BOATING AND FISHING,
T. ROBINSON WARREN.
CHARLES SCRIBNER & CO
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1871, by
CHARLES SCRIBNER & CO.
in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington.
Press of ROGERS & SHERWOOD,
94 & 96 Nassau St., N. Y.
THIS BOOK I DEDICATE TO MY THREE BOYS,
JOHN, SCHUYLER, AND KEARNY,
WITH THE HOPE IT WELL LEAD THEM TO THE
CULTIVATION OF MANLY SPORTS.
TO MY BOYS.
BOYS, so you want to be sportsmen, do you?
Well, its a laudable ambition. Now do you know
that there are two words in the English lan-
guage which have no synonym in any other, both
pleasant to the ear, not only of boyhood, but
manhood, too ; the one is the dear old word home,
and the other that vigorous monosyllable sport.
While the French have their jeu, the Spaniards
their juego, and the Germans their spiel, all sig-
nifying a game or play, neither word possesses
the comprehensiveness of the Saxon word which
applies equally to the frolics of the play-ground
and the sterner excitement of the chase. In
proof of this, let me remark that the Parisians,
some time since, determining upon the establish-
ment of a newspaper in the interests of the
sporting community, cast about them for a suit-
able title; it must be short, sharp, expressive.
Was there no fit word or combination of words
in that language so fertile, so luxuriant in idiom?
It seems not, for the proprietors fell back in de-
spair upon the English, and dubbed their new
journal " Le Sport."
This word so noble, yet so simple, has been
prostituted to the basest uses, for as the hypocrite
adopts religion as a cloak for his misdeeds, so the
gambler, the prize-fighter and the jockey strive
to give themselves an air of respectability by the
assumption of the title of "sporting men," but
the pinchbeck is too vulgar not to be easy dis-
tinguishable from the genuine. Bear in mind,
Boys, that there is nothing in the character of
the real sportsman that is inconsistent with that
of the Christian gentleman ; and, also, that sports-
manship does not consist merely in shouldering
a gun, following a dog across a stubble field, or
casting a fly into a shady pool. Do not imagine
that one is born a sportsman and has only to
buy the implements of the trade to become an
expert, for experience will teach you that few
callings require so arduous an apprenticeship,
combining the severe physical training of the
athlete with the intellectual assiduity of the stu-
dent, and that he who attains such perfection
earns a proud position in the ranks of manhood.
Sportsmanship brooks no tampering with na-
ture's laws, no association with vice. A clear eye
and a steady hand can not coexist with the use
of artificial stimulants, nor is self-reliance or
self-control the attribute of the sybarite, the gour-
mand, or the sensualist. The glance along the
gun-barrel must be undimmed and unwavering ;
the grasp upon the tiller must be firm and un-
faltering, and the muscle that wields the paddle
or bends the oar must be of whip-cord and of
As sportsmanship demands the highest physi-
cal development, so does it call for a cultivated
intellect and a practical acquaintanceship with
nature's laws, success in the chase requiring fa-
miliarity with the genus and variety of the game
which is hunted, with its habits and its instincts,
with its food and the circumstances of climate
and of soil producing it.
Mechanical skill, too, to a certain extent, is es-
sential to the sportsman, giving him a thorough
knowledge of, and ability to repair, the imple-
ments of the chase ; in fact he should be an am-
ateur gunsmith, and sufficiently a sailor to fish a
spar, splice a rope, or mend a sail.
Now, Boys, don't turn away in disgust, saying
you don't aspire to perfection, but only want to
shoot moderately well, to be able to work a dog,
or cast a fly like a gentleman; and that as to
sailing your own yacht, your boat-keeper is paid
for doing that. Depend upon it, Boys, that what-
ever is worth doing at all is worth doing well.
and that the pleasure that excellence affords
more than compensates for the labor of its at-
tainment. A true sportsman is independent of
the gunner, who is the necessary and expensive
attendant of the amateur, to whose whim and
caprice he is always subject, or of the sailing
master, who is usually his tyrant ; the gunner
generally reserving the best shooting for himself,
while the sailing master is invariably ready with
some quibble of impending gale or an unfavor-
able tide as an excuse for not getting under way
when it suits his convenience to remain ashore.
