Bibliography

Renovations continue. Thanks for your patience.

Bibliography.

Introduction.

In 1893, brothers Joseph Burr Tyrrell and James Williams Tyrrell (of the Geological Survey of Canada) led the first documented exploration of the barrenlands of northern Canada.
In 1955, Arthur Moffatt set out to retrace and document the central portion of that trip. He is known to have accessed both their books and to have possessed other material (for example JBT’s maps), and he had corresponded with JBT. I was able to access much of this material, but my best efforts failed to find two important items, namely JBT’s journal and his response to Moffatt’s first letter.
Reference. Ancillary 7. Tyrrell sources, Moffatt’s and mine,

Guide and comments.
Guide to the literature. I split the results of my literature search into five categories.
The primary accusatory literature.
The secondary accusatory literature (which is based on the above).
The primary Moffatt literature.
The secondary Moffatt literature.
The Tyrrell literature.
Comments regarding the accusatory literature.
A virtually universal feature of that literature is the failure to cite evidence, even so much as provide a source beyond the obvious. And so some sleuthing was required; I did what I could.
Some items are listed more than once.
A peripheral item, listed only for completeness.
Osgood, Larry. Letter to George Luste (23 February 1996).

The primary accusatory literature.

The following lists items with primary basis in the publications of the participants.
Publications based on those items are listed in what I call the secondary accusatory literature.
The order is chronological.

The Sports Illustrated article.
Issues of
9 March Man against the barrens grounds (pp 68-76) and
16 March 1959 Danger and Sacrifice (pp 80-88).
Reader responses were posted at
http://www.si.com/vault/1959/04/06/604104/19th-hole-the-readers-take-over
Contents include edited material from Moffatt’s journal, plus much accusatory material.

Inglis, Alex.
Northern Vagabond. The Life and Career of J B Tyrrell – the Man Who Conquered the Canadian North. McClelland and Stewart. (1978).
Thanks to Mike Gray for informing me of it and for lending his copy.
Quite understandably, Inglis’s book went unmentioned in the other Moffatt literature.

Grinnell, George J.
Art Moffatt’s Wilderness Way to Enlightenment, Canoe, July 1988, pp 18-21 & 56.
Written by a participant. Listed in both the primary accusatory literature and the primary Moffatt literature.

Anonymous.
Assertions made by unidentified persons in or before 1996.
Quoted by George Luste in Grinnell’s book (first edition, next reference).

Grinnell, George (James).
First edition, in my possession.
A Death on the Barrens. A true story. Northern Books, Toronto (1996).
The publisher (NOT the editor) was George Luste.
Contents include much personal, introspective material, plus comments by Luste.
Listed in both the primary accusatory literature and the primary Moffatt literature.
Reviews.
Unwanted images pop up and so I don’t provide URLs for the reviews that I found, namely those at goodreads.com, northatlanticbooks.com, readingforsanity.ca, Amazon (1556438826), etc.
Second edition, not in my possession.
A Death on the Barrens. Heron Dance Press (2006).
Third edition, in my possession. Death on the Barrens. A True Story of Courage and Tragedy in the Canadian Arctic. North Atlantic Books, Berkeley (2010).

Murphy and MacDonald.
Articles by James Murphy and Andrew MacDonald, asserted to be reviews of Grinnell’s book (1996 edition).
Che-Mun. Canoelit section. Moffatt, Myth & Mysticism. Outfit?, Spring 1996, pp 5 & 11]
Murphy’s article is available online http://www.canoe.ca/AllAboutCanoes/book_deathbarrens.html ,
MacDonald’s apparently not.

Mahler, Charlie.
Comments from Bob Thum and others are included.
Publication 1.
Down a Dead Man’s River, Che-Mun. Outfit 122, Autumn 2005, starting on page 4.
http://www.ottertooth.com/che-mun/122/chemun122.pdf
Publication 2, believed identical to the above.
Feature Story in the Advanced Paddler section at canoeing.com.
The URL that was active when I announced the opening of the blog to public view.
http://www.canoeing.com/advanced/feature/deadmansriver.htm

Kingsley, Jennifer.
Article 1.
In a most dreadful sort of paradise. Up Here. May 2012; pp 88, 90 & 91.
http://www.jenniferkingsley.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/looking-back-May-2012-Moffatt-pdf-.pdf
Article 2.
Back and Beyond. Lake. Issue 6 (2013); pp 12-14.
http://www.jenniferkingsley.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Lake_Back-and-Beyond_2011pdf.pdf
Book.
Paddle North. Adventure, Resilience and Renewal in the Arctic Wild. Greystone Books, Vancouver/Berkeley (2014).
Reviews are provided at Amazon.ca, goodreads.com, canoekayak.com, timirvin.com, goodreads.com and likely elsewhere.
Aside. Not to be confused with Paddle North: Canoeing the Boundary Waters-Quetico Wilderness, Greg Breining, publisher? (2010).

The primary Moffatt literature.

The following lists all known participant publications, available to me or not. For lack of a better place, I include also the evidence of George Luste and that of my previous Moffatt publications and posts.
The order is sort of chronological.

Moffatt, Arthur.
Moffatt’s journal.
Edited excerpts were published in the Sports Illustrated article (1959).
Pessl kindly supplied several complete entries; those for 4 August, 5 August, 10 September and 13 September come immediately to mind.
Moffatt’s correspondence with J B Tyrrell.
Thanks to Pessl, I possess copies of his two letters to JBT. But I lack JBT’s response (known to have been made) to the first; I had thought the response to be held at the Dartmouth College library, but the kind and helpful staff there were unable to find it.
Aside. I lack also JBT’s journal, known to have been possessed by Moffatt. Dartmouth staff were unable to find it either.
The evidence suggests that both items would provide a deeper understanding of Moffatt’s preparations, most importantly the circumstances that led to his death.

Lanouette, Ed.
Aside. Lanouette was Moffatt’s bowperson.
Item 1. A faithfully condensed version of his journal for 14 September was published in the Sports Illustrated article of 1959.
Item 2. Later, Lanouette kindly provided me with his full journal for that day and assisted in the transcription of it. Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
Item 3. Private correspondence.
Item 4. His daughter Elizabeth Emge transcribed and provided his full journal for the trip. It is now posted at Canadian Canoe Routes. When I find time, I’ll convert the htmls and post the result here, in a separate Ancillary.
Post 1 of 8. 16 June to 1 July.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=181&t=46535
Post 2 of 8. 2 July to 16 July.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=181&t=46555
Post 3 of 8. 17 July to 28 July.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=181&t=46557
Post 4 of 8. 29 July to 7 August.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=181&t=46561
Post 5 of 8. 8 August to 20 August.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=181&t=46610
Post 6 of 8. 21 August to 2 September.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=181&t=46696
Post 7 of 8. 3 September to 10 September.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=181&t=46737
Post 8 of 8. 11 September to 16 September.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=181&t=46738

LeFavour, Bruce.
Item 1. Material based on his journal was published in four articles (27 through 30 December, 1955), Evening Recorder, Amsterdam NY. I possess only the third, kindly and generously supplied by him. It provides what I assess to be exculpatory evidence (the advice provided by J B Tyrrell) regarding the cause of Moffatt’s death.
Item 2. Private correspondence.

Grinnell, George (James).
For the convenience of the reader, I repeat some items provided above.
1. Grinnell’s Canoe article.
Art Moffatt’s Wilderness Way to Enlightenment. Canoe, July 1988, pp 18-21 & 56.
In my possession.
2. Grinnell’s book, first edition.
A Death on the Barrens. A true story. Northern Books, Toronto (1996).
In my possession. Contents include much personal, introspective material, plus comments by George Luste. I emphasise that Luste was the publisher, not the editor.
Listed in both the primary accusatory literature and the primary Moffatt literature.
Opinion. The most influential component of all the 55 years of the accusatory literature.
Reviews. Unwanted images pop up and so I don’t provide URLs for those that I found: goodreads.com, northatlanticbooks.com, readingforsanity.ca, Amazon (1556438826), etc.
3. Grinnell’s book, second edition.
A Death on the Barrens. Heron Dance Press (2006).
Not accessed.
Comment. It appears not to have influenced the Moffatt literature.
4. Grinnell’s book, third edition.
Death on the Barrens. A True Story of Courage and Tragedy in the Canadian Arctic.
North Atlantic Books, Berkeley (2010).
In my possession.
Comment. It too appears not to have influenced the Moffatt literature.
5. His post at the blog
Foreword and Forum.
6. An email message.

Pessl, Fred (“Skip”).
Item 1. Three Canoes. 1.46 Bold Journey. Prod. no. 474. ABC Broadcast of Monday 8 July, 1957. Hosted by John Stephenson.
Not available to me.
Synopsis. Fred Pessl, Jr. narrates the films of a canoe trip from Athabaska Lake in southwest Saskatchewan to Hudson Bay. He and five other explorers spent three months working their way through a region rarely visited by white men. In the last rapids the leader of the expedition, Arthur Moffat was thrown from his canoe and died of exposure in the icy waters. [RF]
Item 2. Kesselheim’s Canoe&Kayak article (2012).
Contents include an interview with Pessl, plus the latter’s comments regarding the tragedy and the resulting literature (in particular Grinnell’s contributions thereto).
Item 3. The Fateful 1955 Dubawnt River Trip. Nastawgan. Summer 2013. Vol 70, No 2.
http://www.myccr.com/sites/default/files/storage/CCR%20pdf/Nastawgan/summer_13.pdf
Item 4. Barren Grounds. The Story of the Tragic Moffatt Canoe Trip. Dartmouth College Press (2014).
Contents include excerpts from the journals of Pessl and Franck, photographs (many in colour), an account of events following the tragedy, an Epilogue, a timeline comparing the progress of the Tyrrell and Moffatt trips, and Endnotes [pp 178-180].
Item 5. Copious private correspondence beginning in the fall of 2014 and continuing.

Luste, George.
Item 1. Art Moffatt, following Tyrrell’s notes, was not expecting the rapid in which he swamped and then died [Grinnell book, p 284]
Item 2. Referring to unpublished accusations made prior to the publication of Grinnell’s book (1996), Luste wrote the following. It seems as if a liberal amount of imagination has been invoked by these writers to change the facts so they fit their preoccupations and desires for culpability. [Grinnell book, pp 293&294].
Aside. These two Luste evidences (which I assess to be exculpatory) were mentioned in none of the accusatory literature that followed. Deserving of explicit mention here are what James Murphy and Andrew MacDonald alleged to be reviews of Grinnell’s book.
Item 3. Private correspondence and conversations.

Jacobs, Allan.
Article 1. The Second Annual Luste Lecture.
Nastawgan. Vol 41, Winter 2014, pp 16-19.
http://www.myccr.com/sites/default/files/storage/CCR%20pdf/Nastawgan/winter_2014.pdf
Contents include a review (requested by the editor) of Pessl’s lecture given at the Canadian Canoe Museum on 25 October 2014.
Comments and corrections.
I was unable to access the Sports Illustrated article by the deadline date, and so this first attempt of mine to understand the tragedy is seriously incomplete.
Kesselheim’s Moffatt … a name that, in canoe-tripping circles became synonymous with incompetence is a statement of the perception; it is decidedly not an accusation of incompetence, as I unfortunately suggested on p 17 (left column, item 3a).
Only one tent was destroyed by the storm; and I scrambled some references.
CCR announcement of the opening of the blog.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=45362
Aside. It was opened a few days previously, so that I could provide advance notice to several persons whose names appear there.
Article 2. Announcement of the opening of the blog, accompanied by an incomplete list of not-so items from the accusatory literature, and a photograph of Arthur Moffatt. Nastawgan, Vol 43, Summer/Fall 2016, p 9.
Article 3. A second announcement, plus a summary of accusations made of Moffatt. Nastawgan, Vol 44, Summer 2017, p 19.

The secondary accusatory literature.

This literature is based on the primary accusatory literature, rather than directly on the evidence of the participants. It consists of publications in which the Moffatt trip is mentioned only incidentally.
The efforts of Moffatt’s defamers were highly successful, for their redactions of exculpatory evidence, their falsehoods, their fabrications and their deceits misled the entire paddling community, including many prominent members of it, for 55 years regarding the cause of his death.
Let me be explicit, let me express my conviction that
Jacobson,
Jennings, Hodgins and Small,
O’Hara,
Kesselheim,
MacGregor,
Morse, and
Peake
all acted in good faith.

Jacobson, Cliff.
Expedition Canoeing. A Guide to Canoeing Wild Rivers in North America.
Chapter 4. Loose Threads; p 22, left column. Falcon / Globe-Pequot Press (2005).
I have not examined the 2015 edition Canoeing Wild Rivers.
Comment. Unfortunately, the source for some Jacobson comments was not the faithful condensation of Lanouette’s journal for 14 September, as provided in the Sports Illustrated article (1959) [pp 85-87]. His source was rather the redacted version of that condensation, as provided in Grinnell’s book (1996) [pp 201-204]; please note the ellipsis near the top of p 202. To be explicit, Grinnell redacted the passage This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids before Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids.
Opinion. The redacted material is exculpatory, and such was Grinnell’s motivation for the redaction.

Jennings, John. Bruce W Hodgins and Doreen Small (editors).
The Canoe in Canadian Cultures. Natural Heritage Books (1999).
Unfinished business. Page numbers will be provided.

Johnson, Alissa.
Meet Bob O’Hara. http://canoeing.com/meet-bob-ohara/ (undated).
Referring to Canoeing with the Cree [Eric Sevareid; MacMillan (1935)], the staff of canoeing.com provided the following.
O’Hara and his friends were so inspired they embarked on a trip of their own in 1967, paddling from Norway House, a Northwest Fur Trading Company outpost on the northeast shore of Lake Winnipeg, to York Factory on Hudson Bay. Disregarding warnings of flood stage waters and advice from local authorities to scrap their plans, the inexperienced whitewater paddlers set out with 1:250,000 scale maps. False starts and wrong turns set the tone right from the start, but these minor occurrences were quickly eclipsed by water so high that an entire island – an island with a portage around a waterfall, no less – had disappeared. In the excitement that ensued from this discovery, O’Hara swamped his canoe above the falls.
With respect to that incident, canoeing.com staff provided the following quote from O’Hara: It’s amazing how fast you can think sometimes. I instinctively grabbed the canoe, rolled toward it, and tucked my feet up. I thought hey, my legs are going to be dangling down and I don’t want them to get snagged. So I tucked them up and went over. Got my feet onto a gravel bar and pulled us to shore.
With respect to Moffatt’s death, the staff of canoeing.com provided the following: O’Hara credits a 1955 Sports Illustrated article detailing the death of Arthur Moffatt on the Dubawnt River with scaring everybody off. The canoeist’s party started their trip late in the season, and they grew careless scouting rapids as they raced winter to the end of the river. After swamping his canoe, Moffatt died of hypothermia.
Let there be no doubt. The assertion that the Moffatt party grew careless scouting rapids as they raced winter to the end of the river is a falsehood. But full responsibility for it attaches to the staff at canoeing.com, explicitly none to O’Hara.

Kesselheim, Alan.
57 years Ago. Canoe & Kayak, May 2012, starting on p 46.
Six men. Seventy five days out. Food almost gone, weather desperate. The end of the expedition more than a week away.
Aside. Pessl’s contributions to the article are listed elsewhere.
With respect to the assertion that food was almost gone, I believe that Kesselheim was misled by Moffatt’s defamers in the matter.

MacGregor, Roy.
Canoe Country. The Making of Canada. Random House Canada, first edition (2015). pp 48&49.
…The Far North held many lessons of what could befall the unprepared. Perhaps the best known of all folly expeditions was the Moffatt expedition of 1955, which today stands an example of what not to do when heading into the northern wilderness. Arthur Moffatt, a thirty-six-year-old filmmaker and Dartmouth College graduate, talked five young Americans–two of them still teenagers—to join him on a paddle down the Dubawnt River, which runs through the Northwest Territories and Nunavut. The Dubawnt is considered a very difficult, even dangerous river. Two of the five had limited experience; one had never paddled a canoe.
Ill-prepared and poorly supplied, the six paddlers ran into terrible weather and fought and argued their way along the nearly impossible journey. Short of food and faced with snowy weather, arguing their time was limited, they tried to make up time by running a long rapid without first scouting it. Two of the canoes went over. Moffatt froze to death on the banks while waiting for the others to be rescued.

Opinion. Like so many others, MacGregor was misled by Moffatt’s defamers.

Morse, Eric W.
Freshwater Saga. Memoirs of a Lifetime of Wilderness Canoeing in Canada. University of Toronto Press (1987).
…we had an example before us of what happens without a proper schedule, for at Baker Lake we would be seeing the grave of Arthur Moffatt who, leading a group of young Americans, let the days slip away too easily on the Dubawnt River in 1955, later forcing the party into risks that proved fatal. [p 84].
As well, incidental mention is made of the party’s visit to Moffatt’s grave. [p 104]
Comment. Morse did not identify a source, but the only publication available at the time was the Sports Illustrated article of 1959.

Peake, Michael.
1955: A Tale of Two Trips. [Che-Mun, Outfit 99, Winter 2000].
Item 1. “…the Moffatt trip is now best remembered for the death of its leader. Arthur Moffatt drowned on September 14 on a rapid they had no business running that late in the year. He is buried in Baker Lake. [p 4]
Item 2. The Tragic Trips…1955 – The Moffat Dubawnt River trip.
“1955 – The Moffatt Dubawnt River trip. Arthur Moffatt, a seasoned traveller, took a group of young men on a slow and undisciplined trip down the Dubawnt. Their lack of schedule meant they took risks to catchup on time and Moffatt died of exposure after they dumped in a large rapid they did not scout. He is buried in Baker Lake.” [pp 5&6]
http://www.canoe.ca/che-mun/99two.html
Google images.
https://www.google.ca/search?q=arthur+moffatt+canoe&espv=2&biw=1360&bih=667&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=P5wKVfDyBonBgwTLuoDQBw&ved=0CDAQsAQ&dpr=1
Opinion. Peake was misled by the falsehoods of Murphy and MacDonald.

The secondary Moffatt literature.

Items provided for completeness.

Anonymous.
Report of an interview with Peter Franck.
Soph Describes Fatal Canoe Mishap. Canadian Accident.
The Harvard Crimson. September 29, 1955. “NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED.”
http://www.thecrimson.com/article/1955/9/29/soph-describes-fatal-canoe-mishap-ppeter/

Harp, Elmer Jr.
The Moffatt Archeological Collection from the Dubawnt Country, Canada.
Item 1.
Only the first page (412) is available for viewing by the general public.
http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/276602?sid=21106167779013&uid=4&uid=3737720&uid=3739448&uid=2
Item 2.
Harp’s interest in the Moffatt expedition is mentioned on page 128 of Pessl’s book.
Before we left the States, Art had arranged that Elmer Harp, Dartmouth College Archaeology Faculty, would have a look at whatever we could collect…
Item 3.
Professor Elmer Harp of Dartmouth College made an archaeological collection at Grant Lake on the Dubawnt. [Lentz, North, 1970] [Hodgins and Hoyle, p 107]

Hodgins, Bruce W; and Gwyneth Hoyle.
Canoeing North into the Unknown: A Record of River Travel, 1874 to 1974. [Dundurn, 1997]
A party of Americans led by Arthur Moffatt…canoed from Black Lake to Selwyn Lake and down the Dubawnt River and across Dubawnt Lake. Following an accident in the rapids entering Marjorie Lake, Moffatt died of exposure and is buried in Baker Lake. The rest of the group completed the trip down the Dubawnt and Thelon in late September. [p 107]
Sources were the Sports Illustrated article (1959), a personal communication from Grinnell, and Grinnell’s Canoe article (1988).
Opinion. A completely faithful representation of the evidence.

Moffatt and the J B Tyrrell literature.

