UP BRUCE AND HURON WAY 235
Even oak timber was unsaleable here then. Some of the finest oak that ever grew was split into rails to make snake-fences, and the timber was still sound as a bell fifty years later. Other equally good oak was rolled into log-heaps and burned. Those logs to-day would be worth more than the cleared farms on which they were burned. To give you an idea of how scarce money then was I may mention one incident. An Indian offered the entire carcass of a deer he had shot for a dollar, but there was not a dollar between our place and the town-line to make the purchase.
"Yes, deer were plentiful then. I have seen five on our farm at one time. Wolves were numerous, too, and once a pack of these brutes kept the Gamble boys prisoners all night in a bush where they had been making sugar.
"Two acres of the bush had been thinned out before we went on our place, but the shanty was without a door, and a hole in the roof, besides serving for a chimney, furnished the only sun-light. There was not a nail or piece of metal in the whole structure. Some of the cabins in the neighbourhood were so built that oxen could haul logs right up to the fireplace.
"The family bed in the first cabin was provided by boring holes in one of the wall logs, driving stakes in these supported by posts at the outer end, and laying on top slabs split from basswood with the smooth side up. As the family increased the bed was widened.
"In the first ten years, although wheat was sown year after year, few settlers produced enough for their own bread. The grain would