Bear in mind that I do not pretend to the title
of Sportsman myself, or even to that of " good
shot;" but, acknowledging to an enthusiastic love
of sport, (which in most of its phases I have en-
joyed in the four quarters of the globe) I think
myself justified in offering you the following sug-
gestions, the result, generally speaking, of my
own personal experience, hoping it may excite a
sufficient interest to induce you to study such
authorities as Audubon, Hawker, Herbert, Scott,
Wilson, Youatt, Eosevelt and others, who, as
naturalists and sportsmen, stand preeminent.
New Brunswick, N. J., July 4, 1871.
I. GUNPOWDER, 13
II. THE GUN, .... ... 18
III. BAY SNIPE SHOOTING, 41
IV. ENGLISH SNIPE, G'6
V. DUCKING, 69
VI. QUAIL, 85
VII. WOODCOCK, 95
VIII. THE DOG, 100
IX. BOAT SAILING Ill
X. FISHING, .139
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
BILL CHAD WICK'S SNIPE FLATS, . . . Frontispiece
THE LOCK, 21
CHADWICK'S GUN HOUSE, 69
A SHORT SPLICE, 121
EYE SPLICE, 122
BOWLINE KNOT, 122
RUNNING BOW-LINE KNOT, '. 123
HITCHING A ROPE, 123
OVER-HAND KNOT, 124
REEF KNOT. , 124
As GUNPOWDER plays a most important role in
sporting matters, suppose that we pause for a
moment and look into its nature and mode of
manufacture. On reflection, you will agree with
me in thinking it not a little strange that although
Gunpowder was possibly known in very remote
ages to the Chinese, and was certainly used in
Europe as early as the 13th century, there should
have been so little improvement made in its qual-
ity since the first invention until a very recent
period ; and this seems especially strange when we
take into consideration that all explosive arms, so
to speak, used for offense and defense, which for
years have exercised the inventive genius of man-
kind, have naturally been dependent on its excel-
lence for success. It is unnecessary to state that
Gunpowder is the result of a combination of sul-
phur, saltpeter and charcoal, and I will hence en-
deavor to give a general outline of its manufacture
in a very few words : Saltpeter, which constitutes
75 per cent, of Gunpowder, is composed of six
equal parts of oxygen, one of nitrogen, and one of
potasium. This salt appears in minute crystals
on the damp ground in India (and indeed in
other countries in limited quantities), is collected
and purified by boiling, and then shipped to
Europe and to this country, and there refined by
various elaborate processes until fitted for use.
The next ingredient is sulphur, which is ob-
tained from volcanic districts, and from iron and
copper pyrites. It is purified by melting and
then ground into powder and filtered through
very fine seives. It ignites at a very low temper-
ature, and by its non-absorbent qualities it ren-
ders powder more durable. The quantity used
is from 9 @ 12 1 per cent. Charcoal is the last in-
gredient, and the woods used in its preparation
are selected with very great care. After carbon-
ization it is thoroughly ground and sifted and is
then ready for use.
The three ingredients are now weighed out in
the following proportions, viz. :
Saltpeter, 75 parts.
Sulphur, 10 parts.
Charcoal, .... - 15 parts.
and, after being mixed, about 50 ft weight is put
into a close box, in which a drum armed with
long teeth rapidly revolves, and the mixture be-
ing perfect it is run into a bag and is termed,
technically, the Green Charge. It is then taken
into the incorporating mill and is put into a huge
iron dish, around which revolve runners weigh-
ing several tons ; this immense pressure and ac-
tion, aided by occasional applications of water,
form the mixture into a compact mass of a gray-
ish hue. The operation lasts many hours, at the
expiration of which the mass becomes in reality
Gunpowder, but is called Mill-cake, and is placed
in receptacles in readiness for the next process,
which consists in taking it to the press-house and
putting it under hydraulic pressure, where the
cake, by very complicated machinery and a pres-
sure of several hundred tons, is compressed with-
in three-fifths of its original bulk. It is then by
another machine again broken into lumps about
as large as a hickory nut. It now goes to the
coming-house or granulating mill, where it is
converted into grains by means of immensely
heavy toothed rollers rapidly revolving ; but it has
still to be glazed in order to overcome its porous-
ness, and is placed in large cylinders, which ro-
tate with great rapidity, and consequently the
grains are driven against each other with exces-
sive force, this action generating a certain heat,
and this heat affects the color which, from a gray-
ish tint, is converted into a glossy black, the
glaze being caused by attrition, and thus the
pores are closed, the surface hardened and the
powder so cleaned " as not to soil the whitest
