The Book of Camp-Lore and Woodcraft

The Book of Camp-Lore and Woodcraft

Author:
Daniel Carter Beard
Author:
Daniel Carter Beard
Format:
epub
language:
English

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Author: Beard, Daniel Carter, 1850-1941
Camping
Camping — Equipment and supplies
The Book of Camp-Lore and Woodcraft
Transcriber’s Note: This cover has been created by the transcriber using the original plain cover and the title page. It is placed in the public domain.


CAMP-LORE AND WOODCRAFT


THE BOOK OF CAMP-LORE
AND WOODCRAFT

BY
DAN BEARD
FOUNDER OF THE FIRST BOY SCOUTS SOCIETY

WITH 377 ILLUSTRATIONS BY THE AUTHOR

Garden City Publishing Co., Inc.
Garden City                     New York


COPYRIGHT, 1920, BY BEATRICE ALICE BEARD
THE RIGHTS OF TRANSLATION ARE RESERVED
PRINTED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


TO
George Du Pont Pratt
COMMISSIONER OF CONSERVATION, STATE OF NEW YORK
SCOUT, SPORTSMAN AND OUTDOOR MAN


FOREWORD TO THE SECOND
EDITION

Boys, if this foreword is too “highbrow” for your taste, skip it, but the author don’t believe you will, and even if he has used some dictionary words he feels that you will forgive him after he tells you that he did so only because of the lack of time to think up more simple terms. What he wants to say is that. . . .
Boyhood is a wonderful and invaluable asset to the nation, for in the breast of every boy there is a divine spark, materialists call it the “urge of youth,” others call it the “Christ in man,” the Quakers call it the “inner light,” but all view it with interest and anxiety, the ignorant with fear and the wise with understanding sympathy, but also with a feeling akin to awe.
Those of us who think we know boys, feel that this “inner light” illuminating their wonderful powers of imagination, is the compelling force culminating in the vigorous accomplishments of manhood. It is the force which sent Columbus voyaging over the unknown seas, which sent Captain Cook on his voyage around the world, the same force which carried Lindbergh in his frail airship across the Atlantic. Yes, it is the sublime force which has inspired physicians and laymen to cheerfully risk and sacrifice their lives in search of the cause of Yellow Fever, Anthrax, Hydrophobia and other communicable diseases . . . no, not for science but for
HUMANITY!

As a boy, the author dreamed of wonderful municipal playgrounds, of organizations giving the boys opportunity to camp in the open, of zoological and botanical gardens planned and adapted to the understanding of youth. His busy life as a civil engineer, surveyor, and work in the open gave him no opportunity to develop his dreams, but at the end of a five year tour of the United States and Canada, made over fifty years ago, he drifted into New York City and was shocked beyond expression by the almost total lack of breathing spaces for our boys, in the greatest of American cities. True, it then had Central Park; but fifty years ago Central Park was out among the goats, only to be reached by a long and tiresome horse car journey.
This lamentable state of affairs caused the writer so much real pain and concern that he then and there inaugurated a personal crusade for the benefit of the boys, a crusade with the avowed object of winning for them the peoples’ interest in the big outdoors.
The most difficult part of his task was to convince the men of the swivel chairs that boys’ leisure should be spent in the open; that the blue sky is the only proper roof for a normal boy’s playground; also that the open spaces are the places where God intended young people to live, work and play.
No great crusade, no great movement of any kind is one man’s work, nevertheless, every successful movement must have one enthusiast in the front rank, one who knows the trail and comprehensively envisions the objective—objectum quod complexum. Others may and will join him, and occasionally spurt ahead of the leader, like the hare in the fable, but the enthusiast keeps right on just the same.
Pray do not understand by this that the writer claims that he alone is responsible for this bloodless revolution. No, no, his propaganda work did however win for him the moral support of the editorial staff of St. Nicholas, Youth’s Companion and Harpers. Later he was openly backed and encouraged by such distinguished sportsmen as President Roosevelt, his chief forester Governor Pinchot, and his Chief of Staff Major General Bell. While the stalwart men of the Camp Fire Club of America worked hand and glove with him, all similar organizations failed not in voicing their approval. Furthermore he was always helped by his loyal friends of the daily press. Many famous writers lent their influence, all working consciously or unconsciously to help the great cause of boyhood.
The author only claims that, in all these fifty long years, he has never ceased to work for the boys, never wavered in his purpose, and now?—well, when he marched at the head of fifty thousand Scouts in the great muddy outdoor Scout camp at Birkenhead, England, he realized that his ephemeral air castles had settled down to a firm foundation upon Mother Earth.
Yes, boys we have won a great victory for boyhood! We have won it by iteration and reiteration, in other words, by shouting outdoors, talking outdoors, picturing outdoors, singing outdoors and above all by writing about the outdoors, and constantly hammering on one subject and keeping one purpose always in view. By such means we have at last, not only interested the people of the United States in the open, but stampeded the whole world to the forests and the fields. So let us all join in singing the old Methodist hymn:—