The following provides references to J B Tyrrell literature in which incidental reference is made to Moffatt’s death.
Inglis, Alex.
Northern Vagabond. The Life and Career of J B Tyrrell – the Man Who Conquered the Canadian North. McClelland and Stewart. (1978).
Primarily a biography of J B Tyrrell, the book is mentioned also above, under Primary accusatory literature.
Robertson, Heather.
Measuring Mother Earth. How Joe the Kid Became Tyrrell of the North. McClelland and Stewart, Toronto (2007).
URL. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heather_Robertson
A second biography of Joseph Burr Tyrrell. The Tyrrell-Tyrrell expedition of 1893 is described, starting with Chapter 8 (p 136). I provide two excerpts regarding the Moffatt trip.
Excerpt 1. …in 1955, an American, Arthur Moffatt, died running a rapid on the Dubawnt River… [p 315].
Excerpt 2. A Death on the Barrens, by George James Grinnell, Northern Books, Toronto, 1996, tells the haunting story of Arthur Moffatt’s death in the context of Grinnell’s own existential crisis as one of the six men on Moffatt’s expedition. [p 333].
Opinion. A completely faithful representation of the evidence.

Appendix. Material related to Pessl’s book.
URLs of reviews.
http://www.upne.com/1611685336.html

http://www.dartmouth.org/classes/55/images/dart_news_oct_14.pdf
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18988880-barren-grounds
A Review of Barren Grounds: The Story of the Tragic Moffatt Canoe Trip by Fred “Skip” Pessl
Texts of some reviews.
Source. The back cover of the book.
1. Skip Pessl delivers a vivid on-the-ground account of northern canoe adventure, from a time before GPS, composite boats, sat phones, and expedition blogs. His riveting day-by-day chronicle fires up the youthful exhilaration and fierce joy of traditional expedition life in the Far North. It also reveals, with refreshing honesty and humility, the fear and tragedy survived by the Moffatt party. Pessl brings a lifetime of contemplation to bear in his analysis of that awful, mortal moment on the cold river, far from help. Essential reading for those who warm to the flame of northern adventure. [Alan Kesselheim, author of Let Them Paddle.]
2. Skip Pessl’s book…is needed, welcome and superb. I’m saying this as someone who canoed the same arctic Dubawant River in 1969 and was involved in an earlier book about this trip. Skip’s account focuses on reality and evidence, not on personal opinion or mythology. To repeat, this new book is needed and sincerely welcome. [G. J. Luste, Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of Toronto, and founder of the Wilderness & Canoeing Symposium.]
3. Skip Pessl’s candid and long-overdue account of the ’55 Dubawnt trip gives us a balanced view of this historic event. In “Barren Grounds”, Skip faces some of the toughest moments of his life with courage and tenacity. This book is welcome closure for anyone affected by Art Moffatt’s tragic story. [Aleks Gusev, editor of Nastawgan Journal.]
4. Skip Pessl provides a rich and nuanced account of the Moffatt expedition. Drawing on his extensive journals and those of expedition member Peter Franck, Pessl shares a mesmerizing tale of exploration and discovery, of friendship and loss, the stark beauty and utter indifference of the North. [Jeff Moag, editor of Canoe & Kayak magazine.
Emendations.
The headings Wharton Lake for the Pessl/Franck entries of 8 September [pp 127&128] are incorrect. Wharton Lake was reached on 11 September, as evinced by the following excerpts from Moffatt’s journal, kindly, immediately and generously provided by Pessl,
10 September.
In spite of strong winds and snow squalls, made it with help of strong current down to the falls above Wharton Lake. Ice on paddles, hills still white.
11 September.
Shot last run of rapid below falls, rough at first, green water over boulders; then shallow, wide channel, hard to see in poor light, another rapid, and Wharton Lake.
Comments.
I emphasise that the contents are correct [Pessl, private correspondence]; it is only the headings that are not.
Correspondingly, the entry for Moffatt, 1955 in the table on p 129 should read September 11.

Internal URLs.

These URLS are provided for navigation within the blog.
URLs for accessing the following items from outside the blog are provided elsewhere.
Foreword and Forum.
Main text.
Appendix 1. Reality.
Appendix 3. Equipment.
Appendix 4. Experience.
Appendix 5. Pace and Weather.
Appendix 6. Food.
Appendix 7. Schedule.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
Ancillary 1. Accusations.
Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Ancillary 4. Distances.
Ancillary 5. Loose ends and the future.
Ancillary 6. Addenda.
Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.
Ancillary 8. Evidence regarding the tragedy.
Ancillary 10. My sources.
Ancillary 11. Canoe&Kayak manuscript.
Ancillary 12. Acknowledgements.
EDIT!!!
Bibliography.

Notice.
With the exception of quoted material, copyright to the above belongs to Allan Jacobs.

Edition of 16 June 2018.

Ancillary 11. Canoe and Kayak manuscript

Renovations continue. Thanks for your patience.

Failed attempt to publish the first version of
In Defence of Arthur Moffatt.

April 2015.
After consultation with the editor of Canoe&Kayak, I submitted the following eight items: Main text (both print and digital editions), Bibliography and five Appendices.
This version, which omitted accusers’ names, was accepted for publication.
Later, at the request of the editor, I added accusers’ names.
As well, I provided ~eight of Pessl’s photos.
June 2015.
What were to have been the print and digital editions of the Main text were posted online
http://www.canoekayak.com/canoe/in-defense-of-arthur-moffatt/#5UIXv2RETJtWMQwt.97 ,

In Defense of Arthur Moffatt (Unabridged Version)


The subtitle of both. Allan Jacobs on why the conventional wisdom about Arthur Moffatt is wrong.
Aside. The software occasionally displays material from these two URLs; if it continues to do so, I might mangle them.
18 October 2015.
All eight items were submitted in final form. No response was received.
28 January 2016.
Text of my message. Just wondering how things are going.
No response was received.
9 June 2016.
Given
that the Bibliography and none of the Appendices had not been published in any form, and
that I had received no reply to my enquiry (that of 28 January) regarding the publication status of the remaining items, and
that the contents were now hopelessly outdated by the results of my further research,
I withdrew all items from consideration for publication.
I received no response to my withdrawal notice.
In fairness, both the print and the digital versions of the main text were available online when last I looked.

Internal URLs.

These URLS are provided for navigation within the blog.
URLs for accessing the following items from outside the blog are provided elsewhere.
Foreword and Forum.
Main text.
Appendix 1. Reality.
Appendix 3. Equipment.
Appendix 4. Experience.
Appendix 5. Pace and Weather.
Appendix 6. Food.
Appendix 7. Schedule.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
Ancillary 1. Accusations.
Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Ancillary 4. Distances.
Ancillary 5. Loose ends and the future.
Ancillary 6. Addenda.
Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.
Ancillary 8. Evidence regarding the tragedy.
Ancillary 10. My sources.
Ancillary 11. Canoe&Kayak manuscript.
Ancillary 12. Acknowledgements.
Bibliography.

Notice.
With the exception of quoted material, copyright to the above belongs to Allan Jacobs.

Edition of 14 March 2018.

Ancillary 13. Timeline of the primary Moffatt literature

Renovations continue. Thanks for your patience.

Ancillary 13. Timeline of the primary Moffatt literature.

Items listed below include the publications of the trip participants, the publications of Moffatt’s primary accusers, and two personal items.
Items of what I call the secondary Moffatt literature are listed in the corresponding part of the Bibliography.
The accusations are addressed in Ancillary 1. Accusations.

1955.
Publication of participant LeFavour’s four articles in the Evening Recorder, Amsterdam NY, 27 through 30 December (1955).
The articles are not accessible to the public. I possess only the third (thanks to him), which provides evidence regarding both the fatal rapids and the food on board on 14 September.
If the reader will excuse a comment. As best I know, no Moffatt accuser was aware of any LeFavour evidence.

1959.
Publication of the Sports Illustrated article.
Part 1, 9 March. Man against the Barren Grounds. [pp 68-76].
Part 2, 16 March. Danger and Sacrifice. [pp 80-88].
Reader responses to both parts were posted at
http://www.si.com/vault/1959/04/06/604104/19th-hole-the-readers-take-over
The editor had full access to Moffatt’s journal, edited excerpts from which comprise much of the article.
Other contents include Moffatt’s prospectus for the trip, photographs of the participants and thumbnails of them, a map of the route, the New York Times article regarding arrival in Baker Lake, a condensation of Lanouette’s journal for the day of the tragedy, and an Epilogue (which contains major contributions from participant Grinnell).

1978.
Publication of the book of Alex Inglis.
Northern Vagabond. The Life and Career of J B Tyrrell – the Man Who Conquered the Canadian North. McClelland and Stewart. (1978).
If the reader will excuse a comment. The book went unnoticed in the subsequent literature.

1988.
Publication of participant Grinnell’s article.
Canoe. July 1988, pp 18-21 and 56.

Undated assertions made prior to 1996.
The only known source regarding these assertions is George Luste’s comments in Grinnell’s book [pp 293&294].
If the reader will excuse two comments. I possess
no information regarding when the assertions were made, or their authors, or their source/s, and
no evidence that the assertions influenced the later literature.

1996.
Publication of participant Grinnell’s book.
Grinnell, George J. A Death on the Barrens. A True Story.
Recently, I purchased the 2010 edition; I have not looked at the 2005 edition.
If the reader will excuse some comments.
I agree with Pessl [private correspondence] that the 2010 edition differs significantly from that of 1996. But the two agree regarding the evidence presented regarding Lanouette’s evidence for 14 September.
As best I know, the Moffatt literature is based entirely on the 1996 edition, and so all my comments in the following are based on it alone.
Opinion. The book is the most important publication of the accusatory literature.

1996.
Publication of reviews of Grinnell’s book by James Murphy and Andrew MacDonald.
Che-Mun Canoelit section. Moffatt, Myth & Mysticism. Spring 1996, pp 5 & 11.
If the reader will excuse a comment, both Murphy and MacDonald provided more than reviews.

2000.
Publication of two short articles regarding the Moffatt trip.
Peake, Michael.
Che-Mun, Outfit 99, Winter 2000.
1. 1955: A Tale of Two Trips. p 4.
http://www.canoe.ca/che-mun/99two.html
2. The Tragic Trips…1955 – The Moffat Dubawnt River trip. pp 5&6.

2005.
Publication of the two Mahler-Thum articles, identical at first glance.
1. Che-Mun. Outfit 122, Autumn 2005, starting on page 4.
http://www.ottertooth.com/che-mun/122/chemun122.pdf
2. Feature Story in the Advanced Paddler section at canoeing.com.
http://www.canoeing.com/advanced/feature/deadmansriver.htm

2012.
1. Publication of Kesselheim’s article in Canoe&Kayak; it contains contributions from participant Pessl. Follow-up material was published in the issues of July 2012 (p 14) and August 2012 (p 12).
2. Publication of Kingsley’s first online article.
In a most dreadful sort of paradise. Up Here. May 2012; pp 88, 90 & 91.
http://www.jenniferkingsley.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/looking-back-May-2012-Moffatt-pdf-.pdf

2013.
1. Publication of Kingsley’s second online article.
Back and Beyond. Lake. Issue 6 (2013); pp 12-14.
http://www.jenniferkingsley.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Lake_Back-and-Beyond_2011pdf.pdf
2. Publication of participant Pessl’s article.
The Fateful 1955 Dubawnt River Trip. Nastawgan. Summer 2013. Vol 70, No 2.
http://www.myccr.com/sites/default/files/storage/CCR%20pdf/Nastawgan/summer_13.pdf

2014.
1. Publication of Kingsley’s book. Paddle North. Adventure, Resilience and Renewal in the Arctic Wild. Greystone Books, Vancouver/Berkeley (2014).
Moffatt material is confined to pages 185-189 and 220.
2. Publication of Pessl’s book.
Barren Grounds. The Story of the Tragic Moffatt Canoe Trip. Dartmouth College Press, Hanover, NH (2014).
Pessl provides copious amounts of new evidence, notes on trip planning, excerpts from his journal and that of fellow participant Peter Franck, a comparison with the progress of the Tyrrell-Tyrrell trip of 1893, an Epilogue and a list of nontravel days.
I possess no evidence that Pessl knew of any Kingsley publication.
3. Pessl’s talk (the Second Annual Luste Lecture, 13 November; unpublished) at the Canadian Canoe Museum.
http://www.canoemuseum.ca/blog/2014/11/13/highlights-of-the-2014-luste-lecture
4. Publication of my Nastawgan article (Winter issue, 2014, pp 16-19). It contains a review of that Pessl talk, plus related material.
http://www.myccr.com/sites/default/files/storage/CCR%20pdf/Nastawgan/winter_2014.pdf

Comments regarding the 2012-2014 literature.
1. Kingsley knew of Pessl’s contribution to Kesselheim’s article of 2012, but made only incidental mention of it. I possess no evidence, and I doubt, that Kingsley knew of either Pessl’s Nastawgan article (2013) or his book (2014).
2. I possess no evidence, and I doubt, that Pessl knew of any Kingsley publication.

2015 and 2016. A personal item.
Failed attempt on my part to publish the first version of In Defence of Arthur Moffatt.
Reference. Ancillary 11. Canoe&Kayak manuscript.

19 September 2016. A second personal item.
Announcement at Canadian Canoe Routes of the opening of my blog In Defence of Arthur Moffatt to public view.
http://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=45362
A few days earlier, I had informed several interested parties that the blog was open for viewing.

Ancillary 12. Acknowledgements.

Ancillary 12. Acknowledgements.

I am profoundly grateful to trip participants Fred “Skip” Pessl, Ed “Joe” Lanouette and Bruce LeFavour for their generous and extensive assistance with my research. They kindly and most patiently informed me, without guiding me, as I stumbled along the path to understand the tragedy. They supplied copies of much of the source material cited in my bibliography; I would have had considerable difficulty otherwise. Indeed, I would not have so much as known of the existence of some material.
In more detail:
Pessl provided excerpts from Moffatt’s journal.
Lanouette provided his full journal for 14 September (only a condensation was provided in the SI article of 1959). And he gave permission to post his full journal, as transcribed his daughter Elizabeth Emge.
LeFavour provided the third of his four newspaper articles.
As well, all three corresponded privately as well.
I hope that I have honoured the trust that they placed in me.
But responsibility for all errors, especially those of judgment, belongs to me alone.

Thanks also to the following.
George Luste provided keen insights into the tragedy, this early in my research; I much regret that I did not speak more with him while still I could.
Bruce Buttimore assisted in setting up the blog and suggested an important clarification.
Mike Gray loaned his two books regarding the Moffatt expedition.
Elizabeth Emge provided excerpts from the journal of participant Lanouette (her father). And she is now providing his complete journal.
Mathieu Sabourin (Library and Archives, Canada) provided a highly informative response to my request for information regarding the alleged inquest into Moffatt’s death.
The staff of the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library (University of Toronto) made exceptional efforts to assist my access to Tyrrell material.
Lee Sessions provided much needed and much appreciated advice regarding the presentation of the evidence.
Michael Pitt corresponded regarding the fatal rapids.
George Grinnell (participant) corresponded frankly regarding the Epilogue of the Sports Illustrated article. And he responded at the Forum. Foreword and Forum.
David DeMello corresponded regarding the Moffatt route from Wharton Lake to Marjorie Lake, and he posted information at Canadian Canoe Routes regarding the Marjorie-Aberdeen portage.
Les Wilcox suggested an important clarification and provided correspondence regarding the Tyrrell-Moffatt route from Wharton Lake to Marjorie Lake.
Ken McGoogan suggested a more effective introduction to the evidence of Appendix 9.
CCR’s recped pointed out an incorrect URL.

Internal URLs.

These URLS are provided for navigation within the blog.
URLs for accessing the following items from outside the blog are provided elsewhere.
Foreword and Forum.
Main text.
Appendix 1. Reality.
Appendix 3. Equipment.
Appendix 4. Experience.
Appendix 5. Pace and Weather.
Appendix 6. Food.
Appendix 7. Schedule.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
Ancillary 1. Accusations.
Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Ancillary 4. Distances.
Ancillary 5. Loose ends and the future.
Ancillary 6. Addenda.
Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.
Ancillary 8. Evidence regarding the tragedy.
Ancillary 10. My sources.
Ancillary 11. Canoe&Kayak manuscript.
Ancillary 12. Acknowledgements.
Bibliography.

Notice.
With the exception of quoted material, copyright to the above belongs to Allan Jacobs.

Edition of 12 March 2018.

Ancillary 10. My sources.

Renovations continue. Thanks for your patience.

Ancillary 10. My sources.

Tyrrell material.
Items possessed.
The relevant material from the books of J B Tyrrell and J W Tyrrell,
the maps of J B Tyrrell, and
Moffatt’s two letters to J B Tyrrell.
Missing items.
My best efforts failed to obtain the following.
JBT’s response (known to have been made) to Moffatt’s first letter.
JBT’s journal (known to have been possessed by Moffatt and to differ substantially from his book).
Reference.
Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.

Participant material.
Moffatt, Arthur.
1. Edited excerpts from his journal, as provided in Sports Illustrated. Issues of 9 March 1959 Man against the barrens grounds (pp 68-76) and 16 March 1959 Danger and Sacrifice (pp 80-88).
2. Unedited excerpts provided by Pessl.
Lanouette, Ed “Joe”.
1. His full journal for 14 September 1955 and a portion for the next day.
2. The condensation (I believe it to be a faithful one) of the entry for 14 September, as published in the Sports Illustrated article (pp 85-87).
3. Private correspondence.
4. In progress. His full journal for the trip, as kindly provided by his daughter Elizabeth Emge.
LeFavour, Bruce.
1. The third (only) of his four Evening Recorder articles (1955). It is not publicly available and so did not influence the Moffatt literature prior to my mention of it in 2016.
2. Private correspondence.
Grinnell, George.
1. Art Moffatt’s Wilderness Way to Enlightenment. Canoe (1988). pp 18-21 & 56.
2. A Death on the Barrens. A True Story. Northern Books (1996).
3. A True Story of Courage and Tragedy in the Canadian Arctic. North Atlantic Books (2010). I possess it but made only superficial use of it, this to examine his version of the condensation of Lanouette’s journal for 14 September.
I possess no evidence that the Moffatt literature made of either the 2005 or the 2010 edition.
4. His post at the blog.
5. Private correspondence (one message).
Pessl, Fred “Skip”.
1. Three Canoes. 1.46 Bold Journey. Prod. no. 474. ABC Broadcast of Monday 8 July, 1957. I possess only a summary, but decided to list it, for completeness.
2. Comments published in Kesselheim’s article 57 years Ago. Canoe & Kayak, May 2012, starting on p 46.
As best I know, the article appeared too late to influence the Moffatt literature, except for incidental use by Kingsley.
3. The Fateful 1955 Dubawnt River Trip. Nastawgan. Summer 2013. Vol 70, No 2.
http://www.myccr.com/sites/default/files/storage/CCR%20pdf/Nastawgan/summer_13.pdf
As best I know, the article appeared too late to influence the Moffatt literature.
4. Barren Grounds. The Story of the Tragic Moffatt Canoe Trip. Dartmouth College Press (2014). Excerpts from his journal and that of Franck, plus comments on the previous literature.
As best I know, the book appeared too late to influence the Moffatt literature.
5. Private correspondence.
Franck, Peter.
Excerpts from his journal, as provided in Pessl’s book.

Other sources.
Mathieu Sabourin (Library and Archives, Canada) kindly responded to my request regarding Grinnell’s assertion that an inquest had been held into the death of Arthur Moffatt.

Internal URLs.

These URLS are provided for navigation within the blog.
URLs for accessing the following items from outside the blog are provided elsewhere.
Foreword and Forum.
Main text.
Appendix 1. Reality.
Appendix 3. Equipment.
Appendix 4. Experience.
Appendix 5. Pace and Weather.
Appendix 6. Food.
Appendix 7. Schedule.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
Ancillary 1. Accusations.
Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Ancillary 4. Distances.
Ancillary 5. Loose ends and the future.
Ancillary 6. Addenda.
Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.
Ancillary 8. Evidence regarding the tragedy.
Ancillary 10. My sources.
Ancillary 11. Canoe&Kayak manuscript.
Ancillary 12. Acknowledgements.
Bibliography.

Notice.
With the exception of quoted material, copyright to the above belongs to Allan Jacobs.

Edition of 10 April 2018.

Main text

Renovations continue. Thanks for your patience.

In Defence of Arthur Moffatt.

Introductory comments.

If everyone agrees what the story was, then it is certainly not true.
[Kenn Harper, Wilderness and Canoeing Symposium (Toronto, February 2018); paraphrased]. https://www.wcsymposium.com/sites/default/files/2018_wcs_program_v10.pdf
As s/he reads the accusations made of Arthur Moffatt, the reader may wish to keep in mind that he was unable to reply to anything written of him.

