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In the Heart of the Rockies   By: (1832-1902)

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E text prepared by Charles Franks, Michelle Shephard, and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team

IN THE HEART OF THE ROCKIES

A STORY OF ADVENTURE IN COLORADO

BY G. A. HENTY

[Illustration: HUNTING DOG SAVES JERRY FROM THE RAPIDS.]

PREFACE

MY DEAR LADS,

Until comparatively lately that portion of the United States in which I have laid this story was wholly unexplored. The marvellous cañons of the Colorado River extend through a country absolutely bare and waterless, and save the tales told by a few hunters or gold seekers who, pressed by Indians, made the descent of some of them, but little was known regarding this region. It was not until 1869 that a thorough exploration of the cañons was made by a government expedition under the command of Major Powell. This expedition passed through the whole of the cañons, from those high up on the Green River to the point where the Colorado issues out on to the plains. Four years were occupied by the party in making a detailed survey of the course of the main river and its tributaries. These explorations took place some eight or nine years after the date of my story. The country in which the Big Wind River has its source, and the mountain chains contained in it, were almost unknown until, after the completion of the railway to California, the United States government was forced to send an expedition into it to punish the Indians for their raids upon settlers in the plains. For details of the geography and scenery I have relied upon the narrative of Mr. Baillie Grohman, who paid several visits to the country in 1878 and the following years in quest of sport, and was the first white man to penetrate the recesses of the higher mountains. At that time the Indians had almost entirely deserted the country. For the details of the dangers and difficulties of the passage through the cañons I am indebted to the official report of Major Powell, published by the United States government.

Yours sincerely,

G. A. HENTY.

CONTENTS

CHAP.

I. TOM'S CHOICE II. FINDING FRIENDS III. ON THE PLAINS IV. LEAPING HORSE V. IN DANGER VI. UNITED VII. CHASED VIII. IN SAFETY IX. A BAD TIME X. AN AVALANCHE XI. WINTER XII. THE SNOW FORT XIII. A FRESH START XIV. AN INDIAN ATTACK XV. THE COLORADO XVI. AFLOAT IN CANOES XVII. THE GRAND CANON XVIII. BACK TO DENVER XIX. A FORTUNE

ILLUSTRATIONS

Hunting Dog Saves Jerry From The Rapids Carry Reads Uncle Harry's Letter Jerry Gives Tom A Lesson In Shooting Leaping Horse Mounted, And Rode Across The Stream A Moment Later The Indian Fell Forward On His Face "There Is Another Avalanche, Keep Your Backs To The Wall, Boys" They Went Out To Look At The Indian The Chief Had Shot "No Good Fight Here," Said Leaping Horse.

CHAPTER I

TOM'S CHOICE

"I can be of no use here, Carry. What am I good for? Why, I could not earn money enough to pay for my own food, even if we knew anyone who would help me to get a clerkship. I am too young for it yet. I would rather go before the mast than take a place in a shop. I am too young even to enlist. I know just about as much as other boys at school, and I certainly have no talent anyway, as far as I can see at present. I can sail a boat, and I won the swimming prize a month ago, and the sergeant who gives us lessons in single stick and boxing says that he considers me his best pupil with the gloves, but all these things put together would not bring me in sixpence a week. I don't want to go away, and nothing would induce me to do so if I could be of the slightest use to you here. But can I be of any use? What is there for me to look forward to if I stay? I am sure that you would be always worrying over me if I did get some sort of situation that you would know father and mother would not have liked to see me in, and would seem to offer no chance for the future, whereas if I went out there it would not matter what I did, and anything I earned I could send home to you... Continue reading book >>




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