“Shout, shout, we are gaining ground,
Glory, Hallelujah!
The Devil’s kingdom we’ll put down,
Glory, Hallelujah!”
The Devil’s kingdom in this case is the ill-ventilated school rooms, offices and courts.
It is well to note that the work in this book was not done in the library, but either in the open itself or from notes and sketches made in the open. When telling how to build a cooking fire, for instance, the author preferred to make his diagrams from the fires built by himself or by his wilderness friends, than to trust to information derived from some other man’s books. It is much easier to make pictures of impractical fires than to build them. The paste pot and scissors occupy no place of honor in our woodcraft series.
So, Boys of the Open, throw aside your new rackets, your croquet mallets, and your boiled shirts—pull on your buckskin leggings, give a war whoop and be what God intended you should be; healthy wholesome boys. This great Republic belongs to you and so does this
Book of Camp-Lore and Woodcraft.
Dan Beard
Suffern, New York,
December first,
1930.


FOREWORD

Hidden in a drawer in the antique highboy, back of the moose head in my studio, there are specimens of Indian bead work, bits of buckskin, necklaces made of the teeth of animals, a stone calumet, my old hunting knife with its rawhide sheath and—carefully folded in oiled paper—is the jerked tenderloin of a grizzly bear!
But that is not all; for more important still is a mysterious wooden flask containing the castor or the scentgland of a beaver, which is carefully rolled up in a bit of buckskin embroidered with mystic Indian signs.
The flask was given to me as “big medicine” by Bow-arrow, the Chief of the Montinais Indians. Bow-arrow said—and I believe him—that when one inhales the odor of the castor from this medicine flask one’s soul and body are then and forever afterwards permeated with a great and abiding love of the big outdoors. Also, when one eats of the mystic grizzly bear’s flesh, one’s body acquires the strength and courage of this great animal.
During the initiation of the members of a Spartan band of my boys, known as the Buckskin Men, each candidate is given a thin slice of the grizzly bear meat and a whiff of the beaver castor.
Of course, we know that people with unromantic and unimaginative minds will call this sentimentalism. We people of the outdoor tribes plead guilty to being sentimentalists; but we know from experience that old Bow-arrow was right, because we have ourselves eaten of the grizzly bear and smelled the castor of the beaver!

While the writer cannot give each of his readers a taste of this coveted bear meat in material form, or a whiff of the beaver medicine, direct from the wooden flask made by the late Bow-arrow’s own hands, still the author hopes that the magical qualities of this great medicine will enter into and form a part of the subject matter of this book, and through that medium inoculate the souls and bodies of his readers, purify them and rejuvenate them with a love of the World as God Made It.
DAN BEARD
June, 1920


