yellow Journalism

April 29, 1898

With the railways competing to undercut competitor’s fares, Hayes buys a ticket all the way to Seattle for $20. At one stopover in Kansas, farmers “swarmed over the train to get a paper telling of the war.” Hayes gathered up newspapers cast off by passengers inside the train to sell for 10¢ out the windows. He doesn’t mention which paper he sold, but quite likely its publisher was William Randolph Hearst, at whose San Simeon castle Hayes will manage the zoo in the 1930’s. The same frenzy rages across Colorado and Utah, “All want to annihilate the Spaniards who for so long have treated the Cubans as my father treated me.”

Whipping up the Spanish American War.
William Randolph Hearst’s
New York Journal 1898

The prairie bursts with “red, white, and blue” flowers “as far as the eye can see,” while would–be prospectors fill the train with congenial conversation about the fortunes they will uncover in the Yukon.

At Salt Lake City, “these Mormons … have worked hard and now farms and gardens bloom where once was sage and sand.” The long run of track stretching between Salt Lake and Seattle gives Hayes plenty of time to ponder “what then?” “Something always turns up, and will again.”

6.3 Gold Fever

May 3, 1898

War is only the secondary frenzy in Seattle; here GOLD is number one. “Several ships have recently entered the Seattle with tons of gold from the new Klondike mines,” stirring “the cupidity … to a crescendo of fury.” Mountains of mining gear and equipment block the streets and any boat that can float brings an inflated price from some soft-handed man senseless with the gold fever. With few Alaskan mines yet proven, Hayes wryly observes fortunes being made right here in Seattle by those selling boats and gear to greenhorn miners. With enthusiasm outpacing sense, “A lot of them will die before they reach the diggings, and more will perish after that.”

An inventory of the gambling houses in town includes, “Clancy’s, the Considine Brothers big Standard institution, and Billy The Mug’s.” He saw a croupier pull a lever in Clancy’s, got tossed out of the Standard for entering under age, and escaped a beating at Billy the Mug’s when he “demurred at being plucked.” Always the “girls, wan and fading,” to entice one inside.

6.4 Ranch Work with Wet Feet

May 9,1898

Ranch work in the rain for $20 a month. “An old chap named Mason … wants someone to do the hard work.” In May, in the foothills of the Cascades, one’s feet are always wet when chasing cows, plowing, planting – generally working as “a domestic animal.”

May 24, 1898

Three weeks in the rain and Hayes is ready to move on. Everyone in Seattle wants to go either North to the Yukon or enlist for the Spanish War. Hayes thinks maybe he’ll head up into Canada looking for a mining job in a dryer climate.

6.5 Canadian Pacific Railway

May 30, 1898

Rail fare just keeps getting cheaper: $10 from Seattle to St. Paul. But Hayes gets off at Revelstoke after seeing some gorgeous scenery. A quick look at the cedar stumps in Revelstoke, a change of trains, then down Arrow Lake on a steamer, one more rail jump and into Sandon.

“The mountains rise a full mile or more on every side,” with frequent avalanches that snap the trees like matches sometimes killing men in their path. “Many saloons and dance halls” cater to miners digging silver and lead – the only reason for the existence of a town in this remote place.

Some of these silver miners have left for the Klondike, “but most realize as I do that it is just another camp.” Gold prospecting has longer odds than roulette. Hayes estimates 500 will lose everything in the Klondike for every one with a real stake. At roulette, “the odds are only 38 to one against you.” And the one with a real stake will be “taken in hand by some gold digger in a dance hall.”

April 7, 1898

Unable to land a job, Hayes scouts the surrounding mountains, the Payne, the Nobel Five, and the Argonaut, often hiking a mile elevation gain then sliding down on the snow fields.

Variety theatres are the only alternative to bars in Sandon. Not much difference between the two really, “men lose their heads when an especially pretty face is looking into theirs.” Even the thrifty Scot Jock McCann waves handfuls of bills heading past the Maison Francaise – “so he will be broke by now.”

The minister and his wife here are “young and full of life.” They invite Hayes to stop in. He says, “I promised to, but backed out on it.” The bad experiences with church at “home” (Hayes’ quote) determine him never to enter a church again.

April 12, 1898

No job and funds are running low. His cousin Lewis, from California, sent some cash to keep him going for a few more days. As the prospects are not good here, Hayes plans to jump a train to Spokane where something is bound to turn up.

6.6 Canadian Grizzlies

April 14, 1898

Other than the beauty of its location beside the many waterfalls into Kootenay lake, Hayes can see no reason for the town of Kaslo – maybe as a trading post for the many mining towns around.

A prospector Hayes met near Kaslo startled two grizzly bears in the woods. “One ran from him, the other to him.” Slipping his pack, the man fought the one grizzly to a standstill with an axe. The bear died; the man survived. It took him “two or three hours to crawl a mile to a house,” and now he can be seen around town, “a mass of scars and bruises and walks on crutches.”

6.7 No Job in Spokane

April 19,1898

The grizzly attack in Sandon spooked Hayes from trying out a few mining camps near Nelson, so he rode Kootaney lake back down toward the US. Not much mining in Spokane proper but “gold to the west in Okanogan, and in the Coeur D’Alenes silver-lead.” Lead and zinc at other small towns all around support Spokane as a center for trade

And his customary report on the brothels: “at the Coeur D’Alene Dutch Jake has made his already large fortune bigger.” This place has it all, a gambling house, bars, variety show, and “hundreds of harlots plying their trade near this establishment.” His need to describe this scene in every new town evidences a fascination with the life, “But I’ve got to have a job; this easy money is not for me.”