Summary.

In 1955, Moffatt set out to retrace the central portion of the Tyrrell (Joseph Burr and James Williams) expedition of 1893. To guide him, he had consulted both their books; as well, he had obtained JBT’s maps and journal, and he had corresponded with JBT. Reference. Ancillary 3. Tyrrell evidence and the fatal rapids.
The evidence of Moffatt’s journal, and that of participants Franck, Lanouette, LeFavour and Pessl, reveals every accusation made of him to be false, save the seven documented below. Of these, I assess six to be trivial; the sole accusation of substance (that regarding the rapids where Moffatt died) is addressed immediately below.
The efforts of Moffatt’s defamers were outstandingly successful, for they led the entire paddling community (including senior and highly respected members of it), plus the general public, to believe for 55 years that Moffatt died due to general incompetence on his part. I refer the reader to the corresponding two parts, the primary and secondary accusatory literature, of the Bibliography.
The methods used by Moffatt’s defamers were redactions of exculpatory evidence, alternative facts, fabrications and deceits.
And I suggest it to be far from beside the point that a dead person is an easy target for bullies.

The cause of Moffatt’s death.

Because of the overriding importance of the matter, I provide now some evidence regarding the rapids where he died. The full evidence, plus discussion of the related assertions of Moffatt’s defamers, is documented in the following.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.

Evidence 1. The Dubawnt river above the fatal rapids.
Although reaches of that river are highly dangerous, the Moffatt party had experienced not one dump, not one pin and but one swamp in the eleven weeks prior to Moffatt’s death on 14 September 1955.
Opinion. This success was due to both of two factors.
1. The skill and the caution of the Moffatt party.
2. The rapids advice provided to Moffatt by J B Tyrrell.

Evidence 2. That of J B Tyrrell’s map.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-6-1893
List of important features.
Wharton Lake, two rapids (with descents of 15 and 6 feet), a small lake, a rapid with a portage of 18 chains (400 yards), a left turn to the north, followed by a featureless reach terminating at what is now called Marjorie Lake.

Evidence 3. That of J B Tyrrell’s book.
Aside. J W Tyrrell’s book (possessed by Moffatt) makes no mention of the rapids where he died.
The relevant passage from J B Tyrrell’s book (possessed by Moffatt):
Below Wharton Lake the river flows at first eastward, and then southward, for four miles to a small lake, in which distance it rushes down two rapids with descents respectively of 15 and 6 feet. …Five miles below the small lake is a rapid with a descent of twenty feet, past the lower part of which a portage 400 yards long was made over a hill of boulders… At the foot of this rapid the river turns at right angles and flows northward for seven miles as a wide shallow rapid stream, through low country…
Lady Marjorie Lake…was entered at the south end…
.
Reference. Ancillary 3. Tyrrell evidence and the fatal rapids.
The key items in the passage.
The two rapids with descents…of 15 and 6 feet were run without incident on 13 September.
The portage 400 yards long was begun on 13 September and completed in the morning of 14 September.
Moffatt died in the seven-mile, featureless reach described by Tyrrell as a wide shallow rapid stream.

Evidence 4. That of Moffatt’s journal for 10 September.
I note that the SI editor possessed Moffatt’s journal in its entirety. The key item provided in the entry for 10 September is the passage can’t risk an upset now. But that passage was omitted from the Sports Illustrated condensation (p 82) of Moffatt’s journal for that day.
Comment. Perhaps that passage reflects unfavourably on the SI editor’s assertion that the rapids where Moffatt died had been run in desperate haste.

Evidence 5. The events of 13 September
The party ran without incident the two rapids with descents respectively of 15 and 6 feet, traversed the small lake, then began the portage 400 yards long.
All features (the two rapids and the portage, which was completed in the morning of 14 September) were found to be as described by J B Tyrrell, in Evidences 2 and 3.

Intermediate summary.
J B Tyrrell’s advice had proved reliable from the very beginning of the trip even to lunchtime on the day that Moffatt died. In particular, none of the evidence available to Moffatt suggested that the rapids where he died (the last two rapids before Marjorie Lake [Lanouette, evidence 6]) merited caution.
Comment.
Moffatt’s defamers appear to expect us to believe that he changed his mind only a few hours later that very day, and decided, in desperate haste, to ignore J B Tyrrell’s advice and so to risk the life of every member of the party.

Evidence 6. That of Lanouette.
Background.
Ancillary 2. Lanouette evidence and the fatal rapids provides the full journal of Lanouette (Moffatt’s bowperson) for the day of Moffatt’s death. The Sports Illustrated article provided what I assess to be a faithful condensation of his journal for that day. The relevant part of the condensation follows.
After a fine lunch of fish chowder, we shoved off again at around 2:30. The weather was still dismal, although the wind had dropped. In a few minutes we heard and saw rapids on the horizon. This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids before Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids. At the top, the rapids looked as though they would be easy going, a few small waves, rocks—nothing serious. We didn’t even haul to shore to have a look, as we usually did. The river was straight and we could see both the top and foot of the rough water quite clearly, or we thought we could… I was looking a few feet in front of the canoe…when suddenly Art shouted “Paddle”.
… I was surprised to see two lines of white. I looked at them in helpless fascination. It was too late to pull for shore.
[SI article, p 85 (1959)].
Opinion. The key passage (provided both in Lanouette’s journal and in the SI condensation) is the three sentences
This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids before Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids.
Aside. Moffatt died in the first rapids and those that followed.
Interpretation. Moffatt knew there to be two rapids below the portage, but Lanouette’s surprised comment evinces that he had been incorrectly advised (by J B Tyrrell) regarding their severity. Only when it was too late to bail out and escape to shore did Moffatt realise that J B Tyrrell’s advice (which had proved worthy of his trust for the previous 11 weeks of the trip) had failed him in the afternoon of 14 September 1955. He could only tough it out.
Conclusion. The three-sentence passage This surprised us…real beginning of the first rapids is the key to understanding the cause of Moffatt’s death, for it evinces that Moffatt had been misled by J B Tyrrell’s advice.
Unfortunately for Moffatt’s reputation, over the entire 55 years of the accusatory literature not one accuser (many of whom are known to have possessed the SI article) mentioned that Lanouette passage and so the exculpatory evidence that it provides. Worthy of explicit mention in this respect is the SI editor her/himself. And so I am perhaps justified in asking whether the editor had read her/his own article.
Grinnell’s version of the SI condensation.
At the top of page 202 of his book, one finds the passage:
In a few minutes we heard and saw rapids on the horizon… At the top, the rapids looked as though they would be easy going…
On comparing this with the SI condensation, one that Grinnell redacted the three sentences
This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids before Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids
and replaced them with an ellipsis.
I comment below regarding the interpretation of the passage and Grinnell’s motivation for redacting it.

Evidence 7. General evidence of participant LeFavour for 13 and 14 September.
The river between Wharton and Marjorie Lakes…had been traveled by Tyrrell in his trip 60 years before and was described in his journal: there were five rapids, the first two rough but shootable, the third long and heavy requiring a portage of a mile and the last two apparently easy for they were mentioned only as “rapids”. Because this route was described we took it, being careful to look over the first two which were indeed rough. Hurrying as we were, no foolish chances were taken. [The Evening Recorder, Amsterdam NY. Part 3, page 8, 29 December (1955)].
Asides.
LeFavour refers to J B Tyrrell’s journal (contents unknown) as the source. And so the source was not JBT’s response (contents unknown) to Moffatt’s letter of 18 December 1954.
As I documented above, JBT’s book (possessed by Moffatt) makes no mention of the rapids where Moffatt died.
Comments.
On 13 September, the Moffatt party ran without incident the first two rough but shootable rapids. These are the rapids with descents of 15 and 6 feet mentioned in JBT’s book and shown on his map. That same day, the Moffatt party began the portage around the long and heavy rapids.
The portage was completed in the morning of 14 September. That afternoon, Moffatt died in the last two apparently easy rapids that followed.
A request.
I ask that the reader consider the relevance of the LeFavour passage no foolish chances were taken to the assertion of Sports Illustrated editor that the rapids where Moffatt died had been run in desperate haste.
Summary.
LeFavour’s remarks regarding these first three features (the rapids with descents of 15 and 6 feet and the portage) agree completely with those of J B Tyrrell (both in his book and on his map), except for the length of the portage.
Foretaste.
As I now document, the key difference between the evidence of J B Tyrrell on the one hand and that of LeFavour on the other lies in features downstream from the portage; it was in this reach that Moffatt died. In short, LeFavour provides key evidence not mentioned by J B Tyrrell.

Evidence 8. That of LeFavour for 14 September.
At 3 p.m. we were again on the river…we hoped to get a good way up Marjorie Lake in the calm before dark. A mile downriver the roar of the next rapid reached our ears… As we coasted into the top of it all appeared to be well. You could see the bottom, the water, though white, was apparently shootable. Tyrrell had indicated by his neglect that the rapid was an easy one, and it seemed to be just that. [The Evening Recorder, Amsterdam NY. Part 3, page 8, 29 December (1955)].
Opinion. The key passage is Tyrrell had indicated by his neglect that the rapid was an easy one.
Comment. It was in this rapid (and the one that followed) that Moffatt died.

Evidence 9. That of Pessl.
We were following Tyrrell’s journal description of the river conditions approaching Marjorie Lake. Tyrrell’s river descriptions had proven dependable previously and indicated benign conditions entering Marjorie Lake following the last portage. [private correspondence]
Note. The last portage is the one completed in the morning of 14 September.

Evidence 10. That of George Luste.
Art Moffatt, following Tyrrell’s notes, was not expecting the rapid in which he swamped and then died. [Grinnell book, p 284].
Unfortunately, this evidence of Luste was ignored by every Moffatt accuser. Deserving of explicit mention are Grinnell himself (in his own book) and Murphy (in what he alleged to be a review of Grinnell’s book).
A regret. I did not ask Luste about his source for the above while still he could reply.

Aside regarding blind probes.
I expect that many paddlers have run rapids without scouting them. My limited understanding of such matters has it that the act is so common as to have acquired a title, namely making a blind probe. For sure, countless parties have made blind probes and gotten through successfully, but others have dumped. Indeed, two primary defamers (Murphy and Thum) had the courage and the integrity to state that they had dumped because they had not scouted rapids.
Reference 1. Murphy, James. Moffatt, Myth and Mysticism [Che-Mun, Canoelit section. Outfit? Spring 1996, pp 5 & 11]
Reference 2. Thum, Bob. In Down a Dead Man’s River. [Charlie Mahler. Che-Mun. Outfit 122, Autumn 2005, starting on page 4].
http://www.ottertooth.com/che-mun/122/chemun122.pdf
I should welcome correction, but I assume that both these dumps resulted from making a blind probe.
But Moffatt did not make a blind probe. His dump resulted solely from incorrect advice provided by a source that he had learned to trust over the previous eleven weeks. To repeat, J B Tyrrell had advised Moffatt that there were no significant rapids in the reach remaining above Marjorie Lake, and so he led the way down them, without a scout, to his death.

A request.
I ask that reader consider the light shed by these ten evidences on the following assertions regarding Moffatt’s death.
1. …the Moffatt party races against winter on the Barren Grounds …In desperate haste, they take an ultimate chance. [SI article, bottom of right column, p 76; 1955]
2. Increasingly, the men were taking chances. They now shot down churning chutes of white water which, a month earlier, they would have scrutinized with a doubtful eye. [SI article, top of right column, p 82; 1955]
3. …misjudging Tyrrell’s descriptions of the rapids they would encounter before entering Marjorie Lake… [Inglis, 1979]
4. …Moffatt died of exposure after they dumped in a large rapid they did not scout. [Che-Mun, Outfit 99, Winter 2000].
5. The men talked less and took more risks. On September 14th,… all three boats plunged over two sets of waterfalls the paddlers hadn’t bothered to scout…. [Kingsley, Paddle North, top of p 189, 2014]
Conjecture. Assertions 3, 4 and 5 were inspired by those of the SI editor.
References.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.

How did it go so badly wrong,

that Arthur Moffatt was falsely accused for 55 years regarding the running of the rapids where he died?
The evidence leads me to conclude that the primary cause was the redactions of exculpatory evidence made by the Sports Illustrated editor and by participant Grinnell. It bears explicit mention
first that their publications form the sole evidentiary basis (that provided in the publications of the participants) of the entire 55 years of the accusatory literature,
second that they had been in contact before the publication of the SI article.

The redaction made by the Sports Illustrated editor.
1. Moffatt’s last journal entry (that for 13 September) is provided in full in Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
What interpretation of the phrase Following Tyrrell’s route contained there is possible but that Moffatt had possessed route advice from Tyrrell (J B, not J W) and that he was following it the next day, when he died?
2. A version of that last Moffatt entry was published in the Sports Illustrated article (1959), the first publication of the accusatory literature. [lower right column, p 82] On comparing the two versions, one sees that the SI editor redacted the phrase Following Tyrrell’s route.
3. I ask that reader reflect on the light shed by the phrase Following Tyrrell’s route on the following assertions of the SI editor.
…the Moffatt party races against winter on the Barren Grounds …In desperate haste, they take an ultimate chance. [SI article, bottom of right column, p 76]
Increasingly, the men were taking chances. They now shot down churning chutes of white water which, a month earlier, they would have scrutinized with a doubtful eye. [SI article, top of right column, p 82]
4. Interpretation.
Given that the redacted phrase Following Tyrrell’s route calls into question the truth of both assertions, I suggest that such was the editor’s motivation for redacting it.
5. Conclusion.
The Sports Illustrated editor expects us to believe that, having followed J B Tyrrell’s advice throughout the trip, in particular on 13 September and in the morning of 14 September, Moffatt chose to ignore that same advice later that same day.
Who is so credulous?

The redaction made by participant Grinnell.
I documented above that the only change made by Grinnell in his version of the SI faithful condensation of Lanouette’s journal was his redaction of the three-sentence passage
This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids before Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids
and his replacement of it by an ellipsis. [Grinnell book, top of p 202]
And so there must be something very special about that passage, that it was afforded such very special treatment.
Well, what interpretation of that passage is possible but that Moffatt had been misled (by J B Tyrrell’s advice) regarding the danger posed by the rapids where he died? That is, Lanouette and Moffatt were surprised because J B Tyrrell had advised Moffatt that there were no significant rapids in the reach between the portage (completed in the morning of 14 September) and Marjorie Lake. I refer the reader to the ten evidences provided above.

The question.
Given the exculpatory nature of that passage (namely that Moffatt had been misled regarding the danger posed by the rapids where he died), what interpretation of Grinnell’s redaction of that passage is credible but that he intended to mislead his readership regarding the cause of Moffatt’s death?

The collaboration of the Sports Illustrated editor and Grinnell.
I must repeat that both the SI editor and Grinnell redacted what I assess to be exculpatory evidence regarding Moffatt’s decision to run without a scout the rapids where he died.
I bring now to the reader’s attention that Grinnell had collaborated in the writing of the SI article, specifically the Epilogue. I refer here to Grinnell’s comments regarding death by hypothermia, the rescues, the revised plan to reach Baker Lake, the crossing of Aberdeen Lake, etc. Given that Grinnell’s first publication (his Canoe article of 1988) appeared 29 years later, he and the SI editor must have corresponded, at the very least. Indeed, I have cause to believe that they had met through intermediaries, perhaps even in person.
In both his article (1988) and his book (1996), Grinnell had the opportunity to object to the falsehoods and the fabrications of the SI editor (1959). Unfortunately, he chose not to do so, and those items polluted the Moffatt literature to at least 2014. But worse was to come, for Grinnell redacted that exculpatory passage from the condensation of Lanouette’s journal; it is perhaps no gross conjecture that he was inspired by the corresponding redaction made by the SI editor. Had Grinnell chosen the path of truth, Moffatt’s reputation might have been saved; had his family not suffered enough already? Rather, Grinnell (with the assistance of Murphy and MacDonald) ignited the accusatory literature (both primary and secondary) that continued to at least 2014.
And so the thought occurred to me that the SI editor and Grinnell had colluded to defame Arthur Moffatt.

Assessment of the evidentiary basis of the accusatory literature.

I define this basis to be the evidence of the participants.

The evidence of Moffatt
was available only in the form of edited excerpts from his journal, as provided in the Sports Illustrated article. I remind the reader
first that the SI editor redacted the exculpatory phrase Following Tyrrell’s route from Moffatt’s last journal entry (that for 13 September) and
second that the editor made assertions that are falsified by the contents of Moffatt’s journal.
I conclude that no content of the Sports Illustrated article is to be believed, save what is verified by reliable source/s. Particularly undeserving of the reader’s trust are what are alleged to be passages from Moffatt’s journal.

The evidence of Lanouette,
which I trust completely, was available only in the form of the faithful condensation (provided in the SI article) of his journal for 14 September.
That evidence (which I assess to be exculpatory) was ignored by every accuser (notably by the SI editor) for the entire 55 years of the Moffatt literature, save by Grinnell, who redacted it.

The evidence of Grinnell.
In continuation, I remind the reader that, in his book, Grinnell redacted the exculpatory passage This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids before Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids from his version of the evidence of Lanouette.
That redaction, alone and in itself, leads me to conclude that no content of either Grinnell’s book (1996), and so of his article (1988), is to be believed unless confirmed by a reliable source.
Aside. I have yet to document fully, even so much as to count, the accusations made by Grinnell, many of which are known to be false in one way or another. That task is on my to-do list; should it be completed, the result will be posted in Ancillary 1. Accusations.

The evidence of LeFavour
is completely worthy of the reader’s trust. But it was unavailable until he provided me with the key third of the four articles and gave permission to publish its contents.

The evidence of Pessl and Franck
is completely worthy of the reader’s trust. But it appeared too late to influence the literature, with the following exception: Kingsley [Paddle North, top of p 202 (2014)] made incidental mention of the Pessl comment People revealed themselves as imperfect [Kesselheim, Canoe & Kayak (2012)].

Summary.
With that exception, the only participant evidence available in the 55 years of the accusatory literature was that provided in three publications: the SI article (1959), Grinnell’s article (1988) and Grinnell’s book (1996). These are what I call the three pillars of the accusatory literature.
But I documented above
that the SI editor redacted the exculpatory passage Following Tyrrell’s route from Moffatt’s last journal entry, and
that Grinnell (in his book) redacted the exculpatory passage This surprised us…real beginning of the first rapids from the SI condensation of Lanouette’s journal for the day of Moffatt’s death.

Conclusion.
Given
that those three publications form the entire evidentiary basis of the Moffatt literature, and
that no content of any of them and can be trusted,
it follows as the night the day that the entire accusatory literature (primary and secondary alike) of those 55 years has no more substance than a house of cards.

The character of the Moffatt literature and the accusations made of him.

In all the many publications made over those 55 years, in not one instance was evidence provided in support of an accusation. That is, the accusatory literature consists of nothing but assertions.
Given that Moffatt was dead and so unable to defend himself, his defamers had free rein. The evidence leads me to conclude that many of them took maximal advantage of that fact.
I documented above the redactions (I suggest them to have been coordinated) made by the SI editor and by Grinnell.
Other means were used to defame Moffatt, namely falsehoods, fabrications and deceits. But there are so many of each that it would destroy the flow to list here only the major items. I refer the reader to the correspondingly entitled paragraph provided in Ancillary 1. Accusations.
It is a far simpler task to document every true accusation.

The true accusations.
In three-plus years of research into Moffatt’s death, I found but seven true accusations to have made in the accusatory literature, which began in 1959 and continued to 2014.

True accusation 1. The three spare paddles had been left behind in Stony Rapids.
Response. They were delivered the very next day.
Request. I ask that the reader reflect on the accusers’ motivation in documenting such material.

True accusation 2. The party did not take a radio.
Response. Moffatt requested, but was refused, permission to carry a radio. It bears explicit mention that possession of one would not have averted his death.
Request. I ask that the reader reflect on the accuser’s motivation in documenting such material.

