A look back at the ways that have been lost to history!
Before hunting was considered a sport it was a means of life giving food and one of the lost ways of survival in modern times!
The past time that is now as much a sport as means of gathering food was once the difference in life and death for many people throughout history, including the American pioneers !
Today we still hunt for food, but in most cases the food is not the driving force of survival that it was to our grandparents and great-grandparents.
The lost ways of survival can be tracked back to before records of human events were even kept. And for many centuries was a main staple food source and method of clothing!
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The history of the hunt
Hunting for food is something that mankind has always had to do. The tactics and equipment have changed from century to century, but the outcome remains the same. A successful hunt or unsuccessful hunt. The biggest difference in this day and time is that an unsuccessful hunt most likely won’t result in starvation!
The first civilizations survived based on their ability to scavenge and hunt for their food. Men would hunt while the women cared for the home and children and cook the meat the men brought home.
The men hunted daily in order to assure the survival of their families Unlike today the entire animal was used for various reasons. From clothes and tools to of course food, hunting provided pretty much every aspect of life!
Weapons were utilized and respected as a direct link to survival.
From sticks and slings and various designs to weapons made from the bones of previous kills the earliest hunters made use of what was available to them!
As time went on and the 16thth through 19th centuries brought more efficient weapons to bear, the need to hunt was not diminished, but gravitated away for an everyday occurrence, and gave both the man and woman ways to expand their diets through growing various vegetables.
During this time the human life expectancy grew to numbers never before imagined!
Archery Hunting improvements
Most modern archery hunters likely never think about the origins of their sport beyond the native American influence.
Archery is a sport and art that dates back as far as 20,000 BC. But the earliest use of Archery for warfare and hunting was by the Egyptians around 5,000 years ago.
And archery is one of the oldest arts still practiced. The art of archery is much older than the history of martial arts in Asia to give an example!
When China introduced archery to Japan in the 6th century it had an overriding effect on culture, hierarchy,and later etiquette and techniques. To this day Asian archers are still some of the best in the world!
As North America saw the influx of immigrants they began to combine native American and European technologies and techniques and bow hunting became a legitimate means to take animals and feed ones’s family without noise, thus allowing for multiple harvests on one hunt.
This grew the popularity of bow hunting and led to the first club in America known as The United Bowmen of Philadelphia in 1828.
Bowhunting and improvements in design allowed many to feed their families and make a life in America, and still does, even though the hunt has evolved from avoiding starvation to sport for most.
The gunpowder advantage!
Although the earliest recipe for gunpowder was dated at 1044AD the wide spread use of gun powder for hunting didn’t begin outside of China until.the matchlock, wheelock and flintlock were invented by the Europeans in an effort to make better use of the Chinese invention in war.
Before the Matchlock, rifles were basically hand held cannon tubes with fuses and not very conducive to hunting, not to mention that they came up sorely short in the accuracy department. I’ll bet that none of these early rifle hunters could have even dreamed of the highly engineered tack drivers that regularly take deer at over 500 yards!
The advantages of gunpowder and the more modern firing mechanisms in the 16th century were game changers for the more modern hunters! Now game could be harvested at longer distances and more efficiently!
The gunpowder advantage would continue to grow and is still doing so through this modern age!
Lessons of the past!
The past of hunting small game and big game such as deer has evolved over the decades and centuries since the Chinese made the first archery equipment! Today we see high tech designs and archery equipment that commonly exceeds arrow speeds of over 300 feet per second!
Bowhunting has evolved from a means to ensure survival to become one of the most challenging and popular forms of hunting in the United States!
Firearms are now technological marvels compared to those first fuse fired hand cannons of the past. Topped with high powered and even thermal scopes these weapons are responsible for taking game at ranges that were thought impossible just a few decades ago!
Today’s hunter has more technology and firepower at his disposal for deer hunting than most nations had for military use just a few decades earlier!
Hunting is still a way to put meat on the table and likely will be for the foreseeable future!
But how do we learn the lessons of hunting and other resources that people who lived before us used as a means of existence?
Hunting for sport and food is a great activity! But what if they were to become absolute staples for survival again? Have we learned anything?
Much to be said for the Lost ways of survival!
As a weekend warrior when deer hunting I often think about what would happen if any one of a various number of crisis situations forced us to return to the lost ways of survival to once again ensure the survival of our families!
Most of the people I know stand by their hunting skills and think they will depend solely on hunting as a means to ensure the survival of their families. But that is ludicrous to even consider!
The DNR of every state manages the numbers of wild game to ensure balance and a plentiful harvest every year. But consider what will happen when the number of hunters jumps from 4 -5 million in the United States to 350 million !
The answer is simple! The wild game population will be decimated very quickly!So what are the other options? Growing your own vegetables? Do you have a seed bank in place for such a plan of survival? I highly doubt it.
How will you keep your family warm if there is no electricity or natural gas? How do you store food for indefinite periods of time with no refrigeration? How will you get medicines for your family when there are no drug stores?
The simple act of starting a fire when conditions aren’t right can be the difference in life and death when you are in a survival situation!
These are just a few of the questions that come to mind when I am sitting in my deer stand ! There are many more questions that I haven’t asked!
In a crisis the survivors are the ones who are prepared!
The early settlers and pioneers were the truest survivors because they had to practice the art of survival on a daily basis ,
There was no option of failure because entire families and communities depended on these practices for their safety, food, and shelter! Without them survival would have not been possible!
I discovered a how to book researched and written by Claude Davis that explains and gives how to information needed that the pioneers and our great-grandparents used to survive!
From making your own pain killer from plants found in your yard to making a food called Pemican that will last for years, the lost ways covers many lost aspects of how the pioneers survived on a daily basis !
Making pain killer from wild lettuce
What is covered in The Lost Ways?
- Food – in his book,You will learn the recipes of nutritious foods that were carried by native American Scouts, for their ease of keeping edible and fresh! True survival foods by definition!
- Traps – The Lost ways covers a wide range of making traps for various animals so that a steady supply of wild game can be acquired, even during harsh winter months.
- Housing – A big concern that the author of this book is the need of housing. In this regard, he has shed some very useful light on how to construct underground houses . The houses illustrated were an idea that was taken from Native Americans and their building ideas!
- Water – Davis explains the simple yet effective ways that families can obtain and store clean drinking water with little or no expense at all!
- Poultices –Davis instructs how to make poultices from ancient ingredients and the proper storage and care of medicines for the times when they are needed.
- Bullets –The author goes into great detail on what should be done when you run out of bullets , and gives advice on circumstances derived from the way the pioneers moved west and never ran out of bullets !
This book is chock full of extremely valuable information with a wide and varying range of aspects of survival that people in this day and time have completely forgotten !
The Lost Ways is full of information that could become the most valuable thing your family owns in the event of a disaster or crisis ! If you have children you owe it to them to take a look!
We have talked about the lost ways of survival and how they can effect our lives today. I have left links to a book that will be tremendously valuable in a survival situation .
I hope you and your family are prepared in the event of a survival situation!
So the next time you are enjoying the day in the field hunting, stop to consider what would happen if the game disappeared at the most important time to have them!
Thanks for reading! Please leave a comment below if you have questions !