Paty Jager: Shanghaied

My current release is called Western Duets-Volume One in the novella are two historical western romances. One, the longest, has the subject of shanghaiing. This is a subject that has always intrigued me since watching episodes of Bonanza and the Big Valley that had characters being Shanghaied.

I thought it was only done on the Barbary Coast. Until I started doing my research and discovered the most notorious shanghai city was in my own state.

Portland, Oregon was the longest running and most notorious for shanghaiing than anywhere else on the West Coast.

The unsuspecting farm boy, logger, or out-of-towner who was lured to the dock by the saloons, gambling dens, and bawdy houses could wake up indentured to a ship headed to China (where the name shanghaied came from) or ports around the world.

Crimps were men who owned boarding houses that would give sailors a place to eat and sleep when they ran out of money and were waiting for a job. Some men planned to go back on ships, while others had dreams better paying, less harmful work.  While staying at the boarding houses they ran up tabs.  The crimp (the Dutch word krimp means a holding tank or pen for live fish), would use this tab against them. When a captain of ship came around he would pay the crimp the man’s tab and extra to put the man on his ship. The man had to work to pay the tab he now owed the captain. Once he worked to pay off what the captain paid for him then he would online pokies draw wages at the lowest pay scale. It would be quite likely, the captain would pay them much less than they were owed. Since many of the men who ended up as sailors had little learning and couldn’t keep track of what they owed or was owed them.

Many captains would find a crimp and pay them for ten men. If the crimp didn”t have ten men in his house, he would go out and either get able-bodied males drunk and passed out or knock them out in alleys and haul them to the ships and dump them.

A crimp could receive a bonus of $30 – $90 for supplying strong men to the ships. This was called “blood money”. In some instances blood money could go as high as $120. When the price was this high the boarding house operators would work together to “gather sailors.”

Shanghaiing had the crimps prowling the streets looking for strangers to knock out and dress up as sailors and dump on ships for money. Many were naive young men who were befriended then drugged. The prostitutes even got in on shanghaiing. They pulled in young, strong men to their “crib” and while “servicing” the man would knock them out with chloroform.

Shanghaiing had lessened in San Francisco by the mid 1890″s but picked up in Portland at that time. There were even international incidents with the governments of France and Great Britain.


Western Duets- Volume One

Western Duets is a novella with two historical western romance short stories.

Shanghaied Heart
Tossed together in the underbelly of a ship, strangers Finn Callaghan and Prudence Hawthorne must learn to trust one another in order to escape, but their freedom may be short lived once Finn discovers Prudence”s brother wants her dead.

Last Stand for Love
U.S. Marshal Chas Brown agreed to be Sarah”s proxy husband in order for her to keep her dead husband”s ranch. Little did Chas know, he’d lose his heart in the process.

Available at:   Windtree Press       Kindle            Nook

One lucky commenter will receive an ebook copy of Western Duets.


Award winning author Paty Jager is a member of national and local writing organizations. She not only writes the western lifestyle she lives it. With sixteen novels and several short stories published, she continues to have characters cavorting in her head.

You can learn more about Paty at her blog;  her website; or on Facebook;!/paty.jager , Goodreads  and twitter;  @patyjag.

©2013 Paty Jager

Birthday Bash! Today through June 30th the first book of my spirit trilogy, Spirit of the Mountain, a paranormal historical romance set among the Wallowa band of Nez Perce is available in ebook for $.99.  It”s my birthday gift to readers. Enjoy!

Darlene Franklin: Angels in Disguise



Rosie Carson sat in the circle of chairs gathered for the Young People’s Society of the New Testament Church of San Antonio. She loved the Lord and she loved the Bible, even though she found it a little confusing at times. But if she heard more people read the exciting stories with such droning voices, she’d fall asleep.

By the time Rosie caught up with the teacher in the second chapter of Acts, he was droning on about “tongues of fire” resting on the disciples. She screwed her mouth, trying to imagine a tongue made out of fire. Where did it rest on the head? Did it come out of their mouths?

There was a mention of the Holy Ghost . . . Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. She’d like to hear more about that. The teacher continued read as if he was reciting multiplication tables. His voice didn’t convey any of the excitement Rosie felt when she read the accounts of the early Christians.

Some of the witnesses said, “These men are full of new wine.” A picture formed in her mind of church members so excited about the Lord that they were accused of being drunk. She giggled at the image of people with fire sprouting out of their mouths, like circus entertainers, talking in languages half the congregation didn’t understand, staggering about the stage, hollering “praise Jesus!” She laughed out loud.

