The text and paintings on The Trowbridge Chronicles are taken from the illustrated journal of Violet Trowbridge, a shrew that once lived in a village deep in the Olympic Rain Forest. Each new post will represent a portion of Mrs. Trowbridge’s journal.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


It all started this past summer. I was on a safari in Morocco, exploring a musty cave in the cliffs above the Draa River, when I stumbled upon something most amazing. There, buried under skull fragments and pottery shards was what appeared to be an ancient manuscript! I brushed the dust from it and carefully unrolled the scroll.

 Indeed, it was a manuscript. My helmet lamp revealed beautifully scribed text, as well as colorful illustrations. The title (translated) read: "The Legend of Shrew Kahn". The art style was distinctively humorous. I didn't know that they had cartoons in ancient times, did you?

I rolled the manuscript into a sheet of burlap, placed it in the boot of my Land Rover, then drove into Marrakesh to have it carbon dated. To my utter amazement, it dated back to the 3rd Century!

Fast forward to three weeks ago. My phone rings unusually early one morning. I try not to sound's the famous movie producer, Jerry Bruckheimer! My mind is racing as he explains to me that he wants to option my Shrew Kahn manuscript for a movie. I'm momentarily distracted by the "ka-ching" of dollar signs ringing in the back of my mind. Hollywood has caught wind of my discovery. Perhaps Mr. Bruckheimer read about it in USA Today or one of the supermarket rags.

He called me back yesterday to inform me that he has signed none other than Brad Pitt to play the lead role of Shrew Kahn! Kiera Knightley will play Kahn's love interest in the film.

I got special permission from Mr. Bruckheimer to release one page of the manuscript to the public as a teaser, and I chose you, my faithful blog audience. This is the special page that I selected because it's a good close-up depiction of Kahn and his faithful robot steed.

So look for The Legend of Shrew Kahn, coming soon to a multiplex near you.

Monday, November 05, 2012


The Albino Piper's Bellflower (Campanula piperi, forma Sovereigniana, forma nova) is the rarest of the rare. Endemic to the Olympic Mountains, only a few dozen plants are known to exist. I just learned that it was discovered in 1940. 

Campanula piperi is undoubtedly one of the rarest wildflowers on earth. Only a few people know where to find this most precious flower. I am privileged to be counted among them. Ironically, thousands of people each year unknowingly pass right by it. Mrs. Trowbridge saw it and sketched it, but even she couldn't fully appreciate it's rarity.

This is quite likely the actual rock where Mrs. T encountered the Albino Piper's Bellflower just shy of 200 years ago, for there is only one other known location of the flower. She wrote that she found it on "a distant mountain in the North Forest". I photographed the flowers pictured above near the summit of Lillian Ridge in the North Olympic Mountains. There were less than two dozen bellflowers growing on this boulder. The photos that I have taken of this flower are among the most prized photos in my Olympic Mountain wildflower collection.

Have you seen my other blog, Bron Smith's Flights of Fantasy?