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Journal of Western Travel

by John McTurk Gibson
edited by Weldon Hoppe
September 6th, 1859 -- All of our oxen got poisoned with some kind of weed last night, each one was scoured like thunder, a green slimy stuff running from them all day like water, rendering them pretty weak before night. We have turned them down on the river about two miles form camp. This is the South fork of the American River. The pines grow tall and graceful, some that are blown down measuring about 300 feet. Redwood, oak and cedar are also freely interspersed all along the mountains. How I would like to chop amongst these glorious old pines, just to feel the ax sink in to the eye and see and hear the monarchs of the forest thunder and crash to Mother earth.

Travelled 14 miles. Our oxen got poisoned last knight. They are scoured almost to death. The choicest of timber is here. There are trees here 200 feet high and 7 feet in diameter. Plenty of excellent water. We are camped on the side of the mountain not level ground enough to make our beds. We slip down the hill a sleep. We have to pack water up the mountain one half mile.

Copyright © 1997 Weldon Hoppe
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