Mrs. Merriman and I began to work on her. I laid her across the front end of the boat, and worked her arms and back and got some of the water out of her stomach. After a while, I could see she was beginning to come out of it. Ten or fifteen minutes later she was partly conscious. We wanted to get some place as soon as possible.
There was an Indian house around the bend, but the Indians didn't stay there all the time. They happened to be there this day. We hollered and yelled, and when they saw the pieces of the canoe coming down the river they got into their canoes and salvaged quite a bit of the contents. Mrs. Webster was getting better all the time, so I said to Mac, "If you can get hold of one side of her, and her mother the other, she can help herself enough to get up to the house, while I help salvage the rest of the stuff."
It was a big, long Indian house with two fireplaces in the middle of the room and holes in the roof for smoke to get out. The Indian women, seeing what had happened, had built a fire in the far end. They had no chairs, but there was a board six or eight inches above the floor all around the building which they used for chairs, table, or beds.
When Mr.s Webster got there the Indian squaws hung some blankets in front so she had privacy. Then her mother began to take off her wet clothes. When she got to the union suit, it just would not come off. She struggled with it a while, then asked McCarthy to cut it off with his jack knife. Then they wrapped her in blankets.
McCarthy disappeared and went down to the bank of the river and walked up and down. He knew I would tease him about cutting the underwear off a young woman. I had a hard time to persuade him to come back and eat supper when it was ready. When I came in I saw her wrapped in blankets and poked her in the ribs to tease her. She didn't want me to tease her at all. She had to hold those blankets around her. I looked up and saw the cut underwear hanging on a line. Then Mrs. Merriman told me about Mac cutting it off.
The squaws served us smoked salmon and potatotes and pancakes an inch thick. These are made by stirring the dough quite thick, browning or burning the cake a little on one side, flopping it over and browning it on the other side, then standing it up on edge by the fire to finish baking on the inside.