The story of Nathaniel McHorney's 1901 trip to Ecuador.

Archive for July, 2011

February 1st, 1901

The page for Friday, February 1st says:

Arose 6 a.m. At work in office 7:10 a.m.
until 11 a.m. 11:30 to 4:30 p.m.
and its a hard task too, going at
books and balances, 6 months back.
Am getting there though - ??
Have thought of missing my Holy
Communion on the 1st Friday - The
day of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
Talked with D.C.S. on religion. He is a
true catholic.
Rain again today - am tired.
C.G.F. at office 45 minutes looking
over ?afes?. Surprised that Mr. D.C.S. had
had all this to do.
One month nearer to my Anna.
Mrs. C.G.F. promised me some views taken
by her on our trip here.
Meisner talking much - no money - no
food for the men. Mine will not pay.
Grade should be heavier. Discouraging
No clean up of Boqueron - Fiesta tomorrow.
Candlemas Day to be observed including
Sunday. One week gone. Not an
invitation to spend an evening with C.G.F.
Lack of feeling - Pompeo and others
changing a prayers tonight. Edifying.

(as always, you can click on the image to get a larger view) 


Questions and comments:

  • Candlemas Day is February 2nd.
  • I don’t know what C.G.F. was looking over in the office.
  • “Not an invitation” seems wrong, but that’s what it looks like to me.

January 31st, 1901

The page for Thursday, January 31st says:

Arose 5:30 A.M. Sun shining. Office 6:30 A.M.
"Jan 30 - Dreamed of my wife Sarah. Mrs.
Annie Robinson, also, that, Mrs. Wells and
Wm Huston separated. Said I was glad to
know it"
Jan 31 - Dreaming of my Anna last night. pleasantly
too. Fr. Bessano on the way to preach at Aunt Christy's
funeral - he had converted her to the catholic faith.
Anna's family I thought returned to J.C. Bert
started in as a baker. Anna in my arms as I
aroused her 1:30 A.M. Said out my greeting her with XXXXX
"Mac this is like old times"
Started at work on books 7 a.m. until
11 A.M. 11:30 until 1:30 hard work too.
D.C.S & C.G.F family returned from the
photographing of Boqueron, Boys says the
Mrs & Miss have lots of pluck - Talk with
D.C.S 2 hours - go home read spiritual
works for 1/2 hour. Write a letter to
John Ryan of Hoboken, N.J.
Expect to clean up Boqueron Saturday. have
night shift working - men superstitious and
refuse. Boy found piece of gold quartz.
After proper meditation to bed.
No cargo yet - River high.

(as always, you can click on the image to get a larger view) 

Questions and comments (lots and lots here):

  • His wife Sarah (Wademan) Hchorney, died in 1897 (I’m pretty sure).
  • I don’t know who Mrs. Annie Robinson is.
  • Mrs. Wells (aka Anna Marie [HcHorney] Wells, his widowed sister) married Wm Huston. I don’t have any evidence that they separated; I believed they remained together until she died in 1947. In fact, I found a William and Anna Huston together in the 1920 census.
  • In this entry, I’m pretty sure that Anna is Anna Lauterbach, who Nathaniel would marry in November 1901.
  • Fr. Bessano?
  • I have not been able to figure out who “Aunt Christy” would have been referring to.
  • Bert could be Berthold Joseph Lauterbach (b 1866) 0r Richard Berthold Lauterbach (b 1880) both brothers of Anna Lauterbach (or some other Bert)
  • John Ryan?
  • Anna’s family _returned_ to Jersey City? I didn’t know they had left until after Nathaniel’s marriage, when Nathaniel, Anna, and members of both their families moved to San Diego. However, if the Lauterbachs did go to San Diego during early 1901, it would make the entry about Dulzura on the 14th of January make sense.

January 30th, 1901

The page for Wednesday, January 30th says:

Arose at 6 am  Office 7 a.m.
"Mrs C.G.F suggests that I wrote to S. A. Coats
concerning the gold the guide took from
the mud on his heel on his trip with me to
Sajado Mine, on Monday. Evident C.G.F
repeated the story. This was at last night's
supper. I remember the oft-told story of
gold shavings at stakes when surveys were
first made! (Tuesday, January 29th)"
My day spent working in office 7 hours
Ready to begin August entries on the books
Talk with D.C.S. he has written for G.G.A?
Ed Meisner comes to my "Casa" at night.
Talks about "La Plata" (money). Knows 20
ment in need of their salary to send to
their wives and families at P. de. O _ other
places. Tells me 462 ft  head of water
at entrance of pipe at Quasamambi
bridge from the bulkhead - e.g. highest
and lowest points. care should be taken
not to rush water through. Sajado Boyar  (200 ft to sq inch)
He has a salXXXX W 6th St. 1 1/2 blocks from
Market. What is C.G.F's business.  Rain 3 inches
Truly a country without chimneys
the houses. Boy 3 hours in tracing
fixing up Camera. Boqueron to clean
Saturday. We are all to go over.
No canoes up yet - River high.
(as always, you can click on the image to get a larger view) 

Questions and comments:

  • S.A. Coates was one of the members of Plata de Oro Mining company. He was mentioned in a 1897 news article about the company.
  • I don’t know what the word that starts with “Sal” is (7th to last line)
  • [Aug 05] Corrected the name of the mine to “Quasamambi”

January 29th, 1901

The page for Tuesday, January 29th says:

Arose 6 a.m. Coffee at 7 a.m. Waiting for
D.C.S. Put to work in office all day.
Arranging lettres for the past year.
Accounts only written up to July 31
Quit work 4:30 p.m. 9 hours work
Boy making tracing of contour map.
C.G.F. works 1/2 hour in office
Bad slide in Boqureon last night.
10:30 p.m. - one man bruised much.
Monitor lost in debris - Mackenzie
hard at work to make a clean-up.
C.G.F. recalls my attention to the
early days of like happenings and say
"Now you can understand"
Steve Keeper and others try to find out
from me about their wage money due
them. Expect to hear when Mr. C.G.F.
arrived about money. Nothing yet has
been said. I put them off by saying
"Wait until next mail day". Feeling
very unfretful. Learn of a bomb
having been placed under Mr. D.C.S's
house last New Year's night - Fuses
were discovered. Rain - river high.
No cargo - 2 bbls empty - came with
us. Mrs. C.G.F baking for us - good.
Good talk with D.C.S. To bed at 9 p.m.
Rain fall today 2 1/2 inches.
(as always, you can click on the image to get a larger view) 


Questions and comments:

  • “Unfretful” is an odd word – but I don’t know what else it could be.
  • “bbls” is almost certainly “barrels”

January 28th, 1901

The page for Monday, January 28th says:

Mail left today. Hard to secure canoe
Arose at 5 a.m. went to office
See men go to work 6 a.m.
Work in office till 9
Off for Boqueron Mine - Wrote Anna.
Mr Stapleton to meet me a Sajado Mine
at 1 oclock. Reach Boqueron 9:40 See
Mackenkzie working on 8 inch motor
Cue occurred during early morn - 4 men
just escaped with their lives. Not of
importance enough to mention to DCS -
14 men hauling timbers for a re-setting
of a giant in another place. Take break-
fast with him - Shows me sluice boxes 35
of them - under-current or grizzly - walk
thro' Boqueron Tunnel - Sends a boy along
with me to Sajado Mine - 1 hr 10 min walk.
Wait and returm with D.C.S. and C.J.F - stop
again at Boqueron - possibly turn on waiter
tonight. Slide busted 2 head lights. Mine
out of grade. Clean-up in a couple of days.
Distance of 5 or 6 miles walked by me.
Boots too large - feed in bad condition.
Mrs. C.G.F. gives me an excellent cup of tea
on my return at 5 p.m. Wash up and
supper. Now 8 p.m. and ready for bed
Rain and river Santiago high
xxxxxx made a cake - 14 years of age today.
(as always, you can click on the image to get a larger view) 

Questions and comments:

  • “Cue occurred” is probably not right – but I’m not sure what the correct transcription is.
  • There is a “Rio Boqueron” in Ecuador, but it is in the southern part of the country.
  • There’s a smudge on the bottom left corner of the page, obscuring a couple of words.
  • I don’t know whose birthday it is – it would be logical to think of “the boy”, Nathaniel McHorney Jr., but his birthday is in May, and he will be 16 then.
  • I was unable to find any reference to the Sajado (or Dajado) mine, nor the Boqueron mine (or Tunnel)

January 27th, 1901

The page for Sunday, January 27th says:

Read Thomas a' Kempis
Played Phonograph for the natives
Wrote to H.D. McH - a general family
letter - also to Willie McH for to see Sr.
Teresa about Rosaries, etc. G.G.D. letter
mail leaves early tomorrow.
Notified N.Y. office of my arrival.
Promised to go more into detail about
shipments - i.e, later on.
D.C.S tells me to to at the books
tomorrow, and to post up.
Mr & Mrs C.G.F chatty at supper
Many talks about the ?supperten?
We are eating from the Dinner
Service given to Mrs. G.G.F. by the
N.Y Journal for the best arranged
breakfast at the cost of 50 cents.
Strange how and where things
9 p.m. - go to bed. Rain.

(as always, you can click on the image to get a larger view) 

Questions and comments:

  • Thomas a’ Kempis was a medieval Catholic monk and author (see also Jan 13th entry)
  • I can’t tell what word that I wrote as “supperten” is meant to be.
  • “H.D. McH” should be Harry David McHorney (b 18-Aug-1868), Nathaniel’s younger brother.
  • “Willie McH” should be William A. McHorney (b 17-May-1876), another younger brother.

January 26th, 1901

The page for Saturday, January 26th says:

Arise at ringing of bell (triangle)
5:30 A.M. Boy busy all morning
arranging our apartments. Talk
with Ed Mersner, pipe-maker - says
nothing to eat for weeks past. laborers
had an uprising several days ago -
lack of money. cheered him along. his
men had not seen a sucre in months.
Store has plenty corn starch, baking powder,
and pipes. Strange assortment of food, etc.
Much is expected now that Director C.G.F.
is here. Men & women busy buying beef & pork
tho' the new duty has increased all cargo
23% - poor, poor devils of laborers. 50c
a lb for been & pork.
Had a chat with Mr. D.C.S. Sun is shining.
Total cost of my expenses say $25 - gold.
Look over the blacksmith shop.
Give a $5 gold piece to D.C. Stapleton.
Said my stations in the Crucifix given
to me by Fr. Bertrand Monastery
Had a most miserable night for sleep.

(as always, you can click on the image to get a larger view) 

Questions and comments:

  • I couldn’t find any references to a “Bertrand Monastery” and too many references w/o the quotes.
  • I’m pretty sure that Nathaniel wrote “Ed Mersner”, but there are lots of references online to “Ed Meisner”, but I haven’t found any that I can say for sure “that’s him”

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