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Posts Tagged ‘canoe’

Can You Help Us with Darkwater (formerly Darky) Lake?

Monday, April 30th, 2012
submitted by: Bob Evans

Darkwater Lake has two sites, both near the south end of the lake.  One is on the west shore and the other on the east shore.  While the images on both sites on Darkwater Lake can be fairly easily seen, there is evidence that the site has been repainted since the original images were painted on the cliff.  We discussed evidence for repainting in the Northwoods Pictograph Bulletin for Darkwater Lake.  We would like to find photographs taken decades ago to compare the images  across time.

Photos would only be of interest if they were taken at least in or before the 1950’s.  Not only would we like to see if there is evidence or repainting but images on this site appear to be of different time periods, or perhaps to have been painted with different pigment or binding agents.  Images that are very bright right next to ones that can hardly be seen bring this question to mind.

If you have in your family photo albums or old records, old photos of this site we would like to hear from you.  If you are aware of people who might have paddled this area prior to the 50’s we would like to know how to contact them.  If you have any of this information, please contact us at info@northwoodsmemoriesmmp.com  or call us at 405-721-6474

Thanks.

Can You Help Us With the Site On the West Side of the Entrance to Kawa Bay, Kawnipi Lake?

Tuesday, April 24th, 2012
submitted by: Bob Evans

On the west side of the entrance to Kawa Bay from the main body of Kawnipi Lake, there is a site containing two very faded images.  One is a canoe and the other is a four legged animal, probably a Lynx.  We have found those images and visited them many times.  They are on a surface of rock that runs somewhat north and south.

BUT what we need is very specific and not related to those images.  Just to the south of these two images and on a rock surface running roughly east and west (i.e. “just around the corner” from the two images) and distanced from the known two images by ten feet or so is a flat rock surface with some erosion patterns on it.   These erosion patterns are due to some rock surface that has been removed leaving a much lighter color of rock showing.

We are looking for photographs of this surface taken perhaps a decade or more ago.  One probably would not photograph this surface, but if a photograph of the two known images was taken from some distance away, it might also show the surface about which we are inquiring.  So, if you have photographed this surface, or if you photographed any surfaces in the area while looking for the two known pictographs, you might have the surface we seek in your photos.

The bright white erosion areas are easliy seen.  If you have photographed these areas and see any of these bright white areas on a light tan surface would you contact us at  info@northwoodsmemoriesmmp.com   or phone us at 405-721-6474.

Thanks

Can You Help Us With the Jordan Narrows Sites

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012
submitted by: Bob Evans

The Jordan Narrows sites are on the north side of the channel between Jordan Lake and Ima Lake.  There are reports of as many as three panels of pictographs.  On our several trips to the site we have searched inch by inch and taken numerous photos of areas where red pigments can be seen.  We have subjected those photos to extensive photo analysis attempting to show the images.  We are certain we have found two panels and possibly a third but the third is not conclusive.

 

But even with photo analysis, we have not been able to conclusively demonstrate individual images clearly.  There are many reports of specific images but we have not been able to verify any of them.

We have spoken with a number of outfitters and long-time paddlers who viewed this site decades ago and several have said that the images were quite clear as recently as 30 to 40 years ago.  But none of the folks with whom we have spoken have taken photos or made drawings.

So we need help.  If you have photos taken decades ago or know of folks who might know of people who might have photos or drawings of these images, please help us with that information.   email info@northwoodsmemoriesmmp.com  or call 405-721-6474.

Thanks

Help us with the Namakan Narrows Site.

Tuesday, April 17th, 2012
submitted by: Bob Evans

The NamakanNarrows site is fascinating.  It has white images in addition to red ones.  It has a large number of images.  In spite of easy access and many reports, we found two hand  prints that to our knowledge have never been mentioned before.

But the most interesting part of the site is the story of the missing rock.   Dewdney, in his book Indian Rock Paintings of the Great Lakes, describes the site.  On page 41 Dewdney states:

“At Arthur Pohlman’s place I stared in undisguised amazement at a slab of rock from the Namakan site leaning against the wall of his garage:  painted on it a white moose and a red fish-like form.  Pohlman and his brother-in-law, Dr. J. A. Bolz, author of Portage into the Past, had found the 100-pound slab in imminent danger of falling into the water, had rescued it, and were only too happy to accept my offer to deliver it to the Royal Ontario Museum.  There the Namakan Stone now rests.”

We purchased a high resolution photo and the rights to print that photo for the Northwoods Pictographs bulletin about the Namakan Narrows site and the King Williams Narrows site.   In processing that photograph we found other images on the rock not described in the Dewdney account.  Those images are detailed in the Northwoods Pictographs bulletin.

