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Thirty-Seven Days of Peril from Scribner's Monthly Vol III Nov. 1871   By:

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Thirty seven Days of Peril.

Mr. T. C. Everts is spoken of frequently in Bishop Tuttle's contribution. He was commissioned Assessor of Internal Revenue for Montana in 1861.

A graphic description of Mr. Everts' wanderings, in his own language, appeared in Scribner's Magazine of November, 1871, as follows:


VOL. III. November, 1871. No. 1


[Illustration: Imaginary Companions.]

I have read with great satisfaction the excellent descriptive articles on the wonders of the Upper Yellowstone, in the May and June numbers of your magazine. Having myself been one of the party who participated in many of the pleasures, and suffered all the perils of that expedition, I can not only bear testimony to the fidelity of the narrative, but probably add some facts of experience which will not detract from the general interest it has excited.

A desire to visit the remarkable region, of which, during several years' residence in Montana, I had often heard the most marvelous accounts, led me to unite in the expedition of August last. The general character of the stupendous scenery of the Rocky Mountains prepared my mind for giving credit to all the strange stories told of the Yellowstone, and I felt quite as certain of the existence of the physical phenomena of that country, on the morning that our company started from Helena, as when I afterwards beheld it. I engaged in the enterprise with enthusiasm, feeling that all the hardships and exposures of a month's horseback travel through an unexplored region would be more than compensated by the grandeur and novelty of the natural objects with which it was crowded. Of course, the idea of being lost in it, without any of the ordinary means of subsistence, and the wandering for days and weeks, in a famishing condition, alone, in an unfrequented wilderness, formed no part of my contemplation. I had dwelt too long amid the mountains not to know that such a thought, had it occurred, would have been instantly rejected as improbable; nevertheless, "man proposes and God disposes," a truism which found a new and ample illustration in my wanderings through the Upper Yellowstone region.

On the day that I found myself separated from the company, and for several days previous, our course had been impeded by the dense growth of the pine forest, and occasional large tracts of fallen timber, frequently rendering our progress almost impossible. Whenever we came to one of these immense windfalls, each man engaged in the pursuit of a passage through it, and it was while thus employed, and with the idea that I had found one, that I strayed out of sight and hearing of my comrades. We had a toilsome day. It was quite late in the afternoon. As separations like this had frequently occurred, it gave me no alarm, and I rode on, fully confident of soon rejoining the company, or of finding their camp. I came up with the pack horse, which Mr. Langford afterwards recovered, and tried to drive him along, but failing to do so, and my eyesight being defective, I spurred forward, intending to return with assistance from the party. This incident tended to accelerate my speed. I rode on in the direction which I supposed had been taken, until darkness overtook me in the dense forest. This was disagreeable enough, but caused me no alarm. I had no doubt of being with the party at breakfast the next morning. I selected a spot for comfortable repose, picketed my horse, built a fire, and went to sleep.

The next morning I rose at early dawn, saddled and mounted my horse, and took my course in the supposed direction of the camp. Our ride of the previous day had been up a peninsula jutting into the lake, for the shore of which I started, with the expectation of finding my friends camped on the beach. The forest was quite dark, and the trees so thick, that it was only by a slow process I could get through them at all. In searching for the trail I became somewhat confused... Continue reading book >>

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