The leader stared at her, directing the attention of everyone in the group to her unfortunate outburst. “Miss Carson, would you care to tell us what you find so very amusing?

Rosie gulped. Didn’t these people realize how blessed they were, that they had they read the Bible so often that it rolled over them like wagon wheels, running through the same ruts?

“I’d like to hear what Rosie thinks about the day the church was born.” Macy Braum, a pleasant contrast to her stuffed shirt of a brother, gave Rosie the courage to speak.

“It’s the place where it says people were mocking the disciples and all, saying they were drunk. Here God was doing something amazing and wonderful and all they saw was drunks.”

“Yeah, Braxton, maybe we should hold the next service at the saloon down the street.” A young man Rosie didn’t recognize said.

Laughter followed, although Rosie didn’t think it was such a bad idea. Didn’t Jesus eat with publicans and sinners and even ladies of the night? They were the people who knew they needed a Savior, not people who had grown up without ever wondering where their next meal was coming from.

“At least they took a risk in sharing their faith.” A deep voice from the back of the room said.

Turning, Rosie registered his blond good looks while feeling a bone-deep fear of the authority shouting from every inch of his frame.


Award-winning author and speaker Darlene Franklin lives in Oklahoma near her son’s family.

Darlene loves music, needlework, reading, and reality TV. She has published several titles with Barbour Publishing, including her two latest releases, A Bride’s Rogue in Roma, Texas, and Merry Christmas, With Love, in Postmark: Christmas. She has also written two books in the Texas Trails series with RiverNorth Fiction, Lone Star Trail and A Ranger’s Trail. She’s a member of Oklahoma City Christian Fiction Writers.

You can find Darlene online at, and

Darlene’s 5 Questions a Day: ( Darlene answers the first five questions related to the writing life posed on any given day. Group members are also welcome to contribute.

Darlene is giving away a copy of Texas Brides to one lucky commenter today!


Best of the Best Native American Romances – Cheryl St.John’s List

A while back a group of inspirational authors and readers shared their favorite Native American stories, and so of course I made a list. I had read several of them, but am now collecting all these books. I wanted to share my list with you, because who doesn’t need a wish list? If you have more to add, this is the place, and I’d love to hear about them.

A Whisper of Peace, Kim Vogel Sawyer



Ostracized by her tribe because of her white father, Lizzie Dawson lives alone in the mountains of Alaska, practicing the ways of her people even as she resides in the small cabin her father built for her mother. She dreams of reconciling with her grandparents to fulfill her mother’s dying request, but she has not yet found a way to bridge the gap that separate her from her tribe.

Clay Selby has always wanted to be like his father, a missionary who holds a great love for the native people and has brought many to God. Clay and his stepsister, Vivian, arrive in Alaska to set up a church and school among the Athbascan people. Clay is totally focused on this goal…until he meets a young, independent Indian woman with the most striking blue eyes he’s ever seen.But Lizzie is clearly not part of the tribe, and befriending her might have dire consequences for his mission. Will Clay be forced to choose between his desire to minister to the natives and the quiet nudging of his heart?


 Courting Morrow Little, Laura Franz



Morrow Little is haunted by the memory of the day her family was torn apart by raiding Shawnee warriors. Now that she is nearly a grown woman and her father is ailing, she must make difficult choices about the future.

Several men–ranging from the undesired to the unthinkable–vie for her attentions, but she finds herself inexplicably drawn to a forbidden love that both terrifies and intrigues her. Can she betray the memory of her lost loved ones–and garner suspicion from her friends–by pursuing a life with him? Or should she seal her own misery by marrying a man she doesn’t love?


The Frontiersman’s Daughter, Laura Franz



Lovely but tough as nails, Lael Click is the daughter of a celebrated frontiersman. Haunted by her father’s former captivity with the Shawnee Indians, as well as the secret sins of her family’s past, Lael comes of age in the fragile Kentucky settlement her father founded.

Though she faces the loss of a childhood love, a dangerous family feud, and the affection of a Shawnee warrior, Lael draws strength from the rugged land she calls home, and from Ma Horn, a distant relative who shows her the healing ways of herbs and roots found in the hills. But the arrival of an outlander doctor threatens her view of the world, God, and herself–and the power of grace and redemption.


Through Rushing Water, Catherine Richmond



Sophia has her life all planned out—but her plan didn’t include being jilted or ending up in Dakota Territory.