We found in the Ridley Library at French Lake in Quetico, a photo taken very close up of the rock when it was still in place on the cliff.  However, the photo shows very little of the surrounding rock.  From the photos we have and from our visits to the sites we cannot determine with accuracy exactly where on the cliff the fallen rock was located.  Dewdney has a drawing in his book locating the rock just to the left of the white drum and drum stick currently in situ.  But there are intriguing questions. 

If Dewdney first saw the rock in Pohlman’s garage, what information told him the location on the cliff?  If Pohlman and Bolz found it ” in imminent danger of falling into the water” how did they know its location on the cliff other than concluding that it fell directly down from above?  Could it have moved sideways when falling along the rocks on the surface?

So here is the help we need from you:  Dewdney published in 1962.  Does anyone have a photo or photos taken prior to that time that shows the rock with its white moose still on the cliff.  Additionally, do you have a photo that shows enough of the cliff to determine the exact location of the fallen rock on the cliff?  If so, or if you know someone who might have taken early photos in that area, will you please contact us.  email  info@northwoodsmemoriesmmp.com or call 405-721-6474.

Thanks.  We will aknowledge  you!!

Looking for Pictograph Help

Tuesday, April 17th, 2012
submitted by: Bob Evans

Progress on the book is being made, but slowly.  Some image processing in black and white is difficult.  When images are specific, such as a canoe, or a cross, or a figure, we are able to select the red image from the background, change it to B&W and then do any one of a number of things to make it easily visible.  In many cases, however, images are abstract and the exact form of the image is not obvious.  While we want to show these images, they cannot be easily lifted from the background and showing them in place is difficult.  But we are persevering and getting better.

In the mean time we are going to try an additional approach.  Many of the unclear images seen now, and in the twenty-five or so years we have been studying them, were once much more clear.  In the course of our work we have visited with many paddlers who viewed a site thirty or forty years ago when it was much more clear than now.

So we are going to ask you, our readers, to help us.  Following will be a series of posts about specific sites where we will describe sites or parts of sites where information in the form of photographs may have been recorded many decades ago.  If you have any of this information or old photos, or know of those who might, please contact us.  While we are constantly searching the net for more information, you may know of references with old photos or diagrams about which we are not aware.   We will, of course, recognize the sources of the information when we publish.

So please read the posts about what we would like to locate and help us out if you can.

Designing the Format is a Challenge

Tuesday, September 6th, 2011
submitted by: Bob Evans

While much text has been written for the 20 Northwoods Pictograph bulletins currently in print, and much photo image processing has been done for the book. the hardest and most difficult part of writing the book is getting it all formatted.  Having never had the experience of writing a book before, we accepted the advice of one of the designers at Fisher Publishing and bought a copy of Adobe InDesign.  This software is especially for working in print media.

We have used the software in producing each of the Northwoods Pictograph bulletins, and now I am using it to format the book.  Among the very laborious tasks in writing a book are things like putting together the Table of Contents, the List of Maps, the List of figures, and the index.  Given that the book will probably not be written from page one to the end page, as chapters are written, and put into order, and shuffled around as the book develops, the pagination must keep up.  Features in InDesign allow one to structure the files to automatically keep up with the page numbering.  Formatting to do the tasks listed above is also possible.

We are now nearly finished with formatting all of these parameters.  This will enable us to write a chapter, and by the way there will be a separate chapter for each lake that has one or more pictograph sites, and fit it into the book file.  Automatically the pagination, tables, and index will all be updated.  Spending the necessary time to format all of this will save tremendous amounts of time and reduce the possibility of errors in the final book.  We have nearly completed this part of the task

We anticipate we will be beginning polishing the chapters and begin to fit them into the book file next week.   We will keep you posted.

A wonderful experience at the Beaverhouse pictograph site.

Monday, August 15th, 2011
submitted by: Bob Evans

Early last July we made a trip to the Beaverhouse pictograph site.  We had been there several times before.  But this trip was special.  As many of you know we made the commitment six years ago to revisit every pictograph site we had visited in the last few decades and to visit every known site we had not visited.  During the course of that incredible challenge, we have met some wonderful people who are interested in pictographs and the culture and religion of the people who put them there.  A few years ago we made contact with Jon Nelson and his wife Marie.  They were rangers in Quetico, first at the Beaverhouse entry and then at Cache Bay and finally at Prairie Portage.  After leaving the Ranger position, Jon reentered graduate school, completed a master’s degree in archaeology, and worked as an archaeologist in Quetico for some time.  He recently published an incredible book, Quetico: Near to Nature’s Heart.  That book is reviewed in an earlier post here.

