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A New Capot…coming soon

I have a LARGE blanket I got recently from Jim Kimpel with a nice dark indigo stripe at each end. I am soon going to be cutting into it to make a new capot to replace my new one I made last year and now sold off this summer. I am aiming for a typical blanket capot of the 1790s+. I have been looking through a lot of images of capots from 1780-1860 and decided to share some of these images now instead of waiting until I finish...

Hunting, Trapping, and 2 Journals

Since writing my article on Euro-American trapping and hunting in the Great Lakes, I have been reading and rereading more journals with this idea in mind. About 6 months ago, I was rereading Michel Curot’s journal from 1803-4 and found some gems. I was especially excited since Curot was a trader on the Yellow River in WISCONSIN. This was truly local info and not the more Northwestern stuff that I typically find more of...

Gerstell on Traps

As trapping season approaches and I think historic traps more and more; I ordered a copy of The Steel Trap in North America by Richard Gerstell on Inter Library Loan. I have done this before, but there is so much in this book and it covers the total history through North America which is immense and much of it is beyond my area of interest. I decided, for my own records and to make the book more digestible for what I do, to...

Hand dags or dagues… this is a knife!

An interesting knife that comes out of the fur trade is the “hand dag.” Often this knife is considered a late western fur trade knife, but it dates back to the French regime and was a knife that was perhaps truly a WISCONSIN knife. Although dag, is short for dagger; it is most likely an Anglicization of the French “dague.” This is especially evident in the fact that some British era fur trade lists and journals still...

Grand Portage Rendezvous

Summer is nearly over and there are a number of things that I am itching to blog about, but for the first new posting… I would like to share some images of us at the Great Carrying Place – Grand Portage. Unfortunately, I did not write the correct date on the calendar for the Madeline Island event that I was contracted to attend and that I LOVE. Due to this, we missed the event (a blessing in disguise as our oldest...