Fort Defiance

Previously:

Inspector MacIntyre detailed Constable Mule Deerslayer to remain behind with O’Reilly to guard the prisoners and arranged for a jail of sorts in one of the buildings in the town adjacent to the way station. Sergeant Yatkov would serve as the engineer of the NWNP train until they reached Brandon, Manitoba, where an engineer & fireman would meet the train, “When we get to Brandon, Susie, we’ll split up. You and your folks will proceed overland to a fur post in the mountains called Fort Defiance. There you’ll make friends with the American fur traders.”

About the same time—at “Fort Defiance”… Someone they already knew—and who knew them was outside the fort—Johann Schwartzkopf—the ancestor of Mille Schwartzkopf Gamboge—and who gave them so much trouble in 1873 Grand Marais.

Things could be worse—right?

Season 8—Chapter 6—O Canada—Episode 8:

Continuing our story—at “Fort Defiance” three weeks later… Johann Schwartzkopf was outside the “fort,” which in fact, was not a fort, but a stockade around a fur-trading post that now, under Schwartzkopf’s control, operated as a whiskey-trading post, trading whiskey for furs with First Nation Indian people.

Schwartzkopf and associates at Fort Defiance

Johann Schwartzkopf was outside the “fort,”…

Shortly after his rather abrupt departure from the Grand Marais/Moosehead County area, Schwartzkopf made his way into Canada and eventually hooked up with whiskey traders out of Montana near Medicine Hat, Alberta. With his glib tongue & remarkable ability at prevarication, he soon became their leader—leading them into the mountains with several wagons loaded with barrels of cheap rot-gut whiskey. Johann was pleased to discover there was no Canadian counterpart to the gunslinging peace officers of the United States and he figured he could make enough money to eventually slither back home—a wealthy man.

The demand for beaver pelts (originally to be made into beaver felt for various types of hats) had already waned from the glory days of the last century, but there remained just enough demand for jackets and coats made from the pelts to enable traders to earn a significant sum of money—knowing this, Schwartzkopf planned on getting what he could, while he could and then returning to the States.

We need more help, boss. Them fellers operating north of here are gettin’ frisky—I heard some talk about them coming here to put us outa business.”

I’ve already put the word out that we need some more guns, and we have some coming with those mountie horses we got coming on the train.”

You heard from them fellers?”

A coupla weeks ago when they stole the train, they sent a telegraph message from the station—the stationmaster earned his pay that night.”

Meanwhile—ten miles away on the trail… “Wow!”

Ten miles away on the trail

“Wow!”

It sure is beautiful, Susan,” Boomer agreed.

To be Continued…

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About Jack Boardman

Just a little bit of a Curmudgeon.
This entry was posted in Pioneer Canada, Season 8, Season 8—Chapter 6—O Canada and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Fort Defiance

  1. Chris Shouse says:

    What a beautiful scene. I am glad I can be part of it. It really is breathtaking 🙂

    Like

  2. sgtmajcarl says:

    WOW!!! Now THAT’S a big change I didn’t expect—a three week advance in time and into the mountains! 😀

    Like

  3. Sarah Cooper says:

    Wow!! That is GORGEOUS! Can we stop for a bit and let me wander around with my camera?

    Like

  4. Yes, gorgeous is right!! BUT, did I hear mention of frisky fellas??

    Like

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