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146   My Brother Theodore Roosevelt

tion which my brother had given me before I visited the Bad Lands.

Years later, when the young owner of Elkhorn Ranch had reached the higher estate of President of the United States, I, as the sister of the President, was receiving with my sister-inlaw at the breakfast in the White House, at his Inaugural in 1905, and was attired in my best black velvet gown and "presidential sister" white plumes; I was surrounded by senators and ambassadors, when suddenly, coming toward me, I recognized the lithe figure of my brother's quondam.cowboy, Will Merrifield. He, too, had climbed the rungs of the ladder of fame, and now, as marshal of Montana, he had been intrusted by the State of Montana with the greetings of that state for the newly inaugurated President. Coming toward me with a gay smile of recognition, he shook me warmly by the hand and said: "Well, now, Mrs. Douglas, it's a sight for sore eyes to see you again; why, almost the last time I laid eyes on you, you were standing on your head in that muddy corral with your legs waving in the air." Senators and ambassadors seemed somewhat surprised, but Will Merrifield and the President's sister shook hands gaily together, and reminisced over one of the latter's most thrilling life victories. But to return to our farewell to Elkhorn Ranch

in 18go.

The three weeks' visit to the ranch-house had passed on fleet wings, and it was a very sad little party that turned its face toward Medora again, in preparation for the specially planned trip to Yellowstone Park. Theodore Roosevelt, as one may well imagine, was making a very real concession to family affection by arranging this trip for us and accompanying us upon it. What he loved was roughing it; near-roughing it was not his "metier," nor, frankly, was it his "metier" to arrange a comfortable trip of any kind. He loved wild places and wild companions, hard tramps and thrilling adventure, and to be a part of the type of trip which women who were not accustomed

I   The Elkhorn Ranch   147

to actual hunting could take, was really an act of unselfishness on his part. We paid huge sums for no comforts, and although supposed to go-as we were riding-where the ordinary travellers in stage-coach could not go in Yellowstone Park, yet there were times when we seemed to be constantly camping in the vicinity of tomato cans !

I write again to my aunt two weeks after we start our Yellowstone experiences:

"We have had a most delightful two weeks' camping and have enjoyed every moment. The weather has been cloudless, and though the nights were cold, we were only really uncomfortable one night. We were all in the best of health and the best of spirits, and ate without a murmur the strange meals of ham, tomatoes, greasy cakes and coffee prepared by our irresistible Chinese cook. Breakfast and dinner were always the same, and lunch was generally bread and cheese carried in our pockets and eaten by the wayside. We have really had great comfort, however, and have enjoyed the pretense of roughing it and the delicious, free, open-air life hugely, and such scenery ! Nothing in my estimation can equal in unique beauty the Yellowstone canyon, the wonderful shapes of the rocks, some like peaks and turrets, others broken in strange fantastic jags, and then the marvellous colors of them all. Pale greens and yellows, vivid reds and orange, salmon pinks and every shade of brown are strewn with a lavish hand over the whole Canyon,-and the beautiful Falls are so foamy and white, and leap with such exultation from their rocky ledge 360 feet down.

"We had one really exciting ride. We had undertaken too long an expedition, namely, the ascent of Mt. Washburn, and then to Towers' Falls in one day, during which, to add to the complications, Edith had been thrown and quite badly bruised. We found ourselves at Towers' Falls at six o'clock in the eve

ning instead of at lunch time, and realized we were still sixteen

miles from Camp, and a narrow trail only to lead us back, a

trail of which our guide was not perfectly sure. We galloped

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