Pete "The Trapper" Provost

Peter “The Trapper” Provost, Northern Sagola Township, ca. 1915-1920: Pete “The Trapper” Provost was born in a log cabin on the Michigamme River about twenty miles north of Sagola on April 17, 1883. In Darryl Ertel’s book Sagola’s Early Years: A History of Sagola, Michigan, the author noted Pete (pages 200-201) was one of fourteen children born to Oliver and Minerva Provost, French Canadians who immigrated to the United States in 1880. When he was eleven years old he began his first career, working as a river log driver along area waterways used in logging operations. Pete’s job was to break loose the log jams and keep the logs moving. In one instance the logs had jammed and the waterline had receded. Peter managed to get them moving by heading upstream and dynamiting beaver dams. The logs were carried along on the resulting flood, but so were some farmers’ crops, outhouses and stray sheds. As logging declined, he began a second career as a trapper. One year while working for the state he trapped more than eighty wolves. When successful, Provost often hung the carcasses of the coyotes, wolves and bobcats he trapped for bounty on his automobile or truck and drove around town to display his expertise. During World War II Pete applied for and received a job at the Ford Motor Company in Kingsford building gliders. When asked to read the letters on an eye chart, Pete, who never paid much attention to education, said, “I can’t read those letters…never could. But give me a .22 and I’ll shoot out every one of ’em.” This photograph was probably taken in the late teens. [Hazel (DeGayner) Dault], Item also published with caption in: Dickinson County, Michigan : from earliest times through the Twenties / compiled and edited by William John Cummings. Iron Mountain, Mich. : Dickinson County Board of Commissioners, 1991. 432 p. : ill, maps, ports. ; 3
Abstract/Description: Peter “The Trapper” Provost, Northern Sagola Township, ca. 1915-1920: Pete “The Trapper” Provost was born in a log cabin on the Michigamme River about twenty miles north of Sagola on April 17, 1883. In Darryl Ertel’s book Sagola’s Early Years: A History of Sagola, Michigan, the author noted Pete (pages 200-201) was one of fourteen children born to Oliver and Minerva Provost, French Canadians who immigrated to the United States in 1880. When he was eleven years old he began his first career, working as a river log driver along area waterways used in logging operations. Pete’s job was to break loose the log jams and keep the logs moving. In one instance the logs had jammed and the waterline had receded. Peter managed to get them moving by heading upstream and dynamiting beaver dams. The logs were carried along on the resulting flood, but so were some farmers’ crops, outhouses and stray sheds. As logging declined, he began a second career as a trapper. One year while working for the state he trapped more than eighty wolves. When successful, Provost often hung the carcasses of the coyotes, wolves and bobcats he trapped for bounty on his automobile or truck and drove around town to display his expertise. During World War II Pete applied for and received a job at the Ford Motor Company in Kingsford building gliders. When asked to read the letters on an eye chart, Pete, who never paid much attention to education, said, “I can’t read those letters…never could. But give me a .22 and I’ll shoot out every one of ’em.” This photograph was probably taken in the late teens. [Hazel (DeGayner) Dault]
Subject(s): Trappers
Portraits
Coyote
Dickinson County (Mich.)
Date Created: 1918 (approximate)