By Mrs. Leonidas Hubbard, Junior
Published October 1908
ELLEN VAN DER VOORT HUBBARD
HIS MOTHER, WHOM HE LOVED
HIS FATHER, WHO WAS ONE OF
This book is the result of a determination on my part to complete
Mr. Hubbard's unfinished work, and having done this to set before
the public a plain statement, not only of my own journey, but of
his as well. For this reason I have included the greater part of
Mr. Hubbard's diary, which he kept during the trip, and which it
will be seen is published exactly as he wrote it, and also George
Elson's account of the last few days together, and his own
I hope that this may go some way towards correcting misleading
accounts of Mr. Hubbard's expedition, which have appeared
elsewhere. It is due also to the memory of my husband that I
should here put on record the fact that my journey with its
results - geographical and otherwise - is the only one over this
region recognised by the geographical authorities of America and
The map which is found accompanying this account of the two
journeys sets forth the work I was able to accomplish. It does not
claim to be other than purely pioneer work. I took no observations
for longitude, but obtained a few for latitude, which served as
guiding points in making my map. The controlling points of my
journey [Northwest River post, Lake Michikamau and its outlet, and
the mouth of the George River] were already astronomically fixed.
The route map of the first Hubbard Expedition is from one drawn for
me by George Elson, with the few observations for latitude recorded
by Mr. Hubbard in his diary as guiding points. My husband's maps,
together with other field notes and records, I have not had access
to, as these have never been handed over to me.
Grateful acknowledgment is here made of my indebtedness to Mr.
Herbert L. Bridgman and Mr. Harold T. Ellis for their help and
counsel in my work.
Here, too, I would express my sincere appreciation of the
contribution to the book from Mr. Cabot, who, descendent of the
ancient explorers, is peculiarly well fitted to speak of Labrador.
The great peninsula has been, as he terms it, his "playground," and
by canoe in summer or on snowshoes in winter he has travelled
thousands of miles in the interior, thus placing himself in closest
touch with it.
To Dr. Cluny Macpherson for his generous service I am deeply
To George Elson for his loyal devotion to Mr. Hubbard and myself my
debt of gratitude must ever remain unpaid.
To Dr. James E. C. Sawyer, my beloved pastor, I am indebted for the
title of my book.
MINA BENSON HUBBARD
I. LEONIDAS HUBBARD, JR.
II. SLIPPING AWAY INTO THE WILDERNESS
III. CLIMBING THE RAPIDS
IV. DISASTER WHICH THREATENED DEFEAT
V. TO THE BEND OF THE RIVER
VI. CROSS COUNTRY TO SEAL LAKE WATERS
VII. OFF FOR MICHIRAMAU
VIII. SCARING THE GUIDES
IX. MOUNT HUBBARD AND WINDBOUND LAKE
XI. STORM-BOUND ON MICHIKAMATS
XII. THE MIGRATING CARIBOU
XII. ACROSS THE DIVIDE
XIV. THROUGH THE LAKES OF THE UPPER GEORGE
XV. THE MONTAGNAIS INDIANS
XVI. THE BARREN GROUND PEOPLE
XVII. THE RACE FOR UNGAVA
XVIII. THE RECKONING
DIARY OF LEONIDAS HUBBARD, JR.
NARRATIVE BY GEORGE ELSON
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
Leonidas Hubbard, Jr.
Where Romance Lingers
Deep Ancient Valleys
On Into the Wilderness
The Fierce Nascaupee
The White Man's Burden
Making Canoe Poles
Job Was in His Element
Coming Down the Trail with Packs
On the Trail
In the Heart of the Wilderness
Solitude (Seal Lake)
Skinning the Caribou
Wild Maid Marion
Breakfast on Michikamau
From an Indian Grave
A Bit of the Caribou Country
The Indians' Cache
The Camp on the Hill
A Montagnais Type
The Montagnais Boy
Nascaupees in Skin Dress
Indian Women and Their Rome
With the Nascaupee Women
The Nascaupee Chief and Men
Nascaupee Little Folk
A North Country Mother and Her Little Ones
Shooting the Rapids,
The Arrival at Ungava
A Bit of the Coast
A Rainy Camp
Working Up Shallow Water
Drying Caribou Meat and Mixing Bannocks
Carrying the Canoe Up the Hill on the Portage
In the Nascaupee Valley
A Rough Country
The French Post at Northwest River
Hudson's Bay Company Post as Northwest River
Map of Eastern Labrador showing Route
A WOMAN'S WAY THROUGH UNKOWN LABRADOR
LEONIDAS HUBBARD, JR.
There was an unusual excitement and interest in Mr. Hubbard's face
when he came home one evening in January of 1903.
We had just seated ourselves at the dinner-table, when leaning
forward he handed me a letter to read. It contained the very
pleasing information that we were shortly to receive a, for us,
rather large sum of money. It was good news, but it did not quite
account for Mr. Hubbard's present state of mind, and I looked up
"You see, Wife, it means that I can take my Labrador trip whether
anyone sends me or not," he said triumphantly.
His eyes glowed and darkened and in his voice was the ring of a
great enthusiasm, for he had seen a Vision, and this trip was a
vital part of his dream.
The dream had begun years ago, when a boy lay out under the apple
trees of a quiet farm in Southern Michigan with elbows resting on
the pages of an old school geography, chin in palms and feet in
air. The book was open at the map of Canada, and there on the
other page were pictures of Indians dressed in skins with war
bonnets on their heads; pictures of white hunters also dressed in
skins, paddling bark canoes; winter pictures of dog-teams and
sledges, the driver on his snow-shoes, his long whip in hand.