The Project Gutenberg EBook of The American Indians, by Henry R. Schoolcraft

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Title: The American Indians
       Their History, Condition and Prospects, from Original Notes
       and Manuscripts

Author: Henry R. Schoolcraft

Release Date: May 4, 2012 [EBook #39607]

Language: English


Produced by Julia Miller, Gary Rees and the Online
Distributed Proofreading Team at (This
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[Illustration: _Sarony & Major Lith._ _117 Fulton St. New York._













    Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1851, by
    GEO. H. DERBY & CO.,

    In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for
    the Northern District of New York.



It is now twenty-six years since I first entered the area of the
Mississippi valley, with the view of exploring its then but imperfectly
known features, geographical and geological. Twenty-two years of this
period have elapsed since I entered on the duties of an Executive Agent
for the United States Government in its higher northern latitudes among
the Indian tribes in the west. Having devoted so large a portion of my
life in an active sphere, in which the intervals of travel left me
favourable opportunities of pursuing the languages and history of this
branch of the race, it appears to be a just expectation, that, in
sitting down to give some account of this people, there should be some
preliminary remarks, to apprise the reader how and why it is, that his
attention is recalled to a topic which he may have supposed to be well
nigh exhausted. This it is proposed to do by some brief personal
reminiscences, beginning at the time above alluded to.

The year 1814 constituted a crisis, not only in our political history,
but also in our commercial, manufacturing, and industrial interests. The
treaty of Ghent, which put a period to the war with England, was a
blessing to many individuals and classes in America: but, in its
consequences, it had no small share of the effects of a curse upon that
class of citizens who were engaged in certain branches of manufactures.
It was a peculiarity of the crisis, that these persons had been
stimulated by double motives, to invest their capital and skill in the
perfecting and establishment of the manufactories referred to, by the
actual wants of the country and the high prices of the foreign articles.
No pains and no cost had been spared, by many of them, to supply this
demand; and it was another result of the times, that no sooner had they
got well established, and were in the high road of prosperity than the
peace came and plunged them headlong from the pinnacle of success. This
blow fell heavier upon some branches than others. It was most fatal to
those manufacturers who had undertaken to produce fabrics of the highest
order, or which belong to an advanced state of the manufacturing
prosperity of a nation. Be this as it may, however, it fell with
crushing force upon that branch in which I was engaged. As soon as the
American ports were opened to these fabrics, the foreign makers who
could undersell us, poured in cargo on cargo; and when the first demands
had been met, these cargoes were ordered to be sold at auction; the
prices immediately fell to the lowest point, and the men who had staked
in one enterprise their zeal, skill and money, were ruined at a blow.

Every man in such a crisis, must mentally recoil upon himself. Habits
of application, reading, and an early desire to be useful, had sustained
me at a prior period of life, through the dangers and fascinations of
jovial company. There was in this habit or temper of room-seclusion, a
pleasing resource of a conservative character, which had filled up the
intervals of my busiest hours; and when business itself came to a stand,
it had the effect to aid me in balancing and poising my mind, while I
prepared to enter a wider field, and indeed, to change my whole plan of
life. If it did not foster a spirit of right thought and
self-dependence, it, at least, gave a degree of tranquillity to the
intervals of a marked pause, and, perhaps, flattered the ability to act.

Luckily I was still young, and with good animal spirits, and a sound
constitution I resolved I would not go down so. The result of seven
years of strenuous exertions, applied with persevering diligence and
success, was cast to the winds, but it was seven years of a young man's
life, and I thought it could be repaired by time and industry. What the
east withheld, I hoped might be supplied by another quarter. I turned my
thoughts to the west, and diligently read all I could find on the
subject. The result of the war of 1812, (if this contest had brought no
golden showers on American manufacturers, as I could honestly testify in
my own case,) had opened to emigration and enterprise the great area
west of the Alleghanies. The armies sent out to battle with Indian, and
other foes, on the banks of the Wabash, the Illinois, the Detroit, the
Raisin and the Miami of the Lakes, had opened to observation attractive
scenes for settlement; and the sword was no sooner cast aside, than
emigrants seized hold of the axe and the plough. This result was worth
the cost of the whole contest, honour and glory included. The total
prostration of the moneyed system of the country, the effects of
city-lot and other land speculations, while the system was at its full
flow, and the very backward seasons of 1816 and 1817, attended with late
and early frosts, which extensively destroyed the corn crop in the
Atlantic states, all lent their aid in turning attention towards the
west and south-west, where seven new states have been peopled and
organized, within the brief period to which these reminiscences apply:
namely, Indiana, Illinois, Mississippi, Missouri, Alabama, Arkansas and
Michigan, besides the flourishing territories of Wisconsin and Iowa, and
the more slowly advancing territory of Florida. It appeared to me, that
information, geographical and other, of such a wide and varied region,
whose boundaries were but ill defined, must be interesting at such a
period; and I was not without the hope that the means of my future
advancement would be found in connexion with the share I might take in
the exploration of it. With such views I resolved to go west. This
feeling I find to be expressed on the back of an old slip of an account
of the period:

    "I will go by western fountain,
      I will wander far and wide;
    Till some sunny spot invite me,
      Till some guardian bid me bide.

    "Snow or tempest--plain the drearest
      Shall oppose a feeble bar,
    Since I go from friends the dearest,
      'Tis no matter then how far.

    "On!--'tis useless here to dally;
      On!--I can but make or mar;
    Since my fortune leads to sally,
      'Tis no matter then how far."

Of the "seven years" to which allusion has been made I had spent four in
New England a land, which is endeared to me at this distance of time, by
recollections of hospitality, virtue, and manly intelligence.

While engaged in the direction of the business above named, I had
prepared the notes and materials for my first publication, in which I
aimed to demonstrate the importance of an acquaintance with Chemistry
and Mineralogy in the preparation and fusion of numerous substances in
the mineral kingdom, which result in the different conditions of the
various glasses, enamels, &c. I had, from early youth, cultivated a
taste for mineralogy, long indeed it may be said, before I knew that
mineralogy was a science; and, as opportunities increased, had been led
by my inquiries, (which I followed with ardour but with very slight
helps,) to add to this some knowledge of elementary chemistry and
experimental philosophy, and to supply myself, from Boston and New York,
with books, apparatus, and tests. I do not know that there were any
public lectures on mineralogy, &c. at this time, say from 1810 to '16;
certainly, there were none within my reach. I gleaned from the best
sources I could, and believe that the late Professor Frederick Hall was
the only person to whom I was indebted even for occasional instructions
in these departments. He was a man strongly devoted to some of the
natural sciences, particularly mineralogy; and was erudite in the old
authors on the subject, whom he liked to quote; and I may say that I
continued to enjoy his confidence and friendship to the time of his
death, which happened in 1843. From such sources, from the diligent
reading of books, and from experiments, conducted with the advantage of
having under my charge extensive works, at various times, in the states
of New York, Vermont and New Hampshire, I drew the principles which
formed the basis of my treatise on Vitreology. With this work in hand, I
left Keene, in New Hampshire, early in the winter of 1817; and, crossing
the Connecticut river at Brattleboro', proceeded over the Green
Mountains, by the route of Bennington, to Albany, and thence returned to
my father's house in western New York. No time was lost in issuing
proposals for the work; and I had the satisfaction to find that the
portions published, and the entire plan and merits of it were warmly
approved by the pen of the late Mr. Maynard of Utica, and by several
liberal minded and intelligent persons. Before quitting New England, I
had determined to go to the Mississippi valley, and had begun to study
its geography; and I now resolved to proceed, without unnecessary delay.

Means constitute the first object of solicitude in all such
undertakings. The ebbing tide of manufacturing prosperity to which I
have referred, had left me very poor. From the fragments of former
acquisitions, for which, however, I was exclusively indebted to my own
industry, I raised a small sum of money--much smaller I think than most
men would be willing to start with, who had resolved to go so far. I
had, in truth, but sixty dollars in the world; but I possessed a very
good wardrobe, and some other personal means, such as it may be supposed
will adhere to a man who has lived in abundance for many years. I put up
a miniature collection of mineralogical specimens, to serve as a
standard of comparison in the west, a few implements for analysis, some
books which I thought it would be difficult to meet with in that region,
and some drawing materials. I had connected these things in some way
with my future success. In other respects, I had the means, as above
hinted, of making a respectable appearance. Thus prepared, I bade adieu
to my father and mother, and also to three sisters and a brother, all
younger than myself, and set forward. The winter of 1818 had opened
before I reached my brother's house at Geneva, in western New York. From
this point I determined to leave the main track, through the Genessee
county west, and to strike the head waters of the Alleghany river, so as
to descend that stream with the spring flood.

My brother drove me in his own sleigh, as far as Angelica. By the time
we reached that place, being no traveller and much fatigued with the
intricacies and roughness of the road, he was fain to give over his
undertaking, and I parted from him, sending back the sleigh from Olean,
to take him home.

The Alleghany river was locked with ice when I reached it. I had an
opportunity to cross it on foot, and to examine in the vicinity those
evidences of the coal formation which are found in masses of bituminous
shale, slaty coal and petroleum. The river began to open about the
middle of March. I left Olean in the first ark for the season, borne
onwards down the sweeping Alleghany at the top of the flood, often
through winding channels, and once in danger of being precipitated over
a mill dam, by taking the wrong channel.

On another occasion, just as we were coming to the division of the
channel, at the head of a group of islands, a tall Seneca Indian,
standing in the bow of a very long pine canoe, cried out, in a tone of
peculiar emphasis, "Keep to the right--I speak it." This direction we
followed, and were saved from another mishap. We tied the ark to the
shore at night, built a fire on the bank and cooked a supper. On
passing the Conowonga, it was at the height of its flood, and appeared
to bring in as much water as the Alleghany. We stopped at the noted
chief Cornplanter's village, and also to gratify a reminiscent
curiosity, at the mouth of French Creek, connected with Washington's
perilous adventure in visiting Fort de Boef, now Erie. At Kittaning, a
great scow ferry boat was rowed and managed by two women or girls with a
degree of muscular exertion, or rather ease, which would put to the
blush many a man east or west of the Alleghanies. The tone, air, and
masculine strength of these girl-boatmen, reminded me of nothing this
side of Rollin's description of the Amazons--save that the same
provision was not apparent for drawing the bow. Bold hills line both
banks of the river along its upper parts, and continue, indeed, at
farther intervals apart, to very near the junction of the Monongahela;
but long before this point, the stream is one of noble dimensions,
clear, broad, and strong. After a voyage of exciting and vivid interest,
I reached and landed at Pittsburgh.


It is Dr. Johnson, I think, who says, that we take slight occasions to
be pleased. At least, I found it so, on the present occasion; the day of
my arrival was my birth day, and it required but little stretch of
imagination to convert the scene upon which I had now entered, into a
new world. It was new to me.--I was now fairly in the great geological
valley of the west, the object of so many anticipations.

The ark, in which I had descended the Allegany, put ashore near the
point of land, which is formed by the junction of the Monongahela with
this fine clear stream. The dark and slowly moving waters of the one,
contrasted strongly with the sparkling velocity of the other. I felt a
buoyancy of spirits as I leapt ashore, and picked up some of its clean
pebbles to see what kind of geological testimony they bore to the actual
character of their parent beds in the Apalachian range.

"What shall I pay you, for my passage, from Olean," said I, to the
gentleman with whom I had descended, and at whose ark-table I had found
a ready seat with his family. "Nothing, my dear sir," he replied with a
prompt and friendly air,--"Your cheerful aid in the way, taking the oars
whenever the case required it, has more than compensated for any claims
on that score, and I only regret that you are not going further with

Committing my baggage to a carman, I ascended the bank of diluvial earth
and pebbles with all eagerness, and walked to the point of land where
Fort Pitt (old Fort Du Quesne) had stood. It is near this point that the
Alleghany and Monongahela unite, and give birth to the noble Ohio. It is
something to stand at the head of such a stream. The charm of novelty is
beyond all others. I could realize, in thought, as I stood here, gazing
on the magnificent prospect of mingling waters, and their prominent and
varied shores, the idea, which is said to be embodied in the old Mingo
substantive-exclamation of O-he-o! a term, be it remembered, which the
early French interpreters at once rendered, and truly, it is believed,
by the name of _La Belle Rivière_.

So far, I said to myself, all is well,--I am now west of the great
spinal chain. All that I know of America is now fairly _east_ of
me--bright streams, warm hearts and all. I have fairly cast myself
loose on the wide waters of the west. I have already come as many
hundred miles, as there are days in the week, but I begin my travels
here. I have, as it were, taken my life in my hand. Father and mother, I
may never see more. God wot the result. I go to seek and fulfil an
unknown destiny. Come weal or woe, I shall abide the result. All the
streams run south, and I have laid in, with "time and chance" for a
journey with them. I am but as a chip on their surface--nothing more!
Whether my bones are to rest in this great valley, or west of the
Cordilleras, or the Rocky Mountains, I know not. I shall often think of
the silver Iosco, the farther I go from it. To use a native metaphor, My
foot is on the path, and the word, is onward! "The spider taketh hold
with her hands," Solomon says, "and is in king's palaces." Truly, a man
should accomplish, by diligence, as much as a spider.

Pittsburgh was, even then, a busy manufacturing town, filled with
working machinery, steam engines, hammers, furnaces, and coal smoke. I
visited Mr. O'Hara, and several other leading manufacturers. They made
glass, bar iron, nails, coarse pottery, castings, and many other
articles, which filled its shops and warehouses, and gave it a city-like
appearance. Every chimney and pipe, perpendicular or lateral, puffed out
sooty coal smoke, and it required some dexterity to keep a clean collar
half a day. I met ladies who bore this _impress_ of the city, on their
morning toilet. I took lodgings at Mrs. McCullough's, a respectable
hotel on Wood street, and visited the various manufactories, for which
the place was then, and is now celebrated. In these visits, I collected
accurate data of the cost of raw material, the place where obtained, the
expense of manufacture, and the price of the finished fabric. I had thus
a body of facts, which enabled me, at least to converse understandingly
on these topics, to give my friends in the east, suitable data, and to
compare the advantages of manufacturing here with those possessed by the
eastern and middle states. Every thing was, in the business prospects of
the west, however, at a comparatively low ebb. The prostrating effects
of the war, and of the _peace_, were alike felt. We had conquered
England, in a second contest, but were well exhausted with the effort.
The country had not recovered from the sacrifices and losses of a series
of military operations, which fell most heavily on its western
population. Its agricultural industry had been crippled. Its financial
affairs were deranged. Its local banks were broken; its manufactories
were absolutely ruined. There was little confidence in business, and
never was credit, public and private, at a lower ebb. There was however,
one thing, in which the west held out a shining prospect. It had
abundance of the finest lands in the world, and in fact, it promised a
happy home to the agricultural industry of half the world. It was
literally the land of promise, to the rest of the union, if not to

Having seen whatever I wished in Pittsburgh, I hired a horse and
crossing the Monongahela, went up its southern banks, as high as
Williamsport. I found the country people were in the habit of calling
the city "Pitt" or "Fort Pitt," a term dating back doubtless to the time
of the surrender, or rather taking possession of Fort Du Quesne, by Gen.
Forbes. Mineral coal (bituminous) characterizes the entire region, as
far as my excursion reached. By a happy coincidence in its geological
structure, iron ores are contained in the series of the coal deposits.
On returning from this trip, night set in, very dark: on the evening I
approached the summit of the valley of the Monongahela, called Coal
Hill. The long and winding road down this steep was one mass of moving
mud, only varied in its consistence, by sloughs, sufficient to mire both
man and horse. I was compelled to let the animal choose his own path,
and could only give him aid, when the flashes of lightning lit up the
scene with a momentary brilliance, which, however, had often no other
effect but to remind me of my danger. He brought me, at length, safely
to the brink of the river, and across the ferry.

To be at the head of the Ohio river, and in the great manufacturing city
of the West, was an exciting thought, in itself. I had regarded
Pittsburgh as the alpha, in my route, and after I had made myself
familiar with its characteristics, and finding nothing to invite my
further attention, I prepared to go onward. For this purpose, I went
down to the banks of the Monongahela, one day, where the arks of that
stream usually touch, to look for a passage. I met on the beach, a young
man from Massachusetts, a Mr. Brigham,--who had come on the same errand,
and being pleased with each other, we engaged a passage together, and
getting our baggage aboard immediately, set off the same evening. To
float in an ark, down one of the loveliest rivers in the world, was, at
least, a novelty, and as all novelty gives pleasure, we went on
charmingly. There were some ten or a dozen passengers, including two
married couples. We promenaded the decks, and scanned the ever changing
scenery, at every bend, with unalloyed delight. At night we lay down
across the boat, with our feet towards the fire-place, in a line, with
very little diminution of the wardrobe we carried by day,--the married
folks, like light infantry in an army, occupying the flanks of our
nocturnal array. The only objection I found to the night's rest, arose
from the obligation, each one was tacitly under, to repair on deck, at
the hollow night-cry of "oars!" from the steersman. This was a cry which
was seldom uttered, however, except when we were in danger of being
shoved, by the current, on the head of some island, or against some
frowning "snag," so that we had a mutual interest in being punctual at
this cry. By it, sleep was to be enjoyed only in sections, sometimes
provokingly short, and our dreams of golden vallies, studded with pearls
and gems, were oddly jumbled with the actual presence of plain matter of
fact things, such as running across a tier of "old monongahela" or
getting one's fingers trod on, in scrambling on deck. We took our meals
on our laps, sitting around on boxes and barrels, and made amends for
the want of style or elegance, by cordial good feeling and a practical
exhibition of the best principles of "association." There was another
pleasing peculiarity in this mode of floating. Two or more arks were
frequently lashed together, by order of their commanders, whereby our
conversational circle was increased, and it was not a rare circumstance
to find both singers and musicians, in the moving communities for "the
west," so that those who were inclined to, might literally dance as they
went. This was certainly a social mode of conquering the wilderness, and
gives some idea of the bouyancy of American character. How different
from the sensations felt, in floating down the same stream, by the same
means, in the era of Boon,--the gloomy era of 1777, when instead of
violin, or flageolet, the crack of the Indian rifle was the only sound
to be anticipated at every new bend of the channel.

Off Wheeling the commander of our ark made fast to a larger one from the
Monongahela, which, among other acquaintances it brought, introduced me
to the late Dr. Sellman of Cincinnatti, who had been a surgeon in
Wayne's army. This opened a vista of reminiscences, which were wholly
new to me, and served to impart historical interest to the scene. Some
dozen miles below this town, we landed at the Grave Creek Flats, for the
purpose of looking at the large mound, at that place. I did not then
know that it was the largest artificial structure of this kind in the
western country. It was covered with forest trees of the native growth,
some of which were several feet in diameter, and it had indeed,
essentially the same look and character, which I found it to present,
twenty-five years afterwards, when I made a special visit to this
remarkable mausoleum to verify the character of some of its antiquarian
contents. On ascending the flat summit of the mound, I found a charming
prospect around. The summit was just 50 feet across. There was a
cup-shaped concavity, in its centre, exciting the idea that there had
been some internal sub-structure which had given way, and caused the
earth to cave in. This idea, after having been entertained for more than
half a century, was finally verified in 1838, when Mr. Abelard
Tomlinson, a grandson of the first proprietor, caused it to be opened.
They discovered two remarkable vaults, built partly of stone, and partly
of logs, as was judged from the impressions in the earth. They were
situated about seventeen feet apart, one above the other. Both contained
bones, the remains of human skeletons, along with copper bracelets,
plates of mica, sea shells, beads of wrought conch, called "ivory" by
the multitude, and some other relics, most of which were analogous to
articles of the same kind occurring in other ancient mounds in the west.
The occasion would not indeed have justified the high expectations which
had been formed, had it not been for the discovery, in one of the
vaults, of a small flat stone of an oval form, containing an
inscription in ancient characters. This inscription, which promises to
throw new light on the early history of America, has not been
decyphered. Copies of it have been sent abroad. It is thought, by the
learned at Copenhagen, to be Celtiberic. It is not, in their view,
Runic. It has, apparently, but one hieroglyphic, or symbolic figure.

A good deal of historical interest clusters about this discovery of the
inscribed stone. Tomlinson, the grandfather, settled on these flats in
1772, two years before the murder of Logan's family. Large trees, as
large as any in the forest, then covered the flats and the mound. There
stood in the depression I have mentioned, in the top of the mound, a
large beech tree, which had been visited earlier, as was shewn by
several names and dates cut on the bark. Among these, there was one of
the date of A.D. 1734. This I have seen stated under Mr. Tomlinson's
own hand. The place continued to be much visited from 1770 to 1790, as
was shewn by newer names and dates, and indeed, continues to be so
still. There was standing at the time of my first visit in 1818, on the
very summit of the mound, a large dead or decayed white oak, which was
cut down, it appears, about ten years afterwards. On counting its
cortical layers, it was ascertained to be about 500 years old. This
would denote the desertion of the mound to have happened about the
commencement of the 13th century. Granting to this, what appears quite
clear, that the inscription is of European origin, have we not evidence,
in this fact, of the continent's having been visited prior to the era of
Columbus? Visited by whom? By a people, or individuals, it may be said,
who had the use of an antique alphabet, which was much employed,
(although corrupted, varied and complicated by its spread) among the
native priesthood of the western shores and islands of the European
continent, prior to the introduction of the Roman alphabet.

The next object of antiquarian interest, in my descent, was at
Gallipolis--the site of an original French settlement on the west bank,
which is connected with a story of much interest, in the history of
western migrations. It is an elevated and eligible plain, which had
before been the site of an Indian, or aboriginal settlement. Some of the
articles found in a mound, such as plates of mica and sea shells, and
beads of the wrought conch, indicated the same remote period for this
ancient settlement, as the one at Grave Creek Flats; but I never heard
of any inscribed articles, or monuments bearing alphabetic characters.

All other interest, then known, on this subject, yielded to that which
was felt in witnessing the antique works at Marietta. Like many others
who had preceded me and many who have followed me, in my visit, I felt
while walking over these semi-military ruins, a strong wish to know, who
had erected works so different from those of the present race of
Indians, and during what phasis of the early history of the continent? A
covered way had, evidently, been constructed, from the margin of the
Muskingum to the elevated square, evincing more than the ordinary degree
of military skill exercised by the Western Indians. Yet these works
revealed one trait, which assimilates them, in character, with others,
of kindred stamp, in the west. I allude to the defence of the open
gate-way, by a minor mound; clearly denoting that the passage was to be
disputed by men, fighting hand to hand, who merely sought an advantage
in exercising manual strength, by elevation of position. The Marietta
tumuli also, agree in style with others in the Ohio valley.

A leaden plate was found near this place, a few years after this visit,
of which an account was given by Gov. Clinton, in a letter to the
American Antiquarian Society, in 1827, but the inscription upon it,
which was in Latin, but mutilated, proved that it related to the period
of the French supremacy in the Canadas. It appeared to have been
originally deposited at the mouth of the river Venango, A.D. 1749,
during the reign of Louis XV.

While at Marietta, our flotilla was increased by another ark from the
Muskingum, which brought to my acquaintance the Hon. Jesse B. Thomas, of
Illinois, to whose civilities I was afterwards indebted, on several
occasions. Thus reinforced, we proceeded on, delighted with the scenery
of every new turn in the river, and augmenting our circle of fellow
travellers, and table acquaintance, if that can be called a table
acquaintance which assembles around a rustic board. One night an
accident befell us, which threatened the entire loss of one of our
flotilla. It so happened, at the spot of our landing, that the smaller
ark, being outside, was pressed by the larger ones, so far ashore, as to
tilt the opposite side into the stream below the caulked seam. It would
have sunk, in a few minutes, but was held up, partly by its fastening to
the other boats. To add to the interest felt, it was filled with
valuable machinery. A congress of the whole travelling community
assembled on shore, some pitching pebble-stones, and some taking a
deeper interest in the fate of the boat. One or two unsuccessful efforts
had been made to bail it out, but the water flowed in faster than it
could be removed. To cut loose the rope and abandon it, seemed all that
remained. "I feel satisfied," said I, to my Massachusetts friend, "that
two men, bailing with might and main, _can_ throw out more water, in a
given time, than is let in by those seams; and if you will step in with
me, we will test it, by trying again." With a full assent and ready good
will he met this proposition. We pulled off our coats, and each taking a
pail, stepped in the water, then half-leg deep in the ark, and began to
bail away, with all force. By dint of determination we soon had the
satisfaction to see the water line lower, and catching new spirit at
this, we finally succeeded in sinking its level below the caulked seam.
The point was won. Others now stepped in to our relief. The ark and its
machinery were saved. This little incident was one of those which served
to produce pleasurable sensations, all round, and led perhaps, to some
civilities at a subsequent date, which were valuable to me. At any rate,
Mr. Thomas, who owned the ark, was so well pleased, that he ordered a
warm breakfast of toast, chickens, and coffee on shore for the whole
party. This was a welcome substitute for our ordinary breakfast of bacon
and tea on board. Such little incidents serve as new points of
encouragement to travellers: the very shores of the river looked more
delightful, after we put out, and went on our way that morning. So much
has a satisfied appetite to do with the aspect of things, both without,
as well as within doors.

The month of April had now fairly opened. The season was delightful.
Every rural sound was joyful--every sight novel, and a thousand
circumstances united to make the voyage one of deep and unmixed
interest. At this early season nothing in the vegetable kingdom gives a
more striking and pleasing character to the forest, than the frequent
occurrence of the celtis ohioensis, or Red Bud. It presents a perfect
bouquet of red, or rose-coloured petals, while there is not a leaf
exfoliated upon its branches, or in the entire forest.

No incident, further threatening the well being of our party, occurred
on the descent to Cincinnatti, where we landed in safety. But long
before we reached this city, its _outliers_, to use a geological phrase,
were encountered, in long lines and rafts of boards and pine timber,
from the sources of the Allegheny, and arks and flat-boats, from all
imaginable places, with all imaginable names, north of its latitude.
Next, steamboats lying along the gravel or clay banks, then a steam-mill
or two, puffing up its expended strength to the clouds, and finally, the
dense mass of brick and wooden buildings, jutting down in rectangular
streets--from high and exceedingly beautiful and commanding hills in the
rear. All was suited to realize high expectations. Here was a city
indeed, on the very spot from which St. Clair set out, on his ill-fated
expedition in 1791, against the hostile Indians. Twenty-five years had
served to transform the wilderness into scenes of cultivation and
elegance, realizing, with no faint outlines, the gay creations of
eastern fable.


Cincinnati had, at this time, (1818,) the appearance of a rapidly
growing city, which appeared to have, from some general causes, been
suddenly checked in its growth. Whole rows of unfinished brick buildings
had been left by the workmen. Banks, and the offices of corporate and
manufacturing companies, were not unfrequently found shut. Nor did it
require long looking or much inquiry to learn that it had seen more
prosperous times. A branch bank of the U.S. then recently established
there, was much and bitterly, but I know not how justly, spoken against.
But if there was not the same life and air in all departments, that
formerly existed, there was abundant evidence of the existence of
resources in the city and country, which must revive and push it onward
in its career and growth, to rank second to no city west of the
Alleghanies. This city owes its origin, I believe, to John Cleves Symes,
father-in-law of the late President Harrison, a Jerseyman by birth, who,
in planning it, took Philadelphia as his model. This has imparted a
regularity to its streets, and squares, that visitors will at once
recognize, as characteristic of its parentage. It stands on a heavy
diluvial formation of various layers of clay, loam, sand, and gravel,
disposed in two great plateaux, or first and second banks, the lowest of
which is some thirty or forty feet above the common summer level of the
Ohio. Yet this river has sometimes, but rarely, been known to surmount
this barrier and invade the lowermost streets of the city. These
diluvial beds have yielded some curious antiquarian relics, which lead
the mind farther back, for their origin, than the Indian race. The most
curious of these, if the facts are correctly reported to me, was the
discovery of a small antique-shaped iron horse-shoe, found twenty-five
feet below the surface in grading one of the streets, and the blunt end,
or stump of a tree, at another locality, at the depth of ninety-four
feet, together with marks of the cut of an axe, and an iron wedge. I
have had no means to verify these facts, but state them as credible,
from the corroborative testimony afforded them by other discoveries in
the great geological basin of the west, examined by me, which denote
human occupancy in America prior to the deposition of the last of the
unconsolidated and eocene series.

Our flotilla here broke up, and the persons who had formed its floating
community separated, each to pursue his several way, and separate views.
I made several acquaintances, whose names are recollected with pleasure.
Dr. S. invited me to dine with him, introduced me to his young partner,
Dr. Moorhead, and put me in the way of obtaining eligible private
lodgings. The three weeks I spent in this city were agreeably passed,
varied as they were, by short excursions in the vicinity, including the
Licking valley--a stream which comes in, on the Kentucky side, directly
opposite the city. I went, one day, to see an experimental structure,
built at the foot of the Walnut hills, with a very long pipe, or wooden
chamber leading up their sides, and rising above their tops. This was
constructed by an ingenious person, at the expense of the late Gen.
Lyttle, under the confident hope of his realizing a practical mechanical
power from the _rarefaction of atmospheric air_. There was confessedly
_a power_, but the difficulty was in multiplying this power, so as to
render it practically applicable to the turning of machinery. The ratio
of its increase, contended for, namely, the length of the pipe, appeared
to me to be wholly fallacious, and the result proved it so. The thing
was afterwards abandoned. There was an ancient mound here, which had not
then been opened, but which has since yielded a curious ornamented
stone, bearing a kind of arabesque figures, not dissimilar, in the style
of drawing, to some of the rude sculptured figures of Yucatan, as
recently brought to light by Mr. Stephens and Mr. Catherwood.

I received, one day, a note from one of the directors of the White Lead
Works, above the city, requesting me to visit it, and inspect in detail
the processes of the manufacture. The latter I found to be defective in
the mode of corroding the lead by the acetic acid; there was also an
unnecessary complication and amount of machinery in bringing the oxide
into the condition of a good pigment, and putting it into kegs, which
had been very onerous in its cost, and was perpetually liable to get out
of order.

It was during my stay here that I first felt the effects of the western
limestone waters in deranging the stomach and bowels, and paid for my
initiation into the habit, as all strangers must, by some days
confinement. Dr. M. brought me about, and checked the disease, without
any permanently injurious effects on my general health.

When I was ready to proceed down the river, I went to seek a passage
along the landing, but found no boat (steamboats were few and far
between in those days.) While pacing the beach, I met a man of
gentlemanly appearance, who had experienced the same disappointment, and
was desirous to go forward in his journey. He told me, that he had found
a small row boat, well built, and fitted with seats, which could be
purchased for a reasonable sum; that it would hold our baggage very
well, and he thought we could make a pleasant trip in it as far as
Louisville at the Falls, where the means of communication by steamboats
were ample. On examining the boat, and a little inquiry, I acceded to
this proposition, and I had no cause to regret it. This gentleman,
whose name I have forgotten, but which is somewhere among my papers, was
a native of the city of Nancy, but a resident of Baltimore. He was, like
the city itself I believe, Franco-German, speaking the two languages
very well, and the English with peculiarities. He had a benevolent and
honest countenance and social, agreeable manners, not too free, nor
stiffly reserved; and we performed the trip without accident, although
we had a narrow escape one day from a sawyer, one of that insidious cast
of these river pests, called in western parlance, a sleeping sawyer. It
was now the month of May; the atmosphere was mild and balmy, loaded with
the perfumes of opening vegetation; we took the oars and the helm
alternately; we had a constant succession of pretty views; we put ashore
to eat and to sleep, and the whole trip, which occupied some three or
four days at the farthest, was perfectly delightful.

We put ashore at Vevay, where the Swiss had then newly introduced the
cultivation of the vine, to see the vineyards and the mode of
cultivation. I have since witnessed this culture on the banks of the
Rhine, and found it to be very similar. The vines are closely pruned and
kept from becoming woody, and are trained to slender sticks, which, are
arranged with the order of a garden bean-bed, which at the proper
season, they much resemble. We also tasted the wine, and found it poor.

On the last day of the voyage, we took into our boat a young
physician--a Hollander, recently arrived in the country, telling him,
that by way of equivalent, we should expect him to take his turn at the
oars. He was a man of small stature--well formed, rather slovenly, yet
pretty well dressed, with blue eyes, a florid face, and very voluble. Of
all that he said, however, by far the most striking part, was his
account of his skill in curing cancer. It was clear that he was an
itinerating cancer-doctor. He said, amid other things, that he had
received an invitation to go and cure the Governor of Indiana. We now
had Indiana on our right hand, and Kentucky on our left.

These are the principal incidents of the trip. We reached our
destination in safety, and landed on the superb natural sylvan wall, or
park, which is formed by the entrance of Beargrass Creek with the Ohio,
just in front of, or a little above, Louisville. Here we sold our boat,
took separate lodgings, and parted. I found in a day or two, that my
friend from Nancy had a flourishing school for military tactics and the
sword exercise, where, at his invitation, I went to visit him. From this
man, I learned, as we descended the Ohio, that the _right_ and _left_
banks of a river, in military science, are determined by the supposed
position of a man standing at its head, and looking _downwards_.

I found in the limestone rocks which form the bed of the river between
the town and Corn Island, the cornu ammonis and some other species of
organic remains; and while I remained here, which was several weeks, I
wrote a notice for one of the papers, of a locality of manganese on
Sandy river, Ky., and others of some other objects of natural history in
the west, which I perceived, by their being copied at the eastward, were
well taken. It was my theory, that there was a general interest felt in
the Atlantic States for information from the west, and this slight
incident served to encourage me.

The steamboat canal since constructed around the falls at this place,
was then a project only spoken of, and is here alluded to for no higher
purpose than to mention, that in its actual subsequent execution, we are
informed the workmen came, at the depth of fourteen feet below the
surface of the _calcareous rock_, to a brick hearth, covered with what
appeared to be the remains of charcoal and ashes.

I took walks almost daily, on the fine promenade, shaded with lofty
trees, festooned with their native vines, along the Beargrass Creek,
which is the common place of landing for arks and boats. On one of these
occasions, there came in a large ark, which had been freighted at
Perryopolis, on the Yioughagany, some thirty miles from Pittsburgh. The
two proprietors were K. and K., Marylanders, both young men, or verging
to middle life, who had clubbed together the necessary funds, and in the
spirit of adventure, resolved on a trading voyage. There was something
in the air and manners of both, which I thought I could trust in for an
agreeable voyage, especially as they saw in me, not a rival in commerce
of any kind, but a mere observer,--a character which I found, on more
than one occasion, placed me on grounds of neutrality and advantage.
Steamboats are the worst vehicles ever invented by the ingenuity of man
to make observations on a country, always excepting the last improvement
on locomotive rail-roads. To a naturalist, especially, they are really
horrible. Not a tree or plant can be examined; not a shell, or a rock
certainly identified. Hundreds of miles are passed in a few hours; the
effect of speed is to annihilate space; town succeeds town, and object
object, with such rapidity, that there is no distinct time left for
observation or reflection; and after the voyager has reached his point
of destination, he is often seriously in doubt, what he has seen, and
what he has not seen, and is as much puzzled to put together the exact
feature of the country's geography, as if he were called to re-adjust
the broken incidents of a night's dream. I had yet another objection to
this class of boats, at the era mentioned. Their boilers and machinery
were not constructed with elaborate skill and strength; their commanders
were often intemperate, and a spirit of reckless rivalry existed, whose
results were not infrequently exhibited in exploded, sunk, or grounded
boats, and the loss of lives.

It is a regulation of law that pilots are provided for all boats,
descending the falls--a descent, by the way, which can only be made on
the Indiana side. When this officer came on board, the owners thought
best to go by land to Shippingport. I had less at stake in its safety
than they, yet felt a desire to witness this novel mode of descent; nor
did the result disappoint me. Standing on the deck, or rather flat roof
of the ark, the view was interesting and exciting. The first point at
which the mass of water breaks was the principal point of danger, as
there is here a powerful reflux, or eddy current, on the right hand,
while the main velocity of the current drives the vessel in a direction
which, if not checked by the large sweeps, would inevitably swamp it.
The object is to give this check, and shoot her into the eddy water.
This was done. The excitement ceased in a few moments, and we passed the
rest of the way with less exertion to the men, and got down the
remainder of the falls in perfect safety. All this danger to the growing
commerce of the west, is now remedied by the Louisville canal, which, by
a work of but two miles in length, which holds the relative position of
a string to the bow, connects the navigable waters above and below those
falls, and permits all river craft of the largest burden to pass.

