My plans to retrace Captain Cook's unfinished voyage have been postponed a year while I work on the next Marine Diesel Basics book and get my new boat SV Oceandrifter ready for sea.
There are many reasons why some people live at a distance from the rest of society. But, as this story demonstrates, the fact that Daniel Fuller was still being remembered 30 years after his death shows that even a person living a secluded life can have quite an impact on people in society. Maybe that in itself is a service to other people, as a witness to another way of life.
For more on Dan – read the Kingston Journal report (Kingston, Masscheusetts, not Ontario, Canada.)
Thinking of those who are under-represented in archival collections, of the undocumented figures of history, hermits have to be in the top ten, right? That just doesn’t seem right, so…
here’s the story of Kingston’s famous hermit, drawn from a cabinet card, a few entries in town records, a newspaper article, a hand-written rebuttal and an anonymous letter.
Vital records provide the bare bones of biography: Daniel Weston Fuller was born to Consider and Hannah (Eaton) Fuller on January 5, 1812 and died of pneumonia on June 7, 1894, the year after his story was published in the Boston Journal.
In 1893, a reporter* traveled south to investigate “the trapper of Smelt Pond.” The story that followed – published on March 17, 1893 then reprinted in the Kingston News a few weeks later – romanticized the recluse with quaint, yet peculiar anecdotes. He slept in a molasses barrel, renounced…
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