glove." The foregoing is, of course, but the
faintest and most imperfect description of the
mode of manufacture, but it may excite your in-
terest (and I hope it will) sufficiently to induce
you to look into the matter thoroughly ; only let
me advise you to get your information from
looks, and not to go within five miles of a powder
mill if you can possibly avoid it, for they have a
way of blowing up at the most inconvenient and
unexpected times, and often without the slightest
possible pretext or excuse. Gunpowder is to be
found in every variety, from abominably bad to
the very finest quality, but a sportsman can read-
ily distinguish the bad from the good. In the
first place the color and the appearance of the
powder will indicate the quality to a certain ex-
tent, then again by rubbing it briskly in the palm
of the hand, if it leaves a dirty stain of course its
quality is inferior; and, again, flashing it in a
glass plate will show whether or not the combi-
nation is perfect, or if it is likely to foul a gun
And its strength can be easily determined by ac-
tual trial with a gun ; for instance, by making a
target of twenty or thirty sheets of blotting paper
and firing the same charge of shot and the same
charge of different brands of powder you will be
able to judge of the penetration to a nicety. Sport-
ing powders are generally made from No. 1 to
No. 6, the grain increasing in size with the num-
ler. This, I believe, is always the mode prac-
ticed by Englishmen ; but, if I mistake not, some
of our American manufacturers reverse the
method. I myself invariably use English pow-
der made by Curtis & Harvey, believing, from
long observation, that it is more uniform in its
great strength and excessive cleanliness than any
There is no doubt that the Hazard and Du-
pont Mills produce a powder possessing both of
these qualities in the highest degree, but they do
not always do so, and hence I know many sports-
men who uniformly pay $1.75 per Sb. for Curtis
& Harvey, when they could buy either Hazard's
or Dupont's for 80 @ 90c. the one they know
is always up to the mark, the other may or may
Of one thing I feel assured, however, and that
is that there can be no good reason why English
powder should be superior to the American, and
18 THE GUN.
as the inferiority of the latter is not the general
rule, it must result from carelessness.
MRS. Partington, a very eccentric and much
misrepresented old lady, has been wont to say
that " a gun was dangerous without lock, stock,
or, barrel," and, barring a little extravagance in
diction, she was about half right, for guns of un-
heard of age, knocked and bruised out of all
semblance to fire arms, and that have lain for
years in damp wet cellars, have been known to
explode contrary to every known law regulating
combustion. In fact, Boys ! always look upon
your gun as your best friend and your worst
enemy, ready to serve you if you watch it closely,
but let your vigilance once cease and an instant's
carelessness may cost you your life or a limb.
You may think it strange Boys, but I here ven-
ture to assert that out of ten men who shoot?
there shall be at least three who can not name all
the parts of a gun that are exposed to view, let
alone those that are not ; it is indeed astonishing
that so many men who shoot a good deal, and
THE GUN. 19
are fair shots, should manifest so little interest in
the construction of their guns, relying entirely
upon their gunsmith to clean and keep them in
condition and repair ; but let me strongly advise
you to avoid any such indifference, and to make
yourselves thoroughly acquainted "with every part
of your piece, and to this end I have made a
drawing of the lock and of its parts separately
and accompany it with instructions for taking it
to pieces and putting it together.
PAETS OF LOCK. ( As in Plate.)
Lock Plate, No. 1. Outside of lock.
Tumbler, No. 2. Moveable center piece.
Hammer ', No. 3. Piece which strikes the caps.
Bridle, No. 4. Piece which caps the tumbler
and holds lock together.
Scear, No. 5. Piece which catches tumbler on
the hammer being moved to half cock.
Scear Spring, No. 6. Small spring holding scear
in the notches of the tumbler at full or half
Spring Cramp. An instrument for taking off
and repairing mainspring of gun lock.
Tumbler Screw. Outside screw securing ham-
mer to tumbler.
THE DIFFERENT PARTS OF A GUN.
Bolt. Small piece of steel securing the barrels
to the stock.
Breech. The piece at the end of the barrels
which contains the chamber.
Butt. The end of the stock placed against the
False Breech. The iron on the gun stock into
which the breech fits.
Chamber. Place in the breech where the powder
Bib. Raised piece of metal on upper side of
and between barrels.
Guard. The metal scroll which guards the trig-
Nipple. The tubes for caps.
Worm. Screw at end of ramrod.
