Sam Cansino was a Texan fur trader and an old acquaintance of the aëronaut Lee Scoresby. While at the Samirsky Hotel in 1997, just after Lord Asriel built the bridge to the other worlds, he told Lee about what he'd heard of Stanislaus Grumman and the story of him. Sam Cansino and a seal-hunter told Lee about how Grumman walked into a trap Yakovlev laid and how Grumman became a Tartar by initiation. He had met Grumman sometime in 1992, but thought he had died sometime.
Sam Cansino was described as having a black beard and being a fur trader whom Lee was acquainted with.