142 THE PIONEERS OF OLD ONTARIO
skins, which a man in Toronto had agreed to buy. I had stopped at Markham to feed the horses. That was in the days of the `Markham gang' and Markham had a bad name. Consequently while waiting in the hotel until my horses were through feeding, I kept my eye on my sleigh. But a cutter drove up alongside as I watched, my skins were whisked into it and the rig was out of sight before I could pursue."
This reference to the wolf skins naturally brought up hunting stories, and once Mr. McFadyen got started on this line the stories came thick and fast.
"When father killed the steer we had secured in exchange for one of our horses, lie found it necessary to go to a neighbour's for salt with which to cure the meat. When on his way back, and in the middle of the `big swamp' of Thorah, there was a sudden and terrific howling from a pack of wolves—a howling that seemed to make the woods fairly tremble. Father dropped the salt and ran back to the neighbour's, where he stayed all night. When he returned to the place where he had dropped the bag, he found the ground tramped up as if a herd of cattle had passed by. There must have been a large number of wolves in that pack.
"The wolves were particularly destructive on domestic animals. A three-year-old steer belonging to the McMillans was pulled down in a swampy place, and all of the animal eaten except the portion under water. No less than eighteen sheep belonging to us were killed in one night.
"In order to check the marauders I bought a trap and caught one wolf with it. I set it