CONTENTS

Chapter Page
I. FIRE MAKING BY FRICTION 1
  How to Make a Fire-board, Bow, Drill and Thimble. Indian Legend of the Source of Fire. Record Fire-makers. Rubbing-stick Outfit. Eskimo Thimble. Bow, Bow-string, Thimble, Fire-board, Fire-pan. Tinder, Charred Rags, Puff Balls. Fire-makers of the Balkan. Fire Without a Bow, Co-li-li, the Fire Saw. Fire Pumping of the Iroquois. Pyropneumatic Apparatus
II. FIRE MAKING BY PERCUSSION 21
  The White Man’s Method, How to Use Flint and Steel. Where to Obtain the Flint and Steel. Chucknucks, Punk Boxes, Spunks and Matches. Real Lucifer Matches. Slow Match. How to Catch the Spark. Substitutes for Flint and Steel
III. HOW TO BUILD A FIRE 33
  How to Lay and Light a Fire. An Experience with Tenderfeet. Modern Fear of Doing Manual Labor. Matches. Fire-makers and Babylonians. The Palpitating Heart of the Camp. Gummy Fagots of the Pine. How to Make a Fire in Wet Weather. Backwoodsmen’s Fire. The Necessity of Small Kindling Wood. Good Firewood. Advantage of Split Wood. Fire-dogs. How to Open a Knife. How to Whittle, How to Split a Stick with a Knife. Bonfires and Council Fires. Camp Meeting Torch Fires. Exploding Stones. Character in Fire. Slow Fires, Signal Fires and Smudges
IV. HOW TO LAY A GOOD COOKING FIRE 53
  A Personal Experience on Short Rations. The Most Primitive of Cooking Outfits. Camp Pot-hooks, the Gallow-crook, the Pot-claw, the Hake, the Gib, the Speygelia and the Saster. Telegraph Wire Cooking Implements, Wire Grid-iron, Skeleton Camp Stove. Cooking Fires, Fire-dogs, Roasting Fire-lay. Campfire Lay, Belmore Lay, Frying Fire Lay, Baking Fire Lay. The Aures Crane
V. CAMP KITCHENS 79
  Camp Pit-fires, Bean Holes. Cowboy Fire-hole. Chinook Cooking Fire-hole. Barbecue-pits. The Gold Digger’s Oven. The Ferguson Camp Stove. The Adobe Oven. The Altar Campfire Place. Camp Kitchen for Hikers, Scouts, Explorers, Surveyors and Hunters. How to Cook Meat, Fish and Bread Without Pots, Pans or Stoves. Dressing Small Animals. How to Barbecue Large Animals
VI. CAMP FOOD 101
  How to Make Ash Cake, Pone, Corn Dodgers, Flapjacks, Johnny-cake, Biscuits and Doughgod. Making Dutch Ovens. Venison. Banquets in the Open. How to Cook Beaver Tail, Porcupines and Muskrats. Camp Stews, Brunswick Stews and Burgoos
VII. PACKING HORSES 23
  How to Make a Pack Horse of Your Own. How to Make an Aparejo. How to Make a Cincha. How to Make a Latigo. How to Throw a Diamond Hitch. How to Throw a Squaw Hitch. How to Hitch a Horse in Open Land Without Post, Tree or Stick or Stone. Use of Hobbles and How to Make Them. How the Travois is Made and Used. Buffalo Bill and General Miles. How to Throw Down a Saddle. How to Throw a Saddle on a Horse. How to Mount a Horse. How to Know a Western Horse
VIII. THE USE OF DOGS. MAN PACKING 145
  Hiking Dogs, Pack Dogs. How to Pack a Dog. How to Throw the Dog Hitch. How to Make Dog Travois. Dog as a Beast of Burden in Europe and Arctic America. Man Packing. Pack Rats. Don’t Fight Your Pack. Portage Pack. Great Men Who Have Carried a Pack. Kinds of Packs. Alpine Rucksack. Origin of Broad Breast Straps. Make Your Own Outfits
IX. PREPARING FOR CAMPING TRIP 165
  Porters of the Portage. Old-time Indian Fighters and Wild Animals. Modern Stampede for the Open. How to Get Ready for Camp. Cut Your Finger Nails. Go to Your Dentist. Get a Hair Cut. A Buckskin Man’s Pocket. Fly Dope. Protection Against Black Flies, Mosquitoes, Midgets and No-see-ums. The Call of the Wild
X. SADDLES 183
  How to Choose a Saddle. Evolution of the Mexican Saddle. Birth of the Bluff Fronted Saddle. The Cowboy Age. Sawbucks or Pack Saddles. Straight Leg and Bent Knee. Names of Parts of Saddle. Center Fire and Double Cinch
XI. CHOOSING A CAMP SITE 196
  ‘Ware Single Trees or Small Groups of Trees. Safety in Woods or Forest. Keep Your Eyes Open for Good Camp Sites. Cross Streams While Crossing is Good. Keep to Windward of Mosquito Holes. ‘Ware Ants’ Nests. How to Tell when Wind Blows. Evolution of the Shack. How to Sweep. How to Make Camp Beds. How to Divide Camp Work. Tent Pegs. How to Pitch a Tent Single-handed. How to Ditch a Tent. Use of Shears, Gins and Tripods
XII. AXE AND SAW 217
  Our Greatest Axeman. Importance of the Axe. What Kind of Axe to Use. How to Swing an Axe. How to Remove a Broken Axe Handle. How to Tighten the Handle in the Head. Accidents. The Brains of an Axe. Etiquette of the Axe. How to Sharpen an Axe. How to “Fall” a Tree. How to Swamp. How to Make a Beetle or Mall. How to Harden Green Wood. How to Make a Firewood Hod. How to Make a Chopping Block. The Proper Way to Chop. How to Make Sawbucks for Logs. How to Use a Parbuckle. How to Split a Log. How to Use a Sawpit
XIII. COUNCIL GROUNDS AND FIRES 245
  Cherokee Indian Council Barbecue. Camp Meeting Council Ground. The Indian Palisaded Council Fire. Indian Legends of the Fire. Stealing the Fire from the Sun-Maidens of the East. Myths of the Mewan Indians. Totems of the Four Winds, Four Mountains and Four Points of the Compass. Impractical Council Fires. Advantages of the Oval Council Ground. How to Make an Ellipse. How to Divide the Council Ground in Four Courts. Council Ceremonies. Ghost Walk and Path of Knowledge. What the Different Colors Stand for. Patriotism, Poetry and Americanism. Camp Meeting Torch Fires
XIV. RITUAL OF THE COUNCIL FIRE 265
  Program of a Council Fire. Invocation. The Pledge and Creed of All Americans. Appeal

