Friday, 22 June 2012

Fire lighting & Tinder Quotes.

Their grow’s here Large Berch trees…on the Root of the branches of the Said tree, grows Large Knobs of wood of Different form’s, which they style posogan, which posogan is of great service to the Natives, they use it to strike Light to, as we do touch wood… its Substance Resembles Spunge…once Light is Very Difficult to put out…will Glow and Bur’n till Consum’d to ashes and never Blaze.”
~James Isham, Hudson’s Bay, 1743-49

“They employ tree mushrooms very frequently instead of tinder. Those which are taken from the sugar maple are reckoned the best; those of the red maple are next in goodness, and next to them, those of the sugar birch, for want of these, they likewise make use of those which grow on the aspen tree.”
~ Peter Kalm, Canada, 1749

"Maple trees usually have large growths on them, which are cut and dried in the sun, making a sort of touchwood which the Canadians call tondre."
Jolicoeur Charles Bonin,
Memoir of French and Indian War Soldier, 1750's

“…fungus that grows on the outside of the birch-tree…used by all the Indians in those parts for tinder…called by the Northern Indians Jolt-thee, and is known all over the country bordering on Hudson’s Bay by the name of Pesogan…there is another kind…that I think is infinitely preferable to either. This is found in old decayed poplars, and lies in flakes…is always moist when taken from the tree but when dry…takes fire readily from the spark of a steel: but it is much improved by being kept dry in a bag that has contained gunpowder.”
~Samuel Hearne, Northern Canada, 1772

“I said to them…you Fools go to the Birch Trees and get some touchwood,”
~David Thompson, Lake Athabasca, 1790s

“This induced me to resolve not to travel more by land without my gun, powder and shot, steel, spunge and flint, for striking a fire…”
~Patrick Campbell, Canada/New York, 1792

“A Canadian never neglects to have touchwood for his pipe”
~David Thompson, Red Lake River, 1798


Gorges Smythe said...

I've created very few fires by flint and steel; none using fungus. I really should practice up.

Le Loup said...

Good idea Gorges. I always recommend it, even if one is using some modern tool for fire lighting.

Ross Gilmore said...

This is great information. Would you know what these different materials correspond to in today's terms (chaga, amadou, etc)?


Le Loup said...

I will email you Ross.
Regards, Keith.