True accusation 3. The initial supply of provisions had proved to be inadequate.
Item 1.
The Moffatt party was woefully short of provisions and caloric energy sustenance… [Luste, Grinnell book, top of p 288].
Aside. As best I know, Luste had no access to either the Sports Illustrated (1959) or Grinnell’s article (1988)
Comment. At first glance, it is unclear whether Luste referred here to the initial supply, or to the supply available during the trip.
But Grinnell’s book documents the shooting of five caribou in the six weeks before Moffatt’s death, plus the acquisition of much other food from the land, plus the massive resupply of provisions from the cache. And so I conclude that Luste referred solely to the initial supply.
Item 2.
The Moffatt expedition was clearly unprepared in the material sense. Not enough food–neither in quantity nor quality. [Kingsley. Back and Beyond. Lake. Issue 6 (2013); p 14].
I assume this to be a paraphrase of the above Luste assertion.
Given that Kingsley refers to Moffatt’s preparations (and so not to the food supply during the trip), I agree completely.
Assessment. True, but only when applied to the early part of the trip, as I am sure was intended by both Luste and Kingsley.

True accusation 4. There was a dispute regarding the sugar supply.
Grinnell assertion. A week later Pessl announced that we had consumed half our sugar supply while covering less than one-third the distance to Baker Lake. [Grinnell article, p 20, top of right column; undated (1988)]
Pessl confirmation. Had a grumpy outbreak over the sugar situation. We are now 1/2 through the supply and only about 1/3 of the distance to Baker Lake…Hope it works. [Pessl book, 29 July, p 56 (2014].
Assessment. True with respect to the time remaining, uncertain with respect to the distance.
Response. The matter was resolved on 29 July.
Aside. Given Grinnell’s redaction of that passage in the condensation of Lanouette’s journal, I saw no need to record and address his accusations that Moffatt was swiping more than his fair share of the sugar.

True accusation 5. Moffatt had used a bowl larger than the others.
Source. Grinnell’s article (1988) and his book (1996); verified by Pessl (2014).
Response. Beginning on 22 August, Moffatt used a bowl of the same size as the others.

True accusation 6. running scared
Source. Sports Illustrated (1959); repeated by Kingsley (2012).
The source is easily identified to have been Moffatt’s comment we’re all running scared in his journal entry for 10 September. Reference. Ancillary 1. Accusations.
But Moffatt’s journal for that very same day contains also the passage can’t risk an upset now, which went unmentioned in all the accusatory literature.
Summary. Material prejudicial to Moffatt was reported, but not material favourable to him.
Request. I ask that the reader reflect on the accusers’ motivation in documenting such material.

True accusation 7. The rapids where Moffatt died had not been scouted.
I refer the reader to the evidence presented at the top of this text, more completely in the following.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.

The character of Arthur Moffatt.
Although a US citizen, he joined the British army shortly after graduation from college, months before December 1941. For four years, he served in the campaigns in Africa and Italy.
But Moffatt was not a combatant, for he was a pacifist. Rather, he was an ambulance driver; he took the wounded and the dying from the very front of the battles to the aid stations in the rear, no job for a coward.
Let the reader compare his character with that of those who knowingly made false accusations of a person unable to respond. The Sports Illustrated editor and Grinnell come immediately to mind.
Let the reader compare his character with that of Thum, who retraced Moffatt’s route solely to show him up.

The mission of the Moffatt party.
In 1955, Moffatt set out to retrace the central portion of the 1893 Tyrrell-Tyrrell (Joseph Burr and James Williams) expedition of the Geological Survey of Canada; this was the reach from Black Lake (on the Fond du Lac River) to Baker Lake (on the Thelon River). To guide him, Moffatt possessed multiple evidences of the Tyrrell brothers.
References. Ancillary 3. Tyrrell items and the fatal rapids, plus other sources.
Moffatt’s was one of first modern trips to paddle the barrenlands; even Eric Morse’s group did not venture there until years later. His was certainly the first party composed entirely of those of European descent to travel any part of the Dubawnt River.
His mission was to document (by film, photos and journal/s) the barrenlands of the Dubawnt/Thelon basin of what is now Nunavut. His was not a recreational trip like that taken by most paddlers, and so I suggest that it not be judged by such standards.
An example. In order to accomplish its mission, the Moffatt party paused as opportunities arose (for example to photograph the caribou and the artefacts left by the native people), and so it could not possibly have had a highly prescriptive schedule. And it had no even one waypoint to be reached by a specified date. But 11 independent sources, including Grinnell (especially in his book), attest that the Moffatt party had what matters, namely a schedule for arrival in Baker Lake. The reader will soon see what Murphy and MacDonald did with that evidence, in what they alleged to be reviews of that book.
Reference. Appendix 7. Schedule.

The evidence of participant Pessl regarding the mission of the Moffatt party.
1. Moffatt had …the grand concept of retracing J. B. Tyrrell’s epic 1893 journey down the Dubawnt River, creating a film documentary about the journey and sharing that experience in print with the wilderness adventure community. [book, p 165]
2. We were filming a canoe journey along a transect that reflected remarkable changes in the wildlife and natural history of the region. It was the journey that mattered and it was the context of that journey that we were committed to record. [book, p 166].
3. In a very different context, Pessl referred to Moffatt’s intention to provide the basis for a coherent, artistic expression of this classic journey… [book, p 167].

The tipping point.

Preliminaries.
1. I documented above the redaction made by the SI editor in her/his article of 1959. One fine day, I’ll compile a list of the falsehoods, the fabrications, etc of the SI editor.
2. I possess no evidence that any accuser knew of the fabrications and deceits of the historian Alex Inglis, made in his book Northern Vagabond. The Life and Career of J B Tyrrell – the Man Who Conquered the Canadian North. McClelland and Stewart. (1978) [pp 52&54]. The book escaped the attention of every Moffatt accuser.
Aside. Inglis’s sole source was the SI article, and he made the first mention of the accusations of the SI editor.
3. I document elsewhere the fabrications and deceits contained in Grinnell’s article (1988); they were mentioned in the literature only after the publication of his book (1996).
4. Elsewhere, I provide Luste’s list of accusations (dates and authors unknown) made prior to the publication of Grinnell’s book (1996 edition, pp 293&294). Given that no accuser provided a source, their effect is not known.
5. A strong candidate for the tipping point is Grinnell’s book of 1996. It contains his redacted version of Lanouette’s journal, and it is replete with falsehoods, fabrications and deceits. It is on my to-do list to document each of these items.
But I question whether the book would have had significant impact had its existence not been made widely known by Murphy and MacDonald. Otherwise, it might well have faded into the obscurity it so richly deserves.
Opinion.
The tipping point of the accusatory literature was the publication of the Murphy-MacDonald articles, which they alleged to be reviews of Grinnell’s book. [Che-Mun, Canoelit section. Moffatt, Myth & Mysticism. Spring 1996, pp 5 & 11].
Certainly those articles broke the dyke; the flood of the accusations (primary and secondary) based on them is known to have continued until 2014.
Bibliography.
And so I document and assess in detail their assertions in what follows.

The assertions of Murphy and MacDonald, preliminaries.

The assertion of Murphy.
Lack of food, proper equipment and most importantly, lack of a planned itinerary, contributed to his [Moffatt’s] demise.
Assertion 1 of MacDonald.
As the summer-length trip wore on, and the progress of their three Chestnut canoes lapsed further and further behind schedule, anxiousness and impending climax accompanies the daily accounts.
Assertion 2 of MacDonald.
One of the implications of a quasi-religious resistance to a pragmatic plan of travel was the death of Arthur Moffat.
Outline.
I provide three paragraphs. The first two address Murphy’s assertions regarding food and equipment, the third the assertions of Murphy and MacDonald regarding the schedule.

Murphy’s assertion regarding lack of food as a cause of Moffatt’s death,
repeated for the reader’s convenience: Lack of food…contributed to his [Moffatt’s] demise.
1. Murphy provided no evidence in support of the above assertion, for the excellent reason that no such evidence exists. Indeed, Grinnell’s book (the very subject of Murphy’s review) documents that food was plentiful, on the whole, in the six weeks before Moffatt’s death.
2. I point out to Murphy but two items contained in Grinnell’s book, the very subject of his review.
Over the ensuing weeks… we killed our third, fourth and fifth caribous… [p 156].
…we saw…a stack of cardboard boxes with cans of dehydrated vegetables inside… We…raided the dump. [7 September, pp 180&181]
3. The evidence of participant LeFavour for 13 September, the day before Moffatt’s death. Up to that point we had shot five caribou and by doing so had saved enough meat to see us through. Now it was not even necessary to spend time hunting. [The Evening Recorder, Amsterdam NY. Part 3 of 4, page 8, 29 December (1955).]
4. Some evidences of Franck and Pessl.
22 August. I was not feeling too well today, probably from eating too much caribou yesterday, … [Franck, in Pessl, p 99].
28 August. We … were so full we could hardly move. [Franck, in Pessl, p 108]
30 August. …I had prepared such a huge breakfast that none of us could have moved much further than the tents anyway. I felt as if I would have crashed right through the bottom of the canoe and sunk like a stone if we would have been loading. [Pessl, p 110]
Conclusion. Murphy’s assertion that Moffatt died in part due to lack of food is a falsehood.
Reference. Appendix 6. Food.

Murphy’s assertion regarding lack of proper equipment as a cause of Moffatt’s death,
repeated for the reader’s convenience: Lack of…proper equipment…contributed to his [Moffatt’s] demise.
1. Murphy provided no evidence in support of his assertion that Moffatt died in part due to lack of…proper equipment, for the excellent reason that no such evidence exists.
2. Inspection reveals Murphy’s unidentified source to have been Luste’s equipment recommendations for paddlers circa 1996.
I point out to Murphy that, to the best of my knowledge, such equipment was not available 41 years earlier. For example, I was unable to find evidence that spray covers had been available in 1955, or that anyone had used such before then. I refer the reader to my post at Canadian Canoe Routes (URL to be provided).
3. I possess no evidence that Moffatt’s equipment was not up-to-date for the times.
Conclusion. Murphy’s assertion that Moffatt died due to lack…of proper equipment is a falsehood.
Reference. Appendix 3. Equipment.

The Murphy-MacDonald assertions regarding lack of schedule as a cause of Moffatt’s death.
Background.
1. The winds in particular forbid any barrenlands party to have a highly prescriptive schedule, the extreme case being a day-by-day one. Even the Tyrrell party of 1893 was forced to stay in camp on occasion.
2. Given the mission of the Moffatt party (to document the barrenlands) it could not have had a highly prescriptive schedule. And it had not even one waypoint to be reached by a specified date. But it had what counts, namely a schedule for arrival in Baker Lake.
3. Clarification. Their editor explained later that by a planned itinerary and a pragmatic plan of travel, Murphy and MacDonald meant what most would call a schedule.

The assertion of Murphy. Lack of…a planned itinerary… contributed to his [Moffatt’s] demise.
Murphy provided no evidence in support of his assertion that Moffatt died in part due to lack of a schedule, for the excellent reason that no such evidence exists.

The assertions of MacDonald.
1. As the summer-length trip wore on, and the progress of their three Chestnut canoes lapsed further and further behind schedule, anxiousness and impending climax accompanies the daily accounts.
2. One of the implications of a quasi-religious resistance to a pragmatic plan of travel was the death of Arthur Moffat.
3. Confession. It is unclear to me whether these assertions support or refute each other.
4. MacDonald provided no evidence in support of his assertion that Moffatt died due to lack of a schedule, for the excellent reason that no such evidence exists.

The evidence of Grinnell’s book, the very subject of the Murphy-MacDonald reviews.
1. Two passages identified in my incomplete search.
(a) we had fallen about a month behind schedule [p 162] and
(b) we were falling behind schedule [p 163].
Suggestion. These passages (and perhaps others in Grinnell’s book) were the source for the Murphy-MacDonald assertions listed above.
What interpretation of these passages is possible but that the Moffatt party had a schedule but was not sticking to it?
Unfortunately, both passages are Grinnell fabrications (this not known to Murphy and MacDonald).
2. On the other hand, Grinnell (in his book) asserted repeatedly, consistently and truthfully that the Moffatt party had a schedule for arrival in Baker Lake.
But neither Murphy nor MacDonald mentioned this evidence, in what they alleged to be reviews of Grinnell’s book.
Aside. Strangely, Grinnell gave the intended arrival date as 2 September, rather than the correct15 September; I interpret this as evidence (confirmed by more such) that he did not keep a journal.
3. Unfortunately for the reputation of Moffatt (who was unable to respond), Murphy and MacDonald made no mention of this evidence provided in Grinnell’s book, in what they alleged to be reviews of that very book. It is perhaps then reasonable to ask whether either Murphy or MacDonald had actually read Grinnell’s book.
4. As well, ten sources other than Grinnell’s book, including The New York Times, confirm that the Moffatt party had a schedule for arrival in Baker Lake. Reference. Appendix 7. Schedule.

Summary.
Murphy’s assertion that Moffatt died due to lack of a schedule is an untruth.
MacDonald’s assertion that Moffatt died due to lack of a schedule is an untruth.

The primary accusatory literature.

At the beginning of this document, I provided the evidence related to the rapids where Moffatt died, and I mentioned the related accusations. And I just addressed the influential accusations of Murphy and MacDonald. But the primary accusatory literature is far larger might be concluded from the above. It consists of the following.
Item 1. The Sports Illustrated article (1959).
Item 2. The book of Inglis (1978); it contains incidental mention of Moffatt’s death.
Item 3. The Canoe article (1988) of participant Grinnell.
Item 4. Assertions quoted by Luste in Grinnell’s book (pp 293&294, 1996 edition)
Item 5. Grinnell’s book (1996 edition).
Item 6. The Murphy-MacDonald reviews of Grinnell’s book (1996).
Item 7. The Mahler-Thum article/s (2005).
Item 8. Kingsley’s articles (2012 and 2013) and book (2014).
In the interest of brevity, I refer the reader to Ancillary 1. Accusations for a full discussion of all these items.

Opinions.

From its inception in 1959 to and including 2014, the accusatory literature consists of nothing but assertions, opinion pieces, and edited versions of previous accusations. In not one case was supporting evidence provided. Not once was a source identified, save the obvious (the reviews of Grinnell’s book). In several instances, the source can have been only the defamer’s imagination.
Accusations were accepted and promulgated, indeed embellished, without thought to whether they were true, even to whether they were credible.
Exculpatory evidence was redacted twice, and ignored on other occasions.
Qualifying evidence was omitted.
Evidence was misrepresented.
Fabrications were represented as evidence.
All too many assertions are conscious untruths.
The little red fruit was picked repeatedly by two defamers.
All this of someone unable to defend himself.

Summary.

At the beginning of this document, I provided all the evidence known to me regarding the cause of Moffatt’s death. To me, the evidence is conclusive that the sole cause was incorrect advice from a source that he had learned to trust over the previous 11 weeks of the trip, indeed in the very morning of the day that he died.
But, over the 55 years of the accusatory literature, many false accusations were made of Moffatt and were widely believed and promulgated. And so I felt it necessary to list some of those accusations, and the conclusions that the evidence led me to reach regarding them.
1.
It is a fabrication that any member of the party lost sense of reality at any time.
It is a falsehood that Grinnell and most of the others had succumbed to a sort of delusion. They felt they were in paradise.
Appendix 1. Reality and Delusion.
2.
It is a falsehood that the party had taken holidays on more than half the days of the trip.
It is a fabrication that an inquest had been held into Moffatt’s death.
Appendix 3. Equipment.
4.
It is a fabrication that the party was inexperienced.
It is a fabrication that the leadership was poor.
Appendix 4. Experience.
5.
It a falsehood that the party raced down the river in order to escape the onset of winter.
Appendix 5. Pace and weather.
6.
It is a falsehood that game grows scarce.
Given that a major resupply of provisions was obtained on 7 September, it is a fabrication that provisions dwindle.
It is a falsehood that Moffatt died due to lack of food.
It is a fabrication that Moffatt said He who controls the food controls the men. It is another the later embellishment He said with a sardonic smile.
It is a deceit that As the summer wore on, the men grew hungry before, during, and after each meal.
It is a fabrication that When Arthur Moffatt set off for the Barrenlands, he envisioned a land of plenty.
Given that a major resupply of provisions was obtained on 7 September, it is a deceit that the party’s provisions were beginning to run low.
It is a deceit that there were only 15 packs of cigarettes left and a half can of roll-your-own.
It is a truth that that the sugar ration had proved to be woefully inadequate.
It is a falsehood that the caribou were long gone.
It is a truth that the Moffatt party shot five caribou, the first on 5 August, the last on 5 September.
It is a truth that, a few hours before Moffatt’s death, the party had so much caribou meat on board that it had no more need to hunt.
Appendix 6. Food.
7.
It is a deceit that the Moffatt party was a week behind Tyrrell’s schedule, another that it was nine days behind schedule.
It is a falsehood that Moffatt died due to lack of a planned itinerary, aka lack of a schedule.
It is a falsehood that he died due to lack of a pragmatic plan of travel, aka lack of a schedule.
It is a truth that the Moffatt party had scheduled arrival in Baker Lake for 15 September, with a grace period of a week.
Appendix 7. Schedule.
8.
It is a misrepresentation of the evidence that the party was running scared.
It is a falsehood that …the Moffatt party races against winter on the Barren Grounds. … In desperate haste, they take an ultimate chance.
It is a falsehood that Increasingly, the men were taking chances. They now shot down churning chutes of white water, which, a month earlier, they would have scrutinized with a doubtful eye.
It is a truth that the rapids where Moffatt died had not been scouted.
It is a truth that Moffatt died because he had been misled by advice that had proved worthy of his trust for the 11 weeks prior to his death.
It is a truth that Art Moffatt, following Tyrrell’s notes, was not expecting the rapid in which he swamped and then died. [Luste]
It is a truth that hurrying as we were, no foolish chances were taken. [LeFavour]
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.

Personal reflections.
Moffatt did not paddle the Dubawnt in order to build his self-esteem by proving himself to himself or to anyone else. A pacifist who served for four years at the very front of the battles in Africa and Italy has no need to prove anything to anyone.
Rather, Moffatt set out to document the barrenlands by means of film, photos and journals. Perhaps he went also to experience the barrens, to immerse himself in it, to understand it at least in part, to appreciate it. Perhaps he had hoped to establish himself as a wilderness writer. Perhaps he already had the idea of protecting the barrens. Perhaps he took the trip in part out of respect for the wilderness.
Whatever his motivation, Moffatt was the very antithesis of the conquer-the-wilderness types, the ego-trippers, the self-promoters, the peak-baggers, the river-baggers, in short all those go into the wild with something to prove. He would never have said The real adventure pits man against nature, as alleged in the Sports Illustrated article [top of p 71]. In private correspondence, Pessl confirmed that such a comment is totally out of character for Moffatt; he referred me to the following passage from Grinnell’s book. How ridiculous to “assault a mountain”! How pretentious to plant a flag! How arrogant to stand on top for fifteen minutes and talk of “conquest!” [Grinnell book, p 19]. A similar remark was made in Grinnell’s article [lower left column, p 20]. In both instances, the context was a conversation about the then recent ascent of Everest.
Moffatt was the very antithesis of Bob Thum, who provided the following motivation for his Dubawnt trip of 1966. Moffatt is precisely why we took the trip…I thought experienced trippers could cover Tyrrell’s route safely and skillfully, which we did. [Down a Dead Man’s River, Che-Mun. Outfit 122, Autumn 2005, starting on page 4. http://www.ottertooth.com/che-mun/122/chemun122.pdf
Response 1. And so the sole purpose of the Thum trip was to show up Moffatt. Such courage, such grace, to bully a dead man.
Response 2. It certainly took considerable skill on Thum’s part and that of his companions to get safely through the many dangerous rapids above those where Moffatt died.
But such skill had been exhibited previously by the Moffatt party, whose first and only dumps occurred in the rapids where he died.
With respect to the rapids where Moffatt died, the only skill required of Thum was the ability to read the evidence regarding Moffatt’s death, namely that those rapids were dangerous in the extreme.
Opinions.
Arthur Moffatt deserves our respect.
He and his family certainly did not deserve the falsehoods, fabrications and misrepresentations published over 55 years by so many, especially those made by fellow paddlers.

Comments.
Those wishing to learn more about the trip and the tragedy are suggested to start with Pessl’s book. Barren Grounds. The Story of the Tragic Moffatt Canoe Trip. Dartmouth College Press (2014).
With all primary accusations shown to have no basis in the evidence, the way is clear for a new chapter in the Moffatt literature, namely an extended appreciation of him. Such would be rather late (he died sixty years ago), but perhaps someone will take on the job.
And I suggest that retractions are in order.

