Saturday, April 18, 2009

Heward's Journal - Paddle Days 1, 2, and 3

As as part of my coverage of the Ultimate Hugh Heward Challenge 2009 I am going to quote from Hugh Heward's daily journal of his 1790 trip from Detroit to the Mississippi. The Challengers were given a full set in advance of their launch. We dry, warm, comfortable followers will get each one as an email with periodic progress reports, hopefully daily.
These words are from the "Journal of a Voyage made by Mr Hugh Heward to the Illinois Country" published in the John  Askins Papers, Volume I: 1747-1795, Edited by Milo M. Quaife, Secretary-Editor, The Burton Historical Collection. Published by the Detroit Library Commission, 1928.
The punctuation, capitalization and spelling are Hugh's own. My only editing is the spacing and leaving out certain non-travel related passages. The parentheticals are mine. 

Hugh Heward's Journal - Paddle days 1, 2, and 3: THE FIRST TWO DAYS. NOT A GOOD START

Paddle Day 1

Detroit March 24th 1790 Took my Departure for the Illinois. had much Trouble as Customary in getting Engagee's off in which Hurry we left a Keg of pork behind 'till we got to petite Cote, return'd with one of the Cannots to Babys Mill (a windmill located near the Windsor end of the Ambassador bridge) & then with Duarier walk'd up opposite the Fort & borrowed a Cannot to cross----had just Time to get the Keg and get out the Gate at 9 oClock cross'd & return'd the Cannot & from thence carried the Keg of pork each in his Turn to our Cannot at Mr Baby's Mill, Slept there.

& next morning the 25th very wet & disagreeable we from there joined our other Cannot at Labourses Mill, the Weather so bad we unloaded & I there hired Joseph La Mirand another Engagee' at 40/p Month

My Note: I have never been able to locate the site of Labourse's Mill. It was probably somewhere on right bank of Detroit River, maybe near Wyandotte? Windmills were the main source of power in the Detroit area in those days "...there was a windmill on every point..."

Paddle Day 2

(March 26th 1790) about mid Day the Rain abating we loaded & set off & got to the last Island opposite Brown's Village. the Weather still foggy & Wet----Encamped on the Nore West point of the Island (Celeron Island) & the wind changing to South East the lake surprized us mounting to where we had piled the Guns & were touched some before we got them moved but not to damage

27th at Daylight we loaded to Gain the River Huron but the Wind rose suddenly & detain'd us all day blowing very hard sleep'd there

Paddle Day 3

28th Parted early in the morning & got to the River Huron to breakfast the Wind still strong at West, the River very high and overflowed on all Sides & Current strong we mounted up the River which abounds in Turnings about 25 Miles the general Course Nore West the Land on all Sides in general very low & wet abound'g with Elum Button Wood (Sycamore) &C. the highest Land with oak of a Middle Size. Encamped.

Campsite: Just downstream of Flat Rock?

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