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Grandfather, years later, related to me about this visit to Jericho.


“My first two days went as planned. This put me at Port Ewen were I turned directly westward and into the Katskill Mountains. On that third morning I was greeted by a drizzle that continued throughout the day. By evening the drizzle had turned into a steady rain. Being unfamiliar with my surroundings I decided to stop well before nightfall. I studied my map and found that I was near the juncture of the Esopus and Bushkill Creeks.”


This meant that Grandfather had travelled about twenty-five miles on that third day. His excellent progress was probably attributable to the fact the there were some well used paths west of Port Ewen. Today’s maps would place him somewhere near the village of Big Indian.


He remained fairly dry because of the waxed rain cloak that Grandmother had made for him. His leather boots had been properly rubbed with lard from a pig that had recently been boiled and pickled. Those oily boots kept his feet dry throughout that third day.


On his fourth day Grandfather covered twenty-four miles. His trip took him from present day Big Indian to where Andes is now located. “I knew my location,” Grandfather related to me, “because my map clearly showed the Tremperkill River. I thanked God for His Light that shone from the rare cabins. These were built by the fearless men who had already started settling here and there. These men kept me on the correct path and reinforced my convictions of God and my map.”


Grandfather was informed by these men that his fifth day would be divided by two legs of the trip.


The first leg would end at the West Branch of the Delaware River. There he would find a good fording place that would take him from the east shore to a large island. Then from this island there was another good fording place that allowed him to safely find the west shore.


The second leg would be fairly easy if he followed the shore of the Delaware to where Walton is now located. That fifth day he covered another twenty-five miles and was pleased to find a pioneer who offered him a place to sleep. It was inside and on the floor. However it was near the fireplace and Grandfathers bones had been aching from the dampness and cold. He was pleased.


© wtomosky