“On the 6th August, 1833, while my young friends, Thomas Lincoln and Joseph Cooledge, accompanied by my son John, were rambling by the rushing waters of a brook banked by stupendous rocks, eight or ten miles from the port of Bras d’Or, on the coast of Labrador, they were startled by a loud and piercing shriek, which issued from the precipices above them. On looking up, my son observed a large Hawk plunging over and about him. It was instantly brought to the ground. A second Hawk dashed towards the dead one, as if determined to rescue it; but it quickly met the same fate, the contents of my son's second barrel bringing it to his feet.
I made my drawing of them the day after their death. It was one of the severest tasks which I ever performed, and was done under the most disagreeable circumstances. I sat up nearly the whole of the night, to sketch them in outline. The next day it rained for hours, and the water fell on my paper and colours all the while from the rigging of the Ripley.”
— John James Audubon, from Birds of America