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Iowa Hunting Journal, circa 1871-1874 (transcript)

Iowa Hunting Journal, circa 1871-1874 (transcript)

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The name and background of the author of the journal is unknown, although from the journal one learns that he lives either near or in Charles City, Iowa. Before his occupation while writing the journal (which is unknown), he was in the cattle business for two years with his dog (Old Bull). The occupation of the author at the time of the journal and hunting trip was probably as a store owner or other supply or retail business. There are lists at the beginning and end of the journal listing people, amounts owed, and if they have paid these debts. There is a possibility that after the hunting trip the author and his traveling companions joined the army in northwest Iowa. Towards the end of the journal, the author describes how he and his companions met a group of soldiers from Wisconsin and enjoyed their company so much that they think about joining them after arranging their business in Charles City.

On their journey, the author and his companions travel with horses and at least one dog. The people he mentions in his journal, although never mentioned by their full names, include Friend H, F. H. (probably an abbreviation for Friend H), Old Fur ("as we call him"), The Elder, and Mr. E (possibly the same person as The Elder) and H. The Elder, Old Fur and H are mentioned the most frequently within the journal. The Elder was probably a Reverend since at one point in the journal "rever" is crossed out before he writes "The Elder" and Rev Mr E, very likely the same person as The Elder (since he also mentions an Elder E), is used at least once.
The bulk of the journal contains the author's description of his hunting trip from Charles City to Lost Island Lake, Iowa. There is a possibility that the narrative was written after the hunting trip, since the only date in the narrative portion (Wednesday, March 29) appears before the first entry. In addition, breaks in the narrative occur very infrequently. The dates 1871-1874 were chosen for the creation dates of the journal since there is an 1874 in the list portion of the journal, and a Wednesday, March 29 occurred in the year 1871. Although the descriptions are brief, and there is no explanation for the reason for the hunting trip, the author describes life on the Iowa prairie in the late nineteenth century.
The first pages of the journal contain notes and lists including the measurements of a pelican the author describes in the journal, supplies, and people (their names, amounts owed, and if they have paid). The last few pages also contain listings of supplies and their costs, a few lists of animals and birds along with numbers (presumably the total number they caught and/or killed), and again, as at the beginning, people and amounts owed. Most of the listings at the beginning of the journal are in a different handwriting than the narrative, so most likely these lists were created by his wife.

A digital copy of the orginal journal can be seen: http://www.scribd.com/doc/34598641/Iowa-Hunting-Journal-circa-1871-1874-original

The original journal can be seen in MS 674, Special Collections Department, Iowa State University Library, 403 Parks Library, Ames, Iowa.
The name and background of the author of the journal is unknown, although from the journal one learns that he lives either near or in Charles City, Iowa. Before his occupation while writing the journal (which is unknown), he was in the cattle business for two years with his dog (Old Bull). The occupation of the author at the time of the journal and hunting trip was probably as a store owner or other supply or retail business. There are lists at the beginning and end of the journal listing people, amounts owed, and if they have paid these debts. There is a possibility that after the hunting trip the author and his traveling companions joined the army in northwest Iowa. Towards the end of the journal, the author describes how he and his companions met a group of soldiers from Wisconsin and enjoyed their company so much that they think about joining them after arranging their business in Charles City.

On their journey, the author and his companions travel with horses and at least one dog. The people he mentions in his journal, although never mentioned by their full names, include Friend H, F. H. (probably an abbreviation for Friend H), Old Fur ("as we call him"), The Elder, and Mr. E (possibly the same person as The Elder) and H. The Elder, Old Fur and H are mentioned the most frequently within the journal. The Elder was probably a Reverend since at one point in the journal "rever" is crossed out before he writes "The Elder" and Rev Mr E, very likely the same person as The Elder (since he also mentions an Elder E), is used at least once.
The bulk of the journal contains the author's description of his hunting trip from Charles City to Lost Island Lake, Iowa. There is a possibility that the narrative was written after the hunting trip, since the only date in the narrative portion (Wednesday, March 29) appears before the first entry. In addition, breaks in the narrative occur very infrequently. The dates 1871-1874 were chosen for the creation dates of the journal since there is an 1874 in the list portion of the journal, and a Wednesday, March 29 occurred in the year 1871. Although the descriptions are brief, and there is no explanation for the reason for the hunting trip, the author describes life on the Iowa prairie in the late nineteenth century.
The first pages of the journal contain notes and lists including the measurements of a pelican the author describes in the journal, supplies, and people (their names, amounts owed, and if they have paid). The last few pages also contain listings of supplies and their costs, a few lists of animals and birds along with numbers (presumably the total number they caught and/or killed), and again, as at the beginning, people and amounts owed. Most of the listings at the beginning of the journal are in a different handwriting than the narrative, so most likely these lists were created by his wife.

