The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 20, July 1916 - April, 1917 Page: 45
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The Last Expedition of Josiah Gregg 45
saturated by the rain. Space does not permit a full statement
of, nor could our minds comprehend, the suffering these men
underwent as they slowly worked their way through what ap-
peared to be impassable mountains. Many days were spent with-
out food, for in places even game was scarce, and often their
animals had no other food than the leaves af the trees that were
cut down for their use. Several times the little party halted to
consider the question of turning back, but each time the decision
was to move forward, for they believed that once having passed
the mountains they would soon reach the ocean or at any rate
find their progress much easier. But here again they were doomed
to disappointment, for they were but to pass from the rugged
mountains into a labyrinth of a primeval forest. The narrative
The redwood forests through which we had to pass, were more
dense and difficult to penetrate than any before, consequently our
progress was in proportion retarded. Dr. Gregg frequently ex-
pressed a desire to measure the circumference of some of these
giants of the forest, and occasionally called upon some one of us
to assist him. Not being in the most amiable state of mind and
feeling at the time, and having neither ambition to gratify nor
desire to enlighten the curious world, we not infrequently an-
swered his calls with shameful abuse. His obstinate persever-
ance, however, in one or two instances, resulted in success.
Through this forest we could not travel to exceed two miles a
day. The reason for this was the immense quantity of fallen
timber that lay upon the ground in every conceivable shape and
direction, and in many instances piled one upon another so that
the only alternative left was literally to cut our way through.
. . . We were obliged, therefore, constantly to keep two men
ahead with axes, who, as occasion required, would chop off suffi-
cient to construct a sort of a platform by means of which the
animals were driven upon the log and forced to jump off on the
At last after more than four weeks of travel their "ears were
greeted with the welcome sound of the surf rolling and beating
upon the sea-shore." The next morning two of the number pro-
posed to go to the coast in advance of the party. This they did
returning on the evening of the same day "bringing the glad
tidings that they had reached the sea-shore, and that it was not
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 20, July 1916 - April, 1917, periodical, 1917; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101070/m1/51/: accessed May 25, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.