A little about Arthur Moffatt, the person.
First and above all, he was not the bungling, incompetent fool that multiple defamers so successfully portrayed him to be for 55 years.
From the little that I know of him, he was a thoughtful, decent, responsible, indeed admirable, person.
1. Arthur Moffatt was born in 1919, the son of a stable worker on a Long Island estate. At 17, he’d paddled the Albany River in Northern Ontario alone, 500 miles from Sioux Lookout to Hudson’s Bay. He attended Dartmouth College—his father’s employer paid his tuition—and immediately after graduating in 1941, he joined the American Field Service, a volunteer ambulance corps attached to the British Eighth Army. A committed pacifist, Moffatt witnessed some of the bloodiest campaigns of World War II, but never carried a weapon. [Pessl, as reported by Kesselheim, Alan. Canoe & Kayak, May 2012, starting on p 46.]
2. He was a quietly principled man who from an early age lived as best he could, consistent with his principles. … He was a pacifist and volunteered for the American Field service as an ambulance driver, serving in Africa and Italy during World War II. [Pessl book, p 165]
Why did he choose the Dubawnt River?
He had …the grand concept of retracing J. B. Tyrrell’s epic 1893 journey down the Dubawnt River, creating a film documentary about the journey and sharing that experience in print with the wilderness adventure community. [Pessl, p 165]

An appreciation of Arthur Moffatt.
Even after these many years, I grieve Art Moffatt’s death. He was more than my mentor; he was perhaps a second father even though he was only fourteen years older than I. His pacifism, his principled lifestyle, and his view of the world, natural and international, opened my mind, challenged my thoughts, and gave me insight and courage to pursue my own dreams.
I wonder what would have been the future had he survived the Dubawnt and fully developed professionally as an outdoor writer and voice for wild spaces, indigenous peoples, habitat protection, and restraint in Arctic resources development. I believe his impact on our awareness and understanding of the Barrens would have been profound. How might we have better valued the vastness and uniqueness of that ecosystem? How different our understanding and vision of the far north might be today had our Dubawnt adventure ended in celebration instead of tragedy?
Certainly, we would be better informed, perhaps more compassionate in causes of peace, and probably more courageous in advocating to protect and conserve our northern heritage.
[Pessl, p 178].

Comments.
The Moffatt family lost a husband and a father.
The survivors lost their leader, their mentor, their companion, their friend.
The false, abusive accusations of the 55 years that followed likely inflicted much pain on both family and survivors, all of whom no doubt already suffered considerably from the loss. And so I express one last time my thanks to Pessl, Lanouette and LeFavour for their assistance.

Opinions.
The Moffatt story is the most shameful chapter in all the outdoor literature known to me. Even John Hornby (Thelon River, 1927) was treated gently in comparison.
Of such caution, charity, compassion, courage, diligence, grace, humanity, integrity, scholarship, thought, and above all commitment to truth, is destroyed the reputations of the defenceless innocent, here a fellow paddler to many accusers.
The opinion of Stewart Coffin.
The Moffatt Expedition stands as the pioneering venture in modern recreational canoe travel through the subarctic tundra of northern Canada. [Appalachia Journal. 15 December, 1996.] Mentioned by Pessl (his page 162); thanks to him for providing a copy.

The last word.
George Luste and I were professional colleagues for forty years. I regarded him as a friend. He got me started with serious tripping and he provided much valuable advice. I helped him with the Wilderness and Canoeing Symposium for several years.
He expressed the following opinion of Moffatt’s defamers prior to 1996. I expect that he would have written even more scathingly of those who wrote later.
Let him have the last word.
It seems as if a liberal amount of imagination has been invoked by these writers to change the facts so they fit their preoccupations and desires for culpability. [Grinnell book, 1996, p 294]

URLs of the items of the blog.

Foreword and Forum.
Main text.
Appendix 1. Reality and Delusion.
Appendix 3. Equipment.
Appendix 4. Experience and Leadership.
Appendix 5. Pace and Weather.
Appendix 6. Food.
Appendix 7. Schedule.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
Ancillary 1. Accusations.
Ancillary 2. Lanouette evidence and the fatal rapids.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell evidence and the fatal rapids.
Ancillary 4. Distances.
Ancillary 5. Loose ends and the future.
Ancillary 6. Addenda.
Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.
Ancillary 8. Evidence regarding the tragedy.
Ancillary 10. My sources.
Ancillary 11. Canoe&Kayak manuscript.
Ancillary 12. Acknowledgements.
Ancillary 13. Timeline of the primary Moffatt literature.
Ancillary 14. Opinions.
Ancillary 15. Moffatt’s preparations.
Bibliography.

Notice.
With the exception of quoted material, copyright to the above belongs to Allan Jacobs.

Edition of 14 June 2018.

Ancillary 8. Evidence regarding the tragedy.

Renovations continue. Thanks for your patience.

Ancillary 8. Evidence regarding the tragedy.

Introduction.
This Ancillary provides all known evidence related to the death of Arthur Moffatt.
So that the reader may assess that evidence unencumbered by my interpretations of it,
I refrain from making comments except as deemed necessary for clarity.
Consequences.
no quotes of accusations, no references to them, no responses to them;
no mention of redactions, no references to them, no responses to them.
The reader will find the omitted items in the Appendices and in the other Ancillaries; the corresponding Internal URLs are provided at the end of this document.

List of Moffatt’s sources.
1. The book of James W Tyrrell.
2. The book of Joseph B Tyrrell.
3. The journal/report of J B Tyrrell.
4. Correspondence with J B Tyrrell.
Reference for these items. Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.
5. The maps of J B Tyrrell.
Reference. The Appendix provided at the end of this document.

The book of James W Tyrrell.
Moffatt had accessed J W Tyrrell’s book Across the Sub-Arctics of Canada (Toronto, 1908).
With the help of the kind and patient staff at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library (University of Toronto), I obtained a copy of every page for the entire reach from Black Lake to Baker Lake to Chesterfield Inlet.
The book makes little mention of rapids in general, and none of rapids in the reach where Moffatt died.
This Ancillary makes no further mention of it.

The book of Joseph B Tyrrell.
As evinced for example by Moffatt’s Prospectus on page 71 of the Sports Illustrated article, Moffatt had accessed J B Tyrrell’s book of the 1893 expedition.
Report on the Doobaunt, Kazan and Ferguson Rivers and the north-west coast of Hudson Bay and on two overland routes from Hudson Bay to Lake Winnipeg. S E Dawson, Ottawa (1897).
With the help of the kind and patient staff at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library (University of Toronto), I obtained a copy of every page for the entire reach from Black Lake to Chesterfield Inlet. If I may be indulged a comment, the remainder is harrowing reading.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt provides the complete excerpt for the reach (Wharton Lake to Marjorie Lake) where Moffatt died.

The journal/report of Joseph B Tyrrell.
Moffatt had also obtained access to J B Tyrrell’s journal (aka his report) for the 1893 expedition. I was unable to access JBT’s journal; I note though that excerpts from the journals of Moffatt and Pessl document that it contains material not mentioned elsewhere.

The Moffatt – J B Tyrrell correspondence.
Thanks to Pessl, I have copies of Moffatt’s letters of 18 December 1954 and 14 January 1955 to J B Tyrrell.
A thorough search at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library (University of Toronto) failed to find JBT’s reply to the first, known to have been made. I possess no evidence that JBT replied to the second.
Reference. Sub-Appendix 1. Tyrrell sources of Appendix 9.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.

The evidence of J B Tyrrell’s book, for the reach from Wharton Lake to Marjorie Lake.
The following provides the text (deletions are marked by ellipses) for the entire reach from Wharton Lake to Marjorie Lake; Moffatt died in rapids not far above the latter.
Below Wharton Lake the river flows at first eastward, and then southward, for four miles to a small lake, in which distance it rushes down two rapids with descents respectively of 15 and 6 feet.
The small lake seems to be everywhere shallow, though the water is very clear. On its south side is a sand ridge or (esker
[character apparently an italic l, which makes no sense to me]) about 300 feet high, trending east-and-west, on the side of which the three terraces seen at the quartzite hill are well shown. Towards the west end of the ridge are scarped banks of sand almost eighty feet high. On the north side of the lake is a cluster of low islands, composed of boulders of red gneiss, covered with moss and grass. Low hills of boulders continue eastward, along the course of the river, for the next five miles. The stream has no well-defined channel, but flows around and between these hills with a current of from five to eight miles an hour. Five miles below the small lake is a rapid with a descent of twenty feet, past the lower part of which a portage 400 yards long was made over a hill of boulders, and we embarked from a sheet of ice that, on the 23rd of August, was still frozen to the bank. Above the rapid a gravel plain extends a long distance back from the river. At the foot of this rapid the river turns at right angles and flows northward for seven miles as a wide shallow rapid stream, through low country, composed of small morainic or drumlin-like hills of boulders of light-gray well foliated gneiss.
Lady Marjorie Lake, so named as a mark of respect… , was entered at the south end, …

Noteworthy items.
1. two rapids with descents respectively of 15 and 6 feet.
2. the small lake below these rapids.
3. Five miles below the small lake is a rapid with a descent of twenty feet, past the lower part of which a portage 400 yards long was made,
4. At the foot of this rapid the river turns at right angles and flows northward for seven miles to what is now called Marjorie Lake.
5. No rapids are mentioned in the northward reach to Marjorie Lake. Moffatt died in rapids in this reach, not far upstream from Marjorie Lake.

Comparison of the evidences of J B Tyrrell’s book and that of his map, for the Wharton-Marjorie reach.
I compare, in downstream order, the features described in JBT’s book with those provided on his map at https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-6-1893 .
Item 1.
Book. two rapids with descents respectively of 15 and 6 feet.
Map. Two Rapids.
Item 2.
Book. small lake.
Map. A small unnamed lake.
Item 3.
Book. A rapid with a descent of twenty feet, with a portage of length 400 yards around the lower part.
Map. A Rapid with a Por. 18c around it.
Comment. 18 chains = 400 yards. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chain_(unit) .
Item 4.
Book. the river turns at right angles and flows northward for seven miles to Lady Marjorie Lake.
Map. A sharp turn to the north.
Conclusion.
J B Tyrrell’s book and his map agree completely regarding the essentials of the features between Wharton Lake and what is now called Marjorie Lake. The book provides more detail, but the map is clearer.
Again, Moffatt possessed both the book and the map.

The evidence of Moffatt’s journal for 13 September.
The following is the complete text of Moffatt’s last journal entry, that for the day before the tragedy, as kindly supplied by Pessl (with (?) indicating faint, uncertain words on my copy.
Off at 10:15 across outlet bay (of Wharton Lake), Skip caught 3 trout, then down 15 foot very swift rapids, no rocks but very rough. Took water, had to bail. Following Tyrrell’s route, down 6’ rapid, back in (?) map, lunch 2 fish chowder, 2 hardtack. Then along island, water in channels, very fast, no looking it over, about 5 miles of it. Sun out more than for 6 days, but spotty. Pulled into bay by esker, I found good dry portage while canoes unloaded above last very rough + rocky part of rapid. I carried canoe across to little valley below bay, where we camped. Others portaged while I cooked huge glop, fish and bully, pudding + tea. Then, in darkness, I made last portage trip for load of wood, (?), 2 poles. Thought of wolves. Saw none!
Good distance today, Marjorie Lake tomorrow.

Comment. This was Moffatt’s last journal entry.
Noteworthy items.
1. The phrase Following Tyrrell’s route.
This phrase was redacted by the Sports Illustrated editor.
2. The references to the 15 ft and 6 ft rapids.
These were run without incident on 13 September.
3. The portage made around the last very rough + rocky part of rapid. This is the Rapid with a Por. 18c around it, aka the rapid with a descent of twenty feet. The portage was begun on 13 September and completed in the morning of 14 September.
Summary.
All features (the 15 ft and 6 ft rapids, and the portage) were found to be as described by Tyrrell.

The evidence of participant Lanouette for the afternoon of 14 September.
His journal is not published and so I express my gratitude to Lanouette (Moffatt’s bowperson) for providing it; I hope that the padding community as a whole is similarly grateful for this contribution to our understanding to the events of 14 September 1955.
Lanouette’s full journal for 14 September is provided in Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
After completing the portage in the morning of 14 September, the party continued downstream, then stopped for lunch.
We had a rather satisfying lunch of chowder and three hardtacks (or ‘tacks) apiece and were ready to shove on again around 2:30 or 3:00. The weather was still dismal, although the wind had dropped (I think) almost to a complete calm.
The river flowed on rather swiftly and it was but a few minutes before we heard and saw another rapids on the horizon. (Notes – at this time, Art figured we had shot the last 2 rapids into Lady Marjorie and so we were not anticipating anything more along this line – actually, what we had taken for rapids were only riffles and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids). At the top, these rapids looked as though they would be very easy going – a few small waves, rocks … nothing serious – so much so that we didn’t even haul over to shore to look it over before proceeding as was customary. The river at this point was straight and we could see both the top and foot of the rapids quite clearly – however, although we didn’t realize it, we couldn’t see the middle, even though we thought we could – at any rate we barrelled happily along. We bounced over a couple of fair-sized waves and took in a couple of splashes but I didn’t mind, as I had made an apron of my poncho and remained dry enough. I, as was my habit, was looking a few feet in front of the canoe, looking for submerged rocks – suddenly, Art shouted “Paddle” – I responded and took up the beat, at the same time looking farther ahead to see what it was we were trying to avoid – to my complete surprise, what I saw were two lines of white, parallel to one another and coming closer with every passing instant – I looked at them in helpless fascination, not altering my stroke any. The lines of white were the crests of two huge waves formed by the water as it crashed over 2, 3 or 4’ ledges or falls). Note: it was too late to pull for shore – all we could was to pick what seemed to be the least turbulent spots and head for them.

The evidence of participant LeFavour.
Thanks to LeFavour for providing the following.
…As we sped through Wharton Lake only the occasional snow flurry fell, an incentive not a deterrent. Up to that point we had shot five caribou and by doing so had saved enough meat to see us through. Now it was not even necessary to spend time hunting. We traveled, and traveled hard.
The river between Wharton and Marjorie Lakes split up into three channels. The longest of these
[the east/rightmost] had been traveled by Tyrrell in his trip 60 years before and was described in his journal: there were five rapids, the first two rough but shootable, the third long and heavy requiring a portage of a mile [“400 yards” in Tyrrell’s book] and the last two apparently easy for they were mentioned only as “rapids”. Because this route was described we took it, being careful to look over the first two which were indeed rough. Hurrying as we were, no foolish chances were taken.
Please note that LeFavour mentions all features encountered on both 13 and 14 September by the Moffatt party.
13 September.
The first two rapids, those rough but shootable, are the 15 ft and 6 ft rapids run by the Moffatt party that day, when it began the portage.
Comment. Tyrrell’s remarks and those of LeFavour agree regarding these two rapids and the portage, except that LeFavour gives a greater length for the portage.
14 September.
The Moffatt party completed the portage in the morning of that day and continued downstream, stopping for lunch. Some time later, it encountered the last two apparently easy for they were mentioned only as “rapids” mentioned above.
Excerpt from LeFavour’s article for the afternoon of 14 September.
At 3 p.m. we were again on the river. Gone was the wind, and we hoped to get a good way up Marjorie Lake in the calm before dark. A mile downriver the roar of the next rapid reached our ears, a roar which had become familiar and comforting in this quiet land, a roar which in the past had promised excitement. As we coasted into the top of it all appeared to be well. You could see the bottom, the water, though white, was apparently shootable. Tyrrell had indicated by his neglect that the rapid was an easy one, and it seemed to be just that.
A flock of ptarmigan on the shore caught my eye, but soon we were past them and out in midstream. It was then that Skip and I noticed that Art and Joe in the lead canoe were having trouble. They were over! We saw the two huge waves, walls of white water which seemed almost five feet high. Pete and George had made the one, were heading for the second, and then we saw nothing but the unavoidable waves. We were into it!

Source. Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
Analysis.
I remind the reader that Tyrrell’s book (possessed by Moffatt) makes no mention of these rapids
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
and also that they are not marked on Tyrrell’s map (also possessed by Moffatt).
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-6-1893
The source for this additional information can be only Tyrrell’s journal/report or the Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence, neither of which I have been unable to access.
References. http://defence-arthurmoffatt.ca/2017/06/02/ancillary-7-the-moffatt-tyrrell-correspondence/
Private correspondence from LeFavour.
His [Tyrrell’s] journal had been accurate to that point, namely lunch time on 14 September, prior to the running of the fatal rapids. [2015].

The evidence of participant Pessl.
Passage 1.
After completing a short portage, loaded the canoes and continued our dash down the river. It was cold and windy, the sky was overcast and we stopped at frequent intervals to warm our feet and legs.
[We] approached what we thought must be the last rapids with confidence and impatience. Art stood up … looked ahead, and … drove his canoe for the middle of the flow. … The next thing I saw as we shot around the bend was a white wall of huge waves. … Beyond the thundering waves, the yellow camera box and Art’s gray canoe bobbed crazily in the rapids below.
[Canoe&Kayak, May 2012 issue, p 48, right column].
Comment. The short portage is the 400-yarder completed in the morning of 14 September.
Passage 2.
That’s the other lesson I learned, says Pessl. To be patient. If we had just been patient and confident, if we hadn’t been in such a headlong rush that we didn’t stop to scout the rapid, we would have been fine. It’s very hard to do that, in the grip of panic, but it would have made all the difference. Art would have been with us, his life …. Pessl pauses. When it comes down to it, even with everything that happened, we were so close. [Canoe&Kayak, May 2012 issue, p 102?, left column].
Passage 3.
The tragedy of September 14, when Art Moffatt died, occurred, in my opinion, … , because Art and I tried to concurrently accomplish two mutually exclusive objectives: canoe travel and documentary filming of that journey. The demands of these opposing goals delayed and distracted our commitment to river miles. Art and I remained tragically stubborn in our commitment to filming the journey, even in the face of serious and obvious deterioration of the weather. [Nastawgan, Summer issue, 2013, p 5].
Passage 4.
The weather grew harsh. Freezing temperatures, wind-driven snow, dwindling food supplies, and deteriorating equipment pushed us hard to travel faster and more efficiently, and ultimately we made a fatal mistake. We approached the rapids entering Marjorie Lake with caution, but without an onshore look. Standing up in our canoes as we floated toward the rapids, we saw a modest current sweeping toward a right-hand bend and drove our canoes into that initial current V. [Pessl book, p XVII.]
Passage 5.
The tragedy of September 14 occurred, in my opinion, not because of Art’s alleged mental instability or some sort of Zen nonsense, but because Art and I failed to accurately translate our collective Albany River experiences to northern big-river conditions, especially into late-season, freezing conditions, and because we tried to concurrently accomplish two mutually exclusive objectives: travel and film. …we did not differentiate between what worked on the Albany River and what would not work in late season on the Dubawnt.
The deteriorating weather…changed our modus operandi from cautious land-based scouting of rapids to a floating assessment as we were sucked into the headwater Vs of each successive rapid. It worked for several days and many rapids, except for one.
Somewhere between the robotic distance grinds of… and the tragic disregard for time, distance, and season of the Moffatt leadership (and I include myself I that category), there must be a reasonable balance for wilderness canoeists on long journeys…
[Pessl book, pp 172&173].
Passage 6.
Pessl (kindly and most frankly, both as ever) responded as follows regarding an email message of mine.
I understand the confusion, contradiction that the two quotes may create. The quote attributed to me [Excerpt 2] is accurate and comes from a conversation I had with Al Kesselheim when he was preparing to write his C&K article on the Moffatt Dubawnt journey (May 2012). It was a very emotional interview for me; the first time in many years that I shared some of my feelings about Dubawnt ’55. The quote expresses my remorse over Art’s death and my belief, in retrospect, that we should have scouted the Marjorie rapids. My use of the term “panic” was inaccurate, too strong and I regret that. Bruce’s phrase is much more accurate.
But our individual and collective state of mind during those early September days is pretty much conjecture and perhaps mostly semantic after so many years. The much more important question, clearly answered by your detailed research, is WHY we didn’t scout the rapids? And the answer: because we were following Tyrrell’s journal description of the river conditions approaching Marjorie Lake. Tyrrell’s river descriptions had proven dependable previously and indicated benign conditions entering Marjorie Lake following the last portage.
[Pessl, private correspondence].