A digital copy of the orginal journal can be seen: http://www.scribd.com/doc/34598641/Iowa-Hunting-Journal-circa-1871-1874-original

The original journal can be seen in MS 674, Special Collections Department, Iowa State University Library, 403 Parks Library, Ames, Iowa.

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05/24/2012

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Transcription KeyIowa Hunting Journal (MS-647)
Please note:
While putting together the transcription, we tried to include allpunctuation, spellings, use of capital letters, and writing styles the author used in the journal, such as his use of long dashes and lines throughout the text. Each line of thetranscription corresponds to a line in the journal. Page numbers, starting with the backof the front cover, are in brackets at the end of each page's transcription. There are listsand notes at both the beginning and end of the journal; these were scanned but nottranscribed.
Transcription style, marks and symbols:
-------: used in transcription when author uses a line, with no text attached[word?]: used in transcription when it is not entirely clear what the original word is, butthe word in the brackets is our closest guess to the correct word.[word]: a word in brackets without a question mark means we are almost certain wehave the right word, but it is possible we are mistaken[illegible]: a word is illegibleword: a word is crossed out in the text[illegible]: a word is crossed out and illegible[…]: words are smudged or in another way illegible? within a word: substituted for an unclear or smudged letter
[xxx] 
: text in italics within brackets are notes we have inserted, such as the pagenumbers we have assigned to the journal
Abbreviations and our best guess at their corresponding complete words:
Please note: as can be seen below, the author often just uses the first letter of a word.Context usually allows the reader to know what the letter stands for, but some of themore common uses of this type of abbreviation are given below.OC: used for o’clock, sometimes written in capitals, sometimes just one letter iscapitalized, or there may be periods after one or both lettersH: often stands for horses, but sometimes stands for house, and is occasionally usedfor a travelling companion
 
B: often stands for bread or breakfast, sometimes for Buffalo fishB. fish: buffalo fishP: often stands for prairieC.C.: Charles CityC: often used for cityS: used for shoulderPrairie C. or P.C.: prairie chickenSweet 16 or sixteen: nickname he uses to refer to his gun
Some of the odd spellings and their most probable current spellings:
ear: used for errblue: blewAlagona: AlgonaEmmitsburg: EmmetsburgBuffalow: buffaloCrains: cranes
Handwriting style:
“t” is almost always not crossed, but the cross mark is located over a later letter“n” and “m”are sometimes written as flat lines when they come at the end of a word
 
TranscriptionIowa Hunting Journal (MS-647)
[Please see the journal or the scanned version for the lists found before the narrative portion of the journal. Page numbers are not found in the journal itself, but were assigned for ease of use.] 
Wednesday Mar 29packed boat early in themorning Started at6 for the west from C.C.on a Hunting [tour?] shotat a flock of Crains about7 OC. loaded my S. 16with 16 R got several shotsduring the A.m. passedthrough a splendidC. at [10 OC.] H. gotgot a splendid shotand got a P. C. at12 OC. found us hauledup for dinner ona high bluff push throughand our side of thelittle iowa of R. lifehere we unhitchedour team fastened
[page 32] 
them to side of theboat used for a wagonbox gave then suitablefeed and prepairedfor our [own] well fantook our [grain boys?]what was filled withfood sufficient to [last]for a day or two seatedourselves on the sideof the bluff while the

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