Previous Pioneers of Ontario (1923) Next

 

144   THE PIONEERS OF OLD ONTARIO

his wound. "It seemed almost cruel to kill the animal under such circumstances," said Mr. McFadyen in describing the adventure to a friend. "But when the excitement of the chase was on, and I remembered the havoc wrought by the black-coated enemy, I did not stop to think of this, and a second shot finished the business."

Sometimes the hunter found himself hunted. One Sunday, as Mr. McFadyen was on his way to church, he saw a bear and two cubs in the oat field. The old bear ran off and Mr. Mc-Fadyen tried to catch one of the cubs, but he was glad to abandon the effort when he found mother bruin after him. On another occasion Colin McLachlin, a neighbour, shot and wounded a bear. When he endeavoured to dispatch the animal with an axe, the bear knocked the axe to one side and grabbed McLachlin's thigh. A brother, who fortunately happened to be present, then seized the axe and killed the bear with a stroke. But even in death the animal held on, and it was necessary to pry the brute's jaws apart before the thigh on which they had fastened could be released.

A little thing like lacerated flesh did not count in those days. People were inured to pain and all were qualified to render first aid to the wounded. Once, when a neighbour's head had been laid open with an axe, Mr. McFadyen him-self sheared away the hair and patched up the wound.

On another occasion a settler was so badly frozen that a number of his fingers had to be amputated. A doctor from Newmarket was


Previous Pioneers of Ontario (1923) Next