Friday, January 5, 2018

The Adventures of Captain Bonneville

[In response to Scouts who inform him that a mountain pass is too treacherous to navigate.]

“My friends, I have seen the pass, and have listened to your words; you have little hearts. When troubles and dangers lie in your way, you turn your backs. That is not the way with my nation. When great obstacles present, and threaten to keep them back, their hearts swell, and they push forward. They love to conquer difficulties.

Early American author, Washington Irving, of Ichabod Crane fame, became an acquaintance of the explorer Captain James Bonneville. Bonneville had recently made a long trek West discovering Yosemite and other wonders before winding up at the Bonneville Salt Flats.

The story is all purportedly true, and most likely much of it is, but one can feel Irving's narrative hand here and there, but that is all forgiven as the adventure itself most likely required no touch-up. The enormity of the task and accomplishment is stupendous enough. 

A fine read for Western history aficionados, adventurers at heart, and devotees of Irving.

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