CHAPTER I
FIRE MAKING BY FRICTION

  • HOW TO MAKE A FIRE-BOARD, BOW, DRILL AND THIMBLE
  • INDIAN LEGEND OF THE SOURCE OF FIRE
  • RECORD FIRE-MAKERS
  • RUBBING-STICK OUTFIT
  • ESKIMO THIMBLE
  • BOW, BOW-STRING, THIMBLE, FIRE-BOARD, FIRE-PAN
  • TINDER, CHARRED RAGS, PUFF BALLS
  • FIRE-MAKERS OF THE BALKAN
  • FIRE WITHOUT A BOW, CO-LI-LI, THE FIRE SAW
  • FIRE PUMPING OF THE IROQUOIS
  • PYROPNEUMATIC APPARATUS

CAMP-LORE AND WOODCRAFT
CHAPTER I
FIRE MAKING BY FRICTION
When the “what-is-its” of Pithecantropus erectus age and other like hob-goblin men were moping around the rough sketch of an earth, there were no camp-fires; the only fire that these creatures knew was that which struck terror to their hearts when it was vomited forth from volcanic craters, or came crashing among them in the form of lightning. No wonder that the primitive men looked upon fire as a deity, no doubt an evil deity at first but one who later became good.
When the vast fields of ice covered Europe during the glacier period and forced men to think or die, necessity developed a prehistoric Edison among the Neanderthal men, who discovered how to build and control a fire, thus saving his race from being frozen in the ice and kept on cold storage, like the hairy rhinoceros and elephant of Siberia.
The fire of this forgotten and unknown glacier savage was the forerunner of our steam-heaters and kitchen ranges; in fact, without it we could have made no progress whatever, for not only the humble kitchen range, but the great factories and power-plants are all depending upon the discovery made by the shivering, teeth-chattering savage who was hopping around and trying to keep himself warm among the European glaciers.
But we people of the camp-fires are more interested in primitive fires just as the Neanderthal men built them, than we are in the roaring furnaces of the steel works, the volcano blast furnaces, or any of the scientific, commercialized fires of factory and commerce.

What we love is the genial, old-fashioned camp-fire in the open, on the broad prairie, on the mountainside, or in the dark and mysterious forests, where, as our good friend Dr. Hornaday says,
We will pile on pine and spruce,
Mesquite roots and sagebrush loose,
Dead bamboo and smelly teak,
And with fagots blazing bright
Burn a hole into the night—
Not long ago the author was up North in the unmapped lake country of Canada, and while camping on the portage between two wild and lonely lakes, Scout Joe Van Vleck made himself a fire outfit consisting of Fig. 1, a thimble made of a burl, with which to hold Fig. 2, the spindle made of balsam. Fig. 3 is a bow cut from a standing bush; not an elastic bow, such as one uses with which to shoot arrows, but a bow with a permanent bend to it. Fig. 4 is the fire-pan which is placed under the fire-board to catch the charcoal dust as it falls through the slot when the spindle is twirled.
Fig. 5 is the fire-board, made of a dead balsam tree which was standing within three yards of the camp-fire.
In order to make his fire it was necessary for our Scout to have some tinder, and this he se

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