Meet Red Hill

While I’m developing Book 3, and there isn’t much to share yet, here are some reference photos I thought  you might find interesting.

icebridge-incline

This photo, courtesy of the Niagara Falls Public Library, shows the incline on the American side that takes you down to the base of the American Falls. In the upper right, you can see part of the Horseshoe Falls. Some ice bridges freeze the surface all the way to the Horseshoe Falls. The 1912 ice bridge was a frozen strip from the incline across the river to the Canadian side. The huge mounds of snow at the base of the falls are actually formed from freezing mist. People used to ride sleds down those slopes!

Ice Bridge with Shanties.

Ice Bridge with Shanties.

Here is a better shot of the ice bridge. As you can see, the shanties are lined up from one shore to the other. The incline on the far shore is in the USA, next to the American Falls. So, how would you like to take a stroll with me out across the ice bridge to buy a snooker of whiskey or a photo of a stuntman? Haha, just kidding.

Red Hill and son

Red Hill and son

This is Red Hill, the guy on the left with all the medals. His son is to the right. Red is legendary as the Riverman. Kind of a River Whisperer, if you will. He and his family are responsible for countless rescues and body recoveries in the Niagara. Red was a dare devil, too. He shot the rapids in a barrel that took him down to the whirlpool, and survived.

Book 3 starts out with Red, as he prepares his souvenir shanty to be set out on the ice bridge. Burrell and Iggy are still on the train, just passing the Erie Station in North East, PA. and soon approaching Buffalo, NY.

Red Hill was quite a character, and I hope to capture that in both the text and the pictures, although it would take volumes to tell his whole story. I’d like this section of the book to be a small biopic of Red, who was also a hero at the ice bridge of 1912 and who really deserves a book of his own!

 

Additional Reading

If you are curious about life in the Niagara Falls area back in the early 1900’s, I highly recommend “The Day the Falls Stood Still”, an historical fiction novel. I loved it! The interesting thing was that a hefty section of the book was devoted to the very incident at Niagara that “Hecock” is about! So you will read about it from a totally different perspective… that of the man who rescues someone other than Burrell… can’t say who… top secret and all that. Atleast not until we get much deeper into my story. The book is by Cathy Marie Buchanan. Check it out!