It was about the falls of the Ohio, or a little above, that I first saw
the gay and noisy paroquet, or little parrot of the west; a gregarious
bird, whose showy green and yellow plumage makes it quite an object to
be noticed and remembered in a passage on the lower Ohio. One of these
birds, which had been wounded, was picked up out of the river, a few
miles below the falls. It was evident, from the occurrence of this
species, and other features in the natural history of the country, that
we were now making a rapid southing. The red-bud, the papaw, the
buckeye, and the cucumber tree, had all introduced themselves to notice,
among the forest species, below Pittsburgh; although they are all, I
think, actually known to extend a little north of that latitude; and we
now soon had added to the catalogue, the pecan and cypress, and the
cane, with the constant attendant of the latter, the green briar. I had
no opportunity to examine the pecan, until we reached the mouth of the
Wabash and Shawneetown, where I went on a shooting excursion with a
young Kentuckian, who gave me the first practical exhibition of bringing
down single pigeons and other small game with the rifle, by generally
striking the head or neck only. I had heard of this kind of shooting
before, and witnessed some capital still shots, but here was a
demonstration of it, in brush and brier--catching a sight as best one
could. The ball used on these occasions was about the size of a large

Shawneetown is a word which brings to mind one of the North American
tribes, who, between 1632 and the present time, figure as one of the
frontier actors in our history. They have, in this time, with the
ubiquity of one of their own genii, skipped over half America. They were
once, certainly dwellers on the Savannah, if not, at a still earlier
day, on the Suanee, in Florida; then fled north, a part coming down the
Kentucky river, and a part fleeing to the Delaware, and thence west.
They are now on the Konga, west of the Missouri. So much for the
association of names. History never remembers any thing which she can
possibly forget, and I found at least, one high-feeling personage here,
who did not like the manner in which I associated the modern town with
reminiscences of the savages. "Why, sir," said he, as we walked the deck
of the ark, floating down the Ohio, and getting nearer the place every
moment, "we have a bank there, and a court house; it is the seat of
justice for Gallatin county;--and a printing press is about to be
established;--it is a very thriving place, and it bids fair to remain
second to none below the Wabash." "All this, truly," I responded,
willing to reprove pride in an easy way, "is a great improvement on the
wigwam and the council-fire, and wampum coin-beads." It is sometimes
better to smile than argue, and I found it so on the present occasion. I
did not wish to tread on the toes of rising greatness, or pour upon a
love of home and locality, honorable and praise-worthy in my fellow
traveller, the chilling influence of cold historical facts. My allusions
were the mere effect of the association of ideas, resulting from names.
If the residents of Shawneetown do not like to be associated with the
native race, who would not have exchanged a good bow and arrows for all
the court houses in Christendom, they should bestow upon the place some
epithet which may sever the tie.


After stopping a day or more at Shawneetown, and reconnoitering its
vicinity, I proceeded to the mouth of the Cumberland, and from thence,
after many days detention at that point waiting for a boat, to the mouth
of the Ohio. I found this to be a highly interesting section of the
river, from its great expanse and its fine water prospects. The
picturesque calcareous cliffs on the west banks, display a novel and
attractive line of river scenery. The Ohio had, from its commencement,
well sustained the propriety of its ancient appellation of the Beautiful
River; but it here assumed something more than beautiful--it was
majestic. Let it be borne in mind that this stream, in the course of
some seven or eight hundred miles flow from Pittsburg to Shawneetown,
had been swelled on the right and left hand by the Scioto, the
Muskingum, the Kentucky, the Miami, Green River, Wabash, and other
rivers of scarcely inferior size. It is still further augmented, from
the left bank, with those noble tributaries, the Cumberland and
Tennessee, which bring in the gathered drain of the middle ranges of the
Alleghanies. It is below Shawneetown, too, that the cliffs of the
Cave-in-Rock-Coast present themselves on the west shore--with their
associations of the early robber-era which has been commemorated by the
pen of fiction of Charles Brockden Brown. These cliffs are cavernous,
and assume varied forms. They rise in bold elevations, which bear the
general name of the Knobs, but which are well worthy of the name of
mountains. Distinct from the interest they have by casting their
castle-like shadows, at sunset, in the pure broad stream, they
constitute a kind of Derbyshire in their fine purple spars, and
crystalized galena and other mineralogical attractions. I was told that
a German of the name of Storch, who pretended to occult knowledge, had,
years before, led money and mineral diggers about these Knobs, and that
he was the discoverer of the fine fluates of lime found here.

One can hardly pass these broken eminences, with the knowledge that they
tally in their calcareous structure and position with the rock formation
of the Missouri state border, lying immediately west of them, without
regarding them as the apparent monuments of some ancient geological
change, which affected a very wide space of country north of their
position. A barrier of this nature, which should link the Tennessee and
Missouri coasts, at Grand Tower, would have converted into an inland
sea the principal area of the present states of Illinois, Indiana, and
Southern Ohio. The line of separation in this latitude is not great. It
constitutes the narrowest point between the opposing rock formations of
the east and west shores, so far as the latter rise through and above
the soil.

I was still in a floating Monongahela ark as we approached this coast of
cliffs. The day was one of the mildest of the month of June, and the
surface of the water was so still and calm that it presented the
appearance of a perfect mirror. Our captain ordered alongside the skiff,
which served as his jolly boat, and directed the men to land me at the
Great Cave. Its wide and yawning mouth gave expectations, however, which
were not realized. It closes rapidly as it is pursued into the rock, and
never could have afforded a safe shelter for gangs of robbers whose
haunts were known. Tradition states, on this point, that its mouth was
formerly closed and hid by trees and foliage, by which means the
unsuspecting voyagers with their upward freight were waylaid. We
overtook the slowly floating ark before it had reached Hurricane Island,
and the next land we made was at Smithfield, at the mouth of the
Cumberland. While here, several discharged Tennessee militiamen, or
volunteers from the still unfinished Indian war in the south, landed on
their way home. They were equipped after the fashion of western hunters,
with hunting shirts and rifles, and took a manifest pride in declaring
that they had fought under "old Hickory"--a term which has, since that
era, become familiar to the civilized world. I here first saw that
singular excrescence in the vegetable kingdom called cypress knees. The
point of land between the mouth of the Cumberland and Ohio, was a noted
locality of the cypress tree. This tree puts up from its roots a blunt
cone, of various size and height, which resembles a sugar loaf. It is
smooth, and without limb or foliage. An ordinary cone or knee would
measure eight inches in diameter, and thirty inches high. It would seem
like an abortive effort of the tree to put up another growth. The
paroquet was exceedingly abundant at this place, along the shores, and
in the woods. They told me that this bird rested by hooking its upper
mandible to a limb. I made several shooting excursions into the
neighbouring forests, and remember that I claimed, in addition to
smaller trophies of these daily rambles, a shrike and a hystrix.

At length a keel boat came in from the Illinois Saline, commanded by a
Captain Ensminger--an Americo-German--a bold, frank man, very
intelligent of things relating to river navigation. With him I took
passage for St. Louis, in Missouri, and we were soon under weigh, by the
force of oars, for the mouth of the Ohio. We stopped a short time at a
new hamlet on the Illinois shore, which had been laid out by some
speculators of Cincinnati, but was remarkable for nothing but its name.
It was called, by a kind of bathos in nomenclature, "America." I
observed on the shores of the river at this place, a very recent
formation of pudding-stone, or rather a local stratum of indurated
pebbles and clay, in which the cementing ingredient was the oxyde of
iron. Chalybeate waters percolated over and amongst this mass. This was
the last glimpse of consolidated matter. All below, and indeed far
above, was alluvial, or of recent origin. Nothing could exceed the
fertile character of the soil, or its rank vegetation and forest growth,
as we approached the point of junction; but it was a region subject to
periodical overflows, the eras of which were very distinctly marked by
tufts and bunches of grass, limbs, and other floating matter which had
been lodged and left in the forks and branches of trees, now fifteen or
twenty feet above our heads. It was now the first day of July, and I
felt the most intense interest as we approached and came to the point of
confluence. I had followed the Ohio, in all its sinuosities, a thousand
miles. I had spent more than three months in its beautiful and varied
valley; and I had something of the attachment of an old friend for its
noble volume, and did not well like to see it about to be lost in the
mighty Mississippi. Broad and ample as it was, however, bringing in the
whole congregated drain of the western slopes of the Alleghanies and the
table lands of the Great Lakes, the contest was soon decided. The stream
had, at that season, sunk down to its summer level, and exhibited a
transparent blue volume. The Mississippi, on the contrary, was swelled
by the melting snows of the Rocky Mountains, and was in its vernal
flood. Coming in at rather an acute angle, it does not immediately
arrest the former, but throws its waters along the Tennessee shores. It
runs with prodigious velocity. Its waters are thick, turbid, and replete
with mingled and floating masses of sand and other comminuted rock and
floating vegetation, trees, and rubbish. For miles the line of
separation between the Ohio and Mississippi waters was visible by its
colour; but long before it reaches the Iron Banks, the modern site of
Memphis--the Father of Waters, as it is poetically, not literally,
called--had prevailed, and held on its way to make new conquests of the
St. Francis, the White, the Arkansas, and other noble streams.

Our captain, although he had no lack of self-confidence, did not seem to
be in haste to grapple with this new foe, by plunging at once into the
turbid stream, but determined to try it next morning. This left me, a
good part of the day, in a position where there was not much to reward
inquiry. I fished awhile from the boat's side, but was rewarded with
nothing besides a gar, a kind of sword, or rather billed fish, which
appears to be provided with this appendage to stir up its food or prey
from a muddy bottom. Its scales and skin are nearly as hard and compact
as a shark's, and its flesh is equally valueless. It is at this point
that the town of Cairo has since been located. There were, at the period
mentioned, several arks and flat-boats lying on the higher banks, where
they had been moored in high water. These now served as dwellings, and
by cutting doors in their sides they formed rude groceries and
provision stores. Whatever else, however, was to be seen at so low and
nascent a point, the mosquito, as night came on, soon convinced us that
he was the true magnate of those dominions.

The next morning at an early hour our stout-hearted commander put his
boatmen in motion, and turned his keel into the torrent; but such was
the velocity of the water, and its opacity and thick turbidness, that I
thought we should have been precipitated down stream, and hurled against
sunken logs. Those who have ascended this stream in the modern era of
steamboats, know nothing of these difficulties. It seemed impossible to
stem the current. A new mode of navigation, to me at least, was to be
tried, and it was evidently one which the best practised and
stoutest-hearted men by no means relished. These boats are furnished
with a plank walk on each side, on which slats are nailed to give a
foothold to the men. Each man has a pole of ash wood about 16 feet long,
with a wooden knob at the head to rest against the shoulder, and a blunt
point at the other end shod with iron. Planting these upon the bottom
near shore, with their heads facing down stream, the men bend all their
force upon them, propelling the boat by their feet in the contrary
direction. This is a very laborious and slow mode of ascent, which has
now been entirely superseded on the main rivers by the use of steam.

Such is the fury and velocity of the current, that it threatens at every
freshet to tear down and burst asunder its banks, and run lawless
through the country. Often whole islands are swept away in a short time.
We had an instance of this one night, when the island against which we
were moored, began to tumble into the channel, threatening to overwhelm
us by the falling earth and the recoil of the waves, and we got away to
the main shore with much effort, for night was set in, the current
furious, and the shore to which we were going entirely unknown. To have
struck a sunken log on such a traverse, under such circumstances, must
have been fatal. We got at length upon a firm shore, where we moored and
turned in at a late hour; but a curious cause of alarm again roused us.
Some animal had made its appearance on the margin of the stream, not far
below us, which in the dimness of the night appeared to be a bear. All
who had arms, got them, and there was quite a bustle and no little
excitement among the cabin passengers. The most knowing pronounced it to
be a white bear. It produced a snorting sound resembling it. It seemed
furious. Both _white_ and _furious_ it certainly was, but after much
delay, commendable caution, and no want of the display of courage, it
turned out to be a large wounded hog, which had been shot in the snout
and head, and came to allay its fevered and festered flesh, by night, in
the waters of the Mississippi.

To stem the current along this portion of the river required almost
superhuman power. Often not more than a few miles can be made with a
hard day's exertions. We went the first day six miles, the second about
the same distance, and the third eight miles, which brought us to the
first cultivated land along a low district of the west shore, called the
Tyewapety Bottom. There were six or eight small farms at this spot; the
land rich, and said to be quite well adapted for corn, flax, hemp, and
tobacco. I observed here the papaw. The next day we ascended but three
miles and stopped, the crew being found too weak to proceed. While
moored to the bank, we were passed by several boats destined for St.
Louis, which were loaded with pine boards and plank from Olean, on the
sources of the Alleghany. They told us that sixty dollars per thousand
feet could be obtained for them.

Additional men having been hired, we went forward the next day to a
point which is called the Little Chain of Rocks, where, from sickness in
some of the hands, another halt became necessary. It is at this point
that the firm cherty clay, or diluvial soil of the Missouri shore, first
presents itself on the banks of the river. This soil is of a sterile and
mineral character. I noticed beneath the first elevated point of it,
near the river's edge, a locality of white compact earth, which is
called chalk, and is actually used as such by mechanics. On giving a
specimen of it, after my return to New York in 1819, to Mr. John
Griscom, he found it completely destitute of carbonic acid; it appears
to be a condition of alumine or nearly pure clay. Large masses of
pudding-stone, disrupted from their original position, were seen lying
along the shore at this locality, being similar in their character to
that seen on approaching the mouth of the Ohio.

We ascended the river this day ten miles, and the next five miles, which
brought us to Cape Girardeau, at the estimated distance of fifty miles
above the mouth of the Ohio. At this place I was received with attention
by one of the principal residents, who, on learning that my object was
to examine the natural history of the country, invited me to his house.
In rambling the vicinity, they showed me a somewhat extra but
dilapidated and deserted house, which had been built by one Loramee, a
Spanish trader, who has left his name on one of the branches of the
river St. Mary's of Indiana. This old fabric excited a strong interest
in my mind as I walked through its open doors and deserted rooms, by a
popular story, how true I know not, that the occupant had been both a
rapacious and cruel man, siding with the Indians in the hostilities
against our western people; and that he had, on one occasion, taken a
female captive, and with his own hands cut off her breasts.

The journey from Cape Girardeau to St. Louis occupied nineteen days, and
was fraught with scenes and incidents of interest, which I should detail
with pleasure were it compatible with my limits. Indeed, every day's
voyage along this varied and picturesque shore presented objects of
remark, which both commended themselves to my taste, and which the slow
mode of ascent gave me full means to improve. This might be said
particularly of its geological structure and its mineralogical
productions--themes which were then fresh and new, but which have lost
much of their attractions by the progress which natural science has made
in the country during six and twenty years. To these topics it is the
less necessary to revert, as they were embraced in the results of my
tour, given in my "_View of the Mines_," published in 1819.

The article improperly called pumice, which floats down the Missouri
during its floods, from the burning coal banks in the Black Hills, I
first picked up on the shore in the ascent above Cape Girardeau, and it
gave me an intimation that the waters had commenced falling. We came to,
the same night, at a well known fountain, called the Moccasin Spring, a
copious and fine spring of crystal water, which issues from an elongated
orifice in the limestone rock.

While lying at the mouth of the river Obrazo, where we were detained on
account of hands, several boats touched at the place, carrying emigrants
from Vermont and New York, whose destination was the most westerly
settlements on the Missouri. At higher points in the ascent we
encountered emigrants from Maine, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, North
Carolina, and Kentucky, which denotes the wide range of the spirit of
migration at the era. The ends of the Union seemed to be brought
together by this general movement towards the west. It was not uncommon
to find representatives from a great number of the states in these
accidental meetings; they were always of a social and highly friendly
character, and the effect of such a system of intercommunication and
residence, from districts widely separated, could not but be highly
auspicious in promoting uniformity of manners and opinions, and
assimilating customs, dress, and language. If long continued it must
destroy provincialisms, and do much to annihilate local prejudices.

Every one who has ascended this stream will recollect the isolated
cliff, standing in its waters, called Grand Tower, with the
corresponding developments of the coast on the contiguous shores, which
tell the traveller plainly enough that here is the site of some ancient
disruptive process in the physical history of the valley. The current
has an increased velocity in sweeping around this obstacle; and we
found, as the waters fell, that there were numerous eddies and strong
jets or currents along this precipitous coast, which it required extra
force to surmount. We saw one day a number of pelicans standing on a
sand bar. The wild turkey and quail were daily encountered on shore.

Our approach to St. Genevieve was preceded by a sight of one of those
characteristic features in all the early French settlements in this
quarter--the great public field extending several miles, five miles I
think, along the banks of the river. St. Genevieve itself lies about a
mile from the river, and is concealed by irregularities in the surface.
It is a highly characteristic antique French town, and reminds one
strongly of the style and manner of building of the provincial villages
and towns of the parent country, as still existing. Three miles above
this place we came to a noted point of crossing called the Little Rock
Ferry; a spot worthy of note at that time as the residence of a very
aged Frenchman, called _Le Breton_. Statements which are believed to be
true, made him 109 years old. From his own account he was at the seige
of Bergen-op-zoom, in Flanders; at the seige of Louisburg; at the
building of Fort Chartres, in Illinois; and at Braddock's defeat. After
his discharge, he discovered those extensive lead mines in Washington
county, about forty miles west of the river, which still bear his name.

The coast between St. Genevieve and Herculaneum is almost one continuous
cliff of precipitous rocks, which are broken through chiefly at the
points where rivers and streams discharge. Herculaneum itself is seated
on one of these limited areas, hemmed in by cliffs, which, in this case,
were rendered still more picturesque by their elevated shot towers. I
landed at this place about noon of my twenty-second day's ascent, and
finding it a convenient avenue to the mine district, determined to leave
my baggage at a hotel till my return from St. Louis, and pursue the rest
of the journey to that place on foot. It was at this point that I was
introduced to Mr. Austin, the elder, who warmly approved my plan of
exploring the mines, and offered every facility in his power to further
it. Mr. Austin was, he informed me at a subsequent stage of our
acquaintance, a native of Connecticut. He had gone early into Virginia
and settled at Richmond, where his eldest son was born, and afterwards
removed to Wythe county. In 1778 he went into Upper Louisiana, enduring
severe sufferings and the risk of life, in crossing the country by way
of Vincennes to St. Louis, where he was well received by the Spanish
local governor. He obtained a grant of land in the present area of
Washington county, the principal seat of the older mines. About the time
I went to Missouri, or soon after it, he resolved to visit San Antonio,
in Texas, with a view of introducing a colony of Americans into that
quarter. This plan he carried into execution, I think, in 1820, and
returned with an ample grant; but he did not live to carry its
stipulations into effect, having died suddenly after his return, at the
house of his daughter, Mrs. Bryant, at Hazel Run.

Mr. Austin was a man of great zeal and fervour of imagination, and
entered very warmly into all his plans and views, whatever they were. He
was hospitable, frank, intelligent, and it is with feelings of unmixed
pleasure, that I revert to my acquaintance with him, no less than with
his talented son, Stephen, and the excellent, benign, and lady-like Mrs.
Austin, and other members of this intelligent family.

NO. V.

Herculaneum had nothing in common with its sombre Italian prototype,
which has been dug out of dust and ashes in modern times, but its name.
Instead of buried palaces and ruins of a luxurious age of marble, bronze
and silver, most of the houses were built of squared oak logs, and had
bulky old fashioned chimneys, built outside with a kind of castelated
air, as they are seen in the old French and Dutch settlements in Canada,
and along the vallies of the Hudson and Mohawk. The arts of painting and
gilding and cornices, had not yet extended their empire here. Mr.
Austin's residence, was the only exception to this remark, I remember.
The Courts of Justice were content to hold their sessions in one of the
oaken timber buildings named; the county jail had a marvellous
resemblance to an ample smoke-house, and my kind host, Ellis, who was a
native of South Carolina, was content to serve up substantial and good
cheer in articles, not exhumed from a city buried in volcanic ashes, but
in plain fabrics of Staffordshire and Birmingham. In addition to the
host-like and agreeable resort, which travellers unexpectedly found at
his hands, in a mansion whose exterior gave no such signs, he presided
over the department of a public ferry, established at this place, across
the wild and fluctuating Mississippi; and had he kept note book, he
could have given account of many a one, from other lands, with golden
hopes of the far west, whom he had safely conducted, against the most
adverse floods, to the Missouri shore. I found a few old books at his
house, which showed that there had been readers in his family, and which
helped to while away moments, which every traveller will find on his

I have intimated that there was nothing in the way of the antique, in
Herculaneum, but its name. To this I might add, that there was no
exception, unless it be found in the impressions of objects, in the
structure of the rocks, in this quarter, denoting a prior age of
existence. I was shown an impression, in the surface of a block of
limestone, quarried here, which was thought to resemble a man's foot. It
did not appear to me to bear this similitude, but was rather to be
referred to some organic extinct forms, which are not yet well

Having passed a couple of days here, I set out early one morning, on
foot, for St. Louis, accompanied by two young men from Pennsylvania,
with whom I had become acquainted on prior parts of my route. They had
come with an adventure of merchandize from the waters of the
Yioughagany, and were desirous of seeing the (then) capitol of the
Territory. Nothing untoward occurred, until we reached and crossed the
river Merrimack, where night overtook us, and set in with intense
darkness, just as we reached the opposite shore. There was but one house
in the vicinity; and not distant more than a mile, but such was the
intensity of the darkness, owing to clouds and a gathering storm, that
we lost the road, wandered in the woods for some hours, during which the
rain commenced, and were at length directed to the house we sought, by
the faint and occasional tinkling of a cow bell.

We travelled the next morning twelve miles, to breakfast at the antique
looking village of Carondalet. The route lies over an elevated tract of
uplands, eligibly situated on the right bank of the Mississippi, in
which a growth of wild prairie grass and flowers, filled up the broad
spaces between the trees. There was no habitation visible on the
route--a standing spring under a ledge of rocks, about half way, was the
only spot where we could get a drop of water to allay our thirst--for it
was a hot August day. We encountered several deer, and from the frequent
occurrence of their tracks, deemed such an occurrence to be common. It
is on this elevated and airy tract, that the site of Jefferson Barracks,
has since been judiciously established by the government.

Beyond Carondalet, the country has the appearance of a grown-up heath.
It is a bushy uninviting tract, without mature forest trees. The most
interesting feature we saw, consisted of a number of regular
depressions, or cup-shaped concavities in the soil, caused by the
passage of springs over a clay basis, upon which there is deposited a
heavy diluvial stratum of sand, mixed earth and pebbles. Within about
three miles of the city, this heathy and desolate tract began to assume
a cultivated character; dwellings and gardens soon succeeded, and we
found ourselves, by almost imperceptible grades, introduced into the
city, which we reached about four o'clock in the afternoon. On entering
its ancient Spanish barriers, we noticed one of the old stone towers, or
defences, which constituted a part of the enclosure. This town, I
afterwards learned, had been regularly walled and fortified, during the
possession of the country by the Spanish crown. As soon as I had taken
lodgings, I called on R. Pettibone Esq., a friend formerly of Vernon, in
western N.Y. who had established himself in this central city of the
west, in the practice of the law; he was not in, at the moment, but his
family received me with cordiality. He returned my visit in the evening,
and insisted on my taking up my quarters at his house. The time that I
spent here, was devoted to the most prominent objects which the town and
its vicinity presented to interest a stranger, such as the private
museum of the late Gen. Wm. Clark, containing many articles of rich and
valuable Indian costume; the large natural mounds above the city, and
the character of the rock formation along the shores of the river, which
was said to have had the impressions of human feet, on its original
surface. The latter I did not see till the summer of 1821, when the
block of stone containing them was examined in Mr. Rapp's garden, at
Harmony, on the Wabash.

My inclinations having led me, at this time, to visit the extensive lead
mines, southwest of this city, on the waters of the Merrimack, I lost no
time in retracing my way to Herculaneum, by descending the Mississippi.

When I was prepared to descend the river, the two gentlemen who had been
my travelling companions, on the journey up, had completed the business
of their adventure, and offered me a seat, in a small boat, under their
control. It was late in the afternoon of the day that this arrangement
was proposed, and it was dusk before we embarked; but it was thought the
village of Cahokia, some five or six miles below, could be reached in
good season. A humid and misty atmosphere rendered the night quite dark,
and we soon found ourselves afloat on the broad current of the stream,
without knowing our position, for it was too intensely dark to descry
the outlines of either shore. Being in a light open boat, we were not
only in some peril, from running foul of drifting trees, but it became
disagreeably cold. On putting in for the Illinois shore, a low sandy
bar, or shoal was made, but one of my companions who had landed came
running back with an account of a bear and her cub, which caused us to
push on about a mile further, where we passed the night, without beds or
fire. Daylight disclosed to us the fact that we had passed Cahokia; we
then crossed over to the Missouri shore, and having taken breakfast at
Carondalet, continued the voyage, without any further misadventure, and
reached Herculaneum at noon.

I lost no time in preparing to visit the mines, and having made
arrangements for my baggage to follow, set out on foot for Potosi. The
first day I proceeded eighteen miles, and reached Steeples, at the head
of the Zwoshau, or Joachim river, at an early hour. The day was
excessively hot, and the road lay for the greater part of the distance,
over a ridge of land, which afforded no water, and very little shelter
from the sun's rays. I met not a solitary individual on the route, and
with the exception of the small swift footed lizard, common to the way
side, and a single wild turkey, nothing in the animal kingdom. The
antlers of the deer frequently seen above the grass, denoted it however
to abound in that animal. I was constrained while passing this dry
tract, to allay my thirst at a pool, in a rut, not, however, without
having disconcerted a wild turkey, which had come apparently for the
same purpose.

Next day I crossed the valley of Grand or _Big_ river, as it is commonly
called, and at the distance of twelve miles from the Joachim, I entered
the mining village of Shibboleth--the feudal seat, so to say, of the
noted "John Smith T." of whose singularities rumour had already
apprized me. Here was a novel scene. Carts passing with loads of
ore--smelting furnaces, and fixtures, and the half-hunter, half-farmer
costumes of the group of men who were congregated about the principal
store, told me very plainly, that I was now in the mining region. Lead
digging and discovering, and the singular hap-hazards of men who had
suddenly got rich by finding rich beds of ore, and suddenly got poor by
some folly or extravagance, gave a strong colouring to the whole tone of
conversation at this spot, which was carried on neither in the mildest
or most unobtrusive way; quite a vocabulary of new technical words burst
upon me, of which it was necessary to get the correct import. I had
before heard of the pretty term, "mineral blossom," as the local name
for radiated quartz, but here were tiff (sulphate of barytes),
glass-tiff (calcareous spar), "mineral sign," and a dozen other words,
to be found in no books. At the head of these new terms stood the
popular word "mineral," which invariably meant galena, and nothing else.
To hunt mineral, to dig mineral, and to smelt mineral, were so many
operations connected with the reduction of the ores of galena.

I soon found the group of men about the village store, was a company of
militia, and that I was in the midst of what New Yorkers call a
"training," which explained the hunter aspect I had noticed. They were
armed with rifles, and dressed in their every day leather or cotton
hunting shirts. The officers were not distinguished from the men, either
because swords were not easily procured, or more probably, because they
did not wish to appear with so inefficient and useless an arm. "Food for
powder," was the first term that occurred to me on first surveying this
group of men, but nothing could have been more inapposite; for although
like "lean Jack's" men, they had but little skill in standing in a right
line, never were men better skilled for personal combat,--from the
specimens given, I believe there was hardly a man present, who could not
drive a bullet into the size of a dollar at a hundred yards. No man was
better skilled in this art, either with rifle or pistol, than the Don of
the village, the said John Smith T., or his brother, called "the Major,"
neither of whom travelled, or eat, or slept, as I afterwards witnessed,
without their arms. During my subsequent rambles in the mine country, I
have sat at the same table, slept in the same room, and enjoyed the
conversation of one or the other, and can say, that their extraordinary
habit of going fully armed, was united in both with courteous manners,
honourable sentiments, and high chivalric notions of personal
independence; and I had occasion to notice, that it was none but their
personal enemies, or opponents in business, that dealt in vituperation
against them. John Smith T. was doubtless a man of singular and
capricious humours, and a most fiery spirit, when aroused; of which
scores of anecdotes are afloat. He was at variance with several of his
most conspicuous neighbours, and, if he be likened to the lion of the
forest, it will be perfectly just to add, that most of the lesser
animals stood in fear of him.

My stop here had consumed some time, but thinking I could still reach
_Minè a Burton_, I pushed on, but had only proceeded a couple of miles
when I was hastily compelled to seek shelter from an impending shower.
As it was late, and the storm continued, I remained at a farm house, at
Old Mines during the night. They gave me a supper of rich fresh milk and
fine corn bread. In the morning, a walk of three miles brought me to
Potosi, where I took lodgings at Mr. Ficklin's, proprietor of the
principal inn of the place. Mr. F. was a native of Kentucky, a man of
open frank manners, and most kind benevolent feelings, who had seen much
of frontier life, had lived a number of years in Missouri, and now at a
rather advanced period of life, possessed a fund of local knowledge and
experience, the communication of which rendered the time I spent at his
house both profitable and pleasing.

I reached Potosi on the second of August. The next day was the day of
the county election[1], which brought together the principal miners and
agricultural gentlemen of the region, and gave me a favourable
opportunity of forming acquaintance, and making known the object of my
visit. I was particularly indebted to the civilities of Stephen F.
Austin, Esq. for these introductions. During my stay in the country he
interested himself in my success, omitted no opportunity of furthering
my views, and extending my acquaintance with the geological features and
resources of the country. He offered me an apartment in the old family
mansion of Durham Hall, for the reception and accumulation of my
collections. Mr. Bates and sons, Mr. Jones and sons, Mr. Perry and
brothers, Mr. Elliot, Mr. Brickey, Mr. Honey and others, seconded these
civilities. Indeed the friendly and obliging disposition I uniformly met
with, from the inhabitants of the mines, and the mine country generally,
is indelibly impressed on my memory.

     [1] About 70 votes were polled in the town of Potosi. Mr. Austin,
     the younger, was returned by the county to the Territorial

I was now at the capital of the mines, and in a position most favourable
for obtaining true information of their character and value. Three
months devoted to this object left scarcely a nook of the country which
I had not either personally explored, or obtained authentic information
of. I found forty-five principal mines, or mineral _diggings_ as some of
them are called, within a circumference of less than forty miles.
Potosi, and its vicinity yielded annually about three millions of pounds
of lead, and furnished employment to the estimated number, of eleven to
twelve hundred hands. The business was however depressed, like almost
every other branch of domestic arts or industry, after the peace of
1814, owing to the great influx and low prices of foreign products, and
the general derangement of currency and credit. Prepared ore, delivered
at the furnaces, was worth two dollars per cwt., paid chiefly in
merchandize. Pig lead sold at four dollars, at the mines; and but half a
dollar higher on the banks of the Mississippi, and was quoted at seven
dollars in the Atlantic cities. Judged from these data, there appeared
no adequate cause for the alleged depression; for in addition to the
ordinary merchant's profit, in the disposition of his stock to the
operative miner or digger of ore, a profit of one cent and a half per
pound was left, over and above the cost of transportation to an eastern
market; besides, the difference in exchange, between the south western
and eastern cities. And it was evident, from a view of the whole
subject, that the business could not only be profitably pursued, with
economical arrangements, but that the public domain, upon which most of
the mines are seated, might be made to yield a revenue to the treasury,
at least equal to the amount of this article required for the national
consumption, over the expenses, the superintendence and management.
Besides which, there was great room for improved and economical modes of
mining; and there was hardly one of the manipulations, from the making
of a common drill or pick, to the erection of a smelting furnace, which
did not admit of salutary changes for the better. The recovery of the
mere waste lead, in its sublimated form, around the open log furnaces of
the country, promised to add a valuable item to the profit of the
business. The most wasteful, hurried, and slovenly of all systems is
pursued in exploring and raising the ore, by which the surface of the
country is riddled with pit holes, in the most random manner; the loose
and scattered deposits in the soil hastily gathered up, and the real
lead and veins of metal left, in very many cases, untouched. Thousands
of square acres of land were thus partially rifled of their riches, and
spoiled, and condemned, without being exhausted. By having no scientific
knowledge of mineral veins and geological structure, as practically
adopted in Europe, all rule in the process of mining and raising the ore
had degenerated into mere guess work, and thousands of dollars had been
wasted, in some places, where the application of some of the plainest
mining principles, would not have warranted the removal of a shovel full
of earth. In short, there was here observed, a blending of the miner and
farmer character. Almost every farmer was a miner. Planters who had
slaves, employed them part of the year in mining; and every miner, to
some extent was a farmer. Because the ore found in the clay beds did not
occur in east and west, or north and south lines, or its rules of
deposition had not been determined by careful observation, all success
in the exploration was supposed to be the result of chance. And whoever
surveys the mineral counties of Missouri, will be ready to conclude,
that more labour has been thrown away in the helter-skelter system of
digging, than was ever applied to well directed or profitable mining.
Had an absolute monarch called for this vast amount of labour from his
people to build some monument, he would have been declared the greatest
tyrant. Indeed, I know of no instance in America, of the misapplication
of so great an amount of free labour--labour cheerfully bestowed, and
thrown away without a regret. For the losers in mining, like the
adventurers in a lottery, have no one to blame but themselves.

It appeared to me that a statement of the actual condition of the mines,
would be received with attention at Washington, and that a system for
the better management of them could not but be approved, were it
properly brought forward. I determined to make the attempt. It did not,
however, appear to me, that nature had limited the deposits of ore to
one species, or to so limited an area, and I sought means to extend my
personal examinations farther west and south. To bring this about, and
to collect the necessary information to base statements on, in a manner
correspondent to my wishes, required time, and a systematic mode of
recording facts.

To this object, in connexion with the natural history of the country, I
devoted the remainder of the year, and a part of the following year. I
soon found, after reaching the mines, that I had many coadjutors in the
business of collecting specimens, in the common miners, some of whom
were in the habit of laying aside for me, any thing they found, in their
pits and leads, which assumed a new or curious character. Inquiries and
applications relative to the mineralogy and structure of the country
were made, verbally and by letter, from many quarters. I established my
residence at Potosi, but made excursions, from time to time, in various
directions. Some of these excursions were fruitful of incidents, which
would be worth recording, did the cursory character of these
reminiscences permit it. On one occasion, I killed a horse by swimming
him across the Joachim river, at its mouth, whilst he was warm and
foaming from a hard day's ride. He was put in the stable and attended,
but died the next day, as was supposed, from this sudden transition.
There was scarcely a mine or digging in the country, for forty miles
around, which I did not personally examine; and few persons, who had
given attention to the subject, from whom I did not derive some species
of information.

The general hospitality and frankness of the inhabitants of the mine
country could not but make a favourable impression on a stranger. The
custom of riding on horseback, in a region which affords great
facilities for it, makes every one a horseman and a woodsman, and has
generated something of the cavalier air and manners. But nothing
impressed me more, in this connexion, than the gallant manner, which I
observed here, of putting a lady on horseback. She stands facing you,
with the bridle in her right hand, and gives you her left. She then
places one of her feet in your left hand, which you stoop to receive,
when, by a simultaneous exertion and spring, she is vaulted backwards
into the saddle. Whether this be a transmitted Spanish custom, I know
not, but I have not observed it in the French, or American settlements
west of the Alleghanies.

The earthquakes of 1812, which were so disastrous in South America, are
known to have propagated themselves towards the north, and they exerted
some striking effects in the lower part of the valley of the
Mississippi, sending down into the channel of the latter, large areas of
deluvial earth, as was instanced, in a remarkable manner, at New Madrid.
Portions of the forest, back of this town, sunk, and gave place to lakes
and lagoons. These effects were also witnessed, though in a milder form,
in the more solid formations of the mine country. Soon after reaching
Potosi, I visited the Mineral Fork, a tributary of the Merrimack, where
some of these effects had been witnessed. I descended into the pit and
crevices of the Old Mines. These mines were explored in the
metalliferous rock. Every thing had an old and ruinous look, for they
had been abandoned. Large quantities of the ore had been formerly raised
at this mine, which was pursued into a deep fissure of the limestone
rock. I descended into this fissure, and found among the rubbish and
vein stones, large elongated and orbicular masses of calc spar, the
outer surfaces of which bore strong marks of geological abrasion. They
broke into rhombs very transparent, and of a honey-yellow colour. Mr.
Elliot, the intelligent proprietor of this mine, represented the
indications of ore to have been flattering, although every thing was now
at a stand. Masses of sulphuret of zinc, in the form of blende, were
noticed at this locality. Mr. Elliot invited me to dine, and he filled
up the time with interesting local reminiscences. He stated, among other
facts, that a copious spring, at these mines, dried up during the
remarkable earthquakes of 1812. These earthquakes appear to have
discharged their shocks in the direction of the stratification from the
southwest to the northeast, but they spent their force west of the
Mississippi. Their chief violence was at Natchitoches and New Madrid, at
the latter of which they destroyed an immense area of alluvial land.
Their effects in the Ohio valley, lying exactly in the direction of
their action, were slight. A Mr. Watkins, of Cincinnati, accompanied me
on this examination, and rode back with me to Potosi.

On the 9th of August, I had dined with Samuel Perry, Esq., at Mine á
Burton, one of the principal inhabitants of the county, and was passing
the evening at Mr. Austin's, when Mr. and Mrs. Perry came suddenly in.
They had hardly taken seats, when a rabble of persons with bells and
horns surrounded the house, and kept up a tumult that would have done
honor to one of the wildest festivals of St. Nicholas, headed by Brom
Bones himself. This, we were told, was a Chiraviri. And what is a
Chiraviri? I am not deep enough read in French local customs to give a
satisfactory answer, but the custom is said to be one that the populace
may indulge in, whenever a marriage has taken place in the village,
which is not in exact accordance with their opinions of its propriety. I
was, by this incident, informed of Mr. Perry's recent marriage, and
should judge, moreover, that he had exercised both taste and judgment in
his selection of a partner. The affair of the Chiraviri is said to have
been got up by some spiteful persons.

