Jim Baker - Mountain Man
Jim Baker 1818-1898
|"Jim Baker," illustration for A Tramp Abroad, 1880|
There was a value or purpose, however, to wiping the grease and other substances on the clothing. David Lavender in Bent's Fort described the trapper's clothing:
"Down to his shoulders hung the hunter's hair, covered with a felt hat or perhaps the hood of a capote. He liked wool clothing, for it would not shrink as it dried and wake him, when he dozed beside the fire, by agonizingly squeezing his limbs. But wool soon wore out and he then clad himself in leather, burdensomely heavy to wear, fringed on the seams with the familiar thongs which were partly to decorate but most utilitarian, to let rain drip off the garment rather than soak in, and to furnish material for mending. Further waterproofing was added by wiping butcher and eating knifes on the garments until they were black and shiny with grease. Upper garments might be pull-over type or cut like a coat, the buttonless edges folded over and clinched into place with a belt. No underclothes were worn, just breechclout. In extreme cold a Hudson's Bay blanket or a buffulo robe was draped Indian-wise over the entire costume."
You may call a jay a bird. Well, so he is, in a measure—because he's got feathers on him, and don't belong to no church, perhaps; but otherwise he is just as much a human as you be. And I'll tell you for why. A jay's gifts, and instincts, and feelings, and interests, cover the whole ground. A jay hasn't got any more principle than a Congressman. A jay will lie, a jay will steal, a jay will deceive, a jay will betray; and four times out of five, a jay will go back on his solemnest promise. The sacredness of an obligation is a thing which you can't cram into no blue-jay's head.