In spite of this, what we do know of the story is too good to keep buried and the photos speak volumes even if they do not exactly answer all of the questions. So with that said here is what we do know. According to a collection of historical, short, news articles The Damrells were from the Mellen, Wisconsin area. In the course of researching this story James Damrell first appears in a February 16th 1912 article that was in the Eau Claire Leader Newspaper. The article tells of Mr. Damrell going to a zoo in Irvine Park where he is acquiring two adult wolves that are to be part of the five wolf team that he plans to exhibit as a “Drawing Card” for advertising a breakfast cereal for a prominent manufacturing concern. The article goes on to state that Damrell and the zookeepers loaded the two animals up and took them to the train Depot from which Damrell and the two animals returned to Mellen.
The date is May 1st 1912 and an ambitious man and his wife have begun to travel from Seattle, Washington to New York City. At the time this would not have been considered anything out of the ordinary. The extraordinary part of this journey is that Mr. and Mrs. James Damrell are being pulled in a buggy by a team of five TIMBERWOLVES!!! At least that is what some of the newspapers of the time claimed. Today all that seems to remain of this story are a few short archived articles and few great photos that leave one only to ask a million questions. Why did they do it? How did they do it? How did they support themselves along the way? Where did the wolves stay when they slept? Where did the Damrells sleep? What I am sure was a fairly intriguing story for its time would be an incredibly amazing story today. The only problem is that most of the story seems to be lost.
By Mace Loftus