Fearsome Creatures of the Lumberwoods

This is something I truly, truly love.

Fearsome Creatures of the Lumberwoods, With a Few Desert and Mountain Beasts

Written by William T. Cox • Illustrated by Coert Du Bois • With Latin Classifications by George B. Sudworth
(Washington: Judd & Detweiler, Inc., 1910)

HYPERTEXT EDITION OF THE WHOLE BOOK HERE

A sample of the genius:

In the mountains of Colorado, where in summer the wood are becoming infested with tourist, much uneasiness has been caused by the presence of the slide-rock bolter. This frightful animal lives only in the steepest mountain country where the slopes are greater than 45 degrees. It has an immense head, with small eyes, and a mouth somewhat on the order of a sculpin, running back beyond its ears. The tail consist of a divided flipper, with enormous grab-hooks, which it fastens over the crest of the mountain or ridge, often remaining there motionless for days at a time, watching the gulch for tourists or any other hapless creature that may enter it. At the right moment, after sighting a tourist, it will lift its tail, thus loosening its hold on the mountain, and with its small eyes riveted on the poor unfortunate, and drooling thin skid grease from the corners of its mouth, which greatly accelerates its speed, the bolter comes down like a toboggan, scooping in its victim as it goes, its own impetus carrying it up the next slope, where it again slaps its tail over the ridge and waits. Whole parties of tourists are reported to have been gulped at one scoop by taking parties far back into the hills. The animals is a menace not only to tourist but to the woods as well. Many a draw through spruce-covered slopes has been laid low, the trees being knocked out by the roots or mowed off as by a scythe where the bolter has crashed down through from the peaks above.
          A forest ranger, whose district includes the rough county between Ophir Peaks and the Lizzard Head, conceived the bold idea of decoying a slide-rock bolter to its own destruction. A dummy tourist was rigged up with plaid Norfolk jacket, knee breeches, and a guide book to Colorado. It was then filled full of giant powder and fulminate caps and posted in a conspicuous place, where, sure enough, the next day it attracted the attention of a bolter which had been hanging for days on the slope of Lizzard Head. The resulting explosion flattened half the buildings in Rico, which were never rebuilt, and the surrounding hills fattened flocks of buzzards the rest of the summer.

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This entry was posted in Animals, Art, Books, Comics, Savage Nerdery. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Fearsome Creatures of the Lumberwoods

  1. k- says:

    This is great. And the line “the surrounding hills fattened flocks of buzzards the rest of the summer” is easily the best thing I’ve read all week.

  2. k- says:

    It’s just like in the pp.com days: I can kill a thread before it even begins.

  3. janet5 says:

    I love this. Personally, I am fond of “drooling thin skid grease from the corners of its mouth, which greatly accelerates its speed” – this has got to work as a great punk song lyric, somewhere.

    Steve, you should Wikipediaize this creature. Americans will incorporate it into their little world of Things That Must Exist Because We Saw It On The Internet, along with the endangered Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus.

  4. steve says:

    Don’t sweat it K.

    and Lord only knows it’s getting late
    Your senses are gone so don’t you hesitate
    Move on up the hill, there’s nothing here left to kill
    Throwing your two bit cares down the drain

    etc.

    Yeah for sure I should wikipedia it. Americans are super dumb though right?

    PS anyone other than me and Janet check Todd’s blog? It’s a sham! Hah!

  5. k- says:

    Yeah, I love the fake blog. Especially the comment about Mr WordPress.
    This one is real though: http://www.ubermidget.com
    Well, real-ish.
    It is Todd after all.

  6. Great Southern Steve says:

    Link added to Ubermidget, for what it’s worth. Checked it out and it’s pretty cool.

    I know I have said this before, but it does sadden me to see all of these blogs like that sitting there with 0 comments and so on. Considering the sort of blog that actually gets popular. Stuff white people like? eeesh.

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