Saskatchewan and the Rocky Mountains
This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1875 edition. Excerpt: ...in what seemed a scarcely possible attitude. ' The men were busy to-day in mending their moccasins. These soft shoes leather socks one might call them are very comfortable in dry, hot weather, but moisture soaks through them in an instant, and, though they do admirably for level ground, I find them slippery on the hill, and no protection against stones and thorns. When the weather is cold they are bad wear for horseback, as one's feet get chilled in the stirrups. But for a pair of nailed shooting-boots, I could not have got along at all in the mountains, which are more covered with sharp-stones than any ground I have seen in Scotland. Even my men, accustomed to nothing but moccasins, are constantly bruising and cutting their feet; they sometimes wear out a new pair of soles in a few hours. ' The best moccasins are made of moose leather: red-deer (wapiti) is very soft, but too thin; buffalo is exceedingly poor both in look and quality. They are generally made in three pieces; one forming the slipper that encloses the foot; another covering the instep, running upwards in a tongue over the front of the ankle, and finished in a semi-oval at the lower end; the third wrapping round the ankle, concealing the upper part of the second piece, and tied sandal-fashion with a strip of thin leather passed through eyelets round the heel. The part that comes over the instep is usually covered with red, blue, or white cloth, and ornamented with embroidery in beads or dyed horse-hair. In Eed River this part is made much larger, and lower over the foot, than in Saskatchewan; generally, also, the toe is less pointed, and the ankle-covering less high. ' The embroidering of men's moccasins with flower patterns is not to be commended, it has a tawdry, effeminate...
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