THE GUN. 23
Having given you the technical names of the
various parts of a gun, I will now proceed to tell
you in detail how
" TO TAKE THE LOCK f O pieces.
First. Cramp and remove mainspring, No. 8, by
raising the hammer, No. 3, to full cock, ap-
plying spring cramp and screwing it up until
the hammer is powerless.
Secondly. Press the scear, No. 5, and letting
down the hammer, the mainspring, No. 8,
may be taken off.
Thirdly. Ease up the screw of the scear spring
and throw it out of its mortice, after which
remove screw and take out scear spring.
Fourthly. Eemove screw which fastens the Scear
through the bridle No. 4, then remove screw
holding the bridle.
Fifthly. Eemove screw holding the hammer.
Sixthly. Then drive out the tumbler, No. 2.
TO ASSEMBLE OB PUT LOCK TOGETHER AGAIN.
First. Put the tumbler, No. 2, into the plate,No. 1.
Second. Then put on the bridle, No. 4, and
Third. Put in scear No. 5, with screw.
Fourth. Then place scear spring into its place,
and these being adjusted,
24 THE GUN.
Fifth. Put hammer, No. 3, in its place and screw
Sixth. The mainspring, No. 8, may then be re-
placed. Then hook it in the swivel and slip
pivot in position, and the Lock is adjusted.
Assuming that you have familiarized your-
selves somewhat with the foregoing explanation,
let me advise you to look up some old fowling-
piece, and after providing yourselves with a vial
of kerosene oil (which will loosen any screw,
however obstinately rusted in,) and screw-driver,
to remove the lock, and, following the instruc-
tions, take it apart piece by piece ; this will give
you a practical insight into its construction, and
after repeating the operation a few times you
will never thereafter experience any difficulty.
Having mastered this, the next thing to take
into consideration is the proper manner of
And, before making any suggestions in this re-
gard, let me here say to you that more accidents
happen, while performing this operation than at
any other time or from any other cause ; hence I
would endeavor to impress upon you the neces-
sity of systematically observing a few simple
First, and above all things and always, keep
THE GUtf. 25
the muzzle turned away from your person ; of
course, while loading, your piece will be grasped
in the left hand, and ought to make an angle of
45 degrees with the ground on which it rests.
Secondly ; under whatever circumstances you
may be placed, never allow yourself to be unduly
hurried or flurried while loading, or the most un-
fortunate results may follow; no matter if a
hundred ducks or geese be coming straight at
you; no matter if both your dogs be standing
stiff as pokers on separate bevies ; no matter if a
grizzly bear be making for you, for so sure as
you do, you will make some fatal blunder and
render your gun useless ; you will either shove
in a wad before the powder, pour in the shot
first, or mayhap put both loads into one barrel,
under either of which contingencies the ducks
and geese would pass unharmed, the covies dis-
appear, the grizzly dine off of you, or the gun
burst and blow your brains out.
Keep cool then by all means and if you have
not used your gun lately, explode a cap on the
nipples to see that they are clear, then put a
charge of powder into either barrel, ramming
down the wads briskly upon the powder, then
put a charge of shot into your right hand barrel,
ramming down the wad upon it and LEAVING THE
26 THE GUN.
BOD IN THE BABBEL, and after putting a charge
into the second barrel, ram it down. The object
of leaving the rod in the one barrel while you
are charging the other being to render it impos-
sible to put in a DOUBLE charge, which beginners
are apt to do, and which is sometimes attended
with dangerous and always with disagreeable
After both barrels are loaded, replace the rod
and cap the tubes, allowing the hammers to press
lightly upon the eaps to see if they are well down
on the nipples, and then draw them back at half
cock, ALWAYS LEAVING them in that position, ex-
cept at the instant before drawing up to your
shoulder to fire, when, of course, they should be
placed at full cock.
Now, both barrels being loaded, let us suppose
that a bird gets up and is fired at, of course the
exploded barrel must be reloaded; this is the
time when the greatest care should be exercised,
for now one hammer is at full cock and one on
the nipple. In the excitement of the moment
never lose sight of this fact, but always put the
hammer of the unexploded barrel at half cock,
otherwise, even with the greatest precaution, the
mere jar of loading might explode the gun.
Having made the foregoing simple suggestions
THE GUN. 27
about loading your piece, let me impress upon
you the necessity of alivays
"KEEPING YOUR GUN IN GOOD CONDITION."