Towards the middle of the month (12th,) I set out, accompanied by Mr.
James B. Austin, on horseback, for Herculaneum, by the way of Hazel Run,
a route displaying a more southerly section of the mine country than I
had before seen. A ride on horseback over the mine hills, offers one of
the most delightful prospects of picturesque sylvan beauty that can be
well conceived of. The hills are, with a few exceptions, not precipitous
enough to make the ride irksome. They rise in long and gentle swells,
resembling those of the sea, in which the vessel is, by an easy motion,
alternately at the top of liquid hills, or in the bottom of liquid
vales. From these hills the prospect extends over a surface of
heath-grass and prairie flowers, with an open growth of oaks, giving the
whole country rather the aspect of a _park_ than a _wilderness_.
Occasionally a ridge of pine intervenes, and wherever there is a brook,
the waters present the transparency of rock crystal. Sometimes a range
of red clay hillocks, putting up rank shrubs and vines of species which
were _unknown before_, indicates an abandoned digging or mine. Farms and
farm houses were then few; and every traveller we met on horseback, had
more or less the bearing of a country cavalier, with a fine horse, good
equipments, perhaps holsters and pistols, sometimes a rifle, and always
something of a military air, betokening manliness and independence.
Wherever we stopped, and whoever we met on the way, there was evinced a
courteous and hospitable disposition.

We did not leave Potosi till afternoon. It was a hot August day, and it
was dusk before we entered the deep shady valley of Big River. Some
delay arose in waiting for the ferryman to put us across the river, and
it was nine o'clock in the evening when we reached Mr. Bryant's, at
Hazel Run, where we were cordially received. Our host would not let us
leave his house, next morning, till after breakfast. We rode to
McCormick's, on the Platten, to dinner, and reached Herculaneum before
sunset. The distance by this route from Potosi is forty-five miles, and
the road, with the exception of a couple of miles, presented a wholly
new section of the country.

The Mississippi was now low, displaying large portions of its margin,
and exhibiting heavy deposits of mud and slime, which broke into cakes,
as they dried in the sun. I know not whether these exhalations affected
me, but I experienced a temporary illness for a few days during this
visit. I recollect that we had, during this time, some severe and
drenching rain storms, with vivid and copious lightning, and heavy
pealing thunder. These drenching and rapid showers convert the brooks
and rills of the mine country to perfect torrents, and this explains one
cause of the washing away and gullying of roads and streets, so
remarkable on the west bank of the Mississippi. My illness induced me to
give up returning on horseback; and I set out, on the 18th of the month,
in a dearborn, accompanied by Mrs. Austin. On descending the long hill,
near Donnell's, beyond the Joachim, the evening was so dark that I
became sensible I must have got out of the road. I drove with the more
care a few moments, and stopped. Requesting Mrs. Austin to hold the
reins, I jumped out and explored the ground. I found myself in an
abandoned, badly gullied track, which would have soon capsized the
wagon; but leading the horse by the bridle, I slowly regained my
position in the direct road and got down the hill, and reached the house
without further accident. Next day we drove into Potosi by four o'clock
in the afternoon. This was my second visit, and I now accepted a room
and quarters for my collection, at their old homestead called Durham

From this period till the middle of September, I pursued with
unremitting assiduity, the enquiry in hand, and by that time had made a
cabinet collection, illustrating fully the mineralogy, and, to some
extent, the geological structure of the country. I erected a small
chemical furnace for assays. Some of the clays of the country were found
to stand a high heat, and by tempering them with pulverized granite,
consisting largely of feldspar, I obtained crucibles that answered every
purpose. Some of the specimens of lead treated in the dry way, yielded
from 75 to 82 per cent.

Accident threw in my way, on the 25th of August, a fact which led to the
discovery of a primitive tract, on the southern borders of the mine
country, the true geological relation of which to the surrounding
secondary formations, formed at the outset rather a puzzle. I rode out
on horseback on that day, with Mr. Stephen F. Austin, to Miller's, on
the Mineral Fork, to observe a locality of manganese, and saw lying,
near his mills, some large masses of red syenitic granite, which
appeared to have been freshly blasted. He remarked that they were
obtained on the St. Francis, and were found to be the best material at
hand for millstones. On examination, the rock consisted almost
exclusively of red feldspar and quartz. A little hornblende was present,
but scarcely a trace of mica. This species of syenitic granite, large
portions of which, viewed in the field, are complete syenite, and all of
which is very barren of crystals, I have since found on the upper
Mississippi, and throughout the northwestern regions above the secondary
latitudes. The hint, however, was not lost. I took the first opportunity
to visit the sources of the St. Francis: having obtained letters to a
gentleman in that vicinity, I set out on horseback for that region,
taking a stout pair of saddle-bags, to hold my collections. I passed
through Murphy's and Cook's settlements, which are, at the present time,
the central parts of St. Francis county. _Mine a la Motte_ afforded some
new facts in its mineralogical features. I first saw this red syenite,
in place, on Blackford's Fork. The westernmost limits of this ancient
mine extends to within a mile or two of this primitive formation. The
red clay formation extends to the granitic elevations, and conceals
their junction with the newer rock. The nearest of the carboniferous
series, in place, is on the banks of Rock Creek, at some miles'
distance. It is there the crystalline sandstone. How far this primitive
district of the St. Francis extends, has not been determined. The St.
Francis and Grand rivers, both have their sources in it. It is probable
the Ozaw Fork of the Merrimack comes from its western borders. Not less
than twenty or thirty miles can be assigned for its north and south
limits. The Iron mountain of Bellvieu is within it. The vicinity of the
pass called the Narrows, appears to have been the locality of former
volcanic action. A scene of ruder disruption, marked by the vast
accumulation of broken rock, it would be difficult to find. Indeed the
whole tract is one of high geological, as well as scenic interest. Had
the observer of this scene been suddenly dropped down into one of the
wildest, broken, primitive tracts of New England, or the north east
angle of New York, he could not have found a field of higher physical
attractions. Trap and greenstone constitute prominent tracts, and exist
in the condition of dykes in the syenite, or feldspathique granite. I
sought in vain for mica in the form of distinct plates. Some of the
greenstone is handsomely porphorytic, and embraces green crystals of
feldspar. Portions of this rock are sprinkled with masses of bright
sulphuret of iron. Indeed iron in several of its forms abounds. By far
the largest portion of it is in the shape of the micaceous oxyde. I
searched, without success, for the irridescent specular variety, or Elba
ore. In returning from this trip, I found Wolf river greatly swollen by
rains, and had to swim it at much hazard, with my saddle-bags heavily
laden with the results of my examination. It was dark when I reached the
opposite bank: wet and tired I pushed for the only house in sight. As I
came to it the doors stood open, the fences were down, a perfect air of
desolation reigned around. There was no living being found; and the
masses of yawning darkness exhibited by the untenanted rooms, seemed a
fit residence for the genius of romance. Neither my horse nor myself
were, however, in a temper or plight for an adventure of this kind, and
the poor beast seemed as well pleased as I was, to push forward from so
cheerless a spot. Four miles' riding through an untenanted forest, and a
dark and blind road, brought us to a Mr. Murphy, the sponsor of Murphy's


A.D. 1818 AND 1819.



Very little, it is conceived, is necessary to enable the reader to
determine the writer's position on the extreme south western frontiers,
in the year 1818. He had spent the summer of that year in traversing the
mine district, which extends along the right bank of the Mississippi,
between the mouth of the Maromeg and the diluvial cliffs south of Cape
Girardeau, extending west and south westward to the sources of the St.
Francis. In these mineralogical rambles, which were pursued sometimes on
foot, and sometimes on horseback, or wheels, he made acquaintance with
many estimable men, amongst whom he may name the Austins, father and
son, the late Col. Ashley, John Rice Jones, Esq., and many others who
are still living, by all whom, his object in visiting the country was
cordially approved and encouraged, at all times. He also became
acquainted with practical miners, and persons of enterprize who were not
only familiar with the settled frontiers, but who had occasionally
penetrated beyond them, into the broad expanse of highlands, now
geographically known under the term of, the Ozark Chain. Geologically
considered, the mine country is but the eastern flanks of this chain,
which extends flush to the banks of the Mississippi, and has its
terminus in that elevated range of mural cliffs, which form so striking
and often picturesque a display, between St. Genevieve and St. Louis.
There was, at the time, a general apprehension felt and expressed, by
hunters and others who had penetrated those wilds in quest of deer and
buffalo, or of saltpetre-earth in the limestone caves, of the predatory
tribe of the Osages,--a people who had for years enjoyed the bad
reputation of being thieves and plunderers. All concurred, however, in
the interesting character of the country extending in a general course,
south-westwardly, from the junction of the Missouri with the
Mississippi. He felt an ardent desire to penetrate this terra incognita.
He could not learn that any exploratory journey had been made towards
the Rocky Mountains, since the well known expeditions of Lewis and
Clark, up the Missouri, and of Lieut. Pike, across the upper region of
the Arkansas, to Santa Fe and Chihuahua. Breckenridge had subsequently
published an account of a trip to Council Bluffs.[2] But neither of
these routes crossed the wide and mountainous tracts referred to, or
gave any definite information respecting them. Viewed on the map, these
routes formed the general exterior outlines, but they left the interior
filling up to be supplied,--or, if supplied at all, it was too often
with such vague phrases as these--"Here are salt mountains." "The ----
is supposed to take its rise here." "Volcanic hills," and so forth. The
geology of the country furnished no indications whatever of the
probability of the latter remark. The kind of pseudo-pumice found
floating down the Missouri, in high water, had been stated by Lewis and
Clarke, to have a far more remote, and local origin. The description of
rock salt, in mountain mass, had long been numbered by popular belief,
among the fanciful creations of an exciting political era; and together
with western volcanoes, had settled down among those antiquarian
rumours, which hold up, as their prime item, the existence of the living
mammoth "beyond the big lakes."

     [2] The United States government, the very next year, 1819, sent
     out Col. Long to the Yellow Stone.

If the writer of the notes and journal which furnish these sketches, was
not swayed by any particular theories of this nature, yet was he not
free from the expectation of finding abundant materials, in the natural
productions and scenery and incidents of the journey, to reward him
amply for its perils. He had received from hunters several objects of
the mineralogical and geological collection which he made, while living
at Potosi, and _Mine à Burton_: from these wild borders, and, without
pretending to estimate the force of each particular object which made up
the sum of his motives, he resolved to organize an expedition, with all
the means he could muster, and explore the region. The Austins, who had
treated him with marked kindness and attention, from the hour of his
first landing in Missouri, were then preparing to make their first
movement into Texas, and held out to him a fine theatre for enterprise;
but it was one not suited to his particular means or taste. He recoiled
from the subtlety of the Spanish character; and is free to confess, that
he deemed it a far more attractive latitude for the zea maize and the
cotton plant, than for those pursuits which led him to prefer the more
rugged eminences of the Ozarks. They, in the end, founded a republic,
and he only made an adventurous journey.

Having thus recalled the era and the motive of the following sketches,
the purport of these remarks is accomplished.

_New York, 1844._


     Things to be thought of before plunging into the woods--Composition
     of the party, and reasons why it was not more numerous--First
     night's encampment--Preliminaries--Sleep in a deserted Indian
     lodge--A singular variety of the Fox Squirrel--The Pack Horse
     escapes--Cross the elevation called the Pinery--Reach the outskirts
     of the settlements in the valley of the Fourche A'Courtois.

Whoever would venture into the wilderness, should provide himself with
such articles of personal comfort or safety, as habits, forecast, or the
particular object of pursuit or observation, require. Every one will
think of arms and ammunition, but there are other things required to
make life pleasant, or even tolerable in the woods. This, prior
excursions had already taught me, but the lesson was repeated by those
of greater experience. There were two persons who had agreed to go with
me, and stick by me, to the end,--the one a native of Massachusetts, and
the other, of Connecticut, both like myself, new in the field, and
unacquainted with life in the woods. What they lacked in this art, they
more than made up, I thought, in intelligence, enterprise and resource.
The name of the first was Brigham. The other, I shall allude to, under
the name of Enobitti. Some three or four other persons, natives of the
region, had consented to go as hunters, or adventurers into a new field
for emigration, but it so happened, that when all was ready--when every
objection to the tour had been obviated, and every want supplied, and
when my two eastern friends came on to the ground, these persons all
quietly, and with an easy flow of reasons, backed out. In fact, my
friend Brigham, was also obliged to relinquish the journey, after he had
reached the point of rendezvous, i. e. Potosi. A residence on the
American bottom, in Illinois, the prior summer, had exposed him to the
malaria of that otherwise attractive agricultural area, and an
intermittent fever, which he had thus contracted, forbade his venturing
beyond the settlements. So that when the appointed day arrived, Enobitti
and myself and my good landlord, Ficklin--a warm hearted Kentuckian, who
had been a hunter and border spy in his youth, were all the persons I
could number, and the latter, only went a short distance, out of the
goodness of his heart, and love of forest adventure, to set us, as it
were, on the way, and initiate us into some necessary forest arts. It
was a bright balmy day,--the 6th of November, 1818. The leaves were
rapidly falling from the trees, and strewed the road and made a musical
rustling among the branches, as we passed the summits of the mine hills,
which separated the valley of Mine á Burton from the next adjoining
stream. The air had just enough of the autumn freshness in it, to make
it inspiring; and we walked forward, with the double animation of
health and hope. As we passed through forests where the hickory
abounded, the fox and grey squirrel were frequently seen preparing their
winter's stores, and gave additional animation to the scene. It was
early in the afternoon when we came into the valley of Bates' Creek--it
was indeed but a few miles from our starting point, where our kind
Mentor told us, it was best to encamp; for, in the first place, it was
the only spot where we could obtain _water_ for a long distance, and
secondly, and more important than all, it was necessary that we should
re-arrange the load of our pack horse, take a lesson in the art of
encamping, and make some other preparations which were proper, before we
plunged outright into the wilderness. This was excellent advice, and
proper not only to novices, but even to the initiated in the woodsman's
art. It is always an object, to make, by this initiatory movement, what
is technically called _a start_.

I had purchased at Potosi, a horse--a low priced animal, rather old and
bony, to carry our blankets, some light cooking utensils and a few other
articles of necessity, and some provisions. He bore the not very
appropriate name of "Butcher," whether from a former owner, or how
acquired I know not, but he was not of a sanguinary temper, or at least,
the only fighting propensity he ever evinced was to get back to Potosi,
as quick as possible, for he ran off the very first night, and
frequently, till we got quite far west, repeated the attempt. The poor
beast seemed to know, instinctively; that he was going away from the
land of corn fodder, and would have to sustain himself by picking up his
meals out of sere-grass, often in stony places, or in some dense and
vine-bound cane bottom, where his hind legs would often be bound fast by
the green briar, while he reached forward in vain, to bite off a green

Here we took the first lesson in duly hobbling a horse--a very necessary
lesson: for if not _hobbled_, he will stray away, and cause great
detention in the morning, and if not _well_ hobbled he will injure his
legs. We found, near the banks of the stream, a deserted Indian lodge,
which appeared susceptible, by a little effort, of affording us a very
comfortable night's lodging, and would furthermore, should it rain,
prove an effectual shelter. This arrangement we immediately set about:
the horse was unpacked, his burden stowed in the lodge, the horse
hobbled and belled, and a fire lit. While my companion arranged the
details of the camp, and prepared to boil a cup of tea, I took my gun,
and, with but little ado, shot a number of fine fox and grey
squirrels--being the first fruits of our exertions in the chace. Among
them, there was one of decidedly mongrel species. If not, the variety
was peculiar. He had a grey body, and a red foxy tail, with the belly,
nose, and tips of the ears black, thus uniting characteristics of three
varieties. One or two of these were added to our supper, which we made
with great satisfaction, and in due time spread out our blankets, and
slept soundly till day break.

On sallying out, I found the horse was gone, and set out in pursuit of
him. Although his fore feet were tethered, so that he must lift up both
together, he made his way back, in this jumping manner, to his former
owner's door, in the village of Mine à Burton. He had not, however, kept
the path, all the way, and losing his track after he got on the herbage,
my ear caught the sound of a bell far to the left, which I took to be
his, and followed. I pursued the sound of this bell, which was only
heard now and then, till after crossing hill and dale, without deviation
from the line of sound, I came out at a farm yard, four miles below
Potosi; where I found the bell to be attached to the neck of a stately
penned ox. The owner, (who knew me and the circumstance of my having set
out on the expedition,) told me, that Butcher had reached the mines, and
been sent back, by a son of his former owner, to my camp. I had nothing
left, but to retrace my way to the same spot, where I found the
fugitive, and sat down to a breakfast of tea, bread, ham and squirrel.
The whole morning had been lost by this misadventure. It was ten o'clock
before we got the animal packed and set forward.

Our second day's journey yielded but little to remark. We travelled
diligently along a rough mountainous path, across a sterile tract called
the Pinery. This tract is valuable only for its pine timber. It has
neither farming land nor mineral wealth. Not a habitation of any kind
was passed. We saw neither bird nor animal. The silence of desolation
seemed to accompany us. It was a positive relief to the uniform
sterility of the soil, and monotony of the prospect, to see at length, a
valley before us. It was a branch of the Maromeg, or Merrimack, which is
called by its original French term of _Fourche á Courtois_. We had
travelled a distance of fourteen miles over these flinty eminences. The
first signs of human habitation appeared in the form of enclosed fields.
The sun sunk below the hills, as we entered this valley, and we soon had
the glimpse of a dwelling. Some woodcock flew up as we hastened forward,
and we were not long in waiting for our formal announcement in the loud
and long continued barking of dogs. It required the stern commands of
their master, before they slunk back and became quiet. It was a small
log tenement of the usual construction on the frontiers, and afforded us
the usual hospitality and ready accommodation. They gave us warm cakes
of corn bread, and fine rich milk. We spread our blankets before an
evening's fire, and enjoyed a good night's rest. Butcher here, I think,
had his last meal of corn, and made no attempt to return. With the
earliest streaks of day light, we re-adjusted his pack, and again set


     Reach a hunter's cabin on the outskirts of the wilderness--He
     agrees to accompany us--Enter the Ozark Hills--Encounter an
     encampment of the Delaware Indians--Character of the country--Its
     alpine air, and the purity of its waters.--Ascend to the source of
     the Merrimack--Reach a game country--Deserted by the hunter and
     guide, and abandoned to individual exertions in these arts.

Every joint labour, which proceeds on the theory, that each person
engaged in it is to render some personal service, must, in order that it
may go on pleasantly and succeed well, have a definite order, or rule of
progress; and this is as requisite in a journey in the wilderness as any
where else. Our rule was to lead the pack horse, and to take the compass
and guide ahead, alternately, day by day. It was thought, I had the best
art in striking and making a fire, and when we halted for the night,
always did this, while my companion procured water and put it in a way
to boil for tea. We carried tea, as being lighter and more easy to make
than coffee. In this way we divided, as equally as possible, the daily
routine of duties, and went on pleasantly. We had now reached the last
settlement on the frontier, and after a couple of hours' walk, from our
last place of lodging, we reached the last house, on the outer verge of
the wilderness. It was a small, newly erected log hut, occupied by a
hunter of the name of Roberts, and distant about 20 miles from, and
south-west of Potosi. Our approach here was also heralded by dogs. Had
we been wolves or panthers, creeping upon the premises at midnight, they
could not have performed their duty more noisily. Truly this was a very
primitive dwelling, and as recent in its structure as it was primitive.
Large fallen trees lay about, just as the axeman had felled them, and
partly consumed by fire. The effect of this partial burning had been
only to render these huge trunks black and hideous. One of them lay in
front of the cottage. In other places were to be seen deer skins
stretched to dry; and deers' feet and antlers lay here and there. There
was not a foot of land in cultivation. It was quite evident at first
sight, that we had reached the dwelling of a border hunter, and not a
tiller of the ground. But the owner was absent, as we learned from his
wife, a spare, shrewd dark-skinned little woman, drest in buckskin, who
issued from the door before we reached it, and welcomed us by the term
of "Strangers." Although this is a western term, which supplies the
place of the word "friend," in other sections of the union, and she
herself seemed to be thoroughly a native of these latitudes, no Yankee
could have been more inquisitive, in one particular department of
enquiry, namely the department relative to the chace. She inquired our
object--the course and distance we proposed to travel, and the general
arrangements of horse-gear, equipage, &c. She told us of the danger of
encountering the Osages, and scrutinized our arms. Such an examination
would indeed, for its thoroughness, have put a lad to his trumps, who
had come prepared for his first quarter's examination at a country
academy. She told us, con amore, that her husband would be back
soon,--as soon indeed as we could get our breakfast, and that he would
be glad to accompany us, as far as Ashley's Cave, or perhaps farther.
This was an opportunity not to be slighted. We agreed to wait, and
prepare our morning's meal, to which she contributed some well baked
corn cakes. By this time, and before indeed we had been long there,
Roberts came in. It is said that a hunter's life is a life of feasting
or fasting. It appeared to be one of the latter seasons, with him. He
had been out to scour the precincts, for a meat breakfast, but came home
empty handed. He was desirous to go out in the direction we were
steering, which he represented to abound in game, but feared to venture
far alone, on account of the rascally Osages. He did not fear the
Delawares, who were near by. He readily accepted our offer to accompany
us as hunter. Roberts, like his forest help-mate, was clothed in deer
skin. He was a rather chunky, stout, middle sized man, with a ruddy
face, cunning features, and a bright unsteady eye. Such a fellow's final
destination would not be a very equivocal matter, were he a resident of
the broad neighbourhood of Sing Sing, or "sweet Auburn:" but here, he
was a man that might, perhaps, be trusted on an occasion like this, and
we, at any rate, were glad to have his services on the terms stipulated.
Even while we were talking he began to clean his rifle, and adjust his
leathern accoutrements: he then put several large cakes of corn bread in
a sack, and in a very short time he brought a stout little horse out of
a log pen, which served for a barn; and clapping an old saddle on his
back and mounting him, with his rifle in one hand, said, "I am ready,"
and led off. We now had a guide, as well as a hunter, and threw this
burden wholly on him. Our course lay up a long ridge of hard bound clay
and chert soil, in the direction of the sources of the Marameg, or, as
it is now universally called and written, Merrimack. After travelling
about four miles we suddenly descended from an acclivity into a grassy,
woodless valley, with a brisk clear stream winding through it, and
several lodges of Indians planted on its borders. This, our guide told
us, was the Ozaw Fork of the Merrimack, (in modern geographical parlance
Ozark.) And here we found the descendants and remainder of that once
powerful tribe of whom William Penn purchased the site of Philadelphia,
and whose ancient dominion extended, at the earliest certain historical
era, along the banks the Lennapihittuck, or Delaware river. Two of them
were at home, it being a season of the year, and time of day, when the
men are out hunting. Judging from peculiarity of features, manners and
dress, it would seem to be impossible that any people, should have
remained so long in contact with or juxtaposition to the European races
and changed so little, in all that constitutes national and personal
identity. Roberts looked with no very friendly eye upon these ancient
lords of the forest, the whole sum of his philosophy and philanthropy
being measured by the very tangible circle of prairie and forests, which
narrowed his own hunting grounds. They were even then, deemed to have
been injudiciously located, by intelligent persons in the west, and have
long since removed to a permanent location, out of the corporate limits
of the States and Territories, at the junction of the river Konga with
the Missouri. I should have been pleased to have lengthened our short
halt, but the word seemed with him and Enobitti to be "onward," and
onward we pushed. We were now fairly in the Ozark chain--a wide and
almost illimitable tract, of which it may be said, that the vallies only
are susceptible of future cultivation. The intervening ridges and
mountains are nearly destitute of forest, often perfectly so, and in
almost all cases, sterile, and unfit for the plough. It is probable
sheep might be raised on some of these eminences, which possess a
sufficiency of soil to permit the grasses to be sown. Geologically, it
has a basis of limestones, resting on sandstones. Unfortunately for its
agricultural character, the surface has been covered with a foreign
diluvium of red clay filled with chips of hornstone, chert and broken
quartz, which make the soil hard and compact. Its trees are few and
stunted; its grass coarse. In looking for the origin of such a soil, it
seems probable to have resulted from broken down slates and shists on
the upper Missouri and below the range of the Rocky Mountains, in which
these broken and imbedded substances originally constituted veins. It is
only in the vallies, and occasional plains, that a richer and more
carbonaceous soil has accumulated. The purest springs, however, gush out
of its hills; its atmosphere is fine and healthful, and it constitutes a
theatre of Alpine attractions, which will probably render it, in future
years, the resort of shepherds, lovers of mountain scenery, and
valetudinarians. There is another remark to be made of the highland
tracts of the Ozark range. They look, in their natural state, more
sterile than they actually are, from the effects of autumnal fires.
These fires, continued for ages by the natives, to clear the ground for
hunting, have had the effect not only to curtail and destroy large
vegetation, but all the carbonaceous particles of the top soil have been
burned, leaving the surface in the autumn, rough, red, dry and hard.
When a plough comes to be put into such a surface, it throws up quite a
different soil; and the effects of light, and the sun's heat are often
found, as I have noticed in other parts of the west, to produce a dark
and comparatively rich soil.

We occupied the entire day in ascending and crossing the ridge of land,
which divides the little valley of the Oza from that of the Merrimack.
When getting near the latter, the soil exhibited traces of what appeared
to be iron ore, but somewhat peculiar in its character, and of dark
hue. This soon revealed itself, in passing a short distance, in an
abundant locality of black and coloured oxide of manganese--lying in
masses in the arid soil. The Indian trail which we were pursuing led
across the valley. We forded the river on foot. No encampments of
Indians were found, nor any very recent traces of them; and we began to
think that the accounts of Osage depredations and plundering, must be
rather exaggerated. The river pours its transparent mountain waters over
a wide bed of pebbles and small boulders, and, at this season, offered
but little impediment to the horses or ourselves in crossing it. The sun
was getting low, by the time we reached the opposite side of the valley,
and we encamped on its borders, a mile or two above. Here we took due
care of our horses, prepared our evening's meal, talked over the day's
adventures, enjoyed ourselves sitting before our camp fire, with the
wild wide creation before us and around, and then sank to a sound repose
on our pallets.

Novices in the woodman's art, and raw in the business of travelling, our
sleep was sounder and more death-like, than that of Roberts. His eye had
shown a restlessness during the afternoon and evening. We were now in a
game country, the deer and elk began to be frequently seen, and their
fresh tracks across our path, denoted their abundance. During the night
they ventured about our camp, so as to disturb the ears of the weary
hunter, and indeed, my own. He got up and found both horses missing.
Butcher's memory of Mine á Burton corn fodder had not deserted him, and
he took the hunter's horse along with him. I jumped up, and accompanied
him, in their pursuit. They were both overtaken about three miles back
on the track, making all possible speed homeward, that their tethered
fore legs would permit. We conducted them back, without disturbing my
companion, and he then went out with his rifle, and quickly brought in a
fine fat doe, for our breakfast. Each one cut fine pieces of steaks, and
roasted for himself. We ate it with a little salt, and the remainder of
the hunter's corn cakes, and finished the repast, with a pint cup each,
of Enobitti's best tea. This turned out to be _a finale_ meal with our
Fourche à Courtois man, Roberts: for the rascal, a few hours afterwards,
deserted us, and went back. Had he given any intimation of
dissatisfaction, or a desire to return, we should have been in a measure
prepared for it. It is probable his fears of the then prevalent bugbear
of those frontiersmen, the Osages, were greater than our own. It is also
probable, that he had no other idea whatever, in leaving the Fourche à
Courtois, than to avail himself of our protection till he could get into
a region where he could shoot deer enough in a single morning to load
down his horse, with the choicest pieces, and lead him home. This the
event, at least, rendered probable; and the fellow not only deserted us
meanly, but he carried off my best new hunting knife, with scabbard and
belt--a loss not easily repaired in such a place.

To cloak his plan, he set out with us in the morning: it had rained a
little, during the latter part of the night, and was lowering and dark
all the morning. After travelling about ten miles, we left the Osage
trail, which began to bear too far north-west, and struck through the
woods in a south course, with the view of reaching Ashley's Cave on one
of the head streams of the river currents. Soon after leaving this
trail, Roberts, who was in advance on our left, about half a mile, fired
at, and killed, a deer, and immediately re-loaded, pursued and fired
again; telling us to continue on our course, as he, being on horseback,
could easily overtake us. We neither heard nor saw more of him. Night
overtook us near the banks of a small lake, or rather a series of little
lakes or ponds, communicating with each other, where we encamped. After
despatching our supper, and adjusting, in talk, the day's rather
eventful incidents, and the morrow's plan of march, we committed
ourselves to rest, but had not sunk into forgetfulness, when a pack of
wolves set up their howl in our vicinity. We had been told that these
animals will not approach near a fire, and are not to be dreaded in a
country where deer abound. They follow the track of the hunter, to share
such part of the carcass as he leaves, and it is their nature to herd
together and run down this animal as their natural prey. We slept well,
but it is worthy of notice, that on awaking about day break, the howling
of the wolves was still heard, and at about the same distance. They had
probably serenaded us all night. Our fire was nearly out; we felt some
chilliness, and determined to rekindle it, and prepare our breakfast
before setting forward. It was now certain, that Roberts was gone.
Luckily he had not carried off our compass, for _that_ would have been
an accident fatal to the enterprise.


     A deeper view of the Ozark Chain. Pass along the flanks of the
     highlands which send out the sources of the Black, Eleven points,
     Currents and Spring rivers. Reach a romantic glen of caves. Birds
     and animals seen. Saltpetre earth; stalactites. Cross the alpine
     summit of the western Ozarks. Source of the Gasconde river Accident
     in fording the Little Osage river.--Encamp on one of its

It was found, as we began to bestir ourselves for wood to light our fire
that we had reposed not far from a bevy of wild ducks, who had sought
the grassy edge of the lake during the night, and with the first alarm
betook themselves to flight. With not so ready a mode of locomotion, we
followed their example, in due time, and also their course, which was
south. At the distance of a couple of miles, we crossed a small stream,
running south-east, which we judged to be the outlet of the small lakes
referred to, and which is, probably the source of Black River, or the
Eleven points. Our course led us in an opposite direction, and we soon
found ourselves approaching the sterile hills which bound the romantic
valley of the currents. There had been some traces of wheels, on the
softer soil, which had been driven in this direction towards the
saltpetre caves, but we completely lost them, as we came to and ascended
these arid and rugged steeps. Some of these steeps rose into dizzy and
romantic cliffs, surmounted with pines. We wound our way cautiously
amongst them, to find some gorge and depression, through which we might
enter the valley. For ourselves we should not have been so choice of a
path, but we had a pack horse to lead, and should he be precipitated
into a gulf, we must bid adieu to our camp equipage. Our arms and a
single blanket, would be all we could carry. At length this summit was
reached. The view was enchanting. A winding wooded valley, with its
clear bright river, stretched along at the base of the summit. Rich
masses of foliage, hung over the clear stream, and were reflected in its
pellucid current, with a double beauty. The autumnal frost, which had
rifled the highland trees of their clothing, appeared to have passed
over this deeply secluded valley with but little effect, and this
effect, was only to highten the interest of the scene, by imparting to
portions of its foliage, the liveliest orange and crimson tints. And
this was rendered doubly attractive by the contrast. Behind us lay the
bleak and barren hills, over which we had struggled, without a shade, or
a brook, or even the simplest representative of the animal creation. For
it is a truth, that during the heat of the day, both birds and
quadrupeds betake themselves to the secluded shades of the streams and
vallies. From these they sally out, into the plains, in quest of food at
early dawn, and again just before night fall. All the rest of the day,
the plains and highlands have assumed the silence of desolation. Evening
began to approach as we cautiously picked our way down the cliffs, and
the first thing we did, on reaching the stream was to take a hearty
drink of its crystal treasure, and let our horse do the same. The next
object was to seek a fording place--which was effected without
difficulty. On mounting the southern bank, we again found the trail,
lost in the morning, and pursued it with alacrity. It was my turn this
day to be in advance, as guide, but the temptation of small game, as we
went up the valley, drew me aside, while Enobitti proceeded to select a
suitable spot for the night's encampment. It was dark when I rejoined
him, with my squirrel and pigeon hunt. He had confined himself closely
to the trail. It soon led him out of the valley, up a long brushy ridge,
and then through an open elevated pine grove, which terminated abruptly
in a perpendicular precipice. Separated from this, at some eight hundred
yards distance, stood a counter precipice of limestone rock, fretted
out, into pinnacles and massy walls, with dark openings, which gave the
whole the resemblance of architectural ruins. The stream that ran
between these cliffs, was small, and it lay so deep and well embrowned
in the shades of evening, that it presented vividly from this elevation,
a waving bright line on a dark surface. Into this deep dark terrific
glen the path led, and here we lit our fire, hastily constructed a bush
camp, and betook ourselves, after due ablutions in the little stream, to
a night's repose. The sky became rapidly overcast, before we had
finished our meal, and a night of intense darkness, threatening a
tempest, set in. As we sat by our fire, its glare upon huge beetling
points of overhanging rocks, gave the scene a wild and picturesque cast;
and we anticipated returning daylight with an anxious wish to know and
see our exact locality. By the restless tramping of our horse, and the
tinkling of his bell, we knew that he had found but indifferent picking.

Daylight fulfilled the predictions of the evening. We had rain. It also
revealed our position in this narrow, and romantic glen. A high wall of
rocks, encompassed us on either hand, but they were not such as would
have resulted in a volcanic country from a valley fissure. Narrow and
deep as the glen was, it was at once apparent, that it was a valley of
denudation, and had owed its existence to the wasting effects of the
trifling stream within it, carrying away, particle by particle, the
matter loosened by rains and frosts, and mechanical attrition. The
cliffs are exclusively calcareous, and piled up, mason like, in
horizontal layers. One of the most striking pictures which they
presented, was found in the great number, size and variety of caves,
which opened into this calcareous formation. These caves are of all
sizes, some of them very large, and not a few of them situated at
elevations above the floor of the glen, which forbade access.

One of our first objects, after examining the neighbourhood, was to
remove our baggage and location up the glen, into one of these caves,
which at the distance of about a mile, promised us an effectual shelter
from the inclemency of the storm. This done, we determined here to wait
for settled weather, and explore the precincts. By far the most
prominent object, among the caverns, was the one into which we had thus
unceremoniously thrust ourselves. It had evidently been visited before,
by persons in search of saltpetre earth. Efflorescences of nitric earth,
were abundant in its fissures, and this salt was also present in masses
of reddish diluvial earth, which lay in several places. The mouth of
this cave presented a rude irregular arc, of which the extreme height
was probably thirty feet, and the base line ninety. The floor of this
orifice occurs, at an elevation of about forty feet above the stream.
And this size is held for about two hundred feet, when it expands into a
lofty dome, some eighty or ninety feet high, and perhaps, three hundred
in diameter. In its centre a fine spring of water issues from the rock.
From this dome several passages lead off in different directions.

One of these opens into the glen, at an inaccessible point, just below.
Another runs back nearly at right angles with the mouth, putting out
smaller passages, of not much importance, however, in its progress. So
splendid and noble an entrance gave us the highest hopes of finding it
but the vestibule of a natural labyrinth; but the result disappointed
us. These ample dimensions soon contract, and after following the main
or south passage about five hundred yards, we found our further entrance
barred, by masses of fallen rock, at the foot of which a small stream
trickled through the broken fragments, and found its way to the mouth.
Have we good reason to attribute to this small stream, a power
sufficient to be regarded as the effective agent in carrying away the
calcareous rock, so as to have in a long period produced the orifice?
Whence then, it may be asked, the masses of compact reddish clay and
pebble diluvium, which exist? These seem rather to denote that these
caves were open orifices, during the period of oceanic action, upon the
surface of the Ozarks, and that a mass of waters, surcharged with such
materials, flowed into pre-existing caverns. This diluvium is, in truth,
of the same era as the wide spread stream of like kind, which has been
deposited over the metalliferous region of Missouri. If these, however,
be questions for geological doubt, we had lit upon another inquiry,
very prominent on our minds in making this exploration, namely, whether
there were any wild beasts sheltered in its fissures. Satisfied that we
were safe on this score, we retraced our footsteps to our fire, and
sallied out to visit other caves. Most of these were at such heights as
prevented access to them. In one instance, a tree had fallen against the
face of the cliff, in such a manner, that by climbing it to its forks,
and taking one of the latter, the opening might be reached. Putting a
small mineral hammer in my pocket, I ascended this tree, and found the
cave accessible. It yielded some wax-yellow and white translucent
stalactites, and also very delicate white crystals of nitre. The
dimensions of this cave were small, and but little higher than to enable
a man to stand upright.