The evidence of George Luste.
I mention that Luste identified no source for either item.
Item 1.
Art Moffatt, following Tyrrell’s notes, was not expecting the rapid in which he swamped and then died.
Source. Page 284 of Grinnell’s book (1996).
Item 2.
Over the years, a number of unfounded versions or representations of the Moffatt accident have made their way into the canoeing literature. I’ve read statements like
“After some discussion there came a momentous decision. To save time the party would run any rapid which looked safe from the top.” and
“Everyone was rescued quickly so there should have been no problems.” or
“Increasing desperation made them run rapids without careful checking,” or
“…to speed progress they would run any rapid that looked passable from the top…” and
“On Moffatt’s trip, the canoeists surviving the mid-September swamping first picked up all the packs, then the swamped members, a fatal mistake.”

Source. Pages 293 and 294 of Grinnell’s book (1996).

Summary.
Given my introductory remark I refrain from…for clarity, it would be inappropriate to provide a summary.

Appendix. The maps of Joseph B Tyrrell.
At the Thomas Fisher library, I found the URLs (provided below) for his maps for the 1893 expedition, for the reach from Black Lake to the mouth of the Churchill River on Hudson Bay.
The evidence convinces me that Moffatt had obtained copies of these maps. Of special interest is the map (number 6) for the reach from Wharton Lake to what is now called Marjorie Lake, for it was in this reach that Moffatt died. I provide above a full discussion of its contents.
J B Tyrrell’s annotated maps.
Black Lake to south of Selwyn Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-1-1893
Continuation to past Wholdiah/Daly Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-2-1893
Continuation to past Boyd Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-3-1893
Continuation to the middle of Nicholson Lake.

https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-4-1893
Continuation to the middle of Grant Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-5-1893
Continuation to past Aberdeen Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-6-1893
Continuation to Baker Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-7-1893
Continuations to the mouth of the Churchill River.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-8-1893
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-9-1893
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-10-1893
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-11-1893
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-12-1893
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-13-1893
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/content/zone-14-1893

Internal URLs.

These URLS are provided for navigation within the blog.
URLs for accessing the following items from outside the blog are provided elsewhere.
Foreword and Forum.
Main text.
Appendix 1. Reality.
Appendix 3. Equipment.
Appendix 4. Experience.
Appendix 5. Pace and Weather.
Appendix 6. Food.
Appendix 7. Schedule.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
Ancillary 1. Accusations.
Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Ancillary 4. Distances.
Ancillary 5. Loose ends and the future.
Ancillary 6. Addenda.
Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.
Ancillary 8. Evidence regarding the tragedy.
Ancillary 10. My sources.
Ancillary 11. Canoe&Kayak manuscript.
Ancillary 12. Acknowledgements.
Bibliography.

Notice.
With the exception of quoted material, copyright to the above belongs to Allan Jacobs.

Edition of 14 March 2018.

Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.

Major renovations were completed in early November 2017 but I expect that warts remain.
Thanks for your patience. Allan

Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.

Introduction.

The Moffatt trip of 1955 retraced the central portion of the Tyrrell-Tyrrell exploratory trip of 1893, specifically the reach from Black Lake on the Fond du Lac River to Baker Lake on the Thelon River.
The books of both Tyrrell brothers (Joseph Burr and James Williams) are available, and I have obtained copies thereof for the reach from Black Lake to Chesterfield Inlet (the mouth of the Thelon River on Hudson Bay). Moffatt is known to have accessed both books.
Given that both brothers wrote books, both must have kept journals, but neither journal is publicly available to my knowledge. It is known that Moffatt had obtained access to JBT’s journal, aka his report. I possess no evidence that he accessed JWT’s.

The evidence of James Williams Tyrrell.
0. I possess no evidence that Moffatt had corresponded with JWT.
1. Across the Sub-Arctics of Canada (Toronto, 1908).
Not accessed by me. Thought to be identical to the following.
2. Through the Barren Lands: An Exploration Line of 3,200 Miles. Geological Survey of Canada (1896).
Thanks to the kind and excessively helpful staff at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library at the University of Toronto, I was able to obtain a copy for the entire reach from Black Lake to Chesterfield Inlet.
Little mention is made of river features; in particular, this book does not help us to understand the tragedy.
3. In Moffatt’s first letter to J B Tyrrell, he refers to the information provided in your report and in the book by your brother. And so Moffatt had obtained access to the book of J W Tyrrell, but I don’t know to which of the items 1 and 2, if indeed they differ.

The evidence of Joseph Burr Tyrrell.
1. Geographical Journal, v 4, no 5, Nov 1894.
Not known to have been accessed by Moffatt. Not accessed by me.
2. Report on the Doobaunt, Kazan and Ferguson Rivers and the north-west coast of Hudson Bay and on two overland routes from Hudson Bay to Lake Winnipeg. S E Dawson, Ottawa (1897).
The book is known to have been accessed by Moffatt, as evinced by the following passage.
Moffatt “…became fascinated with the forbidding wilderness still further north and determined to go there after reading Report on the Dubawnt, Kazan and Ferguson Rivers, written in 1896 by a Canadian geological surveyor, Dr. J. B. Tyrrell…” [Sports Illustrated, p 71, filed under Art Moffatt’s Prospectus]
Thanks to the kind and excessively helpful staff at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library at the University of Toronto, I was able to obtain a copy for the entire reach from Black Lake to Chesterfield Inlet.
It is far from beside the point that J B Tyrrell provides the following passage regarding the reach between Wharton Lake and Marjorie Lake.
Below Wharton Lake the river flows at first eastward, and then southward, for four miles to a small lake, in which distance it rushes down two rapids with descents respectively of 15 and 6 feet. …Five miles below the small lake is a rapid with a descent of twenty feet, past the lower part of which a portage 400 yards long was made … At the foot of this rapid the river turns at right angles and flows northward for seven miles as a wide shallow rapid stream …Lady Marjorie Lake…was entered at the south end…
The complete passage from J B Tyrrell’s book is provided in Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Like the Tyrrell party of 1893, the Moffatt party of 1955 ran the rapids with descents of 15 and 6 feet, this on 13 September 1955, when it began the portage of 400 yards around the rapid with a descent of twenty feet. That portage was completed in the morning of 14 September.
Moffatt died later that same day, in the apparently featureless wide shallow rapid stream in the reach the sharp turn to the north and Marjorie Lake. Of course, my point is that J B Tyrrell made no mention of rapids in the reach where Moffatt died.
3. As I document below, Moffatt had obtained further information from J B Tyrrell, specifically
JBT’s journal (Moffatt calls it his report) for the 1893 trip,
JBT’s maps for the 1893 trip, and
correspondence with JBT.

The evidence of the Sports Illustrated article.
With respect to the upstream reach from Black Lake to the basin of the Dubawnt River, the SI editor wrote the following.
In the days that immediately followed, the expedition made good time despite erratic winds and rain, the back-stiffening portages and missed routes. The maps the party used – they were the only ones in existence – were never precise enough, and there were many times when, after long wearying hours of working up a stream, the canoeists would have to admit their mistake and painfully retreat. [SI article, bottom of right column, p 73]
Response.
The maps could be
either the government-issue maps of the time (not available to me)
or (more likely?) J B Tyrrell’s maps; those for the reach from Black Lake to Selwyn Lake are the following.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=1
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=2

The journal of J B Tyrrell.
JBT’s journal (sometimes Moffatt calls it his report) is not publicly available; it is known to differ substantially from JBT’s book. Unfortunately, my best efforts failed to access it; but Moffatt was more successful.
Evidence 1.
Tyrrell…had constant rain and cold, also patches of old snow everywhere. But for us it has been very pleasant… [Moffatt, 16 August, top left of p 80 of the SI article].
Evidence 2.
Throughout Tyrrell’s journal, he speaks of seeing patches of snow well to the south and he suffered his first snow storm on August 10. [Pessl book, 28 August, bottom of p 107].
Evidence 3.
Following Tyrrell’s route… [Moffatt journal for 13 September, as provided by Pessl.
Evidence 4.
… I have spent considerable time reviewing the various pertinent journals and following the maps with the journal descriptions … [Moffatt journal, pp 140-141; passage kindly provided by Pessl].
Response. The phrase the various pertinent journals is unclear. One journal was certainly that of JBT. But Moffatt’s use of the plural suggests he possessed also the journal of JWT. Adding to the confusion (at least in my mind) is that Moffatt possessed the books of both brothers.
Aside. The reference to maps is likely to both the 8 mi. to the inch maps and JBT’s maps; Moffatt had access to both.
Evidence 5.
His [Tyrrell’s] journal had been accurate to that point, namely lunch time on 14 September, just prior to the running of the fatal rapids. [LeFavour, private correspondence, 2015].
Evidence 6.
…he [Pessl] and Art had studied them carefully before setting out and notations from the journals had been made on Art’s maps. [Lanouette, private correspondence, 17 January 2015].

The maps of J B Tyrrell.
I note that the Moffatt party possessed government-issue 8 mi. to the inch maps [18 July. Franck, in Pessl, p 44]). I made no attempt to access such maps available in 1955.
But the party possessed also maps from another source.

Passage 1. 10 August. The maps are very inaccurate in placing the rapids for the most part. [Franck, in Pessl, p 78]
Response. The reference was perhaps to the government-issue maps. Let me drop the matter.

Passage 2. 13 August. …went on down to where the 15-ft. falls is marked on the map. Actually this is an error. There was nothing there but a very easy rapid. [Franck, in Pessl, p 85]
Aside. Franck and Pessl agree on the date, namely 13 August.
Response.
The key item is the reference to the 15-ft. falls, for falls of that same height are shown on J B Tyrrell’s map 4.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=4
Those falls lie between Carey Lake (Franck’s POND ABOVE MARKHAM LAKE. [Pessl, p 85]) and Markham Lake.
And so the location of those falls, as given by Franck, agrees with that given by Tyrrell’s map 4.
Conclusion.
On both counts, namely the height of the falls and their location, the evidence of participant Franck and the evidence of Tyrrell’s map 4 are in complete agreement.
The obvious conclusion is that Moffatt had obtained access to at least one of JBT’s maps, namely number 4.
The obvious implication is that Moffatt had obtained access to all of JBT’s maps.
Especially important for our understanding of the tragedy is the map
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=6 .
That map shows no rapids in the northward reach between the portage (Por. 18 c completed in the morning of 14 September) and Marjorie Lake. It was in these unmarked rapids that Moffatt died later that very day.
And I suggest it not beside the point that neither does J B Tyrrell’s book mention those same rapids.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.

Passage 3. For completeness only, I provide the following.
16 August. After dinner, Art got out the maps and looked over our situation. [Franck, in Pessl, p 91].
Comment. My far than thorough search found no more references to maps in Pessl’s book.

Intermediate summary.
I have documented that Moffatt had accessed
J W Tyrrell’s book,
J B Tyrrell’s book,
J B Tyrrell’s journal, and
J B Tyrrell’s maps.
But Moffatt had also corresponded with J B Tyrrell, as I now document.

Moffatt’s correspondence with J B Tyrrell.
Moffatt wrote twice to J B Tyrrell, who replied to the first; but my best efforts failed to find that reply. I possess no evidence that JBT replied to the second.

Moffatt’s letter of 18 December 1954 to J B Tyrrell.
Comment. Copy provided by Pessl; address information deleted.
Dear Dr. Tyrrell:
At the suggestion of Dr. Lincoln Washburn, Professor of Geology at Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, I am writing to tell you of my plans to follow your route from Stony Rapids on Lake Athabaska via the Dubawnt River to Chesterfield Inlet this coming summer.
Since your exploration of that route in 1893 no other canoe parties seem to have made the trip, and if we did not have your excellent report to guide us, I doubt that we should attempt it. My purpose in going is to make a film in color, for lecture purposes—and I believe that with luck we shall have something unlike anything that has been done before.
You may wonder what my qualifications for making such a trip are; I list them briefly: In 1937 I paddled alone from Sioux Lookout, Ontario, to the Albany River and down it to James Bay. Since 1950 I have led parties of five young men of college age down the Albany every summer. In 1952 and ’53 I made a 3000 ft color film of the Albany trip, with which I have been lecturing, and it now seems to be time to attempt a more difficult trip—your route down the Dubawnt.
I plan to use two 18 foot Chestnut Prospector canoes, one paddled by Skip Pessl, a young man who has made the Albany trip with me twice and who is this year a senior at Dartmouth College; and the other paddled by myself. We have not yet selected our two bow paddlers, and in this connection Dr. Washburn thought you might like to send along someone from your mining company to look the country over once again.
We expect to leave from here as close to June 13 as we can, and to remain on the Dubawnt until about September 1. We anticipate several difficulties we have never encountered along the Albany, first the absence of fuel and second, the difficulty of crossing the frozen expanse of Dubawnt Lake—if you are able to give us any advice on coping with these two problems we shall certainly appreciate it.
Of great importance also is the fact that we must carry sufficient supplies for the entire trip—the administration of the Northwest Territories will allow us to carry a rifle, but it is only to be used if we are in danger of starvation—which we feel is rather late in the game to begin living off the country. Nevertheless, we are prepared to travel under these conditions.
To revert briefly to the matter of fuel: Stefansson, in his Arctic Manual, indicates that most Arctic rivers are lined with willows and alders; but in your report and in the book by your brother, I find small mention of such a source of wood for fires. Were they indeed absent along the Dubawnt, or were they too green to burn—or is the country too generally soaked with rain to use them?
I hope you will find it interesting that we will be travelling the Dubawnt this summer, and I also hope that you can give us some advice to help us complete the journey successfully. In any case, I hope that I may have the pleasure of hearing from you.
Sincerely, Arthur R. Moffatt

Comment.
Please note the passage if we did not have your excellent report to guide us, I doubt that we should attempt it. I interpret the reference to the report to be to J B Tyrrell’s journal.

J B Tyrrell’s response to Moffatt’s letter of 18 December 1954.
As evinced by the passage (quoted below), it is known JBT had replied, but my search at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library (University of Toronto) failed, as I describe below. With respect to the date of the response, I know only that it lay between 18 December and 14 January.
Lacking an alternative explanation for the following passage, I suggest that some of its contents are provided in Art Moffatt’s Prospectus, published on page 71 of the Sports Illustrated article.
…In our journey north we will pass into the hunting and trapping grounds of the Chipewyan Indians and out into the Barren Grounds, beyond the northern limit of the trees. This is the summer range of the vast herds of caribou. The lakes and streams are reported to be full of trout up to 25 pounds in weight.

Two of the major problems we shall face are food and fire. The greater part of the route is through the treeless tundra, and what fuel there is often too green or wet to burn. We will not be able to pack enough gas to cook two meals a day.
Food may be even more acute. I have a letter from Dr. Tyrrell…He writes: “You will need to have a couple of high-powered rifles so that you can shoot game at long range, otherwise starvation is likely to threaten from early in the trip…”

Moffatt’s letter of 14 January 1955.
Copy provided by Pessl. Address information deleted.
Dear Dr. Tyrrell:
Thank you very much for your kind reply to my letter of December 18, in which I asked you several questions about the Dubawnt River.
I have tried without success to obtain copies of your report from Mr. Amtmann and from Dora Hood, but Mr. Amtmann referred me to Miss Wills, Librarian of the Geological Survey, who was kind enough to send me, on loan until September 30, 1955, a copy of your report.
I have written Miss Wills of the possible damage that may be done to the report on a trip by canoe down the Dubawnt, and I am waiting now to see is she really means that I should take it with me to the Barrens. I certainly hope that she does—after all, it will be our only guide.
Your suggestion that we will face starvation unless we have good rifles is certainly to the point, and I wish the Administration of the Northwest Territories realised that in forbidding us to use rifles until we are in imminent danger of death they are putting us in a very difficult position. However, if those are the terms on which we may enter the country, we will have to face them or stay home. I believe that by restricting our diet to oatmeal, hardtack, bully beef, dried potatoes and macaroni, we ought to be able to feed four men well enough for the three months we expect to be on the barrens. I’ve eaten worse food longer and survived.
Our search for two bow paddlers is not yet over, and in asking you whether your mining company might not like to send a geologist with us who could also pull his weight in a canoe and on the portages, I was acting at the suggestion of Dr. Washburn, who thought your company might find it to its advantage to do some prospecting along the Dubawnt.
You may be interested to hear that I showed your report to Dr. Vilhjalmur Stefansson, who immediately asked if he might have the letter for his library, which is now a part of the Dartmouth College Library at Hanover, New Hampshire.
I want to thank you again for your interest in my proposed trip, and I wish you a very Happy New Year.
Sincerely, Arthur R. Moffatt

Assumption.
JBT’s report is what I call also his journal.

The evidence of the participants regarding the fatal rapids.
Introduction.
The only possible sources for the following evidences regarding the fatal rapids are J B Tyrrell’s journal (aka his report), his maps, and his correspondence with Moffatt. I say this because neither book of the Tyrrell brothers mentions those rapids.
The evidence available to me has it that J B Tyrrell’s rapids advice had proved accurate for the previous 11 weeks or so of the trip. I refer in particular to the three candidates for the Sports illustrated editor’s churning chutes of white water [SI article, top of right column on p 82], namely the rapids immediately below Nicholson Lake, those immediately below Dubawnt Lake, and those immediately above Wharton Lake.
Argument. Had JBT’s rapids advice proved inaccurate even once in the previous 11 weeks, surely Moffatt would not have followed it in the afternoon of 14 September 1955.
The evidence of Lanouette.
Referring to the rapids where Moffatt died, his bow person wrote the following: This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids into Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids. [Sports Illustrated (1959), p 85]
The evidence of LeFavour.
Referring to the rapids between Wharton Lake and Marjorie Lake, he wrote the following: … there were five rapids, the first two rough but shootable, the third long and heavy requiring a portage of a mile [“400 yards” in Tyrrell’s book] and the last two apparently easy for they were mentioned only as “rapids”. Because this route was described we took it, being careful to look over the first two which were indeed rough. Hurrying as we were, no foolish chances were taken. [Evening Recorder, 29 December 1955, Amsterdam NY]
The evidence of Pessl.
…we were following Tyrrell’s journal description of the river conditions approaching Marjorie Lake. Tyrrell’s river descriptions had proven dependable previously and indicated benign conditions entering Marjorie Lake following the last portage. [private correspondence]
Analysis.
Perhaps the key passage is LeFavour’s …the last two apparently easy for they were mentioned only as “rapids”, for it was in these rapids that Moffatt died.

The evidence of John Lentz regarding the Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence.
The following was kindly supplied by Pessl [private correspondence, May 2017].
Begin Pessl material.
Through Bush and Barrens. North, May-June, 1970, p.22-29.
p.22. He (Moffatt) wrote to Tyrrell who replied that the river, “is a succession of lakes separated by wild rivers.” The old man warned of hazards of these rapids, and suggested the following equipment, “high powered rifles so that you can shoot game at long range, otherwise starvation is likely to threaten very early in your journey.”
This quote attributed by Lentz: “Tyrrell’s letter courtesy Rare Books Department, University of Toronto Library.”
Perhaps there is additional reference in John’s papers/correspondence, maybe available at CCM or the Lentz estate.
End Pessl material.
My comments.
0. I failed to find online access to the North article.
1. Lentz had obtained access to the Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence.
2. I failed to find the Tyrrell’s letter at the Thomas Fisher Rare Books Library of the University of Toronto.
3. I note that the rifles part of Lentz’s quote duplicates material provided in Moffatt’s Prospectus [Sports Illustrated article, p 71].

The evidence of Fred Gaskin regarding the Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence.
The following was kindly supplied by Pessl (private correspondence, May 2017).
Begin Pessl material.
Retracing Tyrrell’s journey into the Barren Lands. Canadian Geographical Journal, v.93, n.3, Dec. 1976/Jan. 1977, p. 46-53.
p.50: “When preparing for his trip, Moffatt had corresponded in 1953 with J.B. Tyrrell who was then 95 years old and living in Toronto. The old man warned Moffatt of the dangers of the rapids and the risks of starvation.”
End Pessl material.
My comments.
0. I failed to find online access to Gaskin’s article.
1. Given that Moffatt’s letter of 18 December 1954 was clearly his first contact with J B Tyrrell, Gaskin’s date of 1953 must be incorrect.
2. I don’t know Gaskin’s source for this material, which differs little from that provided by Lentz.