This you will accomplish only by always cleaning
it thoroughly after use. Be you ever so wearied
after a day's sport, never set your gun on one
side without first swabbing it out and wiping it
on the outside with a woolen rag until all mois-
ture is removed. Mind you, I do not advise you
to take off the locks unless you are going to put
it away for some time, or unless you have been out
in the rain or otherwise got it wet, or where the
fine sand may have been driving in your vicinity,
in which last event it is always desirable to re-
move the locks, and even to take them to pieces, as
it is really wonderful how the fine grains of sand
will work their way into the closest fitting locks,
and of course nothing will do them so much injury
if permitted to remain. The process of cleaning a
gun is so very simple as to make neglect in doing
it inexcusable. Of course every gunner has his
cleaning rod and fixtures, his woolen rags and
bottle of lubricating oil. First, then, remove the
barrels from the stock, then with the wrench take
off the nipples, then placing the breech of the
28 THE GtTN.
gun in a basin of water (hot is best) pour the
water through a funnel into the barrels, then
swab out, working the swab up and down until
the water is entirely ejected through the nipples ;
repeat this until the water runs through perfectly
clean and clear, then attach a piece of dry woolen
cloth to the screw at the end of the cleaning rod
and swab with it until the barrels are perfectly
dry. The nipples should then be cleaned and
thoroughly dried (the screws moistened with oil)
and screwed tightly into their places. The bar-
rels should then be oiled and wiped perfectly dry
and put in their place, a wad being inserted in
each barrel about of an inch below the muz-
zle ; and, previously to letting the hammers down
on the nipples, a piece of buck skin should be
placed over them, thus excludiug the air entirely
from the barrel. The gun is now supposed to be
clean, but should any specks of rust be observed
a drop or two of kerosene oil will remove them
at once. When a gun is laid on one side for the
day it should be placed in its woolen cover, but
if lain away for a longer time it should be put in
its leather case, as it will then be out of harm's
Now, then, about
THE GUN. 29
"THE CHOICE OF A GUN,"
and the question immediately suggests itself,
shall it be Muzzle or Breech-loading? This is
dangerous ground to tread upon, for if you were
to ask the advice of twenty different sportsmen,
probably ten would tell you to buy a Breech-
loader and ten would advise your sticking to the
Muzzle-loader. Both systems have their ad-
herents, but notwithstanding the diversity of opin-
ion and a certain prejudice against the Breech-
loader, I say, " Boys, buy yourselves Breech-loaders.
Firstly and principally because they are less dan-
gerous than the Muzzle-loading gun; and, sec-
ondly, because they give the beginner so many
more chances of making a good Bag, and also for
practice ; for the trouble of loading a Muzzle-
loader being considerable he will hesitate about
shooting off his load, whereas, with a Breech-
loader, knowing it to be the work of a second
only, he fires away whenever there is the slight-
est show. In upland shooting, where speed in
loading is of less consequence, the diminution in
risk, both in the act of loading as well as in
climbing fences, etc. (for with the Breech-loader,
under such circumstances, the load is withdrawn),
is a great desideratum.
The opponents of the Breech-loader assert that
30 THE GUM.
there is danger of the charge blowing out at the
Breech bosh ! Of course the charge will ex-
plode^ in the direction of the least resistance
the breech is the stoutest part of the gun,
whereas nothing intervenes between the powder
in the cartridge and the muzzle of the gun but a
charge of shot and two wads, hence in the nature
of things the explosive forces will find vent in
They assert also that the loading of the shells
is a dangerous and disagreeable operation. Bosh
again ! there is no accident so far as I know on
record, and nothing so relieves the tedium of a
wet day when shooting is impracticable, or the
ennui consequent upon a few spare hours at a
country tavern, as the interest attendant upon
the operation. The assertion that carrying
loaded cartridges in a belt is hazardous, is
equally preposterous, for the belt may fall a hun-
dred times without danger to the owner, and ten
to one that out of a dozen loaded cartridges that
may be dropped from a two story window, not
one will explode. If a person be fastidious or
lazy, he may buy his cartridges already loaded
at a price altogether insignificant.
It is further asserted that a Breech-loader will
not shoot so sharp as a Muzzle-loader, the quality
THE GUN. 31
of the two guns being the same ; granted, but
for upland shooting, for bay or English snipe,
the one is absolutely as effective as the other ;