Status: Indexed


New Philadelphia, Ohio.

Dear Mr. Stefansson:

Your letter came to-day. I am sorry to hear that
Mr. Noice is again trying to make it unpleasant for you. I believe that
if you would ignore his threats or call his bluffs he would soon try to find
some other way of making a living. I hope you will get the best of it in
any trouble he may try to bring to you.

On Dec. 13 I sent the biography of Fred's life which you
asked me to send. I hope you can get out of it all you need. No doubt you
will want to make it as brief as possible.

As to my coming to New York, I want to thank you for
your offer. I should be glad to come and visit with you and Mr. Taylor but
believe the expense can be saved. Business has been very poor this year
with me. No doubt you can use money for other purposes which would do more
good. If you think it of enough importance I could come any time after
Dec. 25th.

[handwritten note in left margin] That the crossing could be made

I will give you my opinion of Fred's letter which may
help you to determine what to do. My brother Tom was in N.Y. about a month
ago. I asked him to call on you and take several matters up with you, but
unfortunately you were out of city
. My opinion is that Fred did not want
to leave the island and that Knight and Crawford insisted and brought for-
ward the argument about the shortage of food and he was persuaded to go with
that reason and gave that as his reason in the letter. No doubt he also
felt that the two young men [ Crawford and Galle ] needed some one with experience to go with them to cross the
ice. You spoke of Fred accusing Knight of shamming sickness. I could not
find in Knight's diary where he did so. Knight wrote when he and Crawford
were on the ice that they would return and Crawfor and Galle would go,
he and Fred would stay, which would have been a dangerous thing for the
two young men to do.
In reading Knight's diary carefully I get the opinion
that Fred allowed himself to be persuaded to go for two reasons, one to
protect Crawford and Galle and to the other to leave Knight and Ada enough

I am sure that the boys could have caught enough game
to keep alive and perhaps to have saved Knight if they had all stayed on Wrangel Island. The
l.c. Diary shows Knight and Crawford making arrangments to leave long before they
did, only waiting for the right season to travel on ice, but not a word about
Fred or Galle wanting to go. I don't say this to criticize Knight, for he
no doubt O.K. thought it the was the best thing to do. No doubt Evidently Fred felt sure of
getting safely across to Siberia and Alaska, as reports of weather conditions show they probably selected
the very worst time.

I have taken up with the family the question of publishing Fred's letter
up with the family. We all agree that the letter as a whole itself should not be published, as a whole for it
is of too private
a nature.

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