In each of the caves of this glen which I entered, during a halt of
several days in this vicinity, I looked closely about for fossil bones,
but without success in any instance. The only article of this kind
observed was the recent leg and foot bones and vertebra of the bos
musarius, which appeared to be an inhabitant of the uppermost fissures
in these calcareous cliffs, but I never saw the living species, although
I ranged along their summits and bases, with my gun and hammer, at
various hours. Some of the compact limestone in the bed of the creek
exhibited a striped and jaspery texture. The wood-duck and the duck and
mallard sometimes frequented this secluded stream, and it was a common
resort for the wild turkey, at a certain hour in the evening. This bird
seemed at such times to come in thirsty, from its ranges in quest of
acorns on the uplands, and its sole object appeared to be to drink.
Sitting in the mouth of our cave, we often had a fine opportunity to see
flocks of these noisy and fine birds flying down from the cliffs, and
perching on the trees below us. If they came to roost, as well as to
slack their thirst, a supposition probable, this was an ill-timed
movement, so long as we inhabited the glen, for they only escaped the
claw and talons of one enemy, to fall before the fire-lock of the other.
This bird, indeed, proved our best resource on the journey, for we
travelled with too much noise and want of precaution generally, to kill
the deer and elk, which, however, were abundant on the highland plains.

We passed three days at the Glen Cave, during which there were several
rains; it stormed one entire day, and we employed the time of this
confinement, in preparing for the more intricate and unknown parts of
our journey. Hitherto we had pursued for the most of the way, a trail,
and were cheered on our way, by sometimes observing traces of human
labour. But, from this point we were to plunge into a perfect
wilderness, without a trace or track. We had before us, that portion of
the Ozark range, which separates to the right and left, the waters of
the Missouri from those of the Mississippi. It was supposed, from the
best reports, that by holding south-west, across these eminences, we
should strike the valley of the White River, which interposed itself
between our position there and the Arkansas. To enter upon this tract,
with our compass only as a guide, and with the certainty of finding no
nutritious grass for our horse, required that we should lighten and
curtail our baggage as much as possible, and put all our effects into
the most compact and portable form. And having done this, and the
weather proving settled, we followed a short distance up the Glen of
Caves; but finding it to lead too directly west, we soon left it and
mounted the hills which line its southern border. A number of latter
valleys, covered with thick brush, made this a labour by no means
slight. The surface was rough; vegetation sere and dry, and every
thicket which spread before us, presented an obstacle which was to be
overcome. We could have penetrated many of these, which the horse could
not be forced through. Such parts of our clothing as did not consist of
buckskin, paid frequent tribute to these brambles. At length we got
clear of these spurs, and entered on a high waving table land where
travelling became comparatively easy. The first view of this vista of
high land plains was magnificent. It was covered with moderate sized
sere grass and dry seed pods, which rustled as we passed. There was
scarcely an object deserving the name of a tree, except, now and then, a
solitary trunk of a dead pine, or oak, which had been scathed by
lightning. The bleached skull of the buffalo, was sometimes met, and
proved that this animal had once existed here. Rarely we passed a
stunted oak; sometimes a cluster of saplings crowned the summit of a
sloping hill; the deer often bounded before us; we sometimes disturbed
the hare from its sheltering bush, or put to flight the quail or the
prairie hen. There was no prominent feature for the eye to rest upon.
The unvaried prospect produced satiety. We felt in a peculiar manner the
solitariness of the wilderness. We travelled silently and diligently. It
was a dry and thirsty barren. From morning till sun set we did not
encounter a drop of water. This became the absorbing object. Hill after
hill, and vale after vale were patiently scanned, and diligently footed,
without bringing the expected boon. At length we came, without the
expectation of it, to a small running stream in the plain, where we
gladly encamped. There was also some grass which preserved a greenish
hue, and which enabled our horse also to recruit himself.

Early the next morning we repacked him, and continued our course,
travelling due west south-west. At the distance of five or six miles, we
reached the banks of a clear stream of twenty feet wide, running over a
bed of pebbles and small secondary boulders. This stream ran towards the
north west, and gave us the first intimation we had, that we had crossed
the summit and were on the off drain of the Missouri. We supposed it to
be the source of the Gasconade, or at farthest some eastern tributary of
the Little Osage.

A few hours travelling brought us to the banks of another stream of
much larger size and depth, but running in the same direction. This
stream we found it difficult to cross, and spent several hours in
heaping piles of stone, and connecting them with dry limbs of trees,
which had been carried down by floods. It had a rapid and deep current,
on each side of which was a wide space of shallow water and rolled
boulders of lime and sand stone. We succeeded in driving the horse
safely over. Enobitti led the way on our frail bridge-work, but
disturbed the last link of it as he jumped off on the south bank, so
that it turned under my tread and let me in. There was no kind of danger
in the fall as it was in the shallow part of the stream, but putting out
my hands to break the fall, it so happened that my whole weight rested
on my gun, which was supported on two stones, merely on its butt and
muzzle; the effect was to wrench the barrel. I gave it a counter wrench
as soon as we encamped, but I never afterwards could place full
confidence in it. We had not gone over three or four miles beyond this
river, when we came to the banks of a third stream, running west, but
also sweeping off below, towards the northwest. This stream was smaller
than the former and opposed no difficulty in fording it. Having done
this we followed it up a short distance, and encamped on its south


     Hearsay information of the hunters turns out false--We alter our
     course--A bear hunt--An accident--Another rencontre with
     bears--Strike the source of the Great North Fork of White
     River--Journey down this valley--Its character and productions--A
     great Spring--Incidents of the route--Pack horse rolls down a
     precipice--Plunges in the river--A cavern--Osage lodges--A hunter's

It was now manifest, from our crossing the last two streams, that we
were going too far north--that we were in fact in the valley of the
Missouri proper; and that the information obtained of the hunters on the
source of the Merrimack, was not to be implicitly relied on. It is not
probable that one of the persons who gave this information had ever been
here. It was a region they were kept out of by the fear of the Osages,
as our own experience in the case of Roberts denoted. Willing to test it
farther, however, we followed down the last named stream a few miles, in
the hope of its turning south or south-west, but it went off in another
direction. We then came to a halt, and after consulting together,
steered our course due _south_ south-west, thus varying our general
course from the caves. This carried us up a long range of wooded
highlands. The forest here assumed a handsome growth. We passed through
a track of the over-cup oak, interspersed with hickory, and had reached
the summit of an elevated wooded ridge, when just as we gained the
highest point, we discovered four bears on a large oak, in the valley
before us. Three of the number were probably cubs, and with their dam,
they were regaling themselves on the ripe acorns without observing us.
We had sought no opportunities to hunt, and given up no especial time to
it, but here was too fair a challenge to be neglected. We tied our horse
securely to a sapling, and then examining our pieces, and putting down
an extra ball, set out to descend the hill as cautiously as possible. An
unlucky slip of Enobitti threw him with force forward and sprained his
ankle. He lay for a short time in agony. This noise alarmed the bears,
who one after the other quickly ran in from the extremities of the limbs
to the trunk, which they descended head first, and scampered clumsily
off up the valley. I pursued them without minding my companion, not
knowing, indeed how badly he was hurt, but was compelled to give up the
chase, as the tall grass finally prevented my seeing what course they
had taken. I now returned to my companion. He could not stand at first,
nor walk when he arose, and the first agony had passed. I proposed to
mount him on the pack horse, and lead him slowly up the valley, and this
plan was carried into effect. But he endured too much suffering to bear
even this. The ankle began to inflame. There was nothing but rest and
continued repose that promised relief. I selected a fine grassy spot to
encamp, unpacked the horse, built a fire, and got my patient comfortably
stretched on his pallet. But little provision had been made at Potosi in
the medical department. My whole store of pharmacy consisted of some
pills and salves, and a few simple articles. The only thing I could
think of as likely to be serviceable, was in our culinary pack,--it was
a little sack of salt, and of this I made a solution in warm water and
bathed the ankle. I then replenished the fire and cut some wood to renew
it. It was still early in the day, and leaving my companion to rest, and
to the effect of the remedy offered, I took my gun and strolled over the
adjoining hills, in hopes of bringing in some pigeons, or other small
game. But it was a time of day when both birds and quadrupeds have
finished their mornings repast, and retired to the groves or fastnesses.
I saw nothing but the little grey bunting, and the noisy jay. When I
returned to our camp in the vale I found my companion easier. The
bathing had sensibly alleviated the pain and swelling. It was therefore
diligently renewed, and the next morning he was so far improved, that he
consented to try the pack horse again. We had not, however, travelled
far, when two large bears were seen before us playing in the grass, and
so engaged in their sport, that they did not perceive us. We were now on
the same level with them, and quickly prepared to give them battle. My
companion dismounted as easily as possible, and having secured the horse
and examined our arms, we reached a stand within firing distance. It was
not till this moment that our approach was discovered by them, and the
first thing they did after running a few yards, was to sit up in the
grass and gaze at us. Having each singled his animal, we fired at the
same instant. Both animals fled, but on reaching the spot where my mark
had sat, blood was copiously found on the grass, and a pursuit was the
consequence. I followed him up a long ridge, but he passed over the
summit so far before me, that I lost sight of him. I came to a large
hollow black oak, in the direction he had disappeared, which showed the
nail marks of some animal, which I believed to be his. While examining
these signs more closely my companion made his appearance. How he had
got there I know not. The excitement had well nigh cured his ancle. He
stood by the orifice, while I went for the axe to our camp, and when I
was tired chopping, he laid hold. We chopped alternately, and big as it
was, the tree at last came down with a crash that made the forest ring.
For a few moments we looked at the huge and partly broken trunk as if a
bear would start from it; but all was silence. We thoroughly searched
the hollow part but found nothing. I went over another ridge of forest
land, started a noble elk, but saw nothing more of my bear. Here
terminated this adventure. We retraced our footsteps back to the valley,
and proceeded on our route. This incident had led us a little south of
our true course; and it so turned out that it was at a point, where a
mile or two one way or the other, was calculated to make a wide
difference in the place of our exit into the valley of White River; for
we were on a high broken summit ridge, from which several important
streams originated. The pursuit of the bear had carried us near to the
head of the valley, and by crossing the intervening summit, we found
ourselves at the head springs of an important stream, which in due time
we learned was the Great North Fork of White River. This stream begins
to develope itself in pools, or standing springs, which soak through the
gravel and boulders, and it is many miles before it assumes the
character of a continuous stream. Even then it proceeds in plateaux or
steps, on which the water has a level, and the next succeeding level
below it has its connection with it, through a rapid. In fact, the whole
stream, till near its mouth, is one series of these lake-like levels,
and short rapids, each level sinking lower and lower, till, like the
locks in a canal, the last flows out on a level with its final
recipient. But however its waters are congregated, they are all pure and
colourless as rock crystal, and well vindicate the propriety of their
original name of _la Rivière Blanc_. They all originate in mountain
springs, are cool and sparkling, and give assurance in this feature,
that they will carry health to the future inhabitants of the valley
through which they flow. With the first springs begins to be seen a
small growth of the cane, which is found a constant species on its
bottom lands. This plant becomes high in more southern latitudes, and
being intertwined with the green briar, renders it very difficult, as we
soon found, to penetrate it, especially with a horse. Man can endure a
thousand adventures and hardships where a horse would die; and it would
require no further testimony than this journey gave, to convince me,
that providence designed the horse for a state of civilization.

We followed the course of these waters about six miles, and encamped. It
was evidently the source of a stream of some note. It ran in the
required direction, and although we did not then know, that it was the
valley of the Great North Fork of White River, we were satisfied it was
a tributary of the latter stream, and determined to pursue it. This we
did for twelve days, before we met with a human being, white or red. It
rapidly developed itself, as we went, and unfolded an important valley,
of rich soil, bearing a vigorous growth of forest trees, and enclosed on
either hand, by elevated limestone cliffs. Nothing could exceed the
purity of its waters, which bubbled up in copious springs, from the
rock, or pebble stratum. For a long distance the stream increased from
such accessions alone, without large and independent tributaries. On the
second day's travel, we came to a spring, of this crystal character,
which we judged to be about fifty feet across, at the point of its issue
from the rock and soil. Its outlet after running about a thousand yards,
joined the main stream, to which it brings a volume fully equal to it.
This spring I named the Elk Spring, from the circumstance of finding a
large pair of the horns of this animal, partly buried in the leaves, at
a spot where I stooped down to drink. I took the horns, and hung them in
the forks of a young oak tree.

We found abundance of game in this valley. There was not an entire day,
I think, until we got near the hunters' camps, that we did not see
either the bear, elk, or deer, or their recent signs. Flocks of the wild
turkey were of daily occurrence. The gray squirrel frequently sported on
the trees, and as the stream increased in size, we found the duck, brant
and swan.

There were two serious objections, however, in travelling down a wooded
valley. Its shrubbery was so thick and rank that it was next to
impossible to force the pack horse through it. Wherever the cane
abounds, and this comprehends all its true alluvions, it is found to be
matted together, as it were, with the green briar and grape vine. So
much noise attended the effort at any rate, that the game generally fled
before us, and had it not been for small game, we should have often
wanted a meal. With every effort, we could not make an average of more
than fourteen miles a day. The river was so tortuous too, that we could
not count, on making more than half this distance, in a direct line. To
remedy these evils we sometimes went out of the valley, on the open
naked plains. It was a relief, but had, in the end, these difficulties,
that while the plains exposed us to greater heats in travelling, they
afforded no water, and we often lost much time in the necessity, we were
under, towards night-fall, of going back to the valley for water.
Neither was it found to be safe to travel far separated, for there were
many causes of accident, which rendered mutual assistance desirable. One
day, while Enobitti led the horse, and was conducting him from a lofty
ridge, to get into the valley, the animal stumbled, and rolled to the
bottom. We thought every bone in his body had been broke, but he had
been protected by his pack, and we found that he was but little injured,
and when repacked, still capable of going forward. On another occasion,
I had been leading him for several hours, along a high terrace of cliffs
on the left banks where this terrace was, as it were, suddenly cut off
by the intersection of a lateral valley. The view was a sublime one,
standing at the pinnacle of junction; but there was no possible way of
descent, and it was necessary to retrace my steps, a long--long way. As
an instance of the very tortuous character of this stream, I will
mention that a rocky peninsula, causing a bend which it took my
companion some two hours to pass, with the horse, I had crossed in less
than twenty minutes, with my hammer and gun. When we had, as we
supposed, become familiar with every species of impediment and delay, in
descending the valley, a new, and very serious and unexpected one, arose
one day, in crossing the stream, from the left to the right bank. It was
my turn to be muleteer that day, and I had selected a ford where the
river was not wide, and the water, apparently, some two or three feet
deep. I judged from the clearness of the pebbles at the bottom, and
their apparent nearness to the surface. But such was the transparency of
the water, that a wide mistake was made. We had nearly lost the horse,
he plunged in over head, could not touch bottom, and when with great
ado, we had got him up the steep bank on the other side, he was
completely exhausted. But this was not the extent of the evil. Our sugar
and salt were dissolved. Our meal, of which a little still remained, was
spoiled. Our tea was damaged,--our blankets and clothing wetted,--our
whole pack soaked. The horse had been so long in the water, in our often
fruitless efforts to get him to some part of the bank depressed enough,
to pull him up, that nothing had escaped its effects. We encamped on the
spot, and spent the rest of the day in drying our effects, and expelling
from our spare garments the superfluous moisture.

The next day we struck out into the high plains, on the right bank, and
made a good day's journey. The country was nearly level, denuded of
trees, with sere autumnal grass. Often the prairie hen started up, but
we saw nothing in the animal creation beside, save a few hares, as
evening came on. To find water for the horse, and ourselves, we were
again compelled to approach the valley. We at length entered a dry and
desolate gorge, without grass or water. Night came on, but no sound or
sight of water occurred. We were sinking deeper and deeper into the
rocky structure of the country at every step, and soon found there were
high cliffs on either side of us. What we most feared now occurred. It
became dark, the clouds had threatened foul weather and it now began to
rain. Had it not been for a cavern, which disclosed itself, in one of
these calcareous cliffs, we must have passed a miserable night. On
entering it, we found a spring of water. It was too high in the cliff to
get the horse in, but we carried him water in a vessel. He was
afterwards hobbled, and left to shift for himself. On striking a fire,
in the cave, its rays disclosed masses of stalactites, and a dark avenue
into the rocks back. Having made a cup of tea and finished our repast,
we determined to explore the cave before lying down to rest, lest we
might be intruded on by some wild animal before morning. A torch of pine
wood was soon made, which guided our footsteps into the dismal recess,
but we found nothing of the kind. On returning to our fire, near the
mouth of the cave, we found the rain had increased to a heavy shower,
and the vivid flashes of lightning, illumined with momentary
brilliancy, the dark and frowning precipices of this romantic gorge. The
excitement and novelty of our position, served to drive away sleep,
notwithstanding a long day's march, and it was late before we sought

Morning brought a clear sky, but the horse was gone. He had followed on
the back track, up the glen, in search of something to feed upon, and
was not found till we reached the skirts of the plains. The whole
morning was indeed, lost in reclaiming him, and we then set forward
again and returned to the North Fork valley. We found it had assumed a
greater expanse, at the point of our re-entry, which it maintained, and
increased, as we pursued it down. Wide open oak plains extended on the
left bank, which appeared very eligible for the purposes of settlement.
On an oak tree, at this spot, we observed some marks, which had probably
been made by some enterprising land explorer. With these improved
evidences of its character for future occupation, we found the
travelling easier. Within a few miles travel, we noticed a tributary
coming in on the left bank, and at a lower point another on the left.
The first stream had this peculiarity, that its waters came in at a
right angle, with the parent stream, and with such velocity as to pass
directly across its channel to the opposite bank. In this vicinity, we
saw many of the deserted pole camps of the Osages, none of which
appeared, however, to have been recently occupied. So far, indeed, we
had met no hindrance, or annoyance from this people; we had not even
encountered a single member of the tribe, and felt assured that the
accounts we had received of their cruelty and rapacity, had been grossly
exaggerated, or if not wholly overcoloured, they must have related to a
period in their history, which was now well nigh past. We could not
learn that they had hunted on these lands, during late years, and were
afterwards given to understand that they had ceded them to the United
States by a treaty concluded at St. Louis. From whatever causes,
however, the district had been left free from their roving parties, it
was certain that the game had recovered under such a cessation of the
chase. The black bear, deer and elk, were abundant. We also frequently
saw signs of the labours of the beaver along the valley. I had the good
luck, one day, while in advance with my gun, of beholding two of these
animals, at play in the stream, and observing their graceful motions. My
position was, within point blank shot of them, but I was screened from
their gaze. I sat, with gun cocked, meaning to secure one of them after
they came to the shore. Both animals came out together, and sat on the
bank at the edge of the river, a ledge of rocks being in the rear of
them. The novelty of the sight led me to pause, and admire them, when,
all of a sudden, they darted into a crevice in the rock.

On the second day after re-entering the valley, we descried, on
descending a long slope of rising ground, a hunter's cabin, covered with
narrow oak boards, split with a frow; and were exhilarated with the
idea of finding it occupied. But this turned out a delusive hope. It had
been deserted, from appearance, the year before. We found, among the
surrounding weeds, a few stems of the cotton plant, which had grown up
from seeds, accidentally dropped. The bolls had opened. I picked out the
cotton to serve as a material in lighting my camp fires, at night, this
being a labour which I had taken the exclusive management of. The site
of this camp, had been well chosen. There was a small stream in front,
and a heavy rich cane bottom behind it, extending to the banks of the
river. A handsome point of woodlands extended north of it, from the
immediate door of the camp. And although somewhat early in the day, we
determined to encamp, and soon made ourselves masters of the fabric, and
sat down before a cheerful fire, with a title to occupancy, which there
was no one to dispute.



    A swain, as he strayed through the grove,
      Had caught a young bird on a spray--
    What a gift, he exclaimed, for my love,
      How beautiful, charming, and gay.

    With rapture he viewed the fair prize,
      And listened with joy to its chat,
    As with haste to the meadow he hies
      To secure it beneath his straw hat.

    I will make of yon willows so gay,
      A cage for my prisoner to mourn,
    Then to Delia, the gift I'll convey,
      And beg for a kiss in return.

    She will grant me that one, I am sure,
      For a present so rare and so gay,
    And I easily can steal a few more
      And bear them enraptured away.

    He returned: but imagine his grief,
      The wind had his hat overthrown,
    And the bird, in the joy of relief,
      Away with his kisses had flown.




     INQUIRY I.--What kind of a being is the North American
     Indian?--Have we judged rightly of him?--What are his peculiar
     traits, his affections, and his intellectual qualities?--Is he much
     influenced by his religion, his mode of government, and his
     complicated language.

My earliest impressions of the Indian race, were drawn from the
fire-side rehearsals of incidents which had happened during the perilous
times of the American revolution; in which my father was a zealous
actor, and were all inseparably connected with the fearful ideas of the
Indian yell, the tomahawk, the scalping knife, and the fire brand. In
these recitals, the Indian was depicted as the very impersonation of
evil--a sort of wild demon, who delighted in nothing so much as blood
and murder. Whether he had mind, was governed by any reasons, or even
had any soul, nobody inquired, and nobody cared. It was always
represented as a meritorious act in old revolutionary reminiscences, to
have killed one of them in the border wars, and thus aided in ridding
the land of a cruel and unnatural race, in whom all feelings of pity,
justice, and mercy, were supposed to be obliterated. These early ideas
were sustained by printed narratives of captivity and hair-breadth
escapes of men and women from their clutches, which, from time to time,
fell into my hands, so that long before I was ten years old, I had a
most definite and terrific idea impressed on my imagination of what was
sometimes called in my native precincts, "the bow and arrow race."

To give a definite conception of the Indian man, there lived in my
native valley, a family of Indians of the Iroquois stock, who often went
off to their people in the west, and as often returned again, as if
they were a troop of genii, or the ghosts of the departed, who came to
haunt the nut wood forests, and sub-vallies of the sylvan Tawasenthaw,
which their ancestors had formerly possessed, and to which they still
claimed some right. In this family, which was of the Oneida tribe, and
consisted of the husband and wife, with two grown up sons, I first saw
those characteristic features of the race,--namely, a red skin, with
bright black eyes, and black straight hair. They were mild and docile in
their deportment, and were on friendly terms with the whole settlement,
whom they furnished with neatly made baskets of the linden wood, split
very thin, and coloured to impart variety, and with nice ash brooms.
These fabrics made them welcome guests with every good housewife, who
had forgotten the horrific stories of the revolution, and who was ever
ready to give a chair and a plate, and a lodging place by the kitchen
fire, to poor old Isaac and Anna, for so they had been named. What their
original names were, nobody knew; they had lived so long in the valley
that they spoke the Dutch language, and never made use of their own,
except when talking together; and I recollect, we thought it a matter of
wonder, when they discoursed in Indian, whether such a guttural jargon,
could possibly be the medium of conveying any very definite ideas. It
seemed to be one undistinguished tissue of hard sounds, blending all
parts of speech together.

Had the boys of my own age, and I may say, the grown people, stopped to
reflect, and been led to consider this family and their race in America,
independently of their gross acts, under the strong excitements of war
and revenge, goaded by wrongs, and led on by the class of revolutionary
tories, more implacable than even themselves, we must have seen, in the
peaceable lives, quiet manners, and benevolent dispositions of these
four people, a contradiction to, at least, some part, of the sweeping
conclusions above noticed. But no such thoughts occurred. The word
"Indian," was synonymous then, as perhaps now, with half the opprobrious
epithets in the dictionary. I recollect to have myself made a few lines,
in early life, on the subject, which ran thus:--

     Indians they were, ere Colon crossed the sea,
     And ages hence, they shall but _Indians_ be.

Fortunately I was still young when my sphere of observation was
enlarged, by seeing masses of them, in their native forests; and I,
after a few years, assumed a position as government agent to one of the
leading tribes, at an age when opinions are not too firmly rooted to
permit change. My opinions were still, very much however, what they had
been in boyhood. I looked upon them as very cannibals and blood-thirsty
fellows, who were only waiting a good opportunity to knock one in the
head. But I regarded them as a curious subject of observation. The
remembrance of poor old Isaac, had shown me that there was some feeling
and humanity in their breasts. I had seen many of them in my travels in
the west, and I felt inclined to inquire into the traits of a people,
among whom my duties had placed me. I had, from early youth, felt
pleased with the study of natural history, and I thought the Indian, at
least in his languages, might be studied with something of the same mode
of exactitude. I had a strong propensity, at this time of life, for
analysis, and I believed that something like an analytical process might
be applied to enquiries, at least in the department of philology.
Whenever a fact occurred, in the progress of my official duties, which I
deemed characteristic, I made note of it, and in this way preserved a
sort of skeleton of dates and events, which, it was believed, would be a
source of useful future reference. It is, in truth, under advantages of
the kind, that these remarks are commenced.

The author has thrown out these remarks, as a starting point. He has
made observations which do not, in all respects, coincide with the
commonly received opinions, and drawn some conclusions which are
directly adverse to them. He has been placed in scenes and circumstances
of varied interest, and met with many characters, in the course of four
and twenty years' residence and travel in the wilds of America, who
would have struck any observer as original and interesting. With numbers
of them, he has formed an intimate acquaintance, and with not a few,
contracted lasting friendships. Connected with them by a long residence,
by the exercise of official duties, and by still more delicate and
sacred ties, he has been regarded by them as one identified with their
history, and received many marks of their confidence.

The Indians, viewed as a distinct branch of the human race, have some
peculiar traits and institutions, from which their history and character
may be advantageously studied. They hold some opinions, which are not
easily discovered by a stranger, or a foreigner, but which yet exert a
powerful influence on their conduct and life. There is a subtlety in
some of their modes of thought and belief, on life and the existence of
spiritual and creative power, which would seem to have been eliminated
from some intellectual crucible, without the limits of their present
sphere. Yet, there is much relative to all the common concerns of life,
which is peculiar to it. The author has witnessed many practices and
observances, such as travellers have often noticed, but like others,
attributed them to accident, or to some cause widely different from the
true one. By degrees, he has been admitted into their opinions, and if
we may so call it, the philosophy of their minds; and the life of an
Indian no longer appears to him a mystery. He sees him acting, as other
men would act, if placed exactly in his condition, prepared with the
education the forest has given him, and surrounded with the same wants,
temptations and dangers.

The gentler affections are in much more extensive and powerful exercise
among the Indian race, than is generally believed, although necessarily
developed with less refinement than in civilized society. Their
paternal and fraternal affections, have long been known to be very
strong, as well as their veneration for the dead. It has been his
province in these departments, to add some striking examples of their
intensity of feeling and affection, and truthfulness to nature.

The most powerful source of influence, with the Red man, is his
religion. Here is the true groundwork of his hopes and his fears, and,
it is believed, the fruitful source of his opinions and actions. It
supplies the system of thought by which he lives and dies, and it
constitutes, indeed, the basis of Indian character. By it he preserves
his identity, as a barbarian, and when this is taken away, and the true
system substituted, he is still a Red Man, but no longer, in the popular
sense, an _Indian_--a barbarian, a pagan.

The Indian religion is a peculiar compound of rites, and doctrines, and
observances, which are early taught the children by precept and example.
In this respect, every bark-built village is a temple, and every forest
a school. It would surprise any person to become acquainted with the
variety and extent to which an Indian is influenced by his religious
views and superstitions. He takes no important step without reference to
it. It is his guiding motive in peace and in war. He follows the chace
under its influence, and his very amusements take their tincture from
it. To the author, the facts have been developing themselves for many
years, and while he is able to account for the peculiar differences
between the conduct of Indians and that of white men, in given cases, he
can easily perceive, why the latter have so often been unable to
calculate the actions of the former, and even to account for them, when
they have taken place. It may be here remarked, that the civilized man,
is no less a mysterious and unaccountable being to an Indian, because
his springs of action are alike unintelligible to him.

If the following pages shall afford the public any means of judging of
the Red Race, with greater accuracy, he hopes they may lead to our
treating them with greater kindness and a more enlarged spirit of
justice. The change which has been wrought in his own mind, by the facts
he has witnessed, has been accompanied by a still more important one, as
to their intellectual capacities and moral susceptibilities, and their
consequent claims on the philanthropy of the age. As a class of men, it
is thought their native speakers, without letters or education, possess
a higher scope of thought and illustration, than the _corresponding
class_ in civilized life. This may be accounted for, perhaps, from
obvious external causes, without impugning the actual native capacity of
the lower, although educated classes of civilized life. Still, it is a
very striking fact, and one which has very often forced itself on the
attention of the author. The old idea that the Indian mind is not
susceptible of a high, or an advantageous developement, rests upon
questionable data. The two principal causes, which have prolonged their
continuance in a state of barbarism, on this continent, for so long a
period, are a false religion, and false views of government. The first
has kept back social prosperity and impeded the rise of virtue. With
respect to government, during all the time we have had them for
neighbours, they may be said to have had no government at all. Personal
independence, has kept the petty chiefs from forming confederacies for
the common good. Individuals have surrendered no part of their original
private rights, to secure the observance of the rest. There has been no
public social organization, expressed or implied. The consequence has
been that the law of private redress and revenge prevailed. In the only
two cases where this system was departed from, in North America, namely
that of the Azteek empire, and of the Iroquois confederacy, there was no
lack of vigour to improve. The results were a constantly increasing
power, and extending degree of knowledge up to the respective eras of
their conquest. It was not want of mental capacity, so much as the
non-existence of moral power, and of the doctrines of truth and virtue,
that kept them back; and left our own wandering tribes, particularly,
with the bow and the spear in their hands. He believes, that their
errors, in these particulars, may be pointed out, without drawing
conclusions adverse to their political or social prosperity, under
better auspices, and without attributing such failures to mental

The mode of recording thought, among these tribes, by means of pictorial
signs, and mnemonic symbols, has attracted particular attention, and
gives the author hopes, that he has been enabled to collect, and bring
forward, a body of facts, in this department, which will recommend
themselves by their interest and novelty. Confidence, inspired by long
residence in their territories, revealed to him another trait of
character, in the existence among them of a traditionary imaginative
lore, which is repeated from father to son, and has no small influence
upon their social condition. It is in these two departments, that, he
believes, he has opened new and important means of judging of the Indian
character, and discovered the sources of views and opinions, on many
subjects, which had escaped previous inquirers.

There is one more point, to-which he will here invite a momentary
attention, and which, although not usually enumerated as among the
practical causes that influenced Indian society and character, is yet
believed to exercise a strong, though silent sway, both upon the
question of the mental character, and its true development. The author
alludes to the topic of their languages. Some of the most venerated
writers present a theory of the origin of national government languages
and institutions, difficult or impossible to be conformed with the
nature of man in society, and unsupported by such evidence as their
doctrines require. Such, he regards, the theory of the "social compact,"
except it be viewed in the most undefined and general sense possible.
Such, also, is the theory of the origin and improvement of languages.
The system of government generally prevailing among the Indian tribes,
is indeed so simple and natural, under their circumstances, that it is
thought no person would long seek for the traces of any great
legislator, giving them laws in any past period. When, however, we
consider the curious structure of their languages, we find an ingenuity
and complexity, far surpassing any theory to be discovered in that of
the modern languages of Europe, with, perhaps, some exceptions in the
Basque and Majyer, and even beyond any thing existing in the Greek. As
the latter has long been held up as a model, and the excellencies of its
plan attributed to some unknown, but great and sagacious, learned and
refined mind, we might feel justified in assigning the richness of
forms, the exceeding flexibility, and the characteristic beauties and
excellencies of the Indian tongues, to a mind of far superior wisdom,
ingenuity, and experience. Yet how perfectly gratuitous would this be!
All history bears testimony against the human invention and designed
alteration of language; and none but a mere theorist can ever embrace
the idea that it is, or ever was, in the power of any man, to fabricate
and introduce a new language, or to effect a fundamental change in the
groundwork of an existing one. This, at least, is the decided opinion of
the author; and he firmly believes, that whoever will contemplate the
subject, amidst such scenes as he has been accustomed to, will
inevitably come to the same conclusion. He has seen changes in dialects
commenced and progressive, and indications of others going on, but these
owed their origin and impulse to accidental circumstances, and were not
the result of any plan or design. They were the result of necessity,
convenience, or caprice. These three causes, that is to say, necessity
convenience and caprice, if properly examined and appreciated in their
influence, and traced with care to their effects, will develop the
origin of many things, whose existence has been sought at too great a
distance, or amidst too much refinement.

Books, and the readers of books, have done much to bewilder and perplex
the study of the Indian character. Fewer theories and more observation,
less fancy and more fact, might have brought us to much more correct
opinions than those which are now current. The Indian is, after all,
believed to be a man, much more fully under the influence of common
sense notions, and obvious every-day motives of thought and action, hope
and fear, than he passes for. If he does not come to the same
conclusions, on passing questions, as we do, it is precisely because he
sees the premises, under widely different circumstances. The admitted
errors of barbarism and the admitted truths of civilization, are two
very different codes. He is in want of almost every source of true
knowledge and opinion, which we possess. He has very imperfect notions
on many of those branches of knowledge in what we suppose him best
informed. He is totally in the dark as to others. His vague and vast and
dreamy notions of the Great Author of Existence, and the mode of his
manifestations to the human race, and the wide and complicated system of
superstition and transcendental idolatry which he has reared upon this
basis, place him, at once, with all his sympathies and theories, out of
the great pale of truth and civilization. This is one of the leading
circumstances which prevents him from drawing his conclusions as we draw
them. Placed under precisely similar circumstances, we should perhaps
coincide in his opinion and judgments. But aside from these erroneous
views, and after making just allowances for his ignorance and moral
depression, the Indian is a man of plain common sense judgment, acting
from what he knows, and sees, and feels, of objects immediately before
him, or palpable to his view. If he sometimes employs a highly
figurative style to communicate his thoughts, and even stoops, as we
_now_ know he does, to amuse his fire-side circle with tales of
extravagant and often wild demonic fancy, he is very far from being a
man who, in his affairs of lands, and merchandize, and business,
exchanges the sober thoughts of self preservation and subsistence, for
the airy conceptions of fancy. The ties of consanguinity bind him
strongly. The relation of the family is deep and well traced amongst the
wildest tribes, and this fact alone forms a basis for bringing him back
to all his original duties, and re-organizing Indian society. The author
has, at least, been thrown into scenes and positions, in which this
truth has strongly presented itself to his mind, and he believes the
facts are of a character which will interest the reader, and may be of
some use to the people themselves, so far as affects the benevolent
plans of the age, if they do not constitute an increment in the body of
observational testimony, of a practical nature from which the character
of the race is to be judged.



     INQUIRY II.--What is the domestic condition and organization of the
     Indian family? Is the tie of consanguinity strong, and what
     characteristic facts can be stated of it? How are the domestic
     duties arranged? What are the rights of each inmate of the lodge?
     How is order maintained in so confined a space, and the general
     relations of the family preserved? Are the relative duties and
     labours of the hunter and his wife, equally or unequally divided?
     Who builds the lodge, and how is it constructed?

There is a very striking agreement, in the condition, relative duties
and obligations, of the Indian family, among all the tribes of whom I
have any personal knowledge, in North America. Climate and position, the
abundance or want of the means of subsistence and other accidental
causes, have created gradations of condition in the various tribes, some
of whom excel others in expertness, in hunting and war, and other arts,
but these circumstances have done little to alter the general
characteristics, or to abridge or enlarge the original rights and claims
of each inmate of the lodge. The tribes who cultivated maize in the rich
sub-vallies and plains of the Ohio and Mississippi, had fuller means of
both physical and mental development, than those who were, and still
are, obliged to pick a scanty subsistence, among the frigid, and half
marine regions in the latitudes north of the great lakes. There are some
peculiar traits of manners, in the prairie-tribes, west of the
Mississippi, who pursue the bison on horse back, and rely for their
subsistence greatly, on its flesh, and the sale of its skin. The well
fed Muscogee, Cherokee, or Choctaw, who lived in the sunny vallies of
upper Georgia, Alabama, and Tennessee, the robust Osage, revelling in
the abundance of corn and wild meat, south of the Missouri, and the
lean and rigid Montaignes, Muskeego, and Kenisteno, who push their
canoes through waters choked with aquatic weeds, and wild rice, present
very different pictures of home and comfort, within their lodge doors.
But they really present the same idea, the same sentiments, and the same
round of duties and obligations, of father and mother, sister and
brother, wife and husband. The original type of the human family among
them, is well preserved, better, indeed, than was to have been expected
in a state of barbarism, and among branches of the race who have been so
long separated, and subjected to such severe vicissitudes. It would be
useless, in this view, to draw a parallel between the relative condition
of the members of a family, within, and without the pale of
civilization. Nothing of the kind could be done, without showing up
pictures of want in the hunter-life which are wholly unknown in the
agricultural state. It cannot perhaps, in fair justice, be said that the
tie of consanguinity, in the man of the woods, is stronger, than in
civilized life. But it is in accordance with all observation to say,
that it is very strong, that its impulses beat with marked force, and
are more free from the intertwined ligaments of interest, which often
weakens the tie of relationship in refined and affluent society.