Sophia Makinoff is certain 1876 is the year that she’ll become the wife of a certain US Congressman, and happily plans her debut into the Capitol city. But when he proposes to her roommate instead, Sophia is stunned. Hoping to flee her heartache and humiliation, she signs up with the Board of Foreign Missions on a whim.

With dreams of a romantic posting to the Far East, Sophia is dismayed to find she’s being sent to the Ponca Indian Agency in the bleak Dakota Territory. She can’t even run away effectively and begins to wonder how on earth she’ll be able to guide others as a missionary. But teaching the Ponca children provides her with a joy she has never known—and never expected—and ignites in her a passion for the people she’s sent to serve.

It’s a passion shared by the Agency carpenter, Willoughby Dunn, a man whose integrity and selflessness are unmatched. The Poncas are barely surviving. When US policy decrees that they be uprooted from their land and marched hundreds of miles away in the middle of winter, Sophia and Will wade into rushing waters to fight for their friends, their love, and their destiny.


The Shadow Catcher’s Daughter, Carla Olson Gade

Eliana has secrets. Daring Eliana Van Horn aims to make her mark by joining her father as his photography assistant–disguised as a young man–on a survey expedition to the remote Four Corners.
Living in the shadows of his native heritage, trail guide Yiska Wilcox is thrown off course when the shadow catcher’s daughter opens up the uncharted territory of his heart.
As they travel through dangerous terrain in the mountains and deserts of Colorado and New Mexico, Eliana and Yiska must learn to overcome the barriers of culture, faith, and ideals to discover common ground.
Though they are worlds apart, will they stake a chance on love?




Valley of Dreams, Lorraine Snelling


Addy Lockwood’s mother died when she was little, so Addy traveled with her father’s Wild West Show and became an amazingly skillful trick rider, likened by some to the famous Annie Oakley. When her father died, she continued to work with the show, having nowhere else to go.

Now Addy has discovered that “Uncle” Jason, the show’s manager, has driven the show into debt, and he’s absconded with what little money was left. Devastated, Addy decides to try to find the hidden valley where here father had dreamed of putting down roots. She has only one clue. She needs to find three huge stones that look like fingers raised in a giant hand.

With Chief, a Sioux Indian who’s been with the show for twenty years, and Micah, the head wrangler, she leaves both the show and a bundle of heartache behind and begins a wild and daring adventure.


Dakota Moon Trilogy, Stephanie Grace Whitson

Heart of the Sandhills:

Genevieve LaCroix Dane Two Stars, married for just a little more than a year, is thankful to be with her beloved husband, Daniel Two Stars. Though they are struggling, they have each other and dream of making a happy home in a safe place.

But “happily ever after” is not always easy to live out in real life. Daniel and his friend, Robert Lawrence, now plow the land that used to be theirs in return for only a portion of the crops and the right to live in two small log cabins with their families. Though many respect their hardworking Indian neighbors, others are unable to look past the color of their skins and see their hearts. They only see “murdering savages.” In the wake of the Dakota Sioux uprising, fear and prejudice toward the Indians grow stronger every day.

How long will Genevieve and her family be able to turn the other cheek in the face of hatred and injustice? Is Daniel’s restlessness a sign that God has another work for him beyond the farm? Should they stay in Minnesota or look for a better place out west?

Valley of the Shadow:

Eighteen-year-old Genevieve LaCroix protests when her father tells her it’s time to leave home and get further education at nearby Renville mission. The daughter of Good Song Woman and Etienne LaCroix, she carries in her blood the proud heritage of a Dakota warrior and a French aristocrat. But when Gen arrives at Renville mission, she learns that her heritage is not valued in the changing world created by new white immigrants.

At first the lessons learned at the mission are difficult and lonely. But soon Gen finds new friends and begins to understand this strange culture she has become immersed in. When the missionary family takes in Two Stars, an injured young Dakota warrior, Gen begins to learn how quickly a life can change.

When the Minnesota Sioux Uprising destroys the world she has known and threatens the people she loves most, Gen begins to question everything she has been taught about God.

Edge of the Wilderness:

In the aftermath of the Dakota War of 1862, Genevieve LaCroix struggles to accept the horrible news that Daniel Two Stars has been falsely imprisoned and executed as a criminal, when, in fact, he risked his life to save others. When a man Gen respects proposes, she learns that obedience can require painful choices. But then, just when she has learned to be content as Simon Dane’s wife and stepmother to his children, Gen learns that Two Stars is alive.