Summary.
The evidence of Moffatt’s journal.
My best efforts failed to obtain full access to that journal, which would almost certainly provide important evidence regarding rapids in general. With regard to the rapids where he died, I possess only the phrase Following Tyrrell’s route… of his last journal entry, that for 13 September.
The evidence of James Williams Tyrrell.
Moffatt had accessed JWT’s book, which provides little information regarding rapids in general, nothing regarding the rapids where Moffatt died in particular.
I possess no evidence that Moffatt had corresponded with JWT.
The evidence of Joseph Burr Tyrrell.
Moffatt’s sources are known to have been the following four items.
1. JBT’s maps. I have provided URLs for the entire reach covered by the Moffatt party. The map for the reach where Moffatt died shows no rapids.
Reference. https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=6
2. JBT’s book. I possess a copy for the entire reach (Black Lake to Baker Lake) covered by the Moffatt party. The book describes the three candidates that I identified for the SI editor’s churning chutes (namely the rapids below Nicholson Lake, those below immediately below Dubawnt Lake, and those immediately above Wharton Lake), but it makes no mention of the rapids where Moffatt died.
Reference. Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
3. JBT’s journal (aka his report). I was unable to access it and so am unable to comment on its contents.
4. Moffatt’s correspondence with JBT. Thanks to Pessl, I was able to provide copies of Moffatt’s two letters to JBT. I was unable to document JBT’s reply (known to have made) to the first. I possess no evidence that JBT had replied to the second.

Conclusions.
1. All known sources state, implicitly, that there were no rapids of significance in the reach where Moffatt died.
2. In particular, Moffatt had good reason to trust JBT’s advice, for Tyrrell’s river descriptions had proven dependable previously and indicated benign conditions entering Marjorie Lake. [Pessl]
3. But J B Tyrrell’s advice failed Moffatt in the afternoon of 14 September 1955.

Appendix. Tyrrell items at the University of Toronto Library.
All known items are held at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, located on the second floor of the Robarts Library, at the corner of St George and Harbord. Access is by permission only; I had a U of T library card, but I believe that a driver’s licence will suffice.
Thanks to the kind, helpful and excessively patient staff at the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library of the University of Toronto for their assistance throughout my visits.

Item 1. Joseph B Tyrrell’s book.
Report on the Doobaunt, Kazan and Ferguson Rivers and the north-west coast of Hudson Bay and on two overland routes from Hudson Bay to Lake Winnipeg. S E Dawson, Ottawa (1897).
I possess copies of all pages for the entire reach from Baker Lake to Chesterfield Inlet.

Item 2. Joseph B Tyrrell’s correspondence
is divided, but only roughly, into professional and personal items.
The largely professional items of interest are provided in two boxes, one for 1951-1953 and one for 1954-1955. I read all material for 1953, 1954 and 1955 but found nothing referring to Moffatt. I did not find the 1953 letter mentioned by Lentz (I believe that he got the date incorrectly).
The largely personal items are provided in a single box. I found nothing referring to Moffatt.
Perhaps I should add that another box contains items related to Tyrrell’s apple orchard in what is now the Toronto suburb of Agincourt.

Item 3. J B Tyrrell, Explorer and Adventurer. The Geological Survey Years 1881-1898.
A Catalogue prepared by Katherine Martyn.
The Catalogue was prepared for an exhibition at the library (3 April to 30 July 1993). The 1893 trip is described in Across the Barren Lands: 1893. [pp 23-30]. Two photos are provided, plus maps for the 1893 Dubawnt and 1894 Kazan trips, the former as described in item 4.
https://fisher.library.utoronto.ca/tyrrell-explorer-and-adventurer
http://link.library.utoronto.ca/Tyrrell/overview.cfm?ID=1893

Item 4. Joseph B Tyrrell’s maps for the reach from Black Lake to Chesterfield Inlet and beyond.
His maps for the 1893 expedition show features (rapids, falls, portages, etc), for the following reaches.
Black Lake to south of Selwyn Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=1
Continuation to past Wholdiah/Daly Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=2
Continuation to past Boyd Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=3
Continuation to the middle of Nicholson Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=4
Continuation to the middle of Grant Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=5
Continuation to past Aberdeen Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=6
Continuation to Baker Lake.
https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=7
etc.
Discussion.
Moffatt certainly possessed map 4, and so almost certainly all maps, especially the vitally important map 6. The Rapid shown shortly below Wharton Lake on that map is the one portaged on 13 and 14 September by the Moffatt party. The important point is that map 6 shows no rapid/s from the end of that portage all the way downstream to Marjorie Lake.
Conclusion.
The rapids where Moffatt died are not shown on J B Tyrrell’s maps.

Item 5. James W Tyrrell’s book/s.
Through the Barren Lands: An Exploration Line of 3,200 Miles. Geological Survey of Canada (1896). Not accessed; believed identical to the following.
Across the Sub-Arctics of Canada (Toronto, 1908).
Comments.
I possess copies of all pages for the entire reach from Baker Lake to Chesterfield Inlet.
The material (especially that regarding ethnography) provided by JWT is fascinating (to me) but it sheds no light on the conditions that led to Moffatt’s death.

Internal URLs.

Foreword and Forum.
Main text.
Appendix 1. Reality.
Appendix 3. Equipment.
Appendix 4. Experience.
Appendix 5. Pace and weather.
Appendix 6. Food.
Appendix 7. Schedule.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
Ancillary 1. Accusations.
Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Ancillary 4. Distances.
Ancillary 5. Loose ends and the future.
Ancillary 6. Addenda.
Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.
Ancillary 8. Evidence regarding the tragedy.
Bibliography.

Notice.
With the exception of quoted material, copyright to the above belongs to Allan Jacobs.

Appendix 9. Cause of the tragedy.

Major renovations were completed in early November 2017 but I expect that warts remain.
Thanks for your patience. Allan

Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.

Foreword.
Some overlap of material presented here is unavoidable with that presented in Appendix 8. Rapids in general.

Background.
0. Moffatt had obtained a copy of J W Tyrrell’s book, which provides no material regarding the fatal rapids.
1. Moffatt had obtained a copy of J B Tyrrell’s report, which I believe to be identical to his journal; I have been unable to access it.
2. Moffatt had accessed JBT’s book, which makes no mention of the rapids (those between Wharton Lake and Marjorie Lake) where Moffatt died.
Reference. Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
3. Moffatt had accessed JBT’s maps for the entire 1893 trip. The one for the reach where Moffatt died does not show the fatal rapids.
Reference. https://barrenlands.library.utoronto.ca/zone.cfm?ID=1893&zone=6 .
4. As well, Moffatt had corresponded with JBT; only a little information (kindly provided by participants) from these exchanges is available. It is clear, however, that Tyrrell had provided Moffatt with rapids information significantly beyond that given in JBT’s book. Sub-Appendix 1. Tyrrell sources provides background for the interested reader.
Reference. Ancillary 7. Moffatt’s Tyrrell sources.

The reliability of JBT’s advice to Moffatt.
As I document below and elsewhere, Moffatt followed closely Tyrrell’s advice regarding rapids on the Dubawnt, most importantly his advice regarding the fatal rapids.
A particular.
His [Tyrrell’s] journal had been accurate to that point, namely lunch time on 14 September, immediately prior to the running of the fatal rapids. [LeFavour, private correspondence, 2015]. LeFavour refers here to the entire 10 or so weeks prior to that point. I assume that by Tyrrell’s journal, LeFavour includes the advice provided in the correspondence.
Initial summary.
Moffatt possessed detailed information from J B Tyrrell regarding Dubawnt rapids. That information had proved accurate for something like 11 weeks previously.
Given the nature of the accusatory literature, I find it necessary to state the obvious:
1. In the 11 weeks prior to his death, had there existed even one significant difference between the three JBT sources (his journal, his correspondence and his maps), Moffatt would have surely have noticed it and would have scouted the rapids where he died.
2. In particular, on 13 and 14 September, the Moffatt party portaged the rapids immediately above those where he died.
The questions.
1. Are we to believe (as the Sports Illustrated editor evidently expects us to do) that, having that very morning completed a portage made in part to protect the film and cameras (the very purposes of the trip), Moffatt changed his mind and, a few hours later, decided to risk the loss of both film and cameras?
2. More importantly, are we to believe (as the SI editor evidently expects us to do), that, a few hours after completing that portage, Moffatt decided to risk the lives of all members of the party and so took the the ultimate chance in running those rapids in desperate haste as the party raced against winter?

START AGAIN HERE
The evidence for 13 and 14 September.
13 September. .
On the day before Moffatt died, the Moffatt party ran two rough rapids, then camped after portaging some gear around a third, a much more serious one. These are the drops of 15 and 6 feet and the portage of 400 yards mentioned in Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
14 September.
The party completed the portage of 400 yards and resumed paddling. At the lunch stop that day, the party added 20 lb of lake trout to the food supply, which was already sufficient that the party had no need to hunt caribou again. Reference. Appendix 6. Food.
Trusting Tyrrell’s advice, which had proved accurate for the previous 10 weeks or so, Moffatt led the way downstream without scouting the rapids below the portage. Only when it was too late to bail out and head for shore did Moffatt see major rapids ahead and so realise that Tyrrell had failed him that day. He could only shout “Paddle!” to his bowperson Lanouette and try to tough it out. His canoe and a second overturned in a pair of rapids not mentioned by Tyrrell, spilling the paddlers into the cold waters. Moffatt died of hypothermia about an hour later.
A request.
I ask that the reader compare the above description of events (which is based on the journals of the trip participants) that lead to Moffatt’s death with the following assertion of the Sports Illustrated editor.
…the Moffatt party races against winter… In desperate haste, they take an ultimate chance.

The redactions.
Over the 55 years from 1959 to 2014, every accuser got wrong the cause of Moffatt’s death.
I believe that they did so largely because both the Sports Illustrated editor and Grinnell redacted evidence that Moffatt had been advised by J B Tyrrell that there existed no rapids of any significance in that reach.
Particular 1.
Points 1 and 2 (below) compare Moffatt’s journal entry (his last) for 13 September with the Sports Illustrated editor’s version of it [SI article, lower right column on p 82].
One sees that the SI editor redacted the phrase Following Tyrrell’s route from Moffatt’s journal entry for 13 September. That phrase shows first that Moffatt had obtained Tyrrell’s advice for that reach, second that he was following it.
Should this redaction be believed to have been accidental, I point out that it falsifies the editor’s assertion …the Moffatt party races against winter on the Barren Grounds. … In desperate haste, they take an ultimate chance. [bottom right of p 76, for the period after 16/17 August].
Particular 2.
Points 5 and 6 (below) compare the SI condensation (a faithful one) of Lanouette’s journal for the day of the tragedy with Grinnell’s version of it [Grinnell book, p 202].
One sees that Grinnell redacted, and replaced by an ellipsis, the passage This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids into Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids.
Does anyone believe this redaction to have been accidental?
Comment.
And so, as I remark several times in this manuscript, it then concerns me that the Sports Illustrated and Grinnell had certainly corresponded [SI article, p 88].

Comments regarding the accusations.
On the basis of no evidence known to me (and none was provided), every defamer who wrote about the tragedy asserted the cause of Moffatt’s death to be rather one or more of those discussed in Appendices 1 through 8. It seems necessary to state that an assertion by a previous defamer is not evidence.
Few of those eight accusations had any support in evidence when they were made. Many of them fly in the face of easily available contrary evidence to the contrary. And every such accusation is falsified by the evidence in toto.
The prime example is James Murphy’s Lack of food, proper equipment and most importantly, lack of a planned itinerary, contributed to his demise. [Che-Mun, Canoelit section. Moffatt, Myth & Mysticism. Spring 1996, pp 5 and 11].
I find it worthy of explicit mention that this accusation was made in Murphy’s review of Grinnell’s book.
1. In that book, Grinnell documents a plethora of food from the land and also from the cache in the six weeks before the tragedy. Reference. Appendix 6. Food.
That is, there was no lack of food. In fact, there was not even a shortage of food on the whole; the truth is rather that the party was hungry at times, gorged at others.
2. I believe that George Luste would have been much angered to learn that his recommendations for gear appropriate for paddlers circa 1996 had been used to defame Moffatt, who died in 1955. Reference. Appendix 3. Equipment.
3. The evidence regarding the schedule (Murphy’s planned itinerary) is contradictory, as I document in Appendix 7. Schedule.
Summary. In constructing his case against Moffatt, Murphy ignored evidence that falsifies his accusations.

The evidence regarding the fatal rapids.

Outline.
I repeat that Tyrrell’s book makes no mention of the fatal rapids below the portage, which was completed in the morning of 14 September. Reference. Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Outline. I provide the following paragraphs.
1. Moffatt’s journal entry for 13 September.
2. The Sports Illustrated editor’s version of Moffatt’s entry for that same day.
3. The assertions of the Sports Illustrated editor.
4. Participant Lanouette’s full journal entry for 14 September.
5. The SI condensation of Lanouette’s journal entry for that day.
6. Participant Grinnell’s version of that condensation.
7. Private correspondence from Lanouette.
8. The evidence of participant LeFavour.
9. The evidence of participant Pessl.
10. A comment of Luste.
11. Analysis.
12. Additional evidence.
13. Summary.

1. Moffatt’s journal entry for 13 September.
Note. I lack access to Moffatt’s journal entries for 11 and 12 September, but I have no reason to believe that they contain anything relevant to the tragedy.
Moffatt’s journal for 13 September.
The following is the complete text of Moffatt’s journal entry for the day before the tragedy, as kindly supplied by Pessl (with (?) indicating faint, uncertain words on my copy).
Off at 10:15 across outlet bay [of Wharton Lake], Skip caught 3 trout, then down 15 foot very swift rapids, no rocks but very rough. Took water, had to bail. Following Tyrrell’s route, down 6’ rapid, back in (?) map, lunch 2 fish chowder, 2 hardtack. Then along island, water in channels, very fast, no looking it over, about 5 miles of it. Sun out more than for 6 days, but spotty. Pulled into bay by esker, I found good dry portage while canoes unloaded above last very rough + rocky part of rapid. I carried canoe across to little valley below bay, where we camped. Others portaged while I cooked huge glop, fish and bully, pudding + tea. Then, in darkness, I made last portage trip for load of wood, (?), 2 poles. Thought of wolves. Saw none!
Good distance today, Marjorie Lake tomorrow.

Comments regarding this last entry made by Moffatt in his journal.
1. Please note in particular the phrase Following Tyrrell’s route.
2. The 15’ and 6’ rapids are documented in J B Tyrrell’s book, as is the portage (of 400 yards).
3. But please note that JBT’s book makes no mention of the rapids below the portage; it was in these rapids that Moffatt died. Reference. Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
4. The portage was completed in the morning of 14 September; after a break for lunch (at which time the party added 20 lb of trout to the already considerable food supply), the party continued downstream toward Marjorie Lake.
5. I ask that the reader compare the above with the following.

2. The Sports Illustrated version of Moffatt’s journal entry for 13 September.
The following is the complete relevant text on page 82 (lower right column) of the Sports Illustrated article.
[On September 11, the Moffatt party, having traveled with snow squalls and wind in their faces all day, reached Wharton Lake. The following morning the weather was better than it had been for a week, although the skies were spotted with clouds. After a portage around rapids, Art Moffatt wrote “I cooked fish and bully, pudding and tea. Then, in darkness, I made the last portage trip for a load of wood, my packsack and two poles. I thought of wolves on the way but saw none. Good distance today. Marjorie Lake tomorrow.” And this was the last entry Art Moffatt was to make in his diary.]
The redaction.
One sees that the SI editor redacted the phrase Following Tyrrell’s route.
To me, that phrase is the key to understanding the tragedy, for it shows that Moffatt was only following Tyrrell’s guide when he chose to run the fatal rapids without a scout.
I suggest that only the most credulous could believe that redaction to have been an accident, a slip of the pen.
And I suggest it to be no coincidence that the redacted passage falsifies both Assertion 1 and Assertion 2 (below) of the editor.

3. The assertions of the Sports Illustrated editor.
I ask that the reader reflect on the relevance of the phrase Following Tyrrell’s route to the following assertions (the parts regarding rapids) of the Sports Illustrated editor.

Assertion 1.
Increasingly, the men were taking chances. They now shot down churning chutes of white water, which, a month earlier, they would have scrutinized with a doubtful eye. [top of right column, p 82].

Already nine days behind schedule, the Moffatt party races against winter on the Barren Grounds. The days grow colder, provisions dwindle, game grows scarce. In desperate haste, they take an ultimate chance. [bottom right of p 76, for the period after 16/17 August].

Responses to the rapids parts of Assertions 1 and 2.
As they apply to rapids above those where Moffatt died, both assertions are falsified by the evidence provided in Appendix 8. Other rapids.
With respect to the fatal rapids, both assertions are falsified by the evidence that Moffatt was only following J B Tyrrell’s advice when he ran the fatal rapids without a scout.
And so I suggest it to be no accident, no slip of the pen, that the editor redacted the passage Following Tyrrell’s route… from Moffatt’s journal entry for 13 September.
And, given that Lanouette’s evidence (provided below) falsifies all of the editor’s Assertion 1 and much of her/his Assertion 2, perhaps the editor failed to read that evidence.
I refer the reader to Ancillary 1. Accusations for a fuller discussion of the accusations regarding the fatal rapids.

Response to the food part of Assertion 2.
The statement game grows scarce is falsified by the evidence of Moffatt’s journal, which documents the shooting of five caribou in the six weeks before the tragedy, the last on 5 September.
It bears mention that Moffatt’s journal documents also the shooting of many ptarmigan, the catching of many fish (three species), and the harvesting of blueberries and mushrooms, all in those six weeks. Reference. Appendix 6. Food.

4. Lanouette’s full journal for 14 September..
The passage that follows (the one relevant to the onset of the fatal rapids) is excerpted from his journal for 14 September, as provided in Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
The journal itself is not publicly available and so I express my gratitude to Lanouette (Moffatt’s bowperson) for making it available to me; I hope that the padding community as a whole is similarly grateful for his generosity.
We had a rather satisfying lunch of chowder and three hardtacks (or ‘tacks) apiece and were ready to shove on again around 2:30 or 3:00. The weather was still dismal, although the wind had dropped (I think) almost to a complete calm.
The river flowed on rather swiftly and it was but a few minutes before we heard and saw another rapids on the horizon. (Notes – at this time, Art figured we had shot the last 2 rapids into Lady Marjorie and so we were not anticipating anything more along this line – actually, what we had taken for rapids were only riffles and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids). At the top, these rapids looked as though they would be very easy going – a few small waves, rocks … nothing serious – so much so that we didn’t even haul over to shore to look it over before proceeding as was customary. The river at this point was straight and we could see both the top and foot of the rapids quite clearly – however, although we didn’t realize it, we couldn’t see the middle, even though we thought we could – at any rate we barrelled happily along. We bounced over a couple of fair-sized waves and took in a couple of splashes but I didn’t mind, as I had made an apron of my poncho and remained dry enough. I, as was my habit, was looking a few feet in front of the canoe, looking for submerged rocks – suddenly, Art shouted “Paddle” – I responded and took up the beat, at the same time looking farther ahead to see what it was we were trying to avoid – to my complete surprise, what I saw were two lines of white, parallel to one another and coming closer with every passing instant – I looked at them in helpless fascination, not altering my stroke any. The lines of white were the crests of two huge waves formed by the water as it crashed over 2, 3 or 4’ ledges or falls). Note: it was too late to pull for shore – all we could was to pick what seemed to be the least turbulent spots and head for them.

Comments.
Lanouette was surprised because J B Tyrrell had advised the party that there existed no rapids of consequence between the portage (the one completed in the morning of 14 September) and Marjorie Lake.
As I document in Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt, J B Tyrrell’s book makes no mention of the fatal rapids. Those rapids are mentioned in the Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence, which suggests however that they are a matter of no concern. I refer the reader to the evidence of LaFavour, as provided in Item 7 below: …the last two apparently easy for they were mentioned only as “rapids”. That correspondence is clearly an item to be pursued; I hope to find the opportunity to do so.
Summary.
Following Tyrrell’s advice, which had proved reliable for many weeks previously, Moffatt continued downstream without a scout, to his death.