The true idea of matrimony, in Indian life, is also well set forth and
acknowledged, although it has come down through ages of plunder and
wandering, degraded in its condition, shorn of its just ceremonies, and
weakened in its sacred character. I have observed that polygamy, among
the northern tribes, is chiefly to be found, among bands who are
favourably located, and have the best means of subsistence. But even
here it is not reputable; it may often increase a man's influence in the
tribe or nation, but there are always persons in the wildest forests,
who do not think the practice right or reputable. In the worst state of
Indian society, there are always some glimmerings of truth. If the
conscience of the Red man may be compared to a lamp, it may be said to
have rather sunk low into its socket, than actually to have expired. The
relation between husband and wife, in the forest, are formed under
circumstances, which are generally uniform. Various incidents, or
motives determine a union. Sometimes it is brought about by the
intervention of friends; sometimes from a sudden impulse of admiration;
sometimes with, and sometimes against the wishes of the graver and more
prudent relatives of the parties. Where the husband is acceptable, and
has not before been married, which covers the majority of cases, he
comes to live for a while after marriage, in the lodge of his
mother-in-law; and this relation generally lasts until the increase of
children, or other circumstances determine his setting up a lodge for
himself. Presents are still a ready way for a young hunter to render
himself acceptable in a lodge. There are some instances, where
considerable ceremony, and the invitation of friends, have attended the
first reception of the bridegroom, at the lodge; but these are in most
cases, what we should denominate matches of state, or expediency, in
which the bravery, or other public services of a chief or leader, has
inclined his village to think, that his merits deserve the reward of a
wife. Generally, the acceptance of the visitor by the party most
interested, and her mother and father, and their expressed, or tacit
consent, is the only preliminary, and this is done in a private way. The
only ceremonial observance, of which I have ever heard, is the assigning
of what is called an abbinos, or permanent lodge seat, to the
bridegroom. When this has been done, by the mother or mistress of the
lodge, who governs these things, he is received, and henceforth
installed as a constituent member of the lodge and family. The simple
rule is, that he who has a right to sit by the bride, is her husband.

The lodge itself, with all its arrangements, is the precinct of the rule
and government of the wife. She assigns to each member, his or her
ordinary place to sleep and put their effects. These places are
permanent, and only changed at her will, as when there is a guest by day
or night. In a space so small as a lodge this system preserves order,
and being at all times under her own eye, is enforced by personal
supervision. The husband has no voice in this matter, and I have never
heard of an instance in which he would so far deviate from his position,
as to interfere in these minor particulars. The lodge is her precinct,
the forest his.

There is no law, nor force, to prevent an Indian from decreeing his own
divorce, that is to say, leaving one wife and taking another whenever he
sees cause. Yet it often occurs that there is some plausible pretext for
such a step, such as if true, would form some justification of the
measure. The best protection to married females arises from the ties of
children, which by bringing into play the strong natural affections of
the heart, and appeals at once to that principle in man's original
organization, which is the strongest. The average number of children
borne by the women, and which reach the adult period is small, and will
scarcely exceed two. On the pay rolls it did not exceed this. Much of
this extraordinary result is owing to their erratic mode of life, and
their cramped means of subsistence. Another cause is to be found in the
accidents and exposure to which young children are liable, but still
more to their shocking ignorance of medicine. I once knew a child at
three years of age to be killed by an attempt to restore a deranged
state of the bowels, by a strong overdose of an astringent tincture of
hemlock bark administered by her father. This man, who was called
Attuck, had strong natural affections, but he was very ignorant even in
the eyes of the Indian race, being one of that people living N.E. of
lake Superior, who are called variously Gens de Terres, Mountaineers,
and Muskeegoes. Wherever the laws of reproduction are relieved from
these depressing circumstances, the number of children is seen to be

The chief Iaba-Waddick, who lived on a small bay at the foot of lake
Superior, and had abundance of means of subsistence, had fourteen
children by one wife. He was an excellent hunter, and of habits for the
most part of his life, strictly temperate; he had married young, and had
always had the means of providing his family with adequate clothing and
food. Not one of these children died in infancy. He lived himself to be
old, and died rather from a complaint induced by constitutional
structure, than from a natural decay of vital power.

The duties and labours of Indian life, are believed to be equally, and
not, as has been generally thought, unequally divided between the male
and female. This division is also the most natural possible, and such as
must ever result from the condition of man, as a mere hunter. It is the
duty of the male to provide food, and of the female to prepare it. This
arrangement carries with it to the share of the male, all that relates
to external concerns, and all that pertains to the internal to the care
of the female as completely as is done in civilized life. To the man
belongs not only the business of hunting, for this is an _employment_
and not a _pastime_, but the care of the territory, and keeping off
intruders and enemies, and the preparation of canoes for travel, and of
arms and implements of war. The duties of cooking and dressing meats and
fowl, and whatever else the chase affords, carries on the other hand, to
the share of the hunter's wife, the entire care and controul of the
lodge, with its structure and removal, and the keeping it in order, with
all its utensils and apparatus. A good and frugal hunter's wife, makes
all this a point of ambitious interest, and takes a pride in keeping it
neat and proper for the reception of her husband's guests. She sweeps
the earth clean around the fire, with a broom of branches of the cedar
constructed for this purpose. This lodge it is to be remembered, is made
not of beams and posts, and heavy carpentry, but out of thin poles, such
as a child can lift, set in the ground in a circle, bent over and tied
at the top, and sheathed with long sheets of the white birch bark. A rim
of cedar wood at the bottom, assimilates these birch bark sheets to the
roller of a map, to which in stormy weather a stone is attached to hold
it firm. This stick has also the precise use of a map-roller, for when
the lodge is to be removed, the bark is rolled on it, and in this shape
carried to the canoe, to be set up elsewhere. The circle of sticks or
frame, is always left standing, as it would be useless to encumber the
canoe with what can easily be had at any position in a forest country.

Such at least is the hunting lodge, and indeed, the lodge generally used
by the tribes north of latitude 42°. It is, in its figure, a half globe,
and by its lightness and wicker-like structure, may be said to resemble
an inverted bird's nest. The whole amount of the transportable materials
of it, is often comprehended in some half a dozen good rolls of bark,
and as many of rush mats which the merest girl can easily lift. The mats
which are the substitute for floor cloths, and also the under stratum of
the sleeping couch, are made out of the common lacustris or bullrush,
or the flag, cut at the proper season, and woven in a warp of fine hemp
net thread, such as is furnished by traders in the present state of the
Indian trade. A portion of this soft vegetable woof, is dyed, and woven
in various colours. Lodges thus constructed are to be still abundantly
seen, by the summer visitor, in the upper lakes, at all the principal
points, to which the Indians resort, during the height of summer. Such
are the posts of Michilimackinac, Sault Ste. Marie, and Green Bay. At
Michilimackinac, where it is now difficult to get fresh lodge poles,
without going some distance, or trespassing on private rights, the
natives who resort thither, of late years, have adopted an ingenious
change, by which two objects are accomplished at the same time, and the
labour of the females dispensed with in getting new poles. It is known,
that the bark canoe, being itself but an enlarged species of wicker
work, has not sufficient strength to be freighted, without previously
having a number of poles laid longitudinally, in the bottom, as a kind
of vertebral support. These poles on landing upon the gravelly shores of
that island, are set up, or _stacked_ to use a military phrase, that is
tying the tops together and then drawing out the other ends so as to
describe a circle, and thus making a perfect cone. The bark tapestry is
hung around these poles very much as it would be around the globular
close lodges; and by this arrangement, an Indian lodge is raised, and
ready for occupation, in as many minutes, after landing, as the most
expert soldiers could pitch a tent in.

Before we can affirm that the labour of preparing these barks and mats
and setting up, and taking down, the lodge, is disproportionately great,
or heavy on the females, it will be necessary to inquire into other
particulars, both on the side of the male and female. Much of the time
of an Indian female, is passed in idleness. This is true not only of a
part of every day, but is emphatically so, of certain seasons of the
year. She has not like the farmer's wife, her cows to milk, her butter
and cheese to make, and her flax to spin. She has not to wash and comb
and prepare her children every morning, to go to school. She has no
extensive or fine wardrobe to take care of. She has no books to read.
She sets little value on time, which is characteristic of all the race.
What she does, is either very plain sewing, or some very pains taking
ornamental thing. When the sheathing and flooring of the lodges are once
made, they are permanent pieces of property, and do not require frequent
renewal. When a skin has been dressed, and a garment made of it, it is
worn, till it is worn out. Frequent ablution and change of dress, are
eminently the traits of high civilization, and not of the hunter's
lodge. The articles which enter into the mysteries of the laundry, add
but little to the cares of a forest housekeeper. With every industrial
effort, and such is, sometimes the case, there is much unoccupied time,
while her husband is compelled by their necessities, to traverse large
tracts, and endure great fatigues, in all weathers in quest of food. He
must defend his hunting grounds, in peace and war, and has his life
daily in his hands. Long absences are often necessary, on these
accounts. It is at such times, during the open season, that the Indian
female exerts her industry. In the fall season, she takes her children
in a canoe, or if she have none, invites a female companion to go with
her, along the streams, to cut the rush, to be manufactured into mats,
at her leisure, in the winter. It is also a part of her duty, at all
seasons, to provide fuel for the lodge fire, which she is careful to do,
that she may suitably receive her husband, on his return from the chase,
and have the means of drying his wet moccasins, and a cheerful spot,
where he may light his pipe, and regain his mental equilibrium, while
she prepares his meals. The very idea of a female's chopping wood, is to
some horrific. But it is quite true that the Indian female _does_ chop
wood, or at least, exert an undue labour, in procuring this necessary
article of the household. In speaking of the female, we, at once, rush
to the poetic idea of the refinement of lady like gentleness, and
delicacy. Not only does the nature of savage life and the hardiness of
muscle created by centuries of forest vicissitude, give the hunter's
wife, but a slender claim on this particular shade of character, but the
kind of labour implied, is very different from the notion civilized men
have of "wood chopping." The emigrant swings a heavy axe of six pounds
weight, incessantly, day _in_, and day _out_, against immense trees, in
the heaviest forest, until he has opened the land to the rays of the
sun, and prepared an amount of cyclopean labours for the power of fire,
and the ox. The hunter clears no forests, the limits of which on the
contrary, he carefully cherishes for his deer to range in. He seats
himself down, with his lodge, in the borders of natural glades, or
meadows, to plant his few hills of maize. He had no metallic axe,
capable of cutting down a tree, before 1492, and he has never learned to
wield a heavy axe up to 1844. His wife, always made her lodge fires by
gathering sticks, and she does so still. She takes a hatchet of one or
two pounds weight, and after collecting dry limbs in the forest, she
breaks them into lengths of about 18 inches, and ties them in bundles,
or faggots, and carries them, at her leisure, to her lodge. Small as
these sticks are, in their length and diameter, but few are required to
boil her pot. The lodge, being of small circumference, but little heat
is required to warm the air, and by suspending the pot by a string from
above, over a small blaze, the object is attained, without that
extraordinary expenditure of wood, which, to the perfect amazement of
the Indian, characterizes the emigrant's roaring fire of logs. The few
fields which the Indians have cleared and prepared for corn fields, in
northern latitudes, are generally to be traced to some adventitious
opening, and have been enlarged very slowly. Hence, I have observed,
that when they have come to be appraised, to fix their value as
improvements upon the land, under treaty provisions, that the amount
thereof may be paid the owner, they have uniformly set a high estimate
upon these ancient clearings, and sometimes regarded their value, one
would think, in the inverse proportion of these limits. As if, indeed,
there were some merit, in having but half an acre of cleared ground,
where, it might be supposed, the owner would have cultivated ten acres.
And this half acre, is to be regarded as the industrial sum of the
agricultural labours of all ages and sexes, during perhaps, ten
generations. Could the whole of this physical effort, therefore, be
traced to female hands, which is doubtful, for the old men and boys,
will often do something, it would not be a very severe imposition. There
is at least, a good deal, it is believed, in this view of the domestic
condition of the women to mitigate the severity of judgment, with which
the proud and labour-hating hunter, has sometimes been visited. He has,
in our view, the most important part of the relative duties of Indian
life, to sustain. In the lodge he is a mild, considerate man, of the
non-interfering and non-scolding species. He may indeed, be looked upon,
rather as the guest of his wife, than what he is often represented to
be, her tyrant, and he is often only known as the lord of the lodge, by
the attention and respect which _she_ shows to him. He is a man of few
words. If her temper is ruffled, he smiles. If he is displeased, he
walks away. It is a province in which his actions acknowledge her right
to rule; and it is one, in which his pride and manliness have exalted
him above the folly of altercation.


There is a prominent hill in the vicinity of Sault Ste. Marie, at the
outlet of lake Superior, called by the French _La Butte des Terres_. An
Indian footpath formerly connected this hill with the old French
settlement at those falls, from which it is distant about a mile. In the
intermediate space, near the path, there formerly stood a tree, a large
mountain ash, from which, Indian tradition says, there issued a sound,
resembling that produced by their own war-drums, during one of the most
calm and cloudless days. This occurred long before the French appeared
in the country. It was consequently regarded as the local residence of a
spirit, and deemed sacred.

From that time they began to deposit at its foot, an offering of small
green twigs and boughs, whenever they passed the path, so that, in
process of time, a high pile of these offerings of the forest was
accumulated. It seemed as if, by this procedure, the other trees had
each made an offering to this tree. At length the tree blew down, during
a violent storm, and has since entirely decayed, but the spot was
recollected and the offerings kept up, and they would have been
continued to the present hour, had not an accidental circumstance put a
stop to it.

In the month of July 1822, the government sent a military force to take
post, at that ancient point of French settlement, at the foot of the
falls, and one of the first acts of the commanding officer was to order
out a fatigue party to cut a wagon road from the selected site of the
post to the hill. This road was directed to be cut sixty feet wide, and
it passed over the site of the tree. The pile of offerings was thus
removed, without the men's knowing that it ever had had a superstitious
origin; and thus the practice itself came to an end. I had landed with
the troops, and been at the place but nine days, in the exercise of my
appropriate duties as an Agent on the part of the government to the
tribe, when this trait of character was mentioned to me, and I was thus
made personally acquainted with the locality, the cutting of the road,
and the final extinction of the rite.

Our Indians are rather prone to regard the coming of the white man, as
fulfilling certain obscure prophecies of their own priests; and that
they are, at best, harbingers of evil to them; and with their usual
belief in fatality, they tacitly drop such rites as the foregoing. They
can excuse themselves to their consciences in such cases, in
relinquishing the worship of a local manito, by saying: it is the tread
of the white man that has desecrated the ground.



There was once a very beautiful young girl, who died suddenly on the day
she was to have been married to a handsome young man. He was also brave,
but his heart was not proof against this loss. From the hour she was
buried, there was no more joy or peace for him. He went often to visit
the spot where the women had buried her, and sat musing there, when, it
was thought, by some of his friends, he would have done better to try to
amuse himself in the chase, or by diverting his thoughts in the
war-path. But war and hunting had both lost their charms for him. His
heart was already dead within him. He pushed aside both his war-club and
his bow and arrows.

He had heard the old people say, that there was a path, that led to the
land of souls, and he determined to follow it. He accordingly set out,
one morning, after having completed his preparations for the journey. At
first he hardly knew which way to go. He was only guided by the
tradition that he must go south. For a while, he could see no change in
the face of the country. Forests, and hills, and vallies, and streams
had the same looks, which they wore in his native place. There was snow
on the ground, when he set out, and it was sometimes seen to be piled
and matted on the thick trees and bushes. At length, it began to
diminish, and finally disappeared. The forest assumed a more cheerful
appearance, the leaves put forth their buds, and before he was aware of
the completeness of the change, he found himself surrounded by spring.
He had left behind him the land of snow and ice. The air became mild,
the dark clouds of winter had rolled away from the sky; a pure field of
blue was above him, and as he went he saw flowers beside his path, and
heard the songs of birds. By these signs he knew that he was going the
right way, for they agreed with the traditions of his tribe. At length
he spied a path. It led him through a grove, then up a long and elevated
ridge, on the very top of which he came to a lodge. At the door stood an
old man, with white hair, whose eyes, though deeply sunk, had a fiery
brilliancy. He had a long robe of skins thrown loosely around his
shoulders, and a staff in his hands.

The young Chippewayan began to tell his story; but the venerable chief
arrested him, before he had proceeded to speak ten words. I have
expected you, he replied, and had just risen to bid you welcome to my
abode. She, whom you seek, passed here but a few days since, and being
fatigued with her journey, rested herself here. Enter my lodge and be
seated, and I will then satisfy your enquiries, and give you directions
for your journey from this point. Having done this, they both issued
forth to the lodge door. "You see yonder gulf," said he, "and the wide
stretching blue plains beyond. It is the land of souls. You stand upon
its borders, and my lodge is the gate of entrance. But you cannot take
your body along. Leave it here with your bow and arrows, your bundle and
your dog. You will find them safe on your return." So saying, he
re-entered the lodge, and the freed traveller bounded forward, as if his
feet had suddenly been endowed with the power of wings. But all things
retained their natural colours and shapes. The woods and leaves, and
streams and lakes, were only more bright and comely than he had ever
witnessed. Animals bounded across his path, with a freedom and a
confidence which seemed to tell him, there was no blood shed here. Birds
of beautiful plumage inhabited the groves, and sported in the waters.
There was but one thing, in which he saw a very unusual effect. He
noticed that his passage was not stopped by trees or other objects. He
appeared to walk directly through them. They were, in fact, but the
souls or shadows of material trees. He became sensible that he was in a
land of shadows. When he had travelled half a day's journey, through a
country which was continually becoming more attractive, he came to the
banks of a broad lake, in the centre of which was a large and beautiful
island. He found a canoe of shining white stone, tied to the shore. He
was now sure that he had come the right path, for the aged man had told
him of this. There were also shining paddles. He immediately entered the
canoe, and took the paddles in his hands, when to his joy and surprise,
on turning round, he beheld the object of his search in another canoe,
exactly its counterpart in every thing. She had exactly imitated his
motions, and they were side by side. They at once pushed out from shore
and began to cross the lake. Its waves seemed to be rising and at a
distance looked ready to swallow them up; but just as they entered the
whitened edge of them they seemed to melt away, as if they were but the
images of waves. But no sooner was one wreath of foam passed, than
another, more threatening still, rose up. Thus they were in perpetual
fear; and what added to it, was the _clearness of the water_, through
which they could see heaps of beings who had perished before, and whose
bones laid strewed on the bottom of the lake. The Master of Life had,
however, decreed to let them pass, for the actions of neither of them
had been bad. But they saw many others struggling and sinking in the
waves. Old men and young men, males and females of all ages and ranks,
were there; some passed, and some sank. It was only the little children
whose canoes seemed to meet no waves. At length, every difficulty was
gone, as in a moment, and they both leapt out on the happy island. They
felt that the very air was food. It strengthened and nourished them.
They wandered together over the blissful fields, where every thing was
formed to please the eye and the ear. There were no tempests--there was
no ice, no chilly winds--no one shivered for the want of warm clothes;
no one suffered for hunger--no one mourned for the dead. They saw no
graves. They heard of no wars. There was no hunting of animals; for the
air itself was their food. Gladly would the young warrior have remained
there forever, but he was obliged to go back for his body. He did not
see the Master of Life, but he heard his voice in a soft breeze: "Go
back, said this voice, to the land from whence you came. Your time has
not yet come. The duties for which I made you, and which you are to
perform, are not yet finished. Return to your people, and accomplish the
duties of a good man. You will be the ruler of your tribe for many days.
The rules you must observe, will be told you by my messenger, who keeps
the gate. When he surrenders back your body, he will tell you what to
do. Listen to him, and you shall afterwards rejoin the spirit, which you
must now leave behind. She is accepted and will be ever here, as young
and as happy as she was when I first called her from the land of snows."
When this voice ceased, the narrator awoke. It was the fancy work of a
dream, and he was still in the bitter land of snows, and hunger and



A lynx almost famished, met a hare one day in the woods, in the winter
season, but the hare was separated from its enemy by a rock, upon which
it stood. The lynx began to speak to it in a very kind manner. "Wabose!
Wabose!"[3] said he, "come here my little white one, I wish to talk to
you." "O no," said the hare, "I am afraid of you, and my mother told me
never to go and talk with strangers." "You are very pretty," replied the
lynx, "and a very obedient child to your parents; but you must know that
I am a relative of yours; I wish to send some word to your lodge; come
down and see me." The hare was pleased to be called pretty, and when she
heard that it was a relative, she jumped down from the place where she
stood, and immediately the lynx pounced upon her and tore her to pieces.

     [3] This word appears to be a derivation from the radix WAWB,
     white. The termination in e is the objective sign. The term is
     made diminutive in s.



A long time ago, there lived an aged Odjibwa and his wife, on the shores
of Lake Huron. They had an only son, a very beautiful boy, whose name
was O-na-wut-a-qut-o, or he that catches the clouds. The family were of
the totem of the beaver. The parents were very proud of him, and thought
to make him a celebrated man, but when he reached the proper age, he
would not submit to the We-koon-de-win, or fast. When this time arrived,
they gave him charcoal, instead of his breakfast, but he would not
blacken his face. If they denied him food, he would seek for birds'
eggs, along the shore, or pick up the heads of fish that had been cast
away, and broil them. One day, they took away violently the food he had
thus prepared, and cast him some coals in place of it. This act brought
him to a decision. He took the coals and blackened his face, and went
out of the lodge. He did not return, but slept without; and during the
night, he had a dream. He dreamed that he saw a very beautiful female
come down from the clouds and stand by his side. "O-no-wut-a-qut-o,"
said she, "I am come for you--step in my tracks." The young man did so,
and presently felt himself ascending above the tops of the trees--he
mounted up, step by step, into the air, and through the clouds. His
guide, at length, passed through an orifice, and he, following her,
found himself standing on a beautiful plain.

A path led to a splendid lodge. He followed her into it. It was large,
and divided into two parts. On one end he saw bows and arrows, clubs and
spears, and various warlike implements tipped with silver. On the other
end, were things exclusively belonging to females. This was the home of
his fair guide, and he saw that she had, on the frame, a broad rich
belt, of many colours, which she was weaving. She said to him: "My
brother is coming and I must hide you." Putting him in one corner, she
spread the belt over him. Presently the brother came in, very richly
dressed, and shining as if he had had points of silver all over him. He
took down from the wall a splendid pipe, together with his sack of
a-pa-ko-ze-gun, or smoking mixture. When he had finished regaling
himself in this way, and laid his pipe aside, he said to his sister:
"Nemissa," (which is, my elder sister,) "when will you quit these
practices? Do you forget that the Greatest of the Spirits has commanded
that you should not take away the children from below? Perhaps you
suppose that you have concealed O-no-wut-a-qut-o, but do I not know of
his coming? If you would not offend me, send him back immediately." But
this address did not alter her purpose. She would not send him back.
Finding that she was purposed in her mind, he then spoke to the young
lad, and called him from his hiding place. "Come out of your
concealment," said he, "and walk about and amuse yourself. You will grow
hungry if you remain there." He then presented him a bow and arrows, and
a pipe of red stone, richly ornamented. This was taken as the word of
consent to his marriage; so the two were considered husband and wife
from that time.

O-no-wut-a-qut-o found every thing exceedingly fair and beautiful around
him, but he found no inhabitants except her brother. There were flowers
on the plains. There were bright and sparkling streams. There were green
vallies and pleasant trees. There were gay birds and beautiful animals,
but they were not such as he had been accustomed to see. There was also
day and night, as on the earth; but he observed that every morning the
brother regularly left the lodge, and remained absent all day; and every
evening the sister departed, though it was commonly but for a part of
the night.

His curiosity was aroused to solve this mystery. He obtained the
brother's consent to accompany him in one of his daily journies. They
travelled over a smooth plain, without boundaries, until
O-no-wut-a-qut-o felt the gnawings of appetite, and asked his companion
if there were no game. "Patience! my brother," said he, "we shall soon
reach the spot where I eat my dinner, and you will then see how I am
provided." After walking on a long time, they came to a place which was
spread over with fine mats, where they sat down to refresh themselves.
There was, at this place, a hole through the sky; and O-no-wut-a-qut-o,
looked down, at the bidding of his companion, upon the earth. He saw
below the great lakes, and the villages of the Indians. In one place, he
saw a war party stealing on the camp of their enemies. In another, he
saw feasting and dancing. On a green plain, young men were engaged at
ball. Along a stream, women were employed in gathering the a-puk-wa for

"Do you see," said the brother, "that group of children playing beside a
lodge. Observe that beautiful and active boy," said he, at the same time
darting something at him, from his hand. The child immediately fell, and
was carried into the lodge.

They looked again, and saw the people gathering about the lodge. They
heard the she-she-gwan of the meeta, and the song he sung, asking that
the child's life might be spared. To this request, the companion of
O-no-wut-a-qut-o made answer--"send me up the sacrifice of a white dog."
Immediately a feast was ordered by the parents of the child, the white
dog was killed, his carcass was roasted, and all the wise men and
medicine men of the village assembled to witness the ceremony. "There
are many below," continued the voice of the brother, "whom you call
great in medical skill, but it is because their ears are open, and they
listen to my voice, that they are able to succeed. When I have struck
one with sickness, they direct the people to look to me: and when they
send me the offering I ask, I remove my hand from off them, and they are
well." After he had said this, they saw the sacrifice parcelled out in
dishes, for those who were at the feast. The master of the feast then
said, "we send this to thee, Great Manito," and immediately the roasted
animal came up. Thus their dinner was supplied, and after they had
eaten, they returned to the lodge by another way.

After this manner they lived for some time; but the place became
wearisome at last. O-no-wut-a-qut-o thought of his friends, and wished
to go back to them. He had not forgotten his native village, and his
father's lodge; and he asked leave of his wife, to return. At length she
consented. "Since you are better pleased," she replied, "with the cares
and the ills, and the poverty of the world, than with the peaceful
delights of the sky, and its boundless prairies, go! I give you
permission, and since I have brought you hither, I will conduct you
back; but remember, you are still my husband, I hold a chain in my hand
by which I can draw you back, whenever I will. My power over you is not,
in any manner, diminished. Beware, therefore, how you venture to take a
wife among the people below. Should you ever do so, it is then that you
shall feel the force of my displeasure."

As she said this, her eyes sparkled--she raised herself slightly on her
toes, and stretched herself up, with a majestic air; and at that moment,
O-no-wut-a-qut-o awoke from his dream. He found himself on the ground,
near his father's lodge, at the very spot where he had laid himself down
to fast. Instead of the bright beings of a higher world, he found
himself surrounded by his parents and relatives. His mother told him he
had been absent a year. The change was so great, that he remained for
some time moody and abstracted, but by degrees, he recovered his
spirits. He began to doubt the reality of all he had heard and seen
above. At last, he forgot the admonitions of his spouse, and married a
beautiful young woman of his own tribe. But within four days, she was a
corpse. Even the fearful admonition was lost, and he repeated the
offence by a second marriage. Soon afterwards, he went out of the lodge,
one night, but never returned. It was believed that his wife had
recalled him to the region of the clouds, where the tradition asserts,
he still dwells, and walks on the daily rounds, which he once witnessed.

       *       *       *       *       *

The native tribes are a people without maxims: One of the few which have
been noticed is this: Do not tell a story in the summer; if you do, the
toads will visit you.



There was once a Shingebiss, [the name of a kind of duck] living alone,
in a solitary lodge, on the shores of the deep bay of a lake, in the
coldest winter weather. The ice had formed on the water, and he had but
four logs of wood to keep his fire. Each of these, would, however, burn
a month, and as there were but four cold winter months, they were
sufficient to carry him through till spring.

Shingebiss was hardy and fearless, and cared for no one. He would go out
during the coldest day, and seek for places where flags and rushes grew
through the ice, and plucking them up with his bill, would dive through
the openings, in quest of fish. In this way he found plenty of food,
while others were starving, and he went home daily to his lodge,
dragging strings of fish after him, on the ice.

Kabebonicca[4] observed him, and felt a little piqued at his
perseverance and good luck in defiance of the severest blasts of wind he
could send from the northwest. "Why! this is a wonderful man," said he;
"he does not mind the cold, and appears as happy and contented, as if it
were the month of June. I will try, whether he cannot be mastered." He
poured forth ten-fold colder blasts, and drifts of snow, so that it was
next to impossible to live in the open air. Still the fire of Shingebiss
did not go out: he wore but a single strip of leather around his body,
and he was seen, in the worst weather, searching the shores for rushes,
and carrying home fish.

     [4] A personification of the North West.

"I shall go and visit him," said Kabebonicca, one day, as he saw
Shingebiss dragging along a quantity of fish. And accordingly, that very
night, he went to the door of his lodge. Meantime Shingebiss had cooked
his fish, and finished his meal, and was lying, partly on his side,
before the fire singing his songs. After Kabebonicca had come to the
door, and stood listening there, he sang as follows:

    Ka       Neej     Ka        Neej
    Be       In       Be        In
    Bon      In       Bon       In
    Oc       Ee.      Oc        Ee.
    Ca       We-ya!   Ca        We-ya!

The number of words, in this song, are few and simple, but they are made
up from compounds which carry the whole of their original meanings, and
are rather suggestive of the ideas floating in the mind, than actual
expressions of those ideas. Literally he sings:

Spirit of the North West--you are but my fellow man.

By being broken into syllables, to correspond with a simple chant, and
by the power of intonation and repetition, with a chorus, these words
are expanded into melodious utterance, if we may be allowed the term,
and may be thus rendered:

    Windy god, I know your plan,
    You are but my fellow man,
    Blow you may your coldest breeze,
    Shingebiss you cannot freeze,
    Sweep the strongest wind you can,
    Shingebiss is still your man,
    Heigh! for life--and ho! for bliss,
    Who so free as Shingebiss?

The hunter knew that Kabebonicca was at his door, for he felt his cold
and strong breath; but he kept on singing his songs, and affected utter
indifference. At length Kabebonicca entered, and took his seat on the
opposite side of the lodge. But Shingebiss did not regard, or notice
him. He got up, as if nobody were present, and taking his poker, pushed
the log, which made his fire burn brighter, repeating as he sat down

You are but my fellow man.

Very soon the tears began to flow down Kabebonicca's cheeks, which
increased so fast, that, presently, he said to himself, "I cannot stand
this--I must go out." He did so, and left Shingebiss to his songs; but
resolved to freeze up all the flag orifices, and make the ice thick, so
that he could not get any more fish. Still Shingebiss, by dint of great
diligence, found means to pull up new roots, and dive under for fish. At
last Kabebonicca was compelled to give up the contest. "He must be aided
by some Monedo," said he, "I can neither freeze him, nor starve him, he
is a very singular being--I will let him alone."

       *       *       *       *       *

The introduction of the Saxon race into North America, has had three
determined opponents, the life of each of whom forms a distinct era.
They were Powhatan, Metakom, and Pontiac. Each pursued the same method
to accomplish his end, and each was the indominitable foe of the
race.--Sassacus ought, perhaps, to be added to the number. Brant, was
but a partisan, and fought for one branch, against another. Tecumseh,
was also, rather the foe of the American type of the race, than the
whole race. The same can be said of lesser men, such as Little Turtle,
Buckanjaheela, and Black Hawk. Uncas was also a partisan, not a hater of
the white race, and like Waub Ojeeg in the north, fought, that one tribe
might prevail over another. If the Saxon race profited by this, he could
not help it. Tuscaloosa fought for his tribe's supremacy; Osceola for



There lived a noted chief on the north banks of the St. Lawrence in the
latter part of the 16th century, who was called by the Iroquois,
Piskaret, but the true pronunciation of whose name, by his own people,
was Bisconace, or the Little Blaze. Names are often arbitrarily bestowed
by the Indians, from some trivial circumstance in domestic life, or
hunting, as mere nick names, which take the place of the real names: for
it is a practice among this people to conceal their real names, from a
subtle, superstitious notion, that, if so known, they will be under the
power of priestly incantation, or some other evil influence.

What the real name of this man was, if it differed from the above, is
not known, as this was his only appellation. He was an Adirondak: that
is to say, one of the race of people who were called Adirondaks by the
Iroquois, but Algonquins by the French. And as the Algonquins and
Iroquois, had lately became deadly enemies and were so then, the
distinction to which Bisconace rose, was in the conducting of the war
which his people waged against the Iroquois, or Five Nations.

It seems, from the accounts of both English and French authors, that the
Algonquins, at the period of the first settlement of the St. Lawrence,
were by far the most advanced in arts and knowledge, and most
distinguished for skill in war and hunting, of all the nations in North
America. This at least is certain, that no chief, far or near, enjoyed
as high a reputation for daring valor and skill as Bisconace. He is
spoken of in this light by all who name him; he was so fierce, subtle
and indomitable that he became the terror of his enemies, who were
startled at the very mention of his name. Bisconace lived on the north
banks of the St. Lawrence, below Montreal, and carried on his wars
against the Indians inhabiting the northern parts of the present state
of New York, often proceeding by the course of the River Sorel.

The period of the Adirondak supremacy, embraced the close of the 15th
century and the beginning of the 16th, and at this time the people began
to derive great power and boldness, from the possession of fire arms,
with which the French supplied them, before their southern and western
neighbours came to participate in this great improvement, this striking
era of the Red man, in the art of war. Golden is thought to be a little
out, in the great estimate he furnishes of the power, influence, and
advances of this great family of the Red Race. The French naturally
puffed them up a good deal; but we may admit that they were most expert
warriors, and hunters, and manufactured arms and canoes, with great
skill. They were the prominent enemies of the Five Nations; and like
all enemies at a distance had a formidable name. The word Adirondak is
one of Iroquois origin; but the French, who always gave their own names
to the Tribes, and had a policy in so doing, called them Algonquins--a
term whose origin is involved in some obscurity. For a time, they
prevailed against their enemies south of the St. Lawrence, but the
latter were soon furnished with arms by the Dutch, who entered the
Hudson in 1609, and their allies, the Iracoson, or Iroquois, soon
assumed that rank in war which, if they had before lacked, raised them
to so high a point of preeminence. It was in that early period of the
history of these nations that Bisconace exerted his power.

Where a people have neither history nor biography, there is but little
hope that tradition will long preserve the memory of events. Some of the
acts of this chief are known through the earlier colonial writers. So
great was the confidence inspired in the breast of this chief, by the
use of fire arms, that he pushed into the Iroquois country like a mad
man, and performed some feats against a people armed with bows only,
which are astonishing.

With only four chiefs to aid him, he left Trois Rivieres, on one
occasion, in a single canoe, with fifteen loaded muskets, thus giving
three pieces, to each man. Each piece was charged with two balls, joined
by a small chain ten inches long. Soon after entering the Sorel river,
he encountered five bark canoes of Iroquois, each having ten men. To
cloak his ruse he pretended to give himself up for lost, in view of such
a disparity of numbers; and he and his companions began to sing their
death song. They had no sooner got near their enemies, however, than
they began to pour in their chain-shot, riddling the frail canoes of the
enemy, who tumbled into the water, and sank under the active blows of
their adversaries. Some he saved to grace his triumphant return, and
these were tortured at the stake.

On another occasion he undertook an enterprize alone. Being well
acquainted with the Iroquois country, he set out, about the time the
snow began to melt, taking the precaution to put the hinder part of his
snow-shoes forward to mislead the enemy, in case his track should be
discovered. As a further precaution, he avoided the plain forest paths,
keeping along the ridges and high stony grounds, where the snow was
melting, that his track might be often lost. When he came near to one of
the Villages of the Five Nations, he hid himself till night. He then
crept forth, and entered a lodge, where he found every soul asleep.
Having killed them all, he took their scalps, and went back to his
lurking place. The next day the people of the village searched in vain
for the perpetrator. At night he again sallied forth, and repeated the
act, on another lodge, with equal secrecy and success. Again the
villagers searched, but could find no traces of his footsteps. They
determined, however, to set a watch. Piskaret, anticipating this,
gathered up his scalps, and stole forth slyly, but found the inhabitants
of every lodge on the alert, save one, where the sentinel had fallen
asleep. This man he despatched and scalped, but alarmed the rest, who
rose in the pursuit. He was, however, under no great fears of being
overtaken. One of the causes of his great confidence in himself was
found in the fact that he was the swiftest runner known. He eluded them
often, sometimes, however, lingering to draw them on, and tire them out.
When he had played this trick, he hid himself. His pursuers, finding
they had let him escape, encamped, thinking themselves in safety, but
they had no sooner fallen asleep, than he stole forth from his lurking
place, and despatched every one of them. He added their scalps to his
bundle of trophies, and then returned.

Recitals of this kind flew from village to village, and gave him the
greatest reputation for courage, adroitness and fleetness.

