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6/26/2005  

Paul Bunyan

Now I hear tell that Paul Bunyan was born in Bangor, Maine (although the folks of Bemidji, Minnesota still dispute this fact.) It took five giant storks to deliver Paul to his parents. His first bed was a lumber wagon, where he lay as a newborn. But after three weeks, he rolled around so much in his sleep that he destroyed four square miles of prime timberland. His parents were at their wits' end! Finally, they built him a raft and floated it off the coast of Maine. Only trouble was, whenever Paul turned over, it caused a 75 foot tidal wave in the Bay of Fundy. They had to send the British Navy over to Maine to wake him up. The sailors had to fire every canon they had in the fleet for seven hours straight before Paul Bunyan woke from his nap! When he stepped off the raft, he accidentally sank four war ships and had to scoop the sailors out of the water before they drowned. After this incident, Paul's parents decided the East was just too plumb small for him, and so the family moved out west.

When Paul Bunyan grew up, he became the most famous lumberjack who ever lived. Here are just a few of the stories told about him!

Paul Bunyan and the Frozen Flames
One winter, shortly after Paul Bunyan dug Lake Michigan as a drinking hole for his blue ox, Babe, he decided to camp out in the Upper Peninsula. It was so cold in that there logging camp that one evening, the temperature dropped to 68 degrees below zero. Each degree in the camp thermometer measured sixteen inches long and the flames in the lanterns froze solid...

Paul Bunyan's Kitchen
One winter, Paul Bunyan came to log along the Little Gimlet in Oregon. Ask any old timer who was logging that winter, and they'll tell you I ain't lying when I say his kitchen covered about ten miles of territory.

Paul Bunyan and the Log Jam
One spring day, the loggers on the Wisconsin River discovered a huge log jam, the biggest they'd ever seen. The logs were piled about two hundred feet high and the jam went upriver for a mile or more. Those loggers chopped and hauled at the jam, but it wouldn't budge an inch. So they called for Paul Bunyan to give them a hand.

Paul Bunyan Tames the Whistling River
The Whistling River - so named because twice a day, it reared up to a height of two hundred feet and let loose a whistle that could be heard for over six hundred miles - was the most ornery river in the U.S. of A. It took a fiendish delight in plaguing the life out of the loggers who worked it. It would tie their logs into knots, flip men into the water then toss them back out onto the banks, and break apart whole rafts of logs as soon as the loggers put them together.


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