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the weather was bad, so we let it go. Later I went out on the ice and found that it was by the tracks a rather large animal. It had retreated over the tracks that it made before it became frightened. Crawford set the crab net last night and hauled it up this morning. He found nothing but about a quart of shrimps on the bait. The shrimps are very small and when boiled nearly tasteless."

October 23rd, "A bear had been to the other camp and had sniffed about. Another bear had been to within two hundred yards of camp during yesterday’s blow. And on October 25th, "Everything comes to him who waits, or goes after it. At 7 A.M. the dogs set up a howl. Crawford rushed out and about a hundred feet west of the tents stood a female and two cubs. Crawford in seven shots killed them. The cubs proved to be yearlings."

Evidently there were more plans and preparations for the trip to the mainland than Knight sets down. On November 1st he says, "For a long time I have said nothing about our seamstress. She is very quiet and rather downhearted over the fact that the ship idd not show up, but she keeps busy and is at present making a pair of fancy moosehide mittens , probably for Crawford. There is considerable clothing to be made for Crawford and me if we go to Siberia. . . . . Crawford and I have just about made up our minds to make the trip,and the time of starting depends on several things - ice conditions, dog feed, weather etc., but we are hoping to get started about January 15th, 1923. We think that if the weather is good and going on the ice not too bad, Nome should be reached in sixty or seventh days, for we have about made up our minds to go to Nome instead of Anadyr Bay. We have thought that Stefansson might be wintering on the mainland south of us, and I think that if he is we will see him by January 1st. If he should not come at all till later, we will have to take a chance and go, for very likely if he is wintering on the mainland we will hear of him and his ship and will go there. If one can go by hunches, my hunch tells me that Stefansson did not come north this summer

Last edit 8 days ago by Samara Cary
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and that we are doing the right thing in making this trip."

Unlike the previous year, there was enough snowfall the autumn of 1922 but it was so windy that much of the ground, nevertheless, remained bare and unfit for sledging, so that it was not until early in November that the business of moving camp from the old site to the new was completed. So far as housing is concerned, this seems to have been the only uncomfortable period on the island. They were still tenting on the old campsite and did not build an outer house over the tents because they were each day expecting that they would move to-morrow.

Every other day or so there is a mention of a sledge load of provisions or equipment being hauled from the old camp to the new but we are not told the exact quantity. The only hint is that on November 12th "we have twenty-six boxes of hard bread left and about three weeks of dog feed. A large amount of seal oil left." Apparently by dog feed is meant the half-decayed meat left from last summer. By the large amount of seal oil Knight probably means about a ton, for that is the quantity that would naturally result from the number of seals killed during the summer, the bears doubtless yielding an equivalent of the fat that the dogs had been eating. We have no record of the size of the hard bread boxes, but fifty pounds is a common size, so that likely they had 1300 pounds. Hundred-pound boxes and hundred and twenty-pound ones are also common, so that the amount may have been double our estimate. There must have been a good many other items of food. There is a common arctic custom apparently originated by the Eskimos but followed by many white people, to state food supplies in terms of the one item that is considered the staple. Ordinarily an Eskimo will tell you that he has so many sacks of flour. If the statement is unmodified, it means that in addition he has fifteen or twenty other items of food in proportions that are generally understood.

Last edit 8 days ago by Samara Cary
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On November 16th the moving from the old camp to the new was at last completed except for "some things which will be left until next summer. The dory is still there. There are a few scraps of skins and bones which might come in handy later in the winter (for dog feed) which I intend to gather up and haul to-morrow. There have been no signs of open water for some time, and unless a bear comes along the dog feed will be getting scarce."

On November 23rd we are told it was "much warmer than it has been for quite a spell," which is instructive, for when you glance back over the thermometer readings for the entire fall we find that only one day had been equally cold and most others conspicuously warmer as recorded instrumentally. This is a perhaps unneeded confirmation of the well-known fact that the impression of cold and real cold as recorded by instruments often differ widely. The maximum this day was three degrees below zero and the minimum twenty below. The entries during the latter half of November and early December are generally repetitions of three items. Trapping was going on energetically and a fox was caught every now and then, bear tracks were occasionally seen but no bears were secured, the seamstress was "busy making skin clothing for Crawford and me," evidently for the proposed trip to Siberia and Nome.