Walks Alone, Sandi Rogg



A Cheyenne warrior bent on vengeance.
A pioneer woman bent on fulfilling a dream.
Until their paths collide.
After fleeing her abusive uncle, Anna is determined to reach the city of her dreams. But White Eagle and his fierce warriors take her prisoner. Anna attempts a harrowing escape, but her savage captor is determined to have her at all costs and forces her to be his wife. Has God forgotten her, or does He have plans of His own?
A man with a boot in one world and a moccasin in the other, White Eagle is disillusioned with his faith after a minister leads a massacre on his peaceful tribe. Where is his God? He’s definitely not with the white men who are slaughtering his people. But White Eagle also can’t give in to the idolatry practiced by his fellow tribesmen. Only the Truth can set him free.

 Wildflower Bride, Mary Connealy



Glowing Sun, a white woman raised by the Flathead tribe, has vague memories of her former life, including a name—Abby Lind. When she’s forced to sever all links with her adopted family, Abby wonders if she’ll ever find a home again. Tenderhearted Wade Sawyer, responsible for Abby’s survival during the village massacre, convinces the knife-wielding woman to return with him to the Sawyer Ranch, never realizing danger lurks behind every corner. Can they survive long enough to fall in love?


Morning for Dove, Martha Rogers



When Luke Anderson falls in love with Dove Morris, he is aware of her Native American heritage. What he is not prepared for is the prejudice suddenly exhibited by his parents against Dove. Luke struggles with the feelings until a wildfire on the prairie threatens Morris Ranch. Luke joins the battle to stave off the fire as it approaches and risks his life to save Dove. Will his parents see that love knows no boundaries of race or culture when it is rooted in God’s love for His people?


Also on the list:

Under a Desert Sky, DiAnn Mills

A Love Forbidden, Kathleen Morgan

The One Who Waits for Me, Lori Copeland

Wired Love

With all the online dating sites these days, it might seem that cyber romance is the wave of the future. But as King Solomon so wisely said, there is nothing new under the sun.

Back in 1879, a female telegraph operator from Boston by the name of Ella Cheever Thayer published a romance novel entitled Wired Love. I ran across this wonderful little book while doing some research into telegraph operators. Apparently many operators were women and could often be identified as such by the delicacy of their “sounding” on the wires. The hero in Miss Thayer’s novel, Clem Stanwood, knows right away that the operator at the “B m” station is female.

Nattie Rogers is intrigued by the mysterious “C” at the “X n” station and seeks out converations that soon turn flirtatious. These two telegraph operators fall in love over the wire without ever laying eyes on one another. I haven’t read the entire novel, but the few chapters I did read were full of delightful humor and banter.

There is one scene about halfway through that was priceless. A case of mistaken identity had scared Nattie off, but Mr. Stanwood arranges a visit to her boarding house and while sitting amongst others in the parlor, he begins tapping out code with his pencil against a marble table top. Nattie recognizes her call name and, taking up a pair of scissors, drums out her own answer. They carry on an entire conversation this way with no one else in the parlor suspecting their action were anything more than idle tapping. Until, that is, Mr. Stanwood reveals himself to be the real “C”.

Nattie jumps to her feet and exclaims aloud, “What do you mean? It cannot be possible!”

Don’t you love it? Hysterical!

Of course everyone else in the room thinks she’s lost her mind except the hero who crosses the room to take her hand.  Ahhh…

Wired Love: A Romance of Dots and Dashes was a best selling book for over 10 years. And why not? The story is timeless. Remember You’ve Got Mail, which was adapted to e-mail from The Shop Around the Corner where Jimmy Stewart did his courting through letters? Very similar premise. And there are so many parrallels to dating in today’s “wired” world. Can you trust that she looks like her description? Is he a gentleman or a stalker? How about the awkwardness of the first face-to-face meet? And with all the abbreviations used on the telegraph lines, it reminded me of the text speak our kids use today. It is really rather eerie how easily Ella Thayer’s story translates to our contemporary society 130 years after it was written.

Wired Love is in the public domain and can be downloaded for free from Amazon or you can read it on Google Books. Those who love research will find a treasure trove of details concerning how a telegraph was run. Those who love to travel back in time will enjoy delving into authentic 19th century life. And those who love a clean love story with a healthy dose of chuckles along the way will find a great read. You might want to give it a try.