5. The Sports Illustrated condensation of Lanouette’s journal for 14 September.
A condensation of Lanouette’s journal entry for 14 September was reported in the SI article of 1959 (the very first publication regarding the tragedy). The following is excerpted from page 85.
After a fine lunch of fish chowder, we shoved off again at around 2:30. The weather was still dismal, although the wind had dropped. In a few minutes we heard and saw rapids on the horizon. This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids before Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids.
At the top, the rapids looked as though they would be easy going, a few small waves, rocks—nothing serious. We didn’t even haul to shore to have a look, as we usually did. The river was straight and we could see both the top and foot of the rough water quite clearly, or we thought we could. We barreled happily along. We bounced over a couple of fair-sized waves and took in a couple of splashes, but I didn’t mind as I had made an apron of my poncho and remained dry enough. I was looking a few feet in front of the canoe for submerged rocks when Art suddenly shouted “Paddle.”

1. The interested reader will verify that the above is a faithful condensation of Lanouette’s journal, as provided in Item 4.
2. The interpretation of the passage is clear to me:
Moffatt had possessed prior information regarding the fatal rapids. From that information (which came from J B Tyrrell), he concluded that the rapids were of no concern, and so he ran them without a scout. Unfortunately, Tyrrell’s information was incorrect.
3. Many of Moffatt’s defamers in the matter of the fatal rapids are known to have possessed the SI article (this from the content of their accusations, some regarding other matters), but not one of them mentioned Lanouette’s exculpatory text, which lay in plain sight in the SI article.
4. Worthy of special mention in this respect is the Sports Illustrated editor her/himself, who not only omitted mention of the passage, but also made accusations falsified by it. Yet worse, the editor redacted the exculpatory passage Following Tyrrell’s route from Moffatt’s journal for 13 September.
5. Summary.
The evidence of Lanouette, as published in the Sports Illustrated condensation of his journal, demonstrates that Moffatt had full reason to believe that the coast was clear to continue downriver without a scout.
But not one defamer in this matter mentioned the exculpatory evidence of Lanouette’s journal, which lay in plain view in the SI article (which was used by them to make other accusations). Did they not act in unseemly haste?

6. Grinnell’s version of the condensation of Lanouette’s journal.
Grinnell provided the following version of Item 5.
In a few minutes we heard and saw rapids on the horizon… [paragraph break]
At the top, the rapids looked as though they would be easy going, a few small waves, rocks—nothing serious.
[Grinnell book, 1996 edition, p 202]
One sees that Grinnell redacted the exculpatory passage
This surprised us. Art had figured we had already shot the last two rapids before Marjorie Lake. Actually, what we had gone down were only riffles, and what lay ahead was the real beginning of the first rapids from the condensation of Lanouette’s journal [Sports Illustrated, p 85, middle of right column] and replaced it with an ellipsis.
This passage tells me that Moffatt (and so Lanouette) had been told by J B Tyrrell there were no more significant rapids above Marjorie Lake.
Hypothesis.
Grinnell redacted the key passage This surprised us…first rapid because it showed that Moffatt had been misled by Tyrrell’s advice.
Follow-up material.
1. Several accusers are known to have been misled by Grinnell’s redaction.
2. The same three exculpatory sentences were redacted also in the 2010 edition of Grinnell’s book [p 207].
3. Pessl disputes many remarks in Grinnell’s book. Especially noteworthy here is Grinnell’s thinly veiled suggestion that Moffatt was suicidal, this with reference in particular to the running of the fatal rapids without a scout.
4. As I documented above, the Sports Illustrated editor also redacted exculpatory evidence regarding Moffatt’s decision to run the fatal rapids without a scout. And so it concerns me that the two had certainly corresponded (perhaps met in person) before the publication of the SI article in 1959; I refer here to page 88 of that article.

7. Private correspondence from Lanouette.
Comment. Thanks to Lanouette for these email messages and for permission to publish them.
1. …he [Pessl] and Art had studied them [J B Tyrrell’s journals] carefully before setting out and notations from the journals had been made on Art’s maps. [17 January , 2015].
2. I can assure you that, at the time of the accident, there was no sense of panic. But after recovering from that experience, we certainly focussed in getting as much mileage behind us each day. [17 January, 2015].
3. Certainly there was no panicky, helter-skelter paddling down the river to reach Baker Lake. [20 March, 2015].
Comment. I am uncertain regarding the times to which the remarks no sense of panic and no panicky…paddling are intended to apply.

8. The evidence of LeFavour’s article.
For completeness, I quote again LeFavour’s comment His [Tyrrell’s] journal had been accurate to that point, namely the start of the fatal rapids. [Private correspondence, 2015]

The source for the following is LeFavour’s article in the Evening Recorder, Amsterdam NY. Part 3, page 8, 29 December (1955)].

13 September.
…As we sped through Wharton Lake only the occasional snow flurry fell, an incentive not a deterrent. Up to that point we had shot five caribou and by doing so had saved enough meat to see us through. Now it was not even necessary to spend time hunting. We traveled, and traveled hard.
The river between Wharton and Marjorie Lakes split up into three channels. The longest of these
[the rightmost] had been traveled by Tyrrell in his trip 60 years before and was described in his journal: there were five rapids, the first two rough but shootable, the third long and heavy requiring a portage of a mile [”400 yards” in Tyrrell’s book] and the last two apparently easy for they were mentioned only as “rapids”. Because this route was described we took it, being careful to look over the first two which were indeed rough. Hurrying as we were, no foolish chances were taken.
Analysis.
1. Tyrrell’s remarks regarding the first two rapids and the portage square with those of participant LeFavour.
2. The first key passage is the last two apparently easy for they were mentioned only as “rapids”. I say that this passage is key because these are the rapids where Moffatt died. I should mention that this advice came from the Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence, rather from Tyrrell’s journal/book (which makes no mention of them).
3. The second key passage is Hurrying as we were, no foolish chances were taken.
I ask that the reader compare this with the Sports Illustrated editor’s assertion
…the Moffatt party races against winter on the Barren Grounds… In desperate haste, they take an ultimate chance. [SI article, bottom right of p 76]

14 September.
A cold breeze blew the morning of the 14th. Thankful for the chance to keep warm by walking we completed the portage around the third rapid and at noon, under the watchful eye of four wolves lounging on a nearby ridge we set off downriver. By two we had stopped to eat a lunch which included hot soup cooked on a sweet smelling dwarf birch fire. Gas was precious, and the constant gathering required to keep the fire going helped to warm our cold feet. Here too, we fished, and after 20 pounds of trout were caught we gave up for the water was freezing in the eyes of the rod. It was cold, there was no doubt about that.
At 3 p.m. we were again on the river. Gone was the wind, and we hoped to get a good way up Marjorie
Lake in the calm before dark. A mile downriver the roar of the next rapid reached our ears, a roar which had become familiar and comforting in this quiet land, a roar which in the past had promised excitement. As we coasted into the top of it all appeared to be well. You could see the bottom, the water, though white, was apparently shootable. Tyrrell had indicated by his neglect that the rapid was an easy one, and it seemed to be just that.
A flock of ptarmigan on the shore caught my eye, but soon we were past them and out in midstream. It was then that Skip and I noticed that Art and Joe in the lead canoe were having trouble. They were over! We saw the two huge waves, walls of white water which seemed almost five feet high. Pete and George had made the one, were heading for the second, and then we saw nothing but the unavoidable waves. We were into it!

Comment.
The objective having been accomplished (namely to document how the tragedy came to pass), more out of respect for the participants, I terminate LeFavour’s account here.

Analysis.
The key passage is … Tyrrell had indicated by his neglect that the rapid was an easy one, and it seemed to be just that. In full agreement with the evidence from other sources (in particular, the condensed version of Lanouette’s journal (SI article, pp 85-87), this passage evinces that, in choosing to run the fatal rapids without a scout, Moffatt had only followed J B Tyrrell’s advice. Given that Tyrrell’s journal makes no mention of these rapids, LeFavour must refer here to the Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence.

A minor point.
Sub-Appendix 2. The Tyrrell-Moffatt route between Wharton Lake and Marjorie Lake discusses the passage The river between Wharton and Marjorie Lakes split up into three channels. The longest of these had been traveled by Tyrrell in his trip 60 years before.

Closing comments.
1. Although Moffatt’s defamers could not have been expected to know of the Evening Recorder article, it does falsify their accusations.
2. I thank LeFavour for providing it and for permission to reproduce it.

9. The evidence of Pessl.

Passage 1.
After completing a short portage, loaded the canoes and continued our dash down the river. It was cold and windy, the sky was overcast and we stopped at frequent intervals to warm our feet and legs.
[We] approached what we thought must be the last rapids with confidence and impatience. Art stood up … looked ahead, and … drove his canoe for the middle of the flow. … The next thing I saw as we shot around the bend was a white wall of huge waves. … Beyond the thundering waves, the yellow camera box and Art’s gray canoe bobbed crazily in the rapids below.
[Canoe&Kayak, May 2012 issue, p 48, right column].

Passage 2.
That’s the other lesson I learned, says Pessl. To be patient. If we had just been patient and confident, if we hadn’t been in such a headlong rush that we didn’t stop to scout the rapid, we would have been fine. It’s very hard to do that, in the grip of panic, but it would have made all the difference. Art would have been with us, his life …. Pessl pauses. When it comes down to it, even with everything that happened, we were so close. [Canoe&Kayak, May 2012 issue, p 102?, left column].

Passage 3.
The tragedy of September 14, when Art Moffatt died, occurred, in my opinion, … , because Art and I tried to concurrently accomplish two mutually exclusive objectives: canoe travel and documentary filming of that journey. The demands of these opposing goals delayed and distracted our commitment to river miles. Art and I remained tragically stubborn in our commitment to filming the journey, even in the face of serious and obvious deterioration of the weather. [Nastawgan, Summer issue, 2013, p 5].

Passage 4.
The weather grew harsh. Freezing temperatures, wind-driven snow, dwindling food supplies, and deteriorating equipment pushed us hard to travel faster and more efficiently, and ultimately we made a fatal mistake. We approached the rapids entering Marjorie Lake with caution, but without an onshore look. Standing up in our canoes as we floated toward the rapids, we saw a modest current sweeping toward a right-hand bend and drove our canoes into that initial current V. [Pessl book, p XVII.]

Passage 5.
The tragedy of September 14 occurred, in my opinion, not because of Art’s alleged mental instability or some sort of Zen nonsense, but because Art and I failed to accurately translate our collective Albany River experiences to northern big-river conditions, especially into late-season, freezing conditions, and because we tried to concurrently accomplish two mutually exclusive objectives: travel and film. …we did not differentiate between what worked on the Albany River and what would not work in late season on the Dubawnt.
The deteriorating weather…changed our modus operandi from cautious land-based scouting of rapids to a floating assessment as we were sucked into the headwater Vs of each successive rapid. It worked for several days and many rapids, except for one.
Somewhere between the robotic distance grinds of… and the tragic disregard for time, distance, and season of the Moffatt leadership (and I include myself I that category), there must be a reasonable balance for wilderness canoeists on long journeys…
[Pessl book, pp 172&173].

Comment regarding passages 2 through 5.
To me, Pessl’s remarks are those of an introspective person still trying, after 59 years, to come to terms with the tragedy; for publishing those remarks, I suggest that he deserves our deep respect.

Passage 6.
Pessl (kindly and most frankly, both as ever) responded as follows regarding an email message of mine.
I understand the confusion, contradiction that the two quotes may create. The quote attributed to me [Excerpt 2] is accurate and comes from a conversation I had with Al Kesselheim when he was preparing to write his C&K article on the Moffatt Dubawnt journey (May 2012). It was a very emotional interview for me; the first time in many years that I shared some of my feelings about Dubawnt ’55. The quote expresses my remorse over Art’s death and my belief, in retrospect, that we should have scouted the Marjorie rapids. My use of the term “panic” was inaccurate, too strong and I regret that. Bruce’s phrase is much more accurate.
But our individual and collective state of mind during those early September days is pretty much conjecture and perhaps mostly semantic after so many years. The much more important question, clearly answered by your detailed research, is WHY we didn’t scout the rapids? And the answer: because we were following Tyrrell’s journal description of the river conditions approaching Marjorie Lake. Tyrrell’s river descriptions had proven dependable previously and indicated benign conditions entering Marjorie Lake following the last portage.
[Pessl, private correspondence].
Opinion.
The passage we were following Tyrrell’s journal description of the river conditions approaching Marjorie Lake, alone and itself, falsifies every accusation made by every Moffatt defamer regarding the running of the fatal rapids.

10. A comment of Luste.
Art Moffatt, following Tyrrell’s notes, was not expecting the rapid in which he swamped and then died. [Luste, in Grinnell’s book, p 284].
Please note the phrase following Tyrrell’s notes. That is, Luste knew (by means unknown) and confirms that Moffatt
had obtained rapids advice from Tyrrell,
was following that advice, and
had been misled by that advice.
Unfortunately, not one defamer mentioned Luste’s exculpatory comment, which appears (it need be repeated) in Grinnell’s book, a prime source for accusations of o’erhasty running of the fatal rapid.
In particular, Grinnell himself (in his own book) had the opportunity to mention Luste’s comment, but failed to do so.

11. Analysis.
1. The Moffatt party possessed information, not provided in Tyrrell’s book, regarding the rapids below the portage. The source for that additional information can be only the Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence, which is known to have occurred but is not publicly available.
2. Those rapids were apparently easy for they were mentioned only as “rapids”. [LeFavour, Ibid.]
3. By the time that Moffatt realized the gravity of the situation, it was too late to bail out and head for shore; they had to tough it out. The rapids grew ever wilder, and despite Moffatt’s considerable experience in running white water, his boat and another capsized, spilling all four into the ice-cold river. The paddlers (one of them later fell into the water) in the third boat were able to rescue the other four, but Moffatt died of hypothermia about an hour later. Luste commented as follows. …one is struck by how close all six came to perishing in the cold water. [Grinnell book, pp 294 & 295].

12. Additional evidence.
1. Referring to food and running rapids, Pessl commented as follows. The protection of our supplies dictates our caution. [Pessl, p 90, 16 August]
2. Moffatt took major precautions to protect also the film and the photographs; after all, these were the main purposes for the trip! Indeed, Moffatt portaged parts of some rapids run by the other two canoes. [Pessl, pp 122 & 124 (search incomplete)].
3. Moffatt’s …decided to portage last 100 yds. of rapid, partly to get warm, also to avoid risk of wetting or hurting film & cameras… as quoted in private correspondence from Pessl; I refer the reader to Appendix 8. Rapids in general.

13. Summary.
Moffatt’s sources regarding the fatal rapids were J B Tyrrell’s book and correspondence with him.
The evidence of Tyrrell’s book (for the reach between Wharton Lake and Marjorie Lake) is provided in Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt..
The full Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence is presently unavailable, only excerpts.
On 14 September 1955, Moffatt ran the fatal rapids (those below the lunch stop) without a scout because J B Tyrrell had informed him, implicitly, that they were not dangerous.
The evidence of trip participants Moffatt (I refer here to his journal entry for 13 September), Lanouette, LeFavour and Pessl attests that Tyrrell’s rapids information, which had proved reliable for the previous ten weeks, failed Moffatt on 14 September.
The efforts of the Sports Illustrated editor and of Grinnell were outstandingly successful, for their redactions misled the paddling community as a whole, including many prominent members of it, for 55 years regarding the cause of Moffatt’s death.
Every author of every accusation regarding the cause of Moffatt’s death got it wrong. They asserted (only) that the cause was one or more of those discussed in Appendices 1 through 8.
What an ugly chapter in the paddling literature are the accusations regarding the fatal rapids.
Sadly, the eight other chapters of the accusatory literature differ but little.
Even John Hornby (Thelon River, 1927) was treated mildly in comparison.
Reference. Ancillary 1. Accusations.

Sub-Appendix 1. Tyrrell sources.

The expedition of 1893 was led by Joseph Burr Tyrrell (1858-1957) and his brother James Williams (1863-1945).
J W Tyrrell’s book.
Assumed to be a full transcription of JWT’s journal, it is available at the University of Toronto library, in microfiche form. I viewed perhaps 20 pages, but in cursory fashion only. I made no copies. I recall much detail regarding ethnography. I found nothing of interest regarding the scene of the tragedy; and I found no mention of weather as severe as that encountered by the Moffatt party.
I did not pursue the matter because I knew that Moffatt’s primary source for Dubawnt information had been rather J B Tyrrell; in fact, as best I know, Moffatt made no use of this item.
J B Tyrrell’s book.
I assume JBT’s book to be a full transcription of his journal; the latter is not publicly available; it might be held at the Thomas Fisher library at the University of Toronto, but I’ll not pursue the matter.
I assume also that, in the following passage, by report Moffatt means JBT’s book.
…who was kind enough to send, on loan until September 30, 1955, a copy of your report. [Moffatt letter to J B Tyrrell, 14 January 1955].
JBT’s book is held at the University of Toronto library. The kind, helpful staff there generously provided me with copies of page 56 F (upstream of “Doobaunt” Lake) to page 70 F (downstream from Aberdeen Lake).
In Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt, I provide the full text of JBT’s journal for the reach between Wharton Lake and Marjorie Lake. The interested reader will verify that Tyrrell makes no reference to rapids below the portage 400 yards long. It was in those unmentioned rapids that Moffatt died.
The Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence.
The following items evince that Moffatt had corresponded with J B Tyrrell regarding the Dubawnt River, in particular its rapids.
1. Moffatt’s letters of 18 December 1954 and 14 January 1955 to J B Tyrrell, (copies kindly provided by Pessl; not available to the general public). In the latter, Moffatt thanks Tyrrell for his response to the first.
2. LeFavour’s newspaper article of 1955.
3. The Sports Illustrated article of 1959 [Art Moffatt’s Prospectus, p 71].
4. Pessl’s Nastawgan article of 2013 [p 3].
5. Pessl’s book of 2014 [pp 10&176].
Comment. The Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence itself is not publicly available, only references to some of its contents, and a few excerpts. This is an important matter to be pursued, for we would then learn in detail what Tyrrell told Moffatt regarding the fatal rapids in particular. I believe the correspondence to be held at the Thomas Fisher library at the University of Toronto; if so, I hope to access it, one fine day.

Sub-Appendix 2. The Tyrrell-Moffatt route between Wharton Lake and Marjorie Lake.

The Dubawnt River exits Wharton Lake by two channels, but some waters of the leftmost channel flow into the rightmost, as one sees easily at Toporama and mytopo. BTW, this is the reason for the <em<three in LeFavour’s passage The river between Wharton and Marjorie Lakes split up into three channels. The longest of these had been traveled by Tyrrell in his trip 60 years before.
The topos identify the rightmost as the Dubawnt River.
Moffatt followed Tyrrell’s route, namely the rightmost channel. The corresponding evidence is provided in Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Comment 1. Bill Layman and Lynda Holland chose the leftmost channel in 2001, I don’t know why.
http://www.out-there.com/bill-jl9.htm#Monday July 30
I note that Layman incorrectly identified the leftmost channel as the one where Moffatt died.
Comment 2. After the tragedy, the Moffatt party portaged from Marjorie Lake to Aberdeen Lake, I assume because the rapids below Marjorie are particularly difficult, as described in another publication by Layman (2002)
http://www.out-there.com/bil-riv.htm
Thanks to Les Wilcox for informing me of the latter.

Internal URLs.

Foreword and Forum.
Main text.
Appendix 1. Reality.
Appendix 2. Holidays.
Appendix 3. Equipment.
Appendix 4. Experience.
Appendix 5. Pace.
Appendix 6. Food.
Appendix 7. Schedule.
Appendix 8. Rapids in general.
Appendix 9. The fatal rapids.
Ancillary 1. Accusations.
Ancillary 2. Lanouette excerpt.
Ancillary 3. Tyrrell excerpt.
Ancillary 4. Distances.
Ancillary 5. Loose ends and the future.
Ancillary 6. Addenda.
Ancillary 7. The Moffatt-Tyrrell correspondence.
Bibliography.