Jon put me in contact with Glenn Nolan, who was also a Ranger at the Beaverhouse entry some time ago.  Glenn is Native American.  He first reported the pictograph image at the Beaverhouse site that is up high on the cliff and is multicolored.   It is a white and red image of a caribou.  When we first visited this site, we did not find the image.  On corresponding with Jon, he told me of conversations with Glenn that resulted in Edwina and I meeting up with Glenn and his wife, and Jon and his son and daughter-in-law at the Beaverhouse site.  (more…)

A New Service on Our Website: Canoe Country Encyclopedia

Thursday, April 14th, 2011
submitted by: Bob Evans

News Flash: We are announcing a new service on our website: Canoe Country Encyclopedia.
For about 35 years we have been taking pictures in Quetico and the Boundary Waters Canoe Area and for nearly 20 years we have been video taping in Canoe Country. We are now adding a section to our website that will be in encyclopedic form that will use a large number of carefully edited video clips, audio segments, and photographs. We are also expanding this multimedia approach to current pages of our website. Extensive cross referenced links will help you move around our site to gain the maximum possible information.
The initial page of the Encyclopedia will be uploaded in a few days and will be the starting point. As soon as it is on line and tested, we will begin formatting it into pages for ease of reference in anticipation of its rapid growth into many hundreds of entries.
Have you ever wondered what the Ranger Cabin on Kahshahpiwi Lake looked like before it was burned? Would you like to show others what the “bathtub” in Lousia Falls looks like? When you talk to your friends about what a portage is like do they look back at you with a blank stare? Well now you can show them short clips of some of the portages you have carried your canoe and pack over.
If you have never been to Canoe Country but are contemplating a trip you can scan the encyclopedia to learn about the area. If you have made a trip or two, you can learn about other areas and skills, or show your friends and family what your trip was like. If you are a long term paddler in Canoe Country, we hope you will be able to scan through the entries to find clips or photos of that bring back wonderful Northwoods Memories.
Join us in trying out the new Northwoods Memories Canoe Country Encyclopedia. We will appreciate your suggestions and comments here on the blog about the new entry.

“Reading Rock Art” by Grace Rajnovich

Saturday, April 24th, 2010
submitted by: Bob Evans

The complete title to the book is “Reading Rock Art:  Interpreting The Indian Rock Paintings Of The Canadian Shield.”  It is an excellent resource for people wanting casual reading to learn more about the pictographs of canoe country but it is also a scholarly work with an excellent and extensive bibliography for those who want more intensive study of this subject.  We have used both the text and the bibliographic references extensively in our research into the Quetico and Boundary Waters pictograph sites.  This book is cited as a reference in nearly all of our publications.  The Northwoods Pictograph series of informational bulletins for use in the field (see pictograph pages on our website)  contains extensively referenced work by Dr. Rajnovich.

Grace Rajnovich is an archaeologist who spent fourteen years in field research before writing this excellent book.  Her academic preparation (B.A. from  York University, M.A. in English from University of Toronto, M.A. in Anthropology from University of Manitoba, and Ph.D. in Anthropology from Michigan State University) is excellent, but don’t get the idea that this is a hard-to-read book written in academic jargon.  Her well-rounded approach to the content not only presents interpretations of many figures found on the rocks of the Canadian Shield, but weaves the figures and their meanings into an overall discussion of the culture and religious practice of the Native Americans who painted these messages on the rocks.  (more…)

Our Canoecopia Presentation

Sunday, January 31st, 2010
submitted by: Bob Evans

We are excited that we have been notified by the Rutabaga staff that we have had our presentation proposal accepted for Canoecopia 2010.  We will be presenting at 4:30 on Saturday March 13.   

As you know, we started three years ago revisiting every pictograph site in canoe country that we have visited in the last 20 + years of paddling, and visiting the remaining known sites not visited.  Our goal was to produce a complete and accurate record of every known pictograph site in canoe country.  Out of this project has come the Northwoods Pictograph bulletin series and much more. 

As many of you also know, in the course of this study, we have been notified of some sites about which we did not know.  On visiting these we have found some are probably authentic and we also have found two to date that very probably are not authentic.  We have found images at some sites that we have not seen previously reported, often using photo analysis techniques.  We also have found some images where authenticity is not clear.  And we have corrected some long held and incorrect information on the locations of some sites.

So our proposal was to present the most interesting of the new sites visited, authentic or not.  We are also presenting some very new information about some very old and well known sites.  In the presentation we will explain some of the photo analysis techniques used to evaluate images, discover images, and make images more easily understandable.  Check out Canoecopia at  www.rutabaga.com/canoecopia

For all of you attending Canoecopia 2010, please come by our presentation.  We would love to see you.  In addition, we will be on the Canoecopia floor throughout the conference wearing easily recognizable shirts.  Please stop us to say “hi” and visit.  We are looking forward to meeting each one of you.