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Daniel Buck
Re: The two girls at Robbers Roost
Sat Feb 3, 2018 5:06am

Read Pocock's Following the Frontier (1903), "The Trail of the Outlaw," but only if you are a glutton for confusion. The chief moment of clarity is p. 287, where he says that he arrived in Monticello, where he was unable to "secure a guide to take me on to the stronghold," indicating he did not enter any bandit redoubt.

Aside from that, he is all over the map and the years, clearly mixing up places, things he read, things he heard, and a previous trip, trying, not very successfully in my estimation, to write a seamless narrative.

P. 289, he refers to "a log house, the Robbers' Roost" on top of Orange Cliff, which is in any event nowhere near Monticello. He doesn't say he actually went there, though the casual, inattentive reader might draw that conclusion if he was so inclined.

The ladies: "The house is cheered by the presence of one or two ladies, wives of outlaws; and in 1896 there were two Mormon girls stolen from Castle Valley who made no moan over their bondage."

The 1900 census gives Utah almost 277,000 people, and let's say 125,000 or so were female, a few of whom graced the ranch at Orange Cliffs. Those ladies were but several among many thousands in the state. More importantly, there's no indication Pocock was ever at Orange Cliffs, or even if such a ranch existed there. And even if there was such a ranch, who it belonged to. Or who the bondaged, no-moan ladies were. More research required. Dan

  • Re: The two girls at Robbers RoostVince Garcia, Fri Feb 2 2:15pm
    That may be true. In fact, he may never have gone further than camp out at the Flattops. What's important to me is the lore about the two girls' place of origin he may have gotten from locals,... more
    • The FlattopsBob Goodwin, Sat Feb 3 6:44am
      Vince, The Flattops are a good fifteen miles north of the Roost in the middle of the San Rafael Desert. To get there from Monticello would mean taking the northern route to Green River and back down. ... more
    • Re: The two girls at Robbers Roost — Daniel Buck, Sat Feb 3 5:06am
      • The trail to Robbers RoostBob Goodwin, Sat Feb 3 6:39am
        Here is the full quote from page 289 (Roger Pocock "Following the Frontier, 1903:" "The tract of land on top of the Orange Cliffs, entirely surrounded by canyons, can only be reached by one or two... more
        • Southwest Coloradojim lynch, Sat Feb 3 11:28am
          For anyone with an interest in that part of Colorado, starting in Grand Junction head east on hi-way 50 towards Delta. Turn south on 141 towards Whitewater and cross the Dolores River. Follow the... more
          • Unaweep CanyonBob Goodwin, Sat Feb 3 11:38am
            Jim, Unaweep is the route that Pocock took South from Grand Junction following roughly the course of route 141.
          • re: Southwest ColoradoBob Goodwin, Sat Feb 3 11:34am
            If you actually take the time to travel down there, don't forget to stop at Dove Creek for some Anasazi beans. Low on gas, and very tasty. Dove Creek is the Bean capital of the U.S.
            • re: Southwest Coloradojim lynch, Sat Feb 3 12:34pm
              I was raised in Cortez and mined uranium on Long Park near Naturita. This is pretty close to heaven!
        • Re: The trail to Robbers RoostDaniel Buck, Sat Feb 3 6:59am
          Bob, I'm not familiar with the area, that is a given. But I have read (and, alas, reread, Pocock). In the chapter from Following the Frontier (1903) under discussion, "The Trail of the Outlaw," he... more
          • re: the trailBob Goodwin, Sat Feb 3 7:42am
            Dan, Your clarity and alacrity are always astounding. Yes, you are correct, Pocock never in his narratives says that he actually visited the Roost himself. And, as you have mentioned often, in his... more
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