On November 29th Knight ways: "Feeding the dogs bear skin and blubber," from which it is probable that the people themselves had only fresh meat ahead for a week or two and were once more beginning to live in considerable part on groceries - although this is not mentioned. The diary contains no thermometer records after the beginning of December but we gather that the weather was warmer with more snow falling. During November Knight frequently complains of the lack of snow which made sledging difficult, but these complaints disappear in December. On the 5th it was warm and there was a slight fall of rain, probably about two or three degrees above freezing, which is

Last edit 8 days ago by Samara Cary
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not a very rare occurrence in the Arctic where one may expect sleet once or twice in mid-winter, no matter what part of the Arctic it is.

To one familiar with the "inside stories" of many arctic and antarctic expeditions, one of the most remarkable and creditable things about the Wrangell Island story is that in a diary obviously frank, even to a fault, there are no disagreements or recriminations after the first few days on the island. In the account of the voyage from Nome to Wrangell Island Knight mentions that Galle was not doing his full share of the work, but later he explains that this was due to seasickness. A few days after landing (September 25, 1921) we are told, "there seems to be some friction between Maurer and Galle but I will do my best to ease matters between them, for a small party like this should run smoothly." Evidently this was smoothed over for after that there is not a word of trouble between any of the four men or any suggestion that they disagreed on policy. Neither is there a suggestion that Knight thought any of the others were doing less than their share of the work or striving less faithfully for the success of the party. But there are some entries the first year to the effect that the Eskimo woman was gloomy and not doing her sewing as rapidly as other Eskimo women with whom Knight was familiar. But the tenor of these comments changes the second year and the farther the diary goes the more frequent are the grateful and even enthusiastic comments upon Ada Blackjack's improvement both in the work she did and in her cheerfulness while doing it. On December 12th, 1922, for instance, Knight says: "The Woman is doing wonderful work and is a great deal better than a year ago." By then she had almost finished a clothing outfit for Crawford and Knight for their journey to Nome and they were evidently very well satisfied with it.

As December advanced bear tracks were more frequently seen but the bears themselves were more elusive than ever. This is partly explained

Last edit 8 days ago by Samara Cary
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by frequent entries of "cloudy", "cloudy and warn," etc. At 72° North Latitude, it is only on a cloudless day that there is daylight enough at this time of year for reading or shooting for four or five hours around noon. On a cloudy day a white thing like a polar bear is very difficult to see.

In the entry for Christmas Eve we have the first suggestion that the party felt the danger of provisions running short, and that an indirect one. "We are celebrating by having an extra hard bread or so apiece. The snow roof was completed to-day excepting the door, and it is nice and comfortable in here to-night." Other entries explain that this long delay in completing the outer house was due to the absence of suitable snow in the vicinity of the camp. They could have hauled snow blocks from a considerable distance on a sledge but apparently the discomfort of an uncovered tent did not seem to them to justify the bother.

We have incorporated into the story in full every mention contained in the diary that relates in any way to the proposed trip to Nome. On December 25th the subject comes up again. "I finished the complete set of dog harness for the trip and Crawford is busy making ridge-pole and upright for the tent" - doubtless the tent which they intended to carry with them to use if they had to camp where there was insufficient snow for building a snowhouse. The next day, "Crawford working on the tent and I brought the sled indoors and made several repairs on it. Hope to finish it to-morrow. Snowing hard, so the trappers stayed in camp to-day." Before that time the diary tells us almost every day that two or three of the boys were out tending traps. Sometimes they came in with foxes and sometimes only with the reports of bear tracks and fox tracks seen.

On December 27th, "The sled and tent in good shape and all that is left for us to do is to get our outfit together. We would like to get started soon but the ground is covered with about six inches of floury snow and

Last edit 8 days ago by Samara Cary
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