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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

TABLE OF CONTENTS

ILLUSTRATIONS

CHAPTER I:
A JOURNEY OF SENTIMENT


CHAPTER II:
THE FATAL ERROR


CHAPTER III:
DUTY FIRST


CHAPTER IV:
A MAN'S GAME


CHAPTER V:
A PERMANENT MEMORIAL


CHAPTER VI:
WILL THE ICE TURN US BACK?


CHAPTER VII:
STORMY VOYAGE


CHAPTER VIII:
RETURN TO NORTHWEST RIVER


CHAPTER IX:
A CHIEF VOYAGEUR


CHAPTER X:
THE BEAVER IS A BAD RIVER


CHAPTER XI:
SOUNDING THE BIG LAKE


CHAPTER XII:
BREAD WITHOUT BAKING POWDER MAKES ME SICK


CHAPTER XIII:
I NEVER TRAVELS ON SUNDAY


CHAPTER XIV:
VIRGIN AS GOD MADE IT


CHAPTER XV:
FIRST PORTAGE


CHAPTER XVI:
TRAIL COMPANIONS


CHAPTER XVII:
MURDOCK'S RAPID


CHAPTER XVIII:
TRACKING THROUGH BOULDERS


CHAPTER XIX:
MARCH TO YOUR FRONT LIKE A SOLDIER


CHAPTER XX:
IT'S ALWAYS BAD LUCK TO TRAVEL ON SUNDAY


CHAPTER XXI:
WORST COUNTRY FOR GAME I EVER SAW


CHAPTER XXII:
BACK TO GET THE BAKING POWDER


CHAPTER XXIII:
DISASTER IN THE RAPIDS


CHAPTER XXIV:
TAKING STOCK


CHAPTER XXV:
GRAPPLING


CHAPTER XXVI:
INDIANS HAVE PLENTY OF HARD TIMES


CHAPTER XXVII:
THIS RIVER IS LIKE A BAD WOMAN


CHAPTER XXVIII:
NO RELIEF FROM WADING


CHAPTER XXIX:
HELL AND TWENTY


CHAPTER XXX:
BACKPACKING TO THE SUSAN


CHAPTER XXXI:
VALLEY OF THE SHADOW OF DEATH


CHAPTER XXXII:
THE MIND WORKS CURIOUSLY


CHAPTER XXXIII:
RELIVING THE PARTING


CHAPTER XXXIV:
MARKING HUBBARD'S BOULDER


CHAPTER XXXV:
A NEW DISASTER


CHAPTER XXXVI:
THE HARDEST BIT OF TRAVELING I EVER DONE


CHAPTER XXXVII:
SOMETHING WORTHWHILE UP THERE IN THE HILLS


NOTES

PHOTO GALLERY

COLOUR SLIDE GALLERY

ADDENDUM TO
THIRD EDITION

COMMENTS ON THE
NAMING COMPULSION


BACK TO THE LABRADOR WILDS

 V

A PERMANENT MEMORIAL

With the passing years I had a growing desire to visit again the scene of Hubbard’s last camp at the head of the Susan River Valley.  I wished to permanently and appropriately mark the spot where he so heroically met death.  Such conscientious devotion to duty, such unwavering faith in God in the hour of trial, and such noble, self-sacrificing  heroism as Hubbard displayed are too rare in the world to go unrecognized.  I felt that somewhere a memorial should be erected to him, a tribute to these qualities, and there seemed no more appropriate spot upon which to erect it than the place where he so bravely met his death.

No year has passed since my return from Labrador in 1904 in which I have not received numerous letters from men and women who have been inspired to nobler ideals of life by Hubbard’s example.  Judge William J. Malone, of Bristol, Connecticut, was one of these.  Through a letter which he wrote me some five years ago I made his acquaintance, and our acquaintance ripened into friendship.

It became possible for me to return to Labrador in the summer of 1913, and I decided to take advantage of this opportunity to carry into execution my wish to mark the spot where Hubbard died.  I mentioned this one day to Judge Malone.  He not only expressed his hearty sympathy with the undertaking, but volunteered to accompany me.

Judge Malone is an experienced wilderness traveler.  He had already made several journeys into remote regions of the Hudson Bay country, was a good canoeman, a good packer, and thoroughly familiar with the discomforts and hardships of sub-arctic trails.  I have never tramped a wilderness trail or sat by a campfire at the end of a hard day’s work with a more companionable man.  I was, indeed, fortunate in securing his cooperation.

In discussing our route it was decided that we should explore the lower Beaver River, between Grand Lake and the point where Hubbard discovered and entered it on his inland journey, and where we abandoned our canoe on our retreat, to re-cross to the Susan River valley.  Nothing was known of this section of the Beaver River, nor of its characteristics.  The route that Judge Malone and I were to take, therefore, as we outlined it, was to be up the Beaver until we came upon Hubbard’s old trail, then over Hubbard’s portage trail to Goose Creek, and thence down Goose Creek to the Susan River.

We made our plans known at once to some of Hubbard’s most intimate friends.  A committee was appointed, and under the supervision of this committee a beautiful bronze tablet [1] was designed and cast, inscribed with the following words:

This tablet marks the scene of the tragic death from exhaustion on October 18, 1903, of  Leonidas Hubbard, Jr., intrepid explorer and practical Christian.  Erected by loving friends June, 1913.  John XIV.-4:  And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.

This was to be erected on the big rock at Hubbard’s last camp.

Hubbard’s only sister, Mrs. Arthur C. Williams, of Detroit Michigan, who was deeply interested in our undertaking, also contributed a silk flag, and a college pennant which had belonged to Hubbard when he was a student in the University of Michigan.  These were to be draped upon the tablet when it was finally fixed upon the rock, and left with it in the wilderness.

We were provided with necessary drills, cold chisels, hammers, lugs and cement to properly and firmly set the tablet.   A canoe, camp equipment and other outfit were purchased, and on June 21, 1913, I sailed from New York on the Red Cross Line steamship Stephano.  Judge Malone joined me in Halifax, Nova Scotia, where the Stephano touched, and on June 26 we reached St. John’s, Newfoundland, where we were to transship to the northward bound Labrador mail boat, the Invermore, on June 27.

Beset by wind and rain and fog, our voyage northward was an unpleasant one, until, on July 1, the weather cleared sharp and cold, and as we steamed across the Strait of Belle, the low, rock-bound coast of Labrador, still harboring many snow drifts, and stretching away in lonely desolation, loomed into view.

 

 


[1] The rediscovery of Hubbard’s camp in 1973 created a renewed interest in the bronze plaque lost in the Beaver River, including the question of its weight. This detail is nowhere to be found in Wallace’s accounts of the 1913 journey. The New York Times reported on 23 October 1913 that friends of Wallace had expressed concern at not hearing from him since early September, when he set out alone up the Labrador coast. The report went on to say that Judge Malone and Gilbert Blake, who returned to civilization two months previously, had described the lost tablet as weighing sixty pounds.

Next: Chapter VI: Will The Ice Turn Us Back?