The Five Nations were, however, early noted for their skill in
stratagem, and owed their early rise to it. They were at this era
engaged in their long, fierce and finally triumphant war against the
Algonquins and Wyandots, or to adopt the ancient terms, the Adirondaks
and Quatoghies. These latter they defeated in a great battle, fought
within two miles of Quebec. In this battle the French, who were in
reality weak in number, were neutral. Their neutrality, on this
occasion, happened in this way. They had urged the reception of priests
upon the Five Nations, through whose influence, they hoped to prevail
over that people, and to wrest western New York from the power of the
Dutch and English. As soon as a number of these missionaries of the
sword and cross had insinuated themselves among the Five Nations, the
latter seized them, as hostages; and, under a threat of their execution,
kept the French quiet in this decisive battle. This scheme had succeeded
so well, that it taught the Five Nations the value of negotiation; and
they determined, the next year, to try another. Pretending that they
were now well satisfied with their triumph on the St. Lawrence, they
sent word that they meant to make a formidable visit to Yonnendio, this
being the official name they bestowed on the governor of Canada. Such
visits they always made with great pomp and show; and on this occasion,
they came with 1000 or 1200 men. On the way to Quebec, near the river
Nicolet, their scouts met Piskaret, whom they cajoled, and kept in utter
ignorance of the large force behind until they had drawn out of him an
important piece of information, and then put him to death. They cut off
his head, and carried it to the Iroquois army. To have killed him, was
regarded as an assurance of ultimate victory. These scouts also carried
to the army the information, which they had obtained, that the
Adirondaks were divided into two bodies, one of which hunted on the
river Nicolet, and the other at a place called Wabmeke, on the north
side of the St. Lawrence. They immediately divided their forces, fell
upon each body at unawares and cut them both to pieces.

This is the great triumph to which Charlevoix, in his history of New
France, alludes. It was the turning point in the war against the
confederated Wyandots, and Algonquins, and, in effect, drove both
nations, in the end, effectually out of the St. Lawrence valley. The
former fled to Lake Huron, to which they imparted their name. Some of
the Adirondaks took shelter near Quebec, under the care of the Jesuits;
the larger number went up the Utawas, to the region of Lake Nipising;
the Atawairos fled to a large chain of islands in Lake Huron, called the
Menaloulins; other bands scattered in other directions. Each one had
some local name; and all, it is probable, were well enough pleased to
hide their defeat by the Five Nations, under local and geographical
designations. But they had no peace in their refuge. The spirit of
revenge burned in the breast of the Iroquois, particularly against their
kindred tribe, the Wyandots, whom they pursued into Lake Huron, drove
them from their refuge at Michilimackinac, and pushed them even to Lake
Superior, where for many years, this ancient tribe continued to dwell.

       *       *       *       *       *

The pernicious examples of white men, who have conducted the Indian
trade, their immoral habits, injustice, and disregard of truth, and open
licentiousness, have created the deepest prejudice in the minds of the
Red men against the whole European race.

The Indian only thinks when he is forced to think, by circumstances.
Fear, hunger and self-preservation, are the three prominent causes of
his thoughts. Affection and reverence for the dead, come next.

Abstract thought is the characteristic of civilization. If teachers
could induce the Indians to think on subjects not before known to them,
or but imperfectly known, they would adopt one of the most efficacious
means of civilizing them.

Christianity is ultraism to an Indian. It is so opposed to his natural
desires, that he, at first, hates it, and decries it. Opposite states of
feeling, however, affect him, precisely as they do white men. What he at
first hates, he may as suddenly love and embrace.

Christianity is not propagated by ratiocination, it is the result of
feelings and affections on the will and understanding. Hence an Indian
can become a christian.





Towards the middle of the seventeenth century, a body of Indians,
composed of the Wyandots (or as they were then called the
Saus-taw-ray-tsee) and Seneca tribes inhabited the borders of Lake
Ontario. The present Wyandots and Senecas are the remains of this
community, and of the cause of their separation and of the relentless
hostilities by which it was succeeded, the following details are given
in the traditionary history of the Wyandots.

A Wyandot girl, whose name for the sake of distinction shall be
_Oon-yay-stee_, and in whom appeared united a rare combination of moral
attractions, and of extraordinary personal beauty, had for her suitors,
nearly all the young men of her tribe. As insensible however, as
beautiful, the attentions of her lovers were productive of no favorable
effect, for though none were rejected, yet neither was any one
distinguished by her partiality. This unaccountable apathy became, in
time, a subject not only of general, but of common interest to the young
Wyandots. A council composed of those interested in the issue of these
many and importunate applications for her favor, was held for the
purpose of devising some method, by which her intentions in relation to
them might be ascertained. At this, when these amourists had severally
conceded, each, that he could boast of no indication of a preference
shown by Oon-yay-stee to himself, upon which to found a reasonable hope
of ultimately succeeding, it was finally determined, that their claims
should be withdrawn in favor of the War Chief of their lodge. This was
adopted, not so much for the purpose of advancing the interests of
another to the prejudice of their own, as to avoid the humiliating
alternative of yielding the object of so much competition to some more
fortunate rival not connected with their band.

It may be here necessary to remark that nearly all the suitors belonged
to one lodge, and that each of these was a large oblong building,
capable of containing 20 or 30 families, the domestic arrangements of
which were regulated by a war chief, acknowledged as the head of that
particular subordinate band.

Many objections to the task imposed on him by this proposition were
interposed by the chief, the principal of which were, the great
disparity of age and the utter futility of any further attempt, upon the
affections of one so obdurate of heart. The first was obviated by some
well applied commendations of his person, and the second yielded to the
suggestion that women were often capricious, were not always influenced
by considerations the most natural, or resolvable to reasons the most

The chief then painted and arrayed himself as for battle, bestowing some
little additional adornment upon his person, to aid him in this species
of warfare, with which he was not altogether so familiar as that in
which he had acquired his reputation; his practice having been confined
rather to the use of stone-headed arrows than love darts, and his
dexterity in the management of hearts displayed rather in making bloody
incisions, than tender impressions. Before he left the lodge, his
retainers pledged themselves, that if the prosecution of this adventure
should impose upon their chief the necessity of performing any feat, to
render him better worthy the acceptance of Oon-yay-stee, they would aid
him in its accomplishment, and sustain him against its consequences to
the last extremity. It was reserved for so adventurous a spirit that it
should be as successful in love, as it had hitherto been resistless in

After a courtship of a few days, he proposed himself and was
conditionally accepted, but what the nature of this condition was,
further than that it was indispensable, Oon-yay-stee refused to tell
him, until he should have given her the strongest assurances that it
should be complied with. After some hesitation and a consultation with
the lovers who urged him to give the promise, he declared himself ready
to accept the terms of the compact. Under her direction he then pledged
the word of a warrior, that neither peril to person, nor sacrifice of
affection should ever prevail with him to desist, imprecating the
vengeance of _Hau-men-dee-zhoo_, and the persecution of
_Dairh-shoo-oo-roo-no_ upon his head if he failed to prosecute to the
uttermost, the enterprise, if its accomplishment were only possible.

She told him to bring her the scalp of a Seneca chief whom she
designated, who for some reason she chose not to reveal, was the object
of her hatred.

The Wyandot saw too late, that he was committed. He besought her to
reflect, that this man was his bosom friend, they had eaten and drank
and grown up together--and how heavy it would make his heart to think
that his friend had perished by his hand. He remonstrated with her on
the cruelty of such a requisition, on the infamy of such an outrage of
confidence and the execration which would forever pursue the author of
an action so accursed. But his expostulations were made to deaf ears.
She told him either to redeem his pledge, or consent to be proclaimed
for a lying dog, whose promises were unworthy ever to be heard, and then
left him.

An hour had hardly elapsed, before the infuriated Wyandot blackened his
face, entered the Seneca Village, tomahawked and scalped his friend, and
as he rushed out of the lodge shouted the scalp-whoop. In the darkness
of the night his person could not be distinguished, and he was
challenged by a Seneca to whom he gave his name, purpose, and a defiance
and then continued his flight. But before it had terminated, the long
mournful scalp-whoop of the Senecas was resounding through the Wyandot
Village; and the chief had hardly joined in the furious conflict that
ensued between the avengers of his murdered victim and his own
retainers, before he paid with his life the forfeit of his treachery.

After a deadly and sustained combat for three days and nights, with
alternate success, the Wyandots were compelled to retire, deserting
their village and abandoning their families to such mercy as might be
granted by an infuriated enemy. Those who were left, sunk under the
tomahawk and scalping knife--the village was devastated--and the
miserable author of the bloody tragedy herself perished amid this scene
of indiscriminate slaughter and desolation.

This war is said to have continued for a period of more than 30 years,
in which time, the Wyandots had been forced backwards as far as Lakes
Huron and Michigan. Here they made an obstinate stand, from which all
the efforts of their relentless enemies to dislodge them were
ineffectual. Their inveterate hatred of each other was fostered by the
war parties of the respective tribes, whose vindictive feelings led them
to hunt and destroy each other, like so many beasts of the forest. These
resulted generally in favor of the Wyandots, who, inspirited by these
partial successes, prepared for more active operations. Three encounters
took place, on the same day, two being had on Lake Michigan and one on
Lake Erie, and which from their savage and exterminating character,
closed this long and merciless contest. It is somewhat remarkable, as no
other tradition makes mention of an Indian battle upon water, that one
of these, said to have occurred on Lake Erie, between Long Point and
Fort Talbot, was fought in canoes. Of this the following detail is

A large body of Wyandots accompanied by two Ottawas left Lake Huron in
birch canoes, on a war excursion into the country of the Senecas, who
had settled at this time, near the head of the Niagara river. They put
ashore at Long Point to cook, when one of the Ottawas and a Wyandot were
sent out as spies to reconnoitre. They had proceeded but a short
distance from the camp, when they met two Senecas, who had been
despatched by their party for the like purposes, and from whom they
instantly fled. The Ottawa finding his pursuers gaining upon him, hid
himself in the branches of a spruce tree, where he remained till the
Seneca had passed. The Wyandot, fleeter of foot, succeeded in reaching
his camp and gave the alarm, when the whole body embarked and pushed out
into the lake. In another moment a party of Senecas was discovered,
turning the nearest point of land in wooden canoes. Immediately the
war-whoops were sounded and the hostile bands began to chant their
respective songs. As they slowly approached each other, the Wyandots
struck a fire, and prepared their gum and bark to repair any damage
which might occur to the canoes. The battle was fought with bows and
arrows, and after a furious and obstinate contest of some hours, in
which the carnage was dreadful, and the canoes were beginning to fill
with blood, water and mangled bodies, the Senecas began to give way. The
encouraged Wyandots fought with redoubled ardor, driving the Senecas to
the shore, where the conflict was renewed with unabated fury. The
Wyandots were victorious, and few of the surviving Senecas escaped to
tell the story of their defeat. One of the prisoners, a boy, was spared
and adopted by the nation. Two Wyandots are now living who profess to
have seen him, when very far advanced in years.

The two other attacks to which allusion has been made, as occurring on
the borders of Lake Michigan, were not more fortunate in their issue.
The Senecas were repulsed with great slaughter.

Thus, say the Wyandots, originated this long, bloody and disastrous war,
and thus it terminated after proving nearly the ruin of our nation.


_Upper Sandusky, March 1st, 1827._


The oldest books we possess written by the first observers of our
Indians abound in interest. Among these is a small work by William Wood,
who visited Plymouth and Massachusetts soon after their settlement, and
published his "_New England's Prospect_," in London, in 1634.

The following extract from this book, (now very scarce,) we make here,
partly for the purpose which the author declares he had in view in
writing it, viz.: to excite the special interest of our female readers,
though the good humour and wit, as well as the benevolence of the
writer, will doubtless commend it to persons of both sexes. That we may
not run the risk of losing any of the effect of the quaint,
old-fashioned style of the original, we have been careful to preserve
the author's orthography and punctuation, together with the long
sentences, for which, as well as many of his contemporaries, he was
remarkable. We have omitted short and unimportant passages in a few
places, marked with asterisks.





There was a snail living on the banks of the river Missouri, where he
found plenty of food, and wanted nothing. But at length the waters began
to rise and overflow its banks, and although the little animal clung to
a log, the flood carried them both away: they floated along for many
days. When the water fell, the poor snail was left in the mud and slime,
on shore. The heat of the sun came out so strong, that he was soon fixed
in the slime and could not stir. He could no longer get any nourishment.
He became oppressed with heat and drought. He resigned himself to his
fate and prepared to die. But all at once, he felt a renewed vigour. His
shell burst open, and he began to rise. His head gradually rose above
the ground, he felt his lower extremities assuming the character of feet
and legs. Arms extended from his sides. He felt their extremities divide
into fingers. In fine he rose, under the influence of one day's sun,
into a tall and noble man. For a while he remained in a dull and stupid
state. He had but little activity, and no clear thoughts. These all came
by degrees, and when his recollections returned, he resolved to travel
back to his native land.

But he was naked and ignorant. The first want he felt was hunger. He saw
beasts and birds, as he walked along, but he knew not how to kill them.
He wished himself again a snail, for he knew how, in _that_ form, to get
his food. At length he became so weak, by walking and fasting, that he
laid himself down, on a grassy bank, to die. He had not laid long, when
he heard a voice calling him by name. "Was-bas-has," exclaimed the
voice. He looked up, and beheld the Great Spirit sitting on a white
horse. His eyes glistened like stars. The hair of his head shone like
the sun. He could not bear to look upon him. He trembled from head to
foot. Again the voice spoke to him in a mild tone "Was-bas-has! Why do
you look terrified?" "I tremble," he replied, "because I stand before
Him who raised me from the ground. I am faint and hungry,--I have eaten
nothing since the floods left me upon the shore--a little shell."

The Great Spirit here lifted up his hands and displaying a bow and
arrows, told him to look at him. At a distance sat a bird on a tree. He
put an arrow to the string, and pulling it with force, brought down the
beautiful object. At this moment a deer came in sight. He placed another
arrow to the string, and pierced it through and through. "These" said
he, "are your food, and these are your arms," handing him the bow and
arrows. He then instructed him how to remove the skin of the deer, and
prepare it for a garment. "You are naked," said he, "and must be
clothed; it is now warm, but the skies will change, and bring rains, and
snow, and cold winds." Having said this, he also imparted the gift of
fire, and instructed him how to roast the flesh. He then placed a collar
of wampum around his neck. "This," said he, "is your authority over all
beasts." Having done this, both horse and rider rose up, and vanished
from his sight.

Was-bas-has refreshed himself, and now pursued his way to his native
land. He had seated himself on the banks of the river, and was
meditating on what had passed, when a large beaver rose up from the
channel and addressed him. "Who art thou;" said the beaver, "that comest
here to disturb my ancient reign?" "I am a _man_," he replied; "I was
once a _shell_, a creeping shell; but who art thou?" "I am king of the
nation of beavers," he answered: "I lead my people up and down this
stream; we are a busy people, and the river is my dominion." "I must
divide it with you," retorted Was-bas-has. "The Great Spirit has placed
me at the head of beasts and birds, fishes and fowl; and has provided me
with the power of maintaining my rights." Here he held up the bow and
arrows, and displayed the collar of shells around his neck. "Come,
come," said the Beaver, modifying his tone, "I perceive we are
brothers.--Walk with me to my lodge, and refresh yourself after your
journey," and so saying he led the way. The Snail-Man willingly obeyed
his invitation, and had no reason to repent of his confidence. They soon
entered a fine large village, and his host led him to the chief's lodge.
It was a well-built room, of a cone-shape, and the floor nicely covered
with mats. As soon as they were seated, the Beaver directed his wife and
daughter to prepare food for their guest. While this was getting ready,
the Beaver chief thought he would improve his opportunity by making a
fast friend of so superior a being; whom he saw, at the same time, to be
but a novice. He informed him of the method they had of cutting down
trees, with their teeth, and of felling them across streams, so as to
dam up the water, and described the method of finishing their dams with
leaves and clay. He also instructed him in the way of erecting lodges,
and with other wise and seasonable conversation beguiled the time. His
wife and daughter now entered, bringing in vessels of fresh peeled
poplar, and willow, and sassafras, and alder bark, which is the most
choice food known to them. Of this, Was-bas-has made a merit of tasting,
while his entertainer devoured it with pleasure. He was pleased with the
modest looks and deportment of the chiefs daughter, and her cleanly and
neat attire, and her assiduous attention to the commands of her father.
This was ripened into esteem by the visit he made her. A mutual
attachment ensued. A union was proposed to the father, who was rejoiced
to find so advantageous a match for his daughter. A great feast was
prepared, to which all the beavers, and other animals on good terms with
them, were invited. The Snail-Man and the Beaver-Maid were thus united,
and this union is the origin of the Osages. So it is said by the old

[Illustration: INDIAN MAIDEN]





     [5] Blind Woman.

At the time when the animals reigned in the earth, they had killed all
but a girl, and her little brother, and these two were living in fear
and seclusion. The boy was a perfect pigmy, and never grew beyond the
stature of a small infant; but the girl increased with her years, so
that the labor of providing food and lodging devolved wholly on her. She
went out daily to get wood for their lodge-fire, and took her little
brother along that no accident might happen to him; for he was too
little to leave alone. A big bird might have flown away with him. She
made him a bow and arrows, and said to him one day, "I will leave you
behind where I have been chopping--you must hide yourself, and you will
soon see the Git-shee-gitshee-gaun, ai see-ug or snow birds, come and
pick the worms out of the wood, where I have been chopping," (for it was
in the winter.) "Shoot one of them and bring it home." He obeyed her,
and tried his best to kill one, but came home unsuccessful. She told him
he must not despair, but try again the next day. She accordingly left
him at the place she got wood, and returned. Towards nightfall, she
heard his little footsteps on the snow, and he came in exultingly, and
threw down one of the birds, which he had killed. "My sister," said he,
"I wish you to skin it and stretch the skin, and when I have killed
more, I will have a coat made out of them." "But what shall we do with
the body?" said she: for as yet men had not begun to eat animal food,
but lived on vegetables alone. "Cut it in two," he answered, "and season
our pottage with one half of it at a time." She did so. The boy, who
was of a very small stature, continued his efforts, and succeeded in
killing ten birds, out of the skins of which his sister made him a
little coat.

"Sister," said he one day, "are we all alone in the world? Is there
nobody else living?" She told him that those they feared and who had
destroyed their relatives lived in a certain quarter, and that he must
by no means go in that direction. This only served to inflame his
curiosity and raise his ambition, and he soon after took his bow and
arrows and went in that direction. After walking a long time and meeting
nothing, he became tired, and lay down on a knoll, where the sun had
melted the snow. He fell fast asleep; and while sleeping, the sun beat
so hot upon him, that it singed and drew up his bird-skin coat, so that
when he awoke and stretched himself, he felt bound in it, as it were. He
looked down and saw the damage done to his coat. He flew into a passion
and upbraided the sun, and vowed vengeance against it, "Do not think you
are too high," said he, "I shall revenge myself."

On coming home he related his disaster to his sister, and lamented
bitterly the spoiling of his coat. He would not eat. He lay down as one
that fasts, and did not stir, or move his position for ten days, though
she tried all she could to arouse him. At the end of ten days, he turned
over, and then lay ten days on the other side. When he got up, he told
his sister to make him a snare, for he meant to catch the sun. She said
she had nothing; but finally recollected a little piece of dried deer's
sinew, that her father had left, which she soon made into a string
suitable for a noose. But the moment she showed it to him, he told her
it would not do, and bid her get something else. She said she had
nothing--nothing at all. At last she thought of her hair, and pulling
some of it out of her head, made a string. But he instantly said it
would not answer, and bid her, pettishly, and with authority, make him a
noose. She told him there was nothing to make it of, and went out of the
lodge. She said to herself, when she had got without the lodge, and
while she was all alone, "neow obewy indapin." This she did, and
twisting them into a tiny cord she handed it to her brother. The moment
he saw this curious braid he was delighted. "This will do," he said, and
immediately put it to his mouth and began pulling it through his lips;
and as fast as he drew it changed it into a red metal cord, which he
wound around his body and shoulders, till he had a large quantity. He
then prepared himself, and set out a little after midnight, that he
might catch the sun before it rose. He fixed his snare on a spot just
where the sun would strike the land, as it rose above the earth's disc;
and sure enough, he caught the sun, so that it was held fast in the
cord, and did not rise.

The animals who ruled the earth were immediately put into a great
commotion. They had no light. They called a council to debate upon the
matter, and to appoint some one to go and cut the cord--for this was a
very hazardous enterprize, as the rays of the sun would burn whoever
came so near to them. At last the dormouse undertook it--for at this
time the dormouse was the largest animal in the world. When it stood up
it looked like a mountain. When it got to the place where the sun was
snared, its back began to smoke and burn, with the intensity of the
heat, and the top of its carcass was reduced to enormous heaps of ashes.
It succeeded, however, in cutting the cord with its teeth, and freeing
the sun, but it was reduced to a very small size, and has remained so
ever since. Men call it the Kug-e-been-gwa-kwa.





Ampata Sapa was the wife of a brave young hunter and warrior, by whom
she had two children. They lived together in great happiness, which was
only varied by the changes of a forest life. Sometimes they lived on the
prairies; sometimes they built their wigwam in the forest, near the
banks of a stream, and they paddled their canoe up and down the rivers.
In these trips they got fish, when they were tired of wild meats. In the
summer season they kept on the open grounds; in the winter, they fixed
their camp in a sheltered position, in the woods. The very change of
their camp was a source of pleasure, for they were always on the lookout
for something new. They had plenty, and they wanted nothing.

In this manner the first years of their marriage passed away. But it so
happened, that as years went by, the reputation of her husband in the
tribe increased, and he soon came to be regarded as a Weetshahstshy
Atapee, or chief. This opened a new field for his ambition and pride.
The fame of a chief, it is well known, is often increased by the number
of his wives. His lodge was now thronged with visitors. Some came to
consult him; some to gain his favour. All this gave Ampata Sapa no
uneasiness, for the Red People like to have visitors, and to show
hospitality. The first thing that caused a jar in her mind, was the
rumour that her husband was about to take a new wife. This was like a
poison in her veins; for she had a big heart. She was much attached to
her husband, and she could not bear the idea of sharing his affections
with another. But she found that the idea had already got strong hold of
her husband's mind, and her remonstrances did little good. He defended
himself on the ground, that it would give him greater influence in the
tribe if he took the daughter of a noted chief. But before he had time
to bring her to his lodge, Ampata Sapa had fled from it, taking her two
children, and returned to her father's lodge. Her father lived at some
distance, and here she remained a short time in quiet. The whole band
soon moved up the Mississippi, to their hunting ground. She was glad to
go with them, and would, indeed, have been glad to go any where, to get
farther from the lodge of her faithless husband.

Here the winter wore away. When the Spring opened, they came back again
to the banks of the river, and mended and fitted up the canoes, which
they had left in the fall. In these they put their furs, and descended
to the Falls of St. Anthony. Ampata Sapa lingered behind a short time
the morning of their embarkation, as they began to draw near the rapids
which precede the great plunge. She then put her canoe in the water, and
embarked with her children. As she approached the falls, the increasing
velocity of the current rendered the paddles of but little use. She
rested with her's suspended in her hands, while she arose, and uttered
her lament:

"It was him only that I loved, with the love of my heart. It was for him
that I prepared, with joy, the fresh killed meat, and swept with boughs
my lodge-fire. It was for him I dressed the skin of the noble deer, and
worked, with my hands, the Moccasins that graced his feet.

I waited while the sun ran his daily course, for his return from the
chase, and I rejoiced in my heart when I heard his manly footsteps
approach the lodge. He threw down his burden at the door--it was a
haunch of the deer;--I flew to prepare the meat for his use.

My heart was bound up in him, and he was all the world to me. But he has
left me for another, and life is now a burden which I cannot bear. Even
my children add to my griefs--they look so much like him. How can I
support life, when all its moments are bitter! I have lifted up my voice
to the Master of life. I have asked him to take back that life, which he
gave, and which I no longer wish. I am on the current that hastens to
fulfil my prayer. I see the white foam of the water. It is my shroud. I
hear the deep murmur from below. It is my funeral song. Farewell."

It was too late to arrest her course. She had approached too near the
abyss, before her purpose was discovered by her friends. They beheld her
enter the foam--they saw the canoe for an instant, on the verge, and
then disappear for ever. Such was the end of Ampata Sapa; and they say
her canoe can sometimes be seen, by moonlight, plunging over the falls.

       *       *       *       *       *

Internal dissention has done more to destroy the Indian power in
America, than the white man's sword. Could the tribes learn the wisdom
of confederation, they might yet be saved. This is a problem now
undergoing an interesting process of solution.





Great good luck once happened to a young woman who was living all alone
in the woods, with nobody near her but her little dog, for, to her
surprise, she found fresh meat every morning at her door. She felt very
anxious to know who it was that supplied her, and watching one morning,
very early, she saw a handsome young man deposit the meat. After his
being seen by her, he became her husband, and she had a son by him. One
day not long after this, the man did not return at evening, as usual,
from hunting. She waited till late at night, but all in vain. Next day
she swung her baby to sleep in its tikenágun, or cradle, and then said
to her dog: "Take care of your brother whilst I am gone, and when he
cries, halloo for me." The cradle was made of the finest wampum, and all
its bandages and decorations were of the same costly material. After a
short time the woman heard the cry of her faithful dog, and running home
as fast as she could, she found her child gone and the dog too. But on
looking round, she saw pieces of the wampum of her child's cradle bit
off by the dog, who strove to retain the child and prevent his being
carried off by an old woman called Mukakee Mindemoea, or the Toad-Woman.
The mother followed at full speed, and occasionally came to lodges
inhabited by old women, who told her at what time the thief had passed;
they also gave her shoes, that she might follow on. There were a number
of these old women, who seemed as if they were all prophetesses. Each of
them would say to her, that when she arrived in pursuit of her stolen
child at the next lodge, she must set the toes of the moccasins they had
loaned her pointing homewards, and they would return of themselves. She
would get others from her entertainers farther on, who would also give
her directions how to proceed to recover her son. She thus followed in
the pursuit, from valley to valley, and stream to stream, for months and
years; when she came, at length, to the lodge of the last of the
friendly old Nocoes, or grandmothers, as they were called, who gave her
final instructions how to proceed. She told her she was near the place
where her son was, and directed her to build a lodge of shingoob, or
cedar boughs, near the old Toad-Woman's lodge, and to make a little bark
dish and squeeze her milk into it. "Then," she said, "your first child
(meaning the dog) will come and find you out." She did accordingly, and
in a short time she heard her son, now grown, going out to hunt, with
his dog, calling out to him, "Monedo Pewaubik (that is, Steel or Spirit
Iron,) Twee, Twee!" She then set ready the dish and filled it with her
milk. The dog soon scented it and came into the lodge; she placed it
before him. "See my child," said she, addressing him, "the food you used
to have from me, your mother." The dog went and told his young master
that he had found his _real_ mother; and informed him that the old
woman, whom he _called_ his mother, was not his mother, that she had
stolen him when an infant in his cradle, and that he had himself
followed her in hopes of getting him back. The young man and his dog
then went on their hunting excursion, and brought back a great quantity
of meat of all kinds. He said to his pretended mother, as he laid it
down, "Send some to the stranger that has arrived lately." The old hag
answered, "No! why should I send to her--the Sheegowish."[6] He
insisted; and she at last consented to take something, throwing it in at
the door, with the remark, "My son gives you, or feeds you this." But it
was of such an offensive nature, that she threw it immediately out after

     [6] _Sheegowiss_, a widow, and _mowigh_, something nasty.

After this the young man paid the stranger a visit, at her lodge of
cedar boughs, and partook of her dish of milk. She then told him she was
his real mother, and that he had been stolen away from her by the
detestable Toad-Woman, who was a witch. He was not quite convinced. She
said to him, "Feign yourself sick, when you go home, and when the
Toad-Woman asks what ails you, say that you want to see your cradle; for
your cradle was of wampum, and your faithful brother, the dog, bit a
piece off to try and detain you, which I picked up, as I followed in
your track. They were real wampum, white and blue, shining and
beautiful." She then showed him the pieces. He went home and did as his
real mother bid him. "Mother," said he, "why am I so different in my
looks from the rest of your children?" "Oh," said she, "it was a very
bright clear blue sky when you were born; that is the reason." When the
Toad-Woman saw he was ill, she asked what she could do for him. He said
nothing would do him good, but the sight of his cradle. She ran
immediately and got a cedar cradle; but he said, "That is not my
cradle." She went and got one of her own children's cradles, (for she
had four,) but he turned his head and said, "That is not mine." She then
produced the real cradle, and he saw it was the same, in substance, with
the pieces the other had shown him; and he was convinced, for he could
even see the marks of the dog's teeth upon it.

He soon got well, and went out hunting, and killed a fat bear. He and
his dog-brother then stripped a tall pine of all its branches, and stuck
the carcass on the top, taking the usual sign of his having killed an
animal--the tongue. He told the Toad-Woman where he had left it, saying,
"It is very far, even to the end of the earth." She answered, "It is not
so far but I can get it," so off she set. As soon as she was gone, the
young man and his dog killed the Toad-Woman's children, and staked them
on each side of the door, with a piece of fat in their mouths, and then
went to his real mother and hastened her departure with them. The
Toad-Woman spent a long time in finding the bear, and had much ado in
climbing the tree to get down the carcass. As she got near home, she saw
the children looking out, apparently, with the fat in their mouths, and
was angry at them, saying, "Why do you destroy the pomatum of your
brother." But her fury was great indeed, when she saw they were killed
and impaled. She ran after the fugitives as fast as she could, and was
near overtaking them, when the young man said, "We are pressed hard, but
let this stay her progress," throwing his fire steel behind him, which
caused the Toad-Woman to slip and fall repeatedly. But still she pursued
and gained on them, when he threw behind him his flint, which again
retarded her, for it made her slip and stumble, so that her knees were
bleeding; but she continued to follow on, and was gaining ground, when
the young man said, "Let the Oshau shaw go min un (snake berry) spring
up to detain her," and immediately these berries spread like scarlet all
over the path for a long distance, which she could not avoid stooping
down to pick and eat. Still she went on, and was again advancing on
them, when the young man at last, said to the dog, "Brother, chew her
into mummy, for she plagues us." So the dog, turning round, seized her
and tore her to pieces, and they escaped.

       *       *       *       *       *

Death is frightful, or welcome, according to the theories men have of
it. To the Indian, it is a pleasing and welcome event. He believes a
future state to be one of rewards, and restitutions, and not of

The Indian idea of paradise is the idea of the orientals. It consists of
sensualities, not spiritualities. He expects the scene to furnish him
ease and plenty. Ease and plenty make the Indian's happiness here, and
his heaven is but a bright transcript of his earth.

Paganism and idolatry, require more mysteries for their support than
Christianity. The Christian has but one God, existing in three
hypostases. It would be below the truth to say that the Indian has one
hundred thousand gods.

The Hindoos _worship_ their multiform gods of the earth, air and sea.
The North American Indian only _believes_ in them. He worships the Great

Wild thoughts are often bright thoughts, but like the wild leaps of a
mountain torrent, they are evanescent and unequal. We are dazzled by a
single figure in an Indian speech, but it is too often like a spark amid
a shower of ashes.



Metoxon states, that the Shawnees were, in ancient times, while they
lived in the south, defeated by a confederacy of surrounding tribes, and
in danger of being totally cut off and annihilated, had it not been for
the interference of the Mohegans and Delawares. An alliance between them
and the Mohegans, happened in this way. Whilst the Mohegans lived at
Schodack, on the Hudson river, a young warrior of that tribe visited the
Shawnees, at their southern residence, and formed a close friendship
with a young warrior of his own age. They became as brothers, and vowed
for ever to treat each other as such.

The Mohegan warrior had returned, and been some years living with his
nation, on the banks of the Chatimac, or Hudson, when a general war
broke out against the Shawnees. The restless and warlike disposition of
this tribe, kept them constantly embroiled with their neighbours. They
were unfaithful to their treaties, and this was the cause of perpetual
troubles and wars. At length the nations of the south resolved, by a
general effort, to rid themselves of so troublesome a people, and began
a war, in which the Shawnees were defeated, battle after battle, with
great loss. In this emergency, the Mohegan thought of his Shawnee
brother, and resolved to rescue him. He raised a war-party and being
joined by the Lenapees, since called Delawares, they marched to their
relief, and brought off the remnant of the tribe to the country of the
Lenapees. Here they were put under the charge of the latter, as their

They were now, in the Indian phrase, put between their grandfather's
knees, and treated as little children. Their hands were clasped and tied
together--that is to say, they were taken under their protection, and
formed a close alliance. But still, sometimes the child would creep out
under the old man's legs, and get into trouble--implying that the
Shawnees could never forget their warlike propensities.

The events of the subsequent history of this tribe, after the settlement
of America are well known. With the Lenapees, or Delawares, they
migrated westward.

The above tradition was received from the respectable and venerable
chief, above named, in 1827, during the negotiation of the treaty of
_Buttes des Morts_, on Fox river. At this treaty his people, bearing the
modern name of Stockbridges, were present, having, within a few years,
migrated from their former position in Oneida county, New York, to the
waters of Fox river, in Wisconsin.

Metoxon was a man of veracity, and of reflective and temperate habits,
united to urbanity of manners, and estimable qualities of head and
heart, as I had occasion to know from several years' acquaintance with
him, before he, and his people went from Vernon to the west, as well as
after he migrated thither.

The tradition, perhaps with the natural partiality of a tribesman, lays
too much stress upon a noble and generous act of individual and tribal
friendship, but is not inconsistent with other relations, of the early
southern position, and irrascible temper of the Shawnee tribe. Their
name itself, which is a derivative from O-shá-wan-ong, the place of the
South, is strong presumptive evidence of a former residence in, or
origin from, the extreme south. Mr. John Johnston, who was for many
years the government agent of this tribe at Piqua, in Ohio, traces them,
in an article in the Archælogia Americana (vol. 1, p. 273) to the
Suwanee river in Florida. Mr. Gallatin, in the second volume of the same
work (p. 65) points out their track, from historical sources of
undoubted authority, to the banks of the upper Savannah, in Georgia; but
remarks that they have only been well known to us since 1680. They are
first mentioned in our scattered Indian annals, by De Laet, in 1632.

It may further be said in relation to Metoxon's tradition, that there is
authority for asserting, that in the flight of the Shawnees from the
south, a part of them descended the Kentucky river west, to the Ohio
valley, where, in after times, the Shawnees of Pennsylvania and New
Jersey, rather formed a re-union with this division of their kindred
than led the way for them.

       *       *       *       *       *

To depart one step from barbarism, is to take one step towards
civilization. To abandon the lodge of bark--to throw aside the
blanket--to discontinue the use of paints--or to neglect the nocturnal
orgies of the wabeno, are as certain indications of incipient
civilization, as it unquestionably is, to substitute alphabetical
characters for rude hieroglyphics, or to prefer the regular cadences of
the gamut, to the wild chanting of the chichigwun.




There was once a man who found himself alone in the world. He knew not
whence he came, nor who were his parents, and he wandered about from
place to place, in search of something. At last he became wearied and
fell asleep. He dreamed that he heard a voice saying, "Nosis," that is,
my grandchild. When he awoke he actually heard the word repeated, and
looking around, he saw a tiny little animal hardly big enough to be seen
on the plain. While doubting whether the voice could come from such a
diminutive source, the little animal said to him, "My grandson, you will
call me Bosh-kwa-dosh. Why are you so desolate. Listen to me, and you
shall find friends and be happy. You must take me up and bind me to your
body, and never put me aside, and success in life shall attend you." He
obeyed the voice, sewing up the little animal in the folds of a string,
or narrow belt, which he tied around his body, at his navel. He then set
out in search of some one like himself, or other object. He walked a
long time in woods without seeing man or animal. He seemed all alone in
the world. At length he came to a place where a stump was cut, and on
going over a hill he descried a large town in a plain. A wide road led
through the middle of it; but what seemed strange was, that on one side
there were no inhabitants in the lodges, while the other side was
thickly inhabited. He walked boldly into the town.

The inhabitants came out and said; "Why here is the being we have heard
so much of--here is Anish-in-á-ba. See his eyes, and his teeth in a half
circle--see the Wyaukenawbedaid! See his bowels, how they are
formed;"--for it seems they could look through him. The king's son, the
Mudjékewis, was particularly kind to him, and calling him
brother-in-law, commanded that he should be taken to his father's lodge
and received with attention. The king gave him one of his daughters.
These people, (who are supposed to be human, but whose rank in the scale
of being is left equivocal,) passed much of their time in play and
sports and trials of various kinds. When some time had passed, and he
had become refreshed and rested, he was invited to join in these
sports. The first test which they put him to, was the trial of frost. At
some distance was a large body of frozen water, and the trial consisted
in lying down naked on the ice, and seeing who could endure the longest.
He went out with two young men, who began, by pulling off their
garments, and lying down on their faces. He did likewise, only keeping
on the narrow magic belt with the tiny little animal sewed in it; for he
felt that in this alone was to be his reliance and preservation. His
competitors laughed and tittered during the early part of the night, and
amused themselves by thoughts of his fate. Once they called out to him,
but he made no reply. He felt a manifest warmth given out by his belt.
About midnight finding they were still, he called out to them, in
return,--"What!" said he, "are you benumbed already, I am but just
beginning to feel a little cold." All was silence. He, however, kept his
position till early day break, when he got up and went to them. They
were both quite dead, and frozen so hard, that the flesh had bursted out
under their finger nails, and their teeth stood out. As he looked more
closely, what was his surprise to find them both transformed into
buffalo cows. He tied them together, and carried them towards the
village. As he came in sight, those who had wished his death were
disappointed, but the Mudjékewis, who was really his friend, rejoiced.
"See!" said he "but one person approaches,--it is my brother-in-law." He
then threw down the carcasses in triumph, but it was found that by their
death he had restored two inhabitants to the before empty lodges, and he
afterwards perceived, that every one of these beings, whom he killed,
had the like effect, so that the depopulated part of the village soon
became filled with people.

The next test they put him to, was the trial of speed. He was challenged
to the race ground, and began his career with one whom he thought to be
a man; but every thing was enchanted here, for he soon discovered that
his competitor was a large black bear. The animal outran him, tore up
the ground, and sported before him, and put out its large claws as if to
frighten him. He thought of his little guardian spirit in the belt, and
wishing to have the swiftness of the Kakake, i. e. sparrow hawk, he
found himself rising from the ground, and with the speed of this bird he
outwent his rival, and won the race, while the bear came up exhausted
and lolling out his tongue. His friend the Mudjékewis stood ready, with
his war-club, at the goal, and the moment the bear came up, dispatched
him. He then turned to the assembly, who had wished his friend and
brother's death, and after reproaching them, he lifted up his club and
began to slay them on every side. They fell in heaps on all sides; but
it was plain to be seen, the moment they fell, that they were not men,
but animals,--foxes, wolves, tigers, lynxes, and other kinds, lay thick
around the Mudjékewis.

Still the villagers were not satisfied. They thought the trial of
frost, had not been fairly accomplished, and wished it repeated. He
agreed to repeat it, but being fatigued with the race, he undid his
guardian belt, and laying it under his head, fell asleep. When he awoke,
he felt refreshed, and feeling strong in his own strength, he went
forward to renew the trial on the ice, but quite forgot the belt, nor
did it at all occur to him when he awoke, or when he lay down to repeat
the trial. About midnight his limbs became stiff, the blood soon ceased
to circulate, and he was found in the morning, a stiff corpse. The
victors took him up and carried him to the village, where the loudest
tumult of victorious joy was made, and they cut the body into a thousand
pieces, that each one might eat a piece.

The Mudjékewis bemoaned his fate, but his wife was inconsolable. She lay
in a state of partial distraction, in the lodge. As she lay here, she
thought she heard some one groaning. It was repeated through the night,
and in the morning, she carefully scanned the place, and running her
fingers through the grass, she discovered the secret belt, on the spot
where her husband had last reposed. "Aubishin!" cried the belt--that is,
untie me, or unloose me. Looking carefully, she found the small seam
which enclosed the tiny little animal. It cried out the more earnestly
"Aubishin!" and when she had carefully ripped the seams, she beheld, to
her surprise, a minute, naked little beast, smaller than the smallest
new born mouse, without any vestige of hair, except at the tip of its
tail, it could crawl a few inches, but reposed from fatigue. It then
went forward again. At each movement it would _pupowee_, that is to say,
shake itself, like a dog, and at each shake it became larger. This it
continued until it acquired the strength and size of a middle sized dog,
when it ran off.

The mysterious dog ran to the lodges, about the village, looking for the
bones of his friend, which he carried to a secret place, and as fast as
he found them arranged all in their natural order. At length he had
formed all the skeleton complete, except the heel bone of one foot. It
so happened that two sisters were out of the camp, according to custom,
at the time the body was cut up, and this heel was sent out to them. The
dog hunted every lodge, and being satisfied that it was not to be found
in the camp, he sought it outside of it, and found the lodge of the two
sisters. The younger sister was pleased to see him, and admired and
patted the pretty dog, but the elder sat mumbling the very heel-bone he
was seeking, and was surly and sour, and repelled the dog, although he
looked most wistfully up in her face, while she sucked the bone from one
side of her mouth to the other. At last she held it in such a manner
that it made her cheek stick out, when the dog, by a quick spring,
seized the cheek, and tore cheek and bone away and fled.

He now completed the skeleton, and placing himself before it, uttered a
hollow, low, long-drawn-out-howl, when the bones came compactly
together. He then modulated his howl, when the bones knit together and
became tense. The third howl brought sinews upon them, and the fourth,
flesh. He then turned his head upwards, looking into the sky, and gave a
howl, which caused every one in the village to startle, and the ground
itself to tremble, at which the breath entered into his body, and he
first breathed and then arose. "Hy kow!" I have overslept myself, he
exclaimed, "I will be too late for the trial." "Trial!" said the dog, "I
told you never to let me be separate from your body, you have neglected
this. You were defeated, and your frozen body cut into a thousand
pieces, and scattered over the village, but my skill has restored you.
Now I will declare myself to you, and show who and what I am!"

He then began to PUPOWEE, or shake himself, and at every shake, he grew.
His body became heavy and massy, his legs thick and long, with big
clumsy ends, or feet. He still shook himself, and rose and swelled. A
long snout grew from his head, and two great shining teeth out of his
mouth. His skin remained as it was, naked, and only a tuft of hair grew
on his tail. He rose up above the trees. He was enormous. "I should fill
the earth," said he, "were I to exert my utmost power, and all there is
on the earth would not satisfy me to eat. Neither could it fatten me or
do me good. I should want more. It were useless, therefore, and the gift
I have, I will bestow on you. The animals shall henceforth be _your
food_. They were not designed to feed on man, neither shall they
hereafter do it, but shall _feed_ him, and he only shall prey on beasts.
But you will respect me, and not eat my _kind_."

     [The preceding is a traditionary tale of Maidosegee, an aged and
     respected hunter, of Sault-ste-Mairie, who was the ruling chief of
     the band of Chippewas at those falls, and the progenitor of the
     present line of ruling chiefs. It is preserved through the Johnston
     family, where he was a frequent guest, prior to 1810, and was happy
     to while away many of his winter's evenings, in return for the
     ready hospitalities which were sure to await him at the house of
     the Indian's friend.]





MÄSH-KWA-SHA-KWONG, was a first rate hunter, and he loved the chase
exceedingly, and pursued it with unceasing vigilance. One day, on his
return home, arriving at his lodge, he was informed by his two sons, who
were but small then, that they were very lonesome, because their mother
was in the habit of daily leaving them alone, and this occurred so soon
as he started upon his daily chase. This circumstance was not unknown
to Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong, but he seemed fully aware of it; he took his boys
in his arms and kissed them, and told them that their mother behaved
improperly and was acting the part of a wicked and faithless woman. But
Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong behaved towards his wife as if ignorant of her vile
course. One morning rising very early, he told his sons to take courage,
and that they must not be lonesome, he also strictly enjoined them not
to absent themselves nor quit their lodge; after this injunction was
given to the boys, he made preparations, and starting much earlier than
usual, he travelled but a short distance from his lodge, when he halted
and secreted himself. After waiting a short time, he saw his wife coming
out of their lodge, and immediately after a man made his appearance and
meeting Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong's wife, they greeted one another. His
suspicions were now confirmed, and when he saw them in the act of
carrying on an illegal intercourse, his anger arose, he went up to them
and killed them with one blow; he then dragged them both to his lodge,
and tying them together, he dug a hole beneath the fire-place in his
lodge and buried them. He then told his sons that it was necessary that
he should go away, as he would surely be killed if he remained, and
their safety would depend upon their ability of keeping the matter a
secret. He gave his eldest son a small bird, (Kichig-e-chig-aw-na-she)
to roast for his small brother over the ashes and embers where their
mother was buried, he also provided a small leather bag, and then told
his sons the necessity of his immediate flight to heaven, or to the
skies. And that it would be expedient for them to fly and journey
southward, and thus prepared their minds for the separation about to
take place. "By and bye," said Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong to his sons, "persons
will come to you and enquire for me and for your mother, you will say to
them that I am gone hunting, and your little brother in the mean time
will continually point to the fire place, this will lead the persons to
whom I allude, to make inquiries of the cause of this pointing, and you
will tell them that you have a little bird roasting for your brother,
this will cause them to desist from further inquiry at the time. As soon
as they are gone escape! While you are journeying agreeably to my
instructions, I will look from on high upon you, I will lead and conduct
you, and you shall hear my voice from day to day." Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong at
this time gave his sons an awl, a beaver's tooth, and a hone, also a dry
coal, and directed them to place a small piece of the coal on the ground
every evening, so soon as they should encamp, from which fire would be
produced and given to them; he told his eldest son to place his brother
in the leather bag, and in that manner carry him upon his back; he then
bade them farewell.

The two boys being thus left alone in the lodge, and while in the act of
roasting the little bird provided for them, a man came in, and then
another, and another, until they numbered ten in all; the youngest boy
would from time to time point at the fire, and the men enquired to know
the reason, the eldest boy said that he was roasting a bird for his
brother, and digging the ashes produced it. They enquired, where their
father and mother were, the boy answered them saying, that their father
was absent hunting, and that their mother had gone to chop and collect
wood; upon this information the men rose and searched around the
outskirts of the lodge, endeavouring to find traces of the man and his
wife, but they were not successful, and returned to the lodge. Before
this, however, and during the absence of the ten men, Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong's
eldest son placed his little brother in the leather bag, (Ouskemood,) and
ran away southward.

One of the ten men observed, that the smallest boy had repeatedly
pointed to the fire place, and that they might find out something by
digging; they set to work, and found the woman and the man tied
together. On this discovery their wrath was kindled, they brandished
their weapons, denouncing imprecations upon Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong, who was
of course suspected of having committed the deed.

The ten men again renewed their search in order to avenge themselves
upon the perpetrator of this dark deed, but Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong, in order
to avoid instant death, had sought a large hollow tree, and entering at
the bottom or root part, passed through and reached the top of it, from
whence he took his flight upwards to the sky. His pursuers finally
traced him, and followed him as far as the tree, and into the sky, with
loud and unceasing imprecations of revenge and their determination to
kill him. The spirit of the mother alone followed her children. About
mid-day the boys heard, as they ran, a noise in the heavens like the
rolling of distant thunder.[7] The boys continued their journey south,
when the noise ceased; towards night they encamped; they put a small
piece of the coal on the ground, then a log of fire-wood was dropped
down from the skies to them, from whence a good blazing fire was
kindled. This was done daily, and when the fire was lit, a raccoon would
fall from on high upon the fire, and in this manner the boys were fed,
and this over-ruling care they experienced daily. In the evenings at
their camping place, and sometimes during the day, the Red Head's voice
was heard speaking to his children, and encouraging them to use their
utmost exertions to fly from the pursuit of their mother. To aid them in
escaping, they were told to throw away their awl, and immediately there
grew a strong and almost impassable hedge of thorn bushes behind them,
in their path, which the pursuing mother could scarcely penetrate, and
thus impeding her progress, tearing away her whole body and leaving
nothing but the head. So they escaped the first day.

     [7] Note by Mr. George Johnston, from whom this tale was
     received.--Any thing of the kind, or a similar noise heard, is
     attributed by the Indian, to this day, as an indication of the
     contention between Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong and his pursuers, and hence
     a prelude to wars and contentions among the nations of the world.

The next day they resumed their march and could distinctly hear the
noise of combat in the sky, as if it were a roaring thunder; they also
heard the voice of their mother behind them, desiring her eldest son to
stop and wait for her, saying that she wished to give the breast to his
brother; then again Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong's voice, encouraging his sons to
fly for their lives, and saying that if their mother overtook them she
would surely kill them.

In the evening of the second day the boys prepared to encamp, and the
noise of combat on high ceased; on placing a small piece of the coal on
the ground, a log and some fire-wood was let down as on the preceding
night, and the fire was kindled, and then the raccoon placed on it for
their food. This was fulfilling the promise made by their father, that
they would be provided for during their flight. The beaver's tooth was
here thrown away, and this is the cause why the northern country now
abounds with beaver, and also the innumerable little lakes and marshes,
and consequently the rugged and tedious travelling now experienced.

On the third day the boys resumed their flight, and threw away their
hone, and it became a high rocky mountainous ridge, the same now seen on
the north shore of these straits, (St. Mary's) which was a great
obstacle in the way of the woman of the Head, for this was now her name,
because that part alone remained of her whole frame, and with it she was
incessantly uttering determinations to kill her eldest son; the boys
finally reached the fishing place known as the eddy of Wah-zah-zhawing,
at the rapids of Bawating, situated on the north shore of the river.
Here Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong, told his sons that he had himself been
overtaken in his flight by his pursuers and killed, and he appeared to
them in the shape of a red headed wood-pecker, or a _mama_. This is a
bird that is seldom or never attacked by birds of prey, for no vestiges
of his remains are ever seen or found by the Indian hunter. "Now my
sons," said the red headed wood-pecker, "I have brought you to this
river, you will now see your grand father and he will convey you across
to the opposite side." Then the boys looked to the southern shore of the
river, and they saw in the middle of the rapid, an OSHUGGAY standing on
a rock; to the Oshuggay the boys spoke, and accosted him as their grand
father, requesting him to carry them across the river Bawating. The
Oshuggay stretching his long neck over the river to the place where the
boys stood, told them to get upon his head and neck, and again
stretching to the southern shore, he landed the boys in safety, upon a
prairie: the crane was seen walking in state, up and down the prairie.

The persevering mother soon arrived at Wah-zah-hawing, and immediately
requested the Oshuggay to cross her over, that she was in pursuit of
her children and stating that she wished to overtake them; but the
Oshuggay seemed well aware of her character, and objected to conveying
her across, giving her to understand that she was a lewd and bad woman;
he continued giving her a long moral lecture upon the course she had
pursued and the bad results to mankind in consequence, such as quarrels,
murders, deaths, and hence widowhood.

The woman of the Head persisted in her request of being conveyed across.
Objections and entreaties followed. She talked as if she were still a
woman, whose favour was to be sought; and he, as if he were above such
favours. After this dialogue the Oshuggay said that he would convey her
across, on the condition that she would adhere strictly to his
injunctions; he told her not to touch the bare part of his head, but to
get upon the hollow or crooked part of his neck; to this she agreed, and
got on. The Oshuggay then withdrew his long neck to about half way
across, when feeling that she had forgotten her pledge he dashed her
head upon the rocks, and the small fish, that were so abundant instantly
fed upon the brain and fragments of the skull and became large white
fish. "A fish" said the Oshuggay, "that from this time forth shall be
abundant, and remain in these rapids to feed the Indians and their
issue, from generation to generation."[8]

     [8] The small white shells that the white fish live upon, and the
     white substance found in its gizzard are to this day considered by
     the Indians, the brain and skull of the woman of the Head.

After this transaction of the Oshuggay's, landing the boys safely
across, and dashing the woman's head upon the rocks, he spake to the
Crane and mutually consulting one another in relation to
Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong's sons they agreed to invite two women from the
eastward, of the tribe of the WASSISSIG, and the two lads took them for
wives. The Oshuggay plucked one of his largest wing feathers and gave it
to the eldest boy, and the Crane likewise did the same, giving his
feathers to the youngest; they were told to consider the feathers as
their sons after this, one feather appeared like an Oshuggay and the
other like a young Crane. By and by they appeared like human beings to
the lads. Thus the alliance was formed with the Wassissig, and the
circumstance of the Oshuggay and Crane interesting themselves in behalf
of the boys and the gift to them of their feathers and the result, is
the origin of the Indian _Totem_.

Here Mäsh-kwa-sha-kwong's sons were told that they would be considered
as chieftains and that this office would be hereditary and continue in
their generations. After this, they multiplied exceedingly and became
strong and powerful. About this time the Obinangoes, (or the Bears'
Totem) came down from Shaugah-wah-mickong, near the extremity of Lake
Superior. On their way eastward they were surprised on reaching Bawating
to find such a numerous population of human beings: they were not aware
of its being in existence; fear came upon the Obinangoes, and they
devised the plan of securing friendship with the Oshuggays and Cranes,
by adopting and claiming a relationship with them, and calling them
their grandsons. This claim was yielded, and they were permitted to
remain at Bawaiting upon the score of relationship thus happily
attained. The Obenangoes eventually emigrated eastward and settled upon
the northern coast of Lakes Huron and Ontario.

Population increased so rapidly at Bawaiting, that it was necessary to
form new villages, some settling on the Garden River, some upon the
Pakaysaugauegan River, and others upon the island of St. Joseph's, and
upon the Menashkong Bay and Mashkotay Saugie River.

About this time, a person in the shape of a human being came down from
the sky; his clothing was exceedingly pure and white; he was seated as
it were in a nest, with a very fine cord attached to it, by which this
mysterious person was let down, and the cord or string reached heaven.
He addressed the Indians in a very humane, mild, and compassionate tone,
saying that they were very poor and needy, but telling them that they
were perpetually _asleep_, and this was caused by the Mache Monedo who
was in the midst of them, and leading them to death and ruin.

This mysterious personage informed them also that above, where he came
from, there was no night, that the inhabitants never slept, that it was
perpetually day and they required no sleep; that Kezha Monedo was their
light. He then invited four of the Indians to ascend up with him
promising that they would be brought back in safety; that an opportunity
would thereby present itself to view the beauty of the sky, or heavens.
But the Indians doubted and feared lest the cord should break, because
it appeared to them so small. They did not believe it possible it could
bear their weight. With this objection they excused themselves. They
were, however, again assured that the cord was sufficiently strong and
that Kezha Monedo had the power to make it so. Yet the Indians doubted
and feared, and did not accompany the messenger sent down to them. After
this refusal the mysterious person produced a small bow and arrows with
which he shot at the Indians in different parts of their bodies: the
result was, the killing of multitudes of small white worms, which he
showed to them; telling them that they were the Mache Monedo which
caused them to sleep, and prevented their awakening from their
death-like state.

This divine messenger then gave to the Indians laws and rules, whereby
they should be guided: first, to love and fear Kezha Monedo, and next
that they must love one another, and be charitable and hospitable; and
finally, that they must not covet their neighbours property, but acquire
it by labour and honest industry. He then instituted the grand medicine
or metay we win dance: this ceremony was to be observed annually, and
with due solemnity, and the Indians, said Nabinoi, experienced much good
from it; but unfortunately, the foolish young men were cheated by Mache
Monedo, who caused them to adopt the Wabano dance and its ceremonies.
This latter is decidedly an institution of the _sagemaus_, or evil
spirits, and this was finally introduced into the metay we wining,
(i. e. medicine dance) and thereby corrupted it.

The old chief continued his moral strain thus: While the Indians were
instructed by the heavenly messenger they were told that it would snow
continually for the space of five years, winter and summer, and the end
would then be nigh at hand; and again that it would rain incessantly as
many winters and summers more, which would cause the waters to rise and
overflow the earth, destroying trees and all manner of vegetation. After
this, ten winters and summers of drought would follow, drying up the
land, and mostly the lakes and rivers; not a cloud would be seen during
this period. The earth would become so dry, that it will then burn up
with fire of itself, and it will also burn the waters to a certain
depth, until it attains the first created earth and waters. Then the
good Indians will rise from death to enjoy a new earth, filled with an
abundance of all manner of living creatures. The only animal which will
not be seen is the beaver. The bad Indians will not enjoy any portion of
the new earth; they will be condemned and given to the evil spirits.

Four generations, he went on to say, have now passed away, since that
brotherly love and charity, formerly known, still existed among the
Indians. There was in those ancient times an annual meeting among the
Indians, resembling the French New Year's Day, which was generally
observed on the new moon's first appearance, Gitchy Monedo gesus. The
Indians of our village would visit these of another, and sometimes meet
one another dancing; and on those occasions they would exchange bows and
arrows, their rude axes, awls, and kettles, and their clothing. This was
an annual festival, which was duly observed by them. In those days the
Indians lived happy; but every thing is now changed to the Indian mind,
indicating the drawing near and approach of the end of time. The Indians
who still adhere to the laws of the heavenly messenger experience
happiness; and, on the contrary, concluded the old man, those who are
wicked and adhere to the Wabano institution, generally meet with their
reward; and it is singular to say that they generally come to their end
by accidents, such as drowning, or miserable deaths.

He then reverted to the former part of his story. The Oshuggays, and the
Cranes quarrelled, and this quarrel commenced on a trivial point. It
appears that the Cranes took a pole, without leave, from the Oshuggays,
and they broke the pole; this circumstance led to a separation. The
Oshuggays emigrated south, and are now known as the Shawnees.





There was an old hag of a woman living with her daughter-in-law and son,
and a little orphan boy, whom she was bringing up. When her son-in-law
came home from hunting, it was his custom to bring his wife the moose's
lip, the kidney of the bear, or some other choice bits of different
animals. These she would cook crisp, so as to make a sound with her
teeth in eating them. This kind attention of the hunter to his wife, at
last, excited the envy of the old woman. She wished to have the same
luxuries, and in order to get them she finally resolved to make way with
her son's wife. One day, she asked her to leave her infant son to the
care of the orphan boy, and come out and swing with her. She took her to
the shore of a lake, where there was a high range of rocks overhanging
the water. Upon the top of this rock, she erected a swing. She then
undressed, and fastened a piece of leather around her body, and
commenced swinging, going over the precipice at every swing. She
continued it but a short time, when she told her daughter to do the
same. The daughter obeyed. She undressed, and tying the leather string
as she was directed, began swinging. When the swing had got in full
motion and well a going, so that it went clear beyond the precipice, at
every sweep, the old woman slyly cut the cords and let her daughter drop
into the lake. She then put on her daughter's clothing, and thus
disguised went home in the dusk of the evening and counterfeited her
appearance and duties. She found the child crying, and gave it the
breast, but it would not draw. The orphan boy asked her where its mother
was. She answered, "She is still swinging." He said, "I shall go and
look for her." "No!" said she, "you must not--what should you go for?"
When the husband came in, in the evening, he gave the coveted morsel to
his supposed wife. He missed his mother-in-law, but said nothing. She
eagerly ate the dainty, and tried to keep the child still. The husband
looked rather astonished to see his wife studiously averting her face,
and asked her why the child cried so. She said, she did not know--that
it would not draw.

In the meantime the orphan boy went to the lake shores, and found no
one. He mentioned his suspicions, and while the old woman was out
getting wood, he told him all that he had heard or seen. The man then
painted his face black, and placed his spear upside down in the earth
and requested the Great Spirit to send lightning, thunder, and rain, in
the hope that the body of his wife might arise from the water. He then
began to fast, and told the boy to take the child and play on the lake

We must now go back to the swing. After the wife had plunged into the
lake, she found herself taken hold of by a water tiger, whose tail
twisted itself round her body, and drew her to the bottom. There she
found a fine lodge, and all things ready for her reception, and she
became the wife of the water tiger. Whilst the children were playing
along the shore, and the boy was casting pebbles into the lake, he saw a
gull coming from its centre, and flying towards the shore, and when on
shore, the bird immediately assumed the human shape. When he looked
again he recognized the lost mother. She had a leather belt around her
loins, and another belt of white metal, which was, in reality, the tail
of the water tiger, her husband. She suckled the babe, and said to the
boy--"Come here with him, whenever he cries, and I will nurse him."

The boy carried the child home, and told these things to the father.
When the child again cried, the father went also with the boy to the
lake shore, and hid himself in a clump of trees. Soon the appearance of
a gull was seen, with a long shining belt, or chain, and as soon as it
came to the shore, it assumed the mother's shape, and began to suckle
the child. The husband had brought along his spear, and seeing the
shining chain, he boldly struck it and broke the links apart. He then
took his wife and child home, with the orphan boy. When they entered the
lodge, the old woman looked up, but it was a look of despair, she
instantly dropped her head. A rustling was heard in the lodge, and the
next moment, she leaped up, and flew out of the lodge, and was never
heard of more.

       *       *       *       *       *

The name of God, among the ancient Mexicans, was Teo, a word seldom
found, except in compound phrases. Among the Mohawks and Onondagas, it
is Neo. With the western Senecas, as given by Smith, Owayneo. With the
Odjibwas, Monedo; with the Ottowas, Maneto. Many modifications of the
word by prefixes, to its radix Edo, appear among the cognate dialects.
It is remarkable that there is so striking a similarity in the principal
syllable, and it is curious to observe that Edo is, in sound, both the
Greek term Deo, and the Azteek Teo, transposed. Is there any thing
absolutely _fixed_ in the sounds of languages?





Most of the individuals who have figured amongst the Red Race in
America, have appeared under circumstances which have precluded any
thing like a full and consistent biography. There is, in truth, but
little in savage life, to furnish materials for such biographies. The
very scantiness of events determines this. A man suddenly appears among
these tribes as a warrior, a negotiator, an orator, or a prophet, by a
name that nobody ever before heard of. He excites attention for a short
time, and then sinks back into the mass of Indian society, and is no
more heard of. His courage, his eloquence, or his diplomatic skill, are
regarded as evidences of talent, and energy of thought or action, which,
under better auspices, might have produced a shining and consistent
character. But he has been left by events, and is sunk in the mass. He
appeared rather like an erratic body, or flash, than a fixed light amid
his people. The circumstances that brought him into notice have passed
away. A victory has been won, a speech made, a noble example given. The
affair has been adjusted, the tribe resumed its hunting, or
corn-planting, or wandering, or internal discords, and the new name,
which promised for a while to raise a Tamerlane, or Tippoo Saib in the
west, settles down in the popular mind; and if it be not wholly lost, is
only heard of now and then, as one of the signatures to some land
treaty. There is not, in fact, sufficient, in the population, military
strength, or importance of the affairs of _most_ of our tribes, to work
out incidents for a sustained and full biography. Even the most
considerable personages of past times, who have been honoured with such
full notices, have too much resemblance to a stout boy in his father's
regimentals. They hang loosely about him. The most that can be done--all
indeed which the occasion requires in general--is a sketch of such
particular events, in aboriginal history, as the individual has
connected his name with. It is proposed in the progress of this work, to
furnish some of such sketches from the unwritten annals of the west and
the north.

Among that class of aboriginal chiefs and actors, who have not risen to
the highest distinction, or attained general notoriety out of the circle
of their own tribes, was Takozid, or the Short-Foot; a Mukundwa, or
pillager; a fierce, warlike, and predatory tribe of the Odjibwa
Algonquin stock, who, at an early time seated themselves on the sources
of the Mississippi, making their head quarters at Leech Lake. To this
place, their traditions assert, they came from Chagoimegon, or still
farther east, prior to the discovery of the country by Europeans. They
were consequently intruders in, or conquerors of the country, and drove
back some other people. It seems equally probable that this people were
the Dacotahs, the Naddowassies, or as it is abbreviated, Sioux, of early
French writers. The Sioux are a numerous and warlike stock, who occupy
portions of the banks of the Missouri and the Mississippi, at, and about
the latitude of St. Anthony's Falls. A hereditary war of which "the
memory of man runneth not to the contrary," was the consequence of this
ancient inroad. Of all this region of country we can speak from personal
knowledge, having traversed it at sundry times, and in various
directions. It is in local reminiscence, little more than a widely
extended scene of Indian battles, ambuscades and murders. There is
hardly a prominent stream, plain or forest, which is not referred to, as
the traveller proceeds, as the particular locality of some fight,
tragedy, or hair-breadth escape among the Red Men. The Olympic games
were not a surer test of fame in successful rivalry, than is this wide
area of aboriginal warfare, for the opposing nations of the Sioux and
Chippewas. War is the prime avenue to distinction to the Indian mind. As
soon as a hunter has acquired any distinction, and begins to look upon
himself as a person of courage and address, he turns his efforts to the
war path. Whatever else he is famous for, this is the crowning test and
seal of his reputation. And none have pursued it with more incessant
devotion than the Chippewas.

Takozid determined from his earliest youth to take a part in the strife
for barbaric glory. He early joined the war parties going into the great
plains. He learned their arts, repeated their songs, and became expert
in all the warrior's arts. He established the reputation of a brave
young man. The next step was to lead a war party himself. He courted
popularity by generosity, self denial, and attention to their religious
rites and ceremonies. These things may be done on a smaller scale, as
effectually among a band of savages, as in the hall or forum. He
succeeded. He raised a war party, conducted it into the plains,
discovered his enemies, approached them slyly, fell upon them, defeated
them, and returned in triumph with their scalps to his village. His deep
and hollow CHE KWAN DUM, or death-cry of victory as he came to the
eminence which overlooked his village, announced all this before he set
foot in his village: and the number of his scalps.

These exploits placed him on the pinnacle of fame. It is a curious fact,
in the lives of our Red men, to observe that war is a stimulus to
poligamy. One of the first things he thought of, as a proper reward for
his bravery, was to take another wife. In this, his friends and
partizans concurred, although he had no cause of dissatisfaction with
his first wife, to whom he had been married but a short time, and who
had borne him a son. Time added confirmation to this plan. It was talked
of, and even debated by the chiefs. It was conceded to be due to his
bravery. All, indeed, appeared to approve of it, but his wife. She heard
of the rumor with alarm, and received the account of its confirmation,
with pain. It could no longer be doubted, for the individual who was to
share, nay, control the lodge with her was named, and the consent of her
parents had been obtained.

Monon, or the Little-Iron-Wood-Tree, as she was called, was a female of
no ordinary firmness of character. She was ardently attached to her
husband, not the less so for his rising fame, jealous of her rights, and
prompted by strong feelings to maintain them. In all these points she
was above the generality of her country women. Like others, however, in
a community where poligamy was common, she might have submitted at
length, to her fate, had not her rival in the affections of Takozid,
appealed to a deeper seated principle, and waked up, in the breast of
the injured wife, the feeling of revenge: a principle reckless enough,
in communities where there are the safeguards of education and
christianity to restrain and regulate it; but horrible in wild and
roving bands of barbarians. Monon's fidelity was slandered. She was a
pure and high minded woman, and the imputation goaded her to the quick.

When this slander first reached her ears, through the ordinary channel
of village gossip, a chord was struck, which vibrated through every
throe, and steeled her heart for some extraordinary act; although none
could anticipate the sanguinary deed which marked the nuptial night. An
Indian marriage is often a matter of little ceremony. It was not so, on
this occasion. To render the events imposing, many had been invited. The
bride was dressed in her best apparel. Her father was present. Many
young and old, males and females were either present or thronged around
the lodge. The broad clear blue waters of the lake, studded with green
islands, spread before the door. A wide grassy lawn, which was the
village ball and play ground, extended down to its margin. It was a
public event. A throng had gathered around. Takozid was to be married.
He was to take a second wife, in the daughter of Obegwud. Takozid
himself was there. Hilarity reigned within and without. All indeed, were
there, but the dejected and deserted Monon, who had been left with her
child, at the chieftain's own lodge.

But a spirit had been aroused in her breast, which would not permit her
to remain absent. She crossed the green silently, stealthily. She stood
gazing awhile at the lake. She approached the bridal lodge. She passed
easily among the group. She entered the lodge. Nor had any one, at that
moment, a thought of suspicion or alarm. The bride was seated on her
envied abbinos; her affianced husband was at her side.

All at once, there arose a shrill cry, in the Chippewa tongue. "_This_,"
vociferated the enraged Monon, "_This_ for the bastard!" and at each
repetition of the words, she raised an Indian poignard, in her hand.
The suddenness of her movement had paralyzed every attempt to arrest
her. Amazement sat in every face. She had plunged a pointed knife into
the breast of her rival.

There is little to be added to such a catastrophe. Its very suddenness
and atrocity appalled every one. Nobody arrested her, and nobody pursued
her. She returned as she came, and re-entered her lodge. Her victim
never spoke.

From this moment the fame of Takozid declined. The event appeared to
have unmanned him. He went no more to war. His martial spirits appeared
to have left him. He sank back into the mass of Indian society, and was
scarcely ever mentioned. Nor should we, indeed, have recalled his name
from its obscurity, were it not associated in the Indian reminiscences
of Leech lake, with this sanguinary deed.

I had this relation a few years ago, from a trader, who had lived at
Leech lake, who personally knew the parties, and whose veracity I had no
reason at all, to call into question. It is one of the elements that go
into the sum of my personal observations, on savage life, and as such I
cast it among these papers. To judge of the Red race aright, we must
view it, in all its phases, and if we would perform our duty towards
them, as christians and men, we should gather our data from small, as
well as great events, and from afar as well as near. When all has been
done, in the way of such collections and researches, it will be found,
we think, that their errors and crimes, whatever they are, assume no
deeper dye than philanthropy has had reason to apprehend them to take,
without a knowledge of the principles of the gospel. _Thou shalt not
kill_, is a law, yet to be enforced, among more than two hundred
thousand souls, who bear the impress of a red skin, within the
acknowledged limits of the American Union.




     "The Pagan world not only believes in a myriad of gods, but
     worships them also. It is the peculiarity of the North American
     Indian, that while he _believes_ in as many, he _worships_ but one,
     the Great Spirit."--(_Schoolcraft_.)

Chemanitou, being the master of life, at one time became the origin of a
spirit, that has ever since caused himself and all others of his
creation a great deal of disquiet. His birth was owing to an accident.
It was in this wise.

METÓWAC, or as the white people now call it, Long Island, was originally
a vast plain, so level and free from any kind of growth, that it looked
like a portion of the great sea that had suddenly been made to move back
and let the sand below appear, which was the case in fact.

Here it was that Chemanitou used to come and sit, when he wished to
bring any new creation to the life. The place being spacious and
solitary, the water upon every side, he had not only room enough, but
was free from interruption.

It is well known that some of these early creations were of very great
size, so that very few could live in the same place, and their strength
made it difficult for Chemanitou, even to controul them; for when he has
given them certain elements, they have the use of the laws that govern
these elements, till it is his will to take them back to himself.
Accordingly, it was the custom of Chemanitou, when he wished to try the
effect of these creatures, to set them in motion upon the island of
Metówac, and if they did not please him, he took the life out before
they were suffered to escape. He would set up a mammoth or other large
animal, in the centre of the island, and build him up with great care,
somewhat in the manner that a cabin or a canoe is made.

Even to this day may be found traces of what had been done here in
former years; and the manner in which the earth sometimes sinks down
[even wells fall out at the bottom here,] shows that this island is
nothing more than a great cake of earth, a sort of platter laid upon the
sea, for the convenience of Chemanitou, who used it as a table upon
which he might work, never having designed it for anything else; the
margin of the CHATIEMAC, (the stately swan,) or Hudson river, being
better adapted to the purposes of habitation.

When the master of life wished to build up an elephant or mammoth he
placed four cakes of clay upon the ground, at proper distances, which
were moulded into shape, and became the feet of the animal.

Now sometimes these were left unfinished; and to this day the green
tussocks, to be seen like little islands about the marshes, show where
these cakes of clay had been placed.

As Chemanitou went on with his work, the NEEBANAWBAIGS (or water
spirits,) the PUCK-WUD-JINNIES, (Fairies[9]) and indeed all the lesser
manittoes, used to come and look on, and wonder what it would be, and
how it would act.

     [9] Literally, little men, who vanish.

When the animal was quite done, and had dried a long time in the sun,
Chemanitou opened a place in the side, and entering in, remained there
many days.

When he came forth, the creature began to shiver and sway from side to
side, in such a manner as shook the whole island for many leagues. If
his appearance pleased the master of life he was suffered to depart, and
it was generally found that these animals plunged into the sea upon the
north side of the island, and disappeared in the great forests beyond.

Now at one time Chemanitou was a very long while building an animal, of
such great bulk, that it looked like a mountain upon the centre of the
island; and all the manittoes, from all parts, came to see what it was.
The Puck-wud-jinnies especially made themselves very merry, capering
behind his great ears, sitting within his mouth, each perched upon a
tooth, and running in and out of the sockets of the eyes, thinking
Chemanitou, who was finishing off other parts of the animal, could not
see them.

But he can see right through every thing he has made. He was glad to see
them so lively, and bethought himself of many new creations while he
watched their motions.

When the Master of Life had completed this large animal, he was fearful
to give it life, and so it was left upon the island, or work-table of
Chemanitou, till its great weight caused it to break through, and
sinking partly down it stuck fast, the head and tail holding it in such
a manner as to prevent it from going down.

Chemanitou then lifted up a piece of the back, and found it made a very
good cavity, into which the old creations, which failed to please him,
might be thrown.

He sometimes amused himself by making creatures very small and active,
with which he disported awhile, and finding them of very little use in
the world, and not so attractive as the little Vanishers, he would take
out the life, holding it in himself, and then cast them into the cave
made by the body of the unfinished animal. In this way great quantities
of very odd shapes were heaped together in this _Roncomcomon_, or "Place
of Fragments."

He was always careful to first take out the life.

One day the Master of Life took two pieces of clay and moulded them into
two large feet, like those of a panther. He did not make four--there
were two only.

He stepped his own feet into them, and found the tread very light and
springy, so that he might go with great speed, and yet make no noise.

Next he built up a pair of very tall legs, in the shape of his own, and
made them walk about awhile--he was pleased with the motion. Then
followed a round body, covered with large scales, like the alligator.

He now found the figure doubling forward, and he fastened a long black
snake, that was gliding by, to the back part of the body, and let it
wind itself about a sapling near, which held the body upright, and made
a very good tail.

The shoulders were broad and strong, like those of the buffaloe, and
covered with hair--the neck thick and short, and full at the back.

Thus far Chemanitou had worked with little thought, but when he came to
the head he thought a long while.

He took a round ball of clay into his lap, and worked it over with great
care. While he thought, he patted the ball upon the top, which made it
very broad and low; for Chemanitou was thinking of the panther feet, and
the buffaloe neck. He remembered the Puck-wud-jinnies playing in the eye
sockets of the great unfinished animal, and he bethought him to set the
eyes out, like those of a lobster, so that the animal might see upon
every side.

He made the forehead broad and full, but low; for here was to be the
wisdom of the forked tongue, like that of the serpent, which should be
in his mouth. He should see all things, and know all things. Here
Chemanitou stopped, for he saw that he had never thought of such a
creation before, one with but two feet, a creature who should stand
upright, and see upon every side.

The jaws were very strong, with ivory teeth, and gills upon either side,
which arose and fell whenever breath passed through them. The nose was
like the beak of the vulture. A tuft of porcupine quills made the

Chemanitou held the head out the length of his arm, and turned it first
upon one side and then upon the other. He passed it rapidly through the
air, and saw the gills rise and fall, the lobster eyes whirl round, and
the vulture nose look keen.

Chemanitou became very sad; yet he put the head upon the shoulders. It
was the first time he had made an upright figure.

It seemed to be the first idea of a man.

It was now nearly night; the bats were flying through the air, and the
roar of wild beasts began to be heard. A gusty wind swept in from the
ocean, and passed over the island of Metówac, casting the light sand to
and fro. A heavy scud was skimming along the horizon, while higher up in
the sky was a dark thick cloud, upon the verge of which the moon hung
for a moment, and then was shut in.

A panther came by and stayed a moment, with one foot raised and bent
inward, while he looked up at the image, and smelt the feet, that were
like his own.

A vulture swooped down with a great noise of its wings, and made a dash
at the beak, but Chemanitou held him back.

Then came the porcupine, and the lizard, and the snake, each drawn by
its kind in the image.

Chemanitou veiled his face for many hours, and the gusty wind swept by,
but he did not stir.

He saw that every beast of the earth seeketh its kind; and that which is
like draweth its likeness unto himself.

The Master of Life thought and thought. The idea grew into his mind that
at some time he would create a creature who should be made not after the
things of the earth, but after himself.

He should link this world to the spirit world,--being made in the
likeness of the Great Spirit, he should be drawn unto his likeness.

Many days and nights, whole seasons, passed while Chemanitou thought
upon these things. He saw all things.

Then the Master of Life lifted up his head; the stars were looking down
upon the image, and a bat had alighted upon the forehead, spreading its
great wings upon each side. Chemanitou took the bat and held out its
whole leathery wings, (and ever since the bat, when he rests, lets his
body hang down,) so that he could try them over the head of the image.
He then took the life of the bat away, and twisted off the body, by
which means the whole thin part fell down over the head, and upon each
side, making the ears, and a covering for the forehead like that of the
hooded serpent.

Chemanitou did not cut off the face of the image below, he went on and
made a chin, and lips that were firm and round, that they might shut in
the forked tongue, and the ivory teeth; and he knew that with the lips
and the chin it would smile, when life should be given to it.

The image was now all done but the arms, and Chemanitou saw that with a
chin it must have hands. He grew more grave.

He had never given hands to any creature.

He made the arms and the hands very beautiful, after the manner of his

Chemanitou now took no pleasure in his work that was done--it was not
good in his sight.

He wished he had not given it hands; might it not, when trusted with
life, might it not begin to create? might it not thwart the plans of the
master of life himself!

He looked long at the image. He saw what it would do when life should be
given it. He knew all things.

He now put fire in the image: but fire is not life.

He put fire within, and a red glow passed through and through it. The
fire dried the clay of which it was made, and gave the image an
exceedingly fierce aspect. It shone through the scales upon the breast,
and the gills, and the bat-winged ears. The lobster eyes were like a
living coal.

Chemanitou opened the side of the image, _but he did not enter_. He had
given it hands and a chin.

It could smile like the manittoes themselves.

He made it walk all about the island of Metówac, that he might see how
it would act. This he did by means of his will.

He now put a little life into it, but he did not take out the fire.
Chemanitou saw the aspect of the creature would be very terrible, and
yet that he could smile in such a manner that he ceased to be ugly. He
thought much upon these things. He felt it would not be best to let such
a creature live; a creature made up mostly from the beasts of the field,
but with hands of power, a chin lifting the head upward, and lips
holding all things within themselves.

While he thought upon these things, he took the image in his hands and
cast it into the cave.

_But Chemanitou forgot to take out the life!_

The creature lay a long time in the cave and did not stir, for his fall
was very great. He lay amongst the old creations that had been thrown in
there without life.

Now when a long time had passed Chemanitou heard a great noise in the
cave. He looked in and saw the image sitting there, and he was trying to
put together the old broken things that had been cast in as of no value.

Chemanitou gathered together a vast heap of stones and sand, for large
rocks are not to be had upon the island, and stopped the mouth of the
cave. Many days passed and the noise grew louder within the cave. The
earth shook, and hot smoke came from the ground. The Manittoes crowded
to Metówac to see what was the matter.

Chemanitou came also, for he remembered the image he had cast in there,
and forgotten to take away the life.

Suddenly there was a great rising of the stones and sand--the sky grew
black with wind and dust. Fire played about the ground, and water gushed
high into the air.

All the Manittoes fled with fear; and the image came forth with a great
noise and most terrible to behold. His life had grown strong within him,
for the fire had made it very fierce.

Everything fled before him and cried--MACHINITO--MACHINITO--which means
a god, but an evil god!

       *       *       *       *       *

The above legend is gathered from the traditions of Iagou, the great
Indian narrator, who seems to have dipped deeper into philosophy than
most of his compeers. The aboriginal language abounds with stories
related by this remarkable personage, which we hope to bring before the
public at some future time. Whether subsequent events justify the Indian
in making Long Island the arena of the production of Machinito or the
Evil Spirit, will seem more than apocryphal to a white resident. However
we have nothing to do except to relate the fact as it was related.

As to these primitive metaphysics, they are at least curious; and the
coolness with which the fact is assumed that the origin of evil was
accidental in the process of developing a perfect humanity, would, at an
earlier day, have been quite appalling to the schoolmen.



When an Indian corpse is put in a coffin, among the tribes of the Lake
Algonquins, the lid is _tied_ down, and not nailed. On depositing it in
the grave, the rope or string is loosed, and the weight of the earth
alone relied on, to keep it in a fixed position. The reason they give
for this, is, that the soul may have free egress from the body.

Over the top of the grave a covering of cedar bark is put, to shed the
rain. This is roof-shaped and the whole structure looks, slightly, like
a house in miniature. It has gable ends. Through one of these, being the
head, an aperture is cut. On asking a Chippewa why this was done, he
replied,--"To allow the soul to pass out, and in."

"I thought," I replied, "that you believed that the soul went up from
the body at the time of death, to a land of happiness. How, then, can it
remain in the body?"

"There are two souls," replied the Indian philosopher.

"How can this be? my friend."

"It is easily explained," said he.

"You know that, in dreams, we pass over wide countries, and see hills
and lakes and mountains, and many scenes, which pass before our eyes,
and affect us. Yet, at the same time, our bodies do not stir, and there
is a soul left with the body,--else it would be dead. So, you perceive,
it must be another soul that accompanies us."

This conversation took place, in the Indian country. I knew the Indian
very well, and had noticed the practice, not general now, on the
frontiers, of _tying_ the coffin-lid, in burials. It is at the orifice
in the bark sheeting mentioned, that the portion of food, consecrated in
feasts for the dead, is set. It could not but happen, that the food
should be eaten by the hystrix, wolf, or some other animal, known to
prowl at night; nor that, Indian superstition, ever ready to turn slight
appearances of this kind to account, should attribute its abstraction to
the spirit of the deceased.




There was once a little boy, remarkable for the smallness of his
stature. He was living alone with his sister older than himself. They
were orphans, they lived in a beautiful spot on the Lake shore; many
large rocks were scattered around their habitation. The boy never grew
larger as he advanced in years. One day, in winter, he asked his sister
to make him a ball to play with along shore on the clear ice. She made
one for him, but cautioned him not to go too far.--Off he went in high
glee, throwing his ball before him, and running after it at full speed;
and he went as fast as his ball. At last his ball flew to a great
distance: he followed it as fast as he could. After he had run for some
time, he saw four dark substances on the ice straight before him. When
he came up to the spot he was surprised to see four large, tall men
lying on the ice, spearing fish. When he went up to them, the nearest
looked up and in turn was surprised to see such a diminutive being, and
turning to his brothers, he said, "Tia! look! see what a little fellow
is here." After they had all looked a moment, they resumed their
position, covered their heads, intent in searching for fish. The boy
thought to himself, they imagine me too insignificant for common
courtesy, because they are tall and large; I shall teach them
notwithstanding, that I am not to be treated so lightly. After they were
covered up the boy saw they had each a large trout lying beside them. He
slyly took the one nearest him, and placing his fingers in the gills,
and tossing his ball before him, ran off at full speed. When the man to
whom the fish belonged looked up, he saw his trout sliding away as if of
itself, at a great rate--the boy being so small he was not distinguished
from the fish. He addressed his brothers and said, "See how that tiny
boy has stolen my fish; what a shame it is he should do so." The boy
reached home, and told his sister to go out and get the fish he had
brought home. She exclaimed, "where could you have got it? I hope you
have not stolen it." "O no," he replied, "I found it on the ice." "How"
persisted the sister, "could you have got it there?"--"No matter," said
the boy, "go and cook it." He disdained to answer her again, but thought
he would one day show her how to appreciate him. She went to the place
he left it, and there indeed she found a monstrous trout. She did as she
was bid, and cooked it for that day's consumption. Next morning he went
off again as at first. When he came near the large men, who fished every
day, he threw his ball with such force that it rolled into the ice-hole
of the man of whom he had stolen the day before. As he happened to raise
himself at the time, the boy said, "Neejee, pray hand me my ball." "No
indeed," answered the man, "I shall not," and thrust the ball under the
ice. The boy took hold of his arm and broke it in two in a moment, and
threw him to one side, and picked up his ball, which had bounded back
from under the ice, and tossed it as usual before him. Outstripping it
in speed, he got home and remained within till the next morning. The man
whose arm he had broken hallooed out to his brothers, and told them his
case, and deplored his fate. They hurried to their brother, and as loud
as they could roar threatened vengeance on the morrow, knowing the
boy's speed that they could not overtake him, and he was near out of
sight; yet he heard their threats and awaited their coming in perfect
indifference. The four brothers the next morning prepared to take their
revenge. Their old mother begged them not to go--"Better" said she "that
one only should suffer, than that all should perish; for he must be a
monedo, or he could not perform such feats." But her sons would not
listen; and taking their wounded brother along, started for the boy's
lodge, having learnt that he lived at the place of rocks. The boy's
sister thought she heard the noise of snow-shoes on the crusted snow at
a distance advancing. She saw the large, tall men coming straight to
their lodge, or rather cave, for they lived in a large rock. She ran in
with great fear, and told her brother the fact. He said, "Why do you
mind them? give me something to eat." "How can you think of eating at
such a time," she replied,--"Do as I request you, and be quick." She
then gave him his dish, which was a large _mis-qua-dace_ shell, and he
commenced eating. Just then the men came to the door, and were about
lifting the curtain placed there, when the boy-man turned his dish
upside-down, and immediately the door was closed with a stone; the men
tried hard with their clubs to crack it; at length they succeeded in
making a slight opening. When one of them peeped in with one eye, the
boy-man shot his arrow into his eye and brain, and he dropped down dead.
The others, not knowing what had happened to their brother, did the
same, and all fell in like manner; their curiosity was so great to see
what the boy was about. So they all shared the same fate. After they
were killed the boy-man told his sister to go out and see them. She
opened the door, but feared they were not dead, and entered back again
hastily, and told her fears to her brother. He went out and hacked them
in small pieces, saying, "henceforth let no man be larger than you are
now." So men became of the present size. When spring came on, the
boy-man said to his sister, "Make me a new set of arrows and bow." She
obeyed, as he never did any thing himself of a nature that required
manual labour, though he provided for their sustenance. After she made
them, she again cautioned him not to shoot into the lake; but regardless
of all admonition, he, on purpose, shot his arrow into the lake, and
waded some distance till he got into deep water, and paddled about for
his arrow, so as to attract the attention of his sister. She came in
haste to the shore, calling him to return, but instead of minding her he
called out, "Ma-mis-quon-je-gun-a, be-nau-wa-con-zhe-shin," that is,
"_you_, of the _red fins_ come and swallow me." Immediately that
monstrous fish came and swallowed him; and seeing his sister standing on
the shore in despair, he hallooed out to her, "Me-zush-ke-zin-ance." She
wondered what he meant. But on reflection she thought it must be an old
mockesin. She accordingly tied the old mockesin to a string, and
fastened it to a tree. The fish said to the boy-man, under water, "What
is that floating?" the boy-man said to the fish, "Go, take hold of it,
swallow it as fast as you can." The fish darted towards the old shoe,
and swallowed it. The boy-man laughed in himself, but said nothing, till
the fish was fairly caught; he then took hold of the line and began to
pull himself and fish to shore. The sister, who was watching, was
surprised to see so large a fish; and hauling it ashore she took her
knife and commenced cutting it open. When she heard her brother's voice
inside of the fish, saying, "Make haste and release me from this nasty
place," his sister was in such haste that she almost hit his head with
her knife; but succeeded in making an opening large enough for her
brother to get out. When he was fairly out, he told his sister to cut up
the fish and dry it, as it would last a long time for their sustenance,
and said to her, never, never more to doubt his ability in any way. So
ends the story.




In the days of this story, wars, murders, and cruelty existed in the
country now comprising the province of Upper Canada, or that portion
bordering upon Lakes Simcoe, Erie, and Ontario, which was claimed and
belonged to the powerful tribe of the eight nations of the Nawtoways.
The young men had, on a day, started for a hunting excursion: in the
evening five only of the brothers returned, one was missing. Upon search
being made the body was found, and it appeared evident that he had been
killed: this gave a great blow to the family, but particularly causing
great affliction to the sister, who was the youngest of the family. She
mourned and lamented her brother's death, and she wept incessantly.

The ensuing year another was killed, and so on till four were killed.
The remaining two brothers did all they could to afford consolation to
their pining sister, but she would not be consoled: they did all they
could to divert her mind from so much mourning, but all their endeavours
proved ineffectual: she scarcely took any food, and what she ate was
hardly sufficient to sustain nature. The two brothers said that they
would go hunting, which they did from day to day. They would bring
ducks and birds of every description to their sister, in order to tempt
her appetite, but she persisted in refusing nourishment, or taking very
little. At the expiration of the year when the fourth brother had been
killed, the two young men set out upon the chase; one of them returned
in the evening, the other was missing, and found killed in like manner
as the others had been. This again augmented the afflictions of the
young girl; she had been very delicate, but was now reduced to a mere
skeleton. At the expiration of the year the only and last of her
brothers, taking pity upon his pining sister, said to her that he would
go and kill her some fresh venison, to entice her to eat. He started
early in the morning, and his sister would go out from time to time, in
the course of the day, to see if her brother was returning. Night set
in, and no indications of his coming--she sat up all night, exhibiting
fear and apprehension bordering upon despair--day light appeared, and he
did not come--search was made, and he was finally found killed, like all
the other brothers. After this event the girl became perfectly
disconsolate, hardly tasting food, and would wander in the woods the
whole day, returning at nights. One of her aunts had the care of her at
this time. One day in one of her rambles she did not return; her aunt
became very anxious, and searched for her, and continued her search
daily. On the tenth day, the aunt in her search lost her way and was
bewildered, and finally was benighted. While lying down, worn with
fatigue, she thought she heard the voice of some one speaking: she got
up, and directing her course to the spot, she came upon a small lodge
made of bushes, and in it lay her niece, with her face to the ground.
She prevailed upon her to return home. Before reaching their lodge the
girl stopt, and her aunt built her a small lodge, and she resided in it.
Here her aunt would attend upon her daily.

One day as she lay alone in her little lodge, a person appeared to her
from on high: he had on white raiment that was extremely pure, clean and
white: he did not touch the earth, but remained at some distance from
it. He spoke to her in a mild tone and said, Daughter, why do you remain
here mourning? I have come to console you, and you must arise, and I
will give you all the land, and deliver into your hands the persons who
have killed your brothers. All things living and created are mine, I
give and take away. Now therefore arise, slay and eat of my dog that
lays there. You will go to your village and firstly tell your relatives
and nation of this vision, and you must act conformably to my word and
to the mind I'll give you, and your enemies will I put into your hands.
I will be with you again.

After this, he ascended on high. When the girl looked to the place where
the heavenly being pointed, she saw a bear. She arose and went home, and
mentioned to her relatives the vision she had seen, and made a request
that the people might be assembled to partake of her feast. She directed
her relations to the spot where the bear was to be found; it was killed
and brought to the village, and singed upon a fire, and the feast was
made, and the nature of the vision explained. Preparations were
immediately set on foot, messengers were sent to each tribe of the six
nations, and an invitation given to them, to come upon a given day to
the village of Toronto. Messengers were also sent all along the north
coast of lake Huron to Bawiting, inviting the Indians to form an
alliance and fight against the enemies of the young girl who had lost so
many brothers.

In the midst of the Nadowas, there lived two chieftains, twin brothers.
They were Nadowas also of the Bear tribe, perfect devils in disposition,
cruel and tyrannical. They were at the head of two nations of the
Nadowas, reigning together, keeping the other nations in great fear and
awe, and enslaving them; particularly the Indians of the Deer totem, who
resided in one portion of their great village. Indians in connection
with the Chippewas were also kept in bondage by the two tyrants, whose
names were _Aingodon_ and _Naywadaha_. When the Chippewas received the
young girl's messengers, they were told that they must rescue their
relatives, and secretly apprize them of their intention, and the great
calamity that would befall Aingodon and Naywadaha's villages and towns.
Many therefore made their escape; but one remained with his family,
sending an excuse for not obeying the summons, as he had a great
quantity of corn laid up, and that he must attend to his crops. The
Indians all along the north shore of lake Huron and of Bawiting,
embarked to join the general and common cause; they passed through the
lakes, and reached Toronto late in the fall. In the beginning of the
winter the assembled allies marched, headed by the young girl. She
passed through lake Simcoe, and the line covered the whole lake,
cracking the ice as they marched over it. They encamped at the head of
the lake. Here the young girl produced a garnished bag, and she hung it
up, and told the assembled multitude that she would make _chingodam_;
and after this she sent hunters out directing them to bring in eighteen
bears, and before the sun had risen high the bears were all brought in,
and they were singed, and the feast of sacrifice offered. At this place
the person from on high appeared to the girl in presence of the
assembled multitude, and he stretched forth his hand and shook hands
with her only. He here directed her to send secret messengers into the
land, to warn the Indians who had the deer totem to put out their totems
on poles before their lodge door, in order that they might be known and
saved from the approaching destruction; and they were enjoined not to go
out of their lodges, neither man, woman, or child; if they did so they
would be surely consumed and destroyed; and the person on high said--Do
not approach nigh the open plain until the rising sun, you will then see
destruction come upon your enemies, and they will be delivered into your

The messengers were sent to the Deer Totems, and they entered the town
at night, and communicated their message to them. After this all the
Indians bearing that mark were informed of the approaching calamity, and
they instantly made preparations, setting out poles before their lodge
doors, and attaching deer skins to the poles, as marks to escape the
vengeance that was to come upon Aingodon and Nawadaha, and their tribes.
The next morning at daylight the Aingodons and Nawadahas rose, and
seeing the poles and deer skins planted before the doors of the lodges,
said in derision, that their friends, the Deer Totems, had, or must have
had, bad dreams, thus to set their totems on poles. The Indians of the
deer totems remained quiet and silent, and they did not venture out of
their lodges. The young girl was nigh the skirts of the wood with her
host, bordering upon the plain; and just as the sun rose she marched,
and as she and her allied forces neared the village of the twin tyrants,
it became a flame of fire, destroying all its inhabitants. The Deer
Totems escaped. Aingodon and Nawadaha were not consumed. The allied
Indians drew their bows and shot their arrows at them, but they bounded
off, and the blows inflicted upon them were of no avail, until the young
girl came up and subdued them, and took them alive, and made them

The whole of Aingodon's and Nawadaha's towns and villages were destroyed
in the same way; and the land was in possession of the young girl and
the six remaining tribes of the Nadowas. After this signal vengeance was
taken the young girl returned with her host, and again encamped at the
head of lake Simcoe, at her former encamping place; and the two tyrants
were asked, what was their object for making chingodam, and what weight
could it have? They said, in answer, that their implements for war, were
war axes, and if permitted they would make chingodam, and on doing so
they killed each two men. They were bound immediately, and their flesh
was cut off from their bodies in slices. One of them was dissected, and
upon examination it was discovered that he had no liver, and his heart
was small, and composed of hard flint stone. There are marks upon a
perpendicular ledge of rocks at the narrows, or head of lake Simcoe,
visible to this day, representing two bound persons, who are recognized
by the Indians of this generation as the two tyrants, or twin brothers,
Aingodon and Nawadaha. One of the tyrants was kept bound, until the time
the French discovered and possessed the Canadas, and he was taken to
Quebec. After this the young girl was taken away by the god of light.


_Sault Ste. Marie, May 12th, 1838._

       *       *       *       *       *

The Indian warriors of the plains west of the sources of the
Mississippi, chew a bitter root, before going into battle, which they
suppose imparts courage, and renders them insensible to pain. It is
called zhigowak.





This individual has indelibly interwoven his name with the history of
the Chippewa nation, during the latter half of the 18th century. His
ancestors had, from the earliest times, held the principal chieftainship
in lake Superior. His father, Ma-mongazida, was the ruling chief during
the war of the conquest of the Canadas by the British crown. In common
with his tribe and the northern nations generally, he was the fast
friend of the French government, and was present with his warriors,
under Gen. Montcalm, at the loss of Quebec, in 1759. He carried a short
speech from that celebrated officer to his people in the north, which is
said to have been verbally delivered a short time before he went to the

The period of the fall of the French power in the Canadas, is one of the
most marked events in Indian reminiscence throughout all northwest
America. They refer to the days of French supremacy as a kind of golden
era, when all things in their affairs were better than they now are; and
I have heard them lament over the change as one which was in every
respect detrimental to their power and happiness. No European nation, it
is evident from these allusions, ever pleased them as well. The French
character and manners adapted themselves admirably to the existing
customs of forest life. The common people, who went up into the interior
to trade, fell in with their customs with a degree of plasticity and an
air of gaiety and full assent, which no other foreigners have, at least
to the same extent, shown. These _Couriers du Bois_ had not much to
boast of on the score of rigid morals themselves. They had nearly as
much superstition as the wildest Indians. They were in fact, at least
nine-tenths of them, quite as illiterate. Very many of them were far
inferior in their mental structure and capacity to the bold, eloquent,
and well formed and athletic northern chiefs and hunters. They respected
their religious and festive ceremonies. They never, as a chief once told
me, _laughed_ at them. They met their old friends on their annual
returns from Montreal, with a kiss. They took the daughters of the red
men for wives, and reared large families, who thus constituted a strong
bond of union between the two races, which remains unbroken at this

This is the true secret of the strenuous efforts made by the northern
and western Indians to sustain the French power, when it was menaced in
the war of 1744, by the fleets and armies of Great Britain. They rallied
freely to their aid at Detroit, Vincennes, the present sites of
Pittsburg and Erie, at Fort Niagara, Montreal, and Quebec, and they
hovered with infuriated zeal around the outskirts of the northern and
western settlements, during the many and sanguinary wars carried on
between the English and French. And when the French were beaten they
still adhered to their cause, and their chiefs stimulated the French
local commanders to continue and renew the contest, even after the fall
of Niagara and Quebec, with a heroic consistency of purpose, which
reflects credit upon their foresight, bravery, and constancy. We hope in
a future number to bring forward a sketch of the man who put himself at
the head of this latter effort, who declared he would drive the Saxon
race into the sea, who beseiged _twelve_ and took _nine_ of the western
stockaded forts, and who for four years and upwards, maintained the war,
after the French had struck their colours and ceded the country. We
refer to the great Algic leader, Pontiac.

At present our attention is called to a cotemporary chief, of equal
personal bravery and conduct, certainly, but who lived and exercised his
authority at a more remote point, and had not the same masses and means
at his command. This point, so long hid in the great forests of the
north, and which, indeed, has been but lately revealed in our positive
geography, is the area of Lake Superior. It is here that we find the
Indian tradition to be rife with the name of Wabojeeg and his wars, and
his cotemporaries. It was one of the direct consequences of so remote a
position, that it withdrew his attention more from the actual conflicts
between the French and English, and fixed them upon his western and
southern frontiers, which were menaced and invaded by the numerous bands
of the Dacotahs, and by the perfidious kinsmen of his nation, the
Outagamies and Saucs. He came into active life, too, as a prominent war
leader, at the precise era when the Canadas had fallen into the British
power, and by engaging zealously in the defence of the borders of his
nation west, he allowed time to mitigate and adjust those feelings and
attachments which, so far as public policy was concerned, must be
considered to have moulded the Indian mind to a compliance with, and a
submission to, the British authority. Wabojeeg was, emphatically, the
defender of the Chippewa domain against the efforts of other branches of
the Red Race. He did not, therefore, lead his people to fight, as his
father, Ma-mongazida, and nearly all the great Indian war captains had,
to enable one type of the foreign race to triumph over another, but
raised his parties and led them forth to maintain his tribal supremacy.
He may be contemplated, therefore, as having had a more patriotic object
for his achievement.

Lake Superior, at the time of our earliest acquaintance with the region,
was occupied, as it is at this day, by the Chippewa race. The chief
seat of their power appeared to be near the southwestern extremity of
the lake, at Chagoimegon, where fathers Marquette and Alloez found their
way, and established a mission, so early as 1668. Another of their
principal, and probably more _ancient_ seats, was at the great rapids on
the outlet of that lake, which they named the Sault de Ste. Marie. It
was in allusion to their residence here that they called this tribe
Saulteur, that is to say people of the leap or rapid.

Indian tradition makes the Chippewas one of the chief, certainly by far
the most _numerous and widely spread_, of the Algonquin stock proper. It
represents them to have migrated from the east to the west. On reaching
the vicinity of Michilimackinac, they separated at a comparatively
moderate era into three tribes, calling themselves, respectively,
Odjibwas, Odawas, and Podawadumees. What their name was before this era,
is not known. It is manifest that the term Odjibwa is not a very ancient
one, for it does not occur in the earliest authors. They were probably
of the Nipercinean or true Algonquin stock, and had taken the route of
the Utawas river, from the St. Lawrence valley into lake Huron. The term
itself is clearly from Bwa, a voice; and its prefix in Odji, was
probably designed to mark a peculiar intonation which the muscles are,
as it were, _gathered up_, to denote.

Whatever be the facts of their origin, they had taken the route up the
straits of St. Mary into lake Superior, both sides of which, and far
beyond, they occupied at the era of the French discovery. It is evident
that their course in this direction must have been aggressive. They were
advancing towards the west and northwest. The tribe known as Kenistenos,
had passed through the Lake of the Woods, through the great lake
Nipesing, and as far as the heads of the Saskatchewine and the portage
of the Missinipi of Hudson's bay. The warlike band of Leech Lake, called
Mukundwas, had spread themselves over the entire sources of the
Mississippi and extended their hunting excursions west to Red River,
where they came into contact with the Assinaboines, or Stone Sioux. The
central power, at this era, still remained at Chagoimegon, on Superior,
where indeed, the force of early tradition asserts there was maintained
something like a frame of both civil and ecclesiastical polity and

It is said in the traditions related to me by the Chippewas, that the
Outagamies, or Foxes, had preceded them into that particular section of
country which extends in a general course from the head of Fox River, of
Green Bay, towards the Falls of St. Anthony, reaching in some points
well nigh to the borders of lake Superior. They are remembered to have
occupied the interior wild rice lakes, which lie at the sources of the
Wisconsin, the Ontonagon, the Chippewa, and the St. Croix rivers. They
were associated with the Saucs, who had ascended the Mississippi some
distance above the Falls of St. Anthony, where they lived on friendly
terms with the Dacotahs or Sioux. This friendship extended also to the
Outagamies, and it was the means of preserving a good understanding
between the Dacotahs and Chippewas.

The Fox tribe is closely affiliated with the Chippewas. They call each
other brothers. They are of the same general origin and speak the same
general language, the chief difference in sound being that the Foxes use
the letter l, where the Odjibwas employ an n. The particular cause of
their disagreement is not known. They are said by the Chippewas to have
been unfaithful and treacherous. Individual quarrels and trespasses on
their hunting grounds led to murders, and in the end to a war, in which
the Menomonees and the French united, and they were thus driven from the
rice lakes and away from the Fox and upper Wisconsin. To maintain their
position they formed an alliance with the Sioux, and fought by their

It was in this contest that Wabojeeg first distinguished himself, and
vindicated by his bravery and address the former reputation of his
family, and laid anew the foundations of his northern chieftaindom.
Having heard allusions made to this person on my first entrance into
that region, many years ago, I made particular enquiries, and found
living a sister, an old white-headed woman, and a son and daughter,
about the age of middle life. From these sources I gleaned the following
facts. He was born, as nearly as I could compute the time, about 1747.
By a singular and romantic incident his father, Ma-mongazida, was a
half-brother of the father of Wabashaw, a celebrated Sioux chief, who
but a few years ago died at his village on the upper Mississippi. The
connexion happened in this way.

While the Sioux and Chippewas were living in amity near each other, and
frequently met and feasted each other on their hunting grounds and at
their villages, a Sioux chief, of distinction, admired and married a
Chippewa girl, by whom he had two sons. When the war between these two
nations broke out, those persons of the hostile tribes who had married
Chippewa wives, and were living in the Chippewa country, withdrew, some
taking their wives along and others separating from them. Among the
latter was the Sioux chief. He remained a short time after hostilities
commenced, but finding his position demanded it, he was compelled, with
great reluctance, to leave his wife behind, as she could not, with
safety, have accompanied him into the Sioux territories. As the blood of
the Sioux flowed in the veins of her two sons, neither was it safe for
her to leave them among the Chippewas. They were, however, by mutual
agreement, allowed to return with the father. The eldest of these sons
became the father of Wabashaw.

The mother thus divorced by the mutual consent of all parties, remained
inconsolable for some time. She was still young and handsome, and after
a few years, became the wife of a young Chippewa chief of Chagoimegon,
of the honoured totem of the ADDICK or reindeer. Her first child by
this second marriage, was Ma Mongazida, the father of Wabojeeg. In this
manner, a connexion existed between two families, of separate hostile
nations, each of which distinguished itself, for bravery and skill in
war and council. It has already been stated that Ma Mongazida, was
present, on the side of the French, in the great action in which both
Montcalm and Wolf fell, and he continued to exercise the chieftainship
till his death, when his second son succeeded him.

It was one of the consequences of the hostility of the Indians to the
English rule, that many of the remote tribes were left, for a time,
without traders to supply their wants. This was the case, tradition
asserts, with Chagoimegon, which, for two years after the taking of old
Mackinac, was left without a trader. To remonstrate against this, Ma
Mongazida visited Sir William Johnson, the superintendant general of
Indian affairs, by whom he was well received, and presented with a broad
wampum belt and gorget. This act laid the foundation of a lasting peace
between the Chippewas and the English. The belt, it is added, was of
blue wampum, with figures of white. And when Wabojeeg came to the
chieftainship, he took from it the wampum employed by him to muster his
war parties.

In making traditionary enquiries I have found that the Indian narrators
were careful to preserve and note any fact, in the early lives of their
distinguished men, which appeared to prefigure their future eminence, or
had any thing of the wonderful or premonitory, in its character. The
following incident of this sort, was noticed respecting this chief. Ma
Mongazida generally went to make his fall hunts on the middle grounds
towards the Sioux territory, taking with him all his near relatives,
amounting usually to twenty persons, exclusive of children. Early one
morning while the young men were preparing for the chase, they were
startled by the report of several shots, directed towards the lodge. As
they had thought themselves in security, the first emotion was surprise,
and they had scarcely time to fly to their arms, when another volley was
fired, which wounded one man in the thigh, and killed a dog. Ma
Mongazida immediately sallied out with his young men, and pronouncing
his name aloud in the Sioux language, demanded if Wabasha or his
brother, were among the assailants. The firing instantly ceased--a pause
ensued, when a tall figure, in a war dress, with a profusion of feathers
upon his head, stepped forward and presented his hand. It was the elder
Wabasha, his half brother. The Sioux peaceably followed their leader
into the lodge, upon which they had, the moment before, directed their
shots. At the instant the Sioux chief entered, it was necessary to stoop
a little, in passing the door. In the act of stooping, he received a
blow from a war-club wielded by a small boy, who had posted himself
there for the purpose. It was the young Wabojeeg. Wabasha, pleased with
this early indication of courage, took the little lad in his arms,
caressed him, and pronounced that he would become a brave man, and
prove an inveterate enemy of the Sioux.

The border warfare in which the father of the infant warrior was
constantly engaged, early initiated him in the arts and ceremonies
pertaining to war. With the eager interest and love of novelty of the
young, he listened to their war songs and war stories, and longed for
the time when he would be old enough to join these parties, and also
make himself a name among warriors. While quite a youth he volunteered
to go out with a party, and soon gave convincing proofs of his courage.
He also early learned the arts of hunting the deer, the bear, the moose,
and all the smaller animals common to the country; and in these
pursuits, he took the ordinary lessons of Indian young men, in
abstinence, suffering, danger and endurance of fatigue. In this manner
his nerves were knit and formed for activity, and his mind stored with
those lessons of caution which are the result of local experience in the
forest. He possessed a tall and commanding person, with a full black
piercing eye, and the usual features of his countrymen. He had a clear
and full toned voice, and spoke his native language with grace and
fluency. To these attractions, he united an early reputation for bravery
and skill in the chase, and at the age of twenty-two, he was already a
war leader.

Expeditions of one Indian tribe against another, require the utmost
caution, skill, and secrecy. There are a hundred things to give
information to such a party, or influence its action, which are unknown
to civilized nations. The breaking of a twig, the slightest impression
of a foot print, and other like circumstances, determine a halt, a
retreat, or an advance. The most scrupulous attention is also paid to
the signs of the heavens, the flight of birds, and above all, to the
dreams and predictions of the jossakeed, priest, or prophet, who
accompanies them, and who is entrusted with the sacred sack. The theory
upon which all these parties are conducted, is secrecy and stratagem: to
steal upon the enemy unawares; to lay in ambush, or decoy; to kill and
to avoid as much as possible the hazard of being killed. An intimate
geographical knowledge of the country, is also required by a successful
war leader, and such a man piques himself, not only on knowing every
prominent stream, hill, valley, wood, or rock, but the particular
productions, animal, and vegetable, of the scene of operations. When it
is considered that this species of knowledge, shrewdness and sagacity,
is possessed on _both_ sides, and that the nations at war watch each
other, as a lynx for its prey, it may be conceived, that many of these
border war parties are either light skirmishes, sudden on-rushes, or
utter failures. It is seldom that a close, well contested, long
continued hard battle is fought. To kill a few men, tear off their
scalps in haste, and retreat with these trophies, is a brave and
honourable trait with them, and may be boasted of, in their triumphal
dances and warlike festivities.

To glean the details of these movements, would be to acquire the modern
history of the tribe; which induced me to direct my enquiries to the
subject; but the lapse of even forty or fifty years, had shorn tradition
of most of these details, and often left the memory of results only. The
Chippewas told me, that this chief had led them seven times to
successful battle against the Sioux and the Outagamies, and that he had
been wounded thrice--once in the thigh, once in the right shoulder, and
a third time in the side and breast, being a glancing shot. His war
parties consisted either of volunteers who had joined his standard at
the war dance, or of auxiliaries, who had accepted his messages of
wampum and tobacco, and come forward in a body, to the appointed place
of rendezvous. These parties varied greatly in number; his first party
consisted of but forty men, his greatest and most renowned, of three
hundred, who were mustered from the villages on the shores of the lake,
as far east as St. Mary's falls.

It is to the incidents of this last expedition, which had an important
influence on the progress of the war, that we may devote a few moments.
The place of rendezvous was _La Pointe_ Chagomiegon, or as it is called
in modern days, La Pointe of Lake Superior. The scene of the conflict,
which was a long and bloody one, was the falls of the St. Croix. The two
places are distant about two hundred and fifty miles, by the most direct
route. This area embraces the summit land between Lake Superior and the
upper Mississippi. The streams flowing each way interlock, which enables
the natives to ascend them in their light canoes, and after carrying the
latter over the portages, to descend on the opposite side. On this
occasion Wabojeeg and his partizan army, ascended the Muskigo, or
Mauvais river, to its connecting portage with the Namakagon branch of
the St. Croix. On crossing the summit, they embarked in their small and
light war canoes on their descent westward. This portion of the route
was passed with the utmost caution. They were now rapidly approaching
the enemy's borders, and every sign was regarded with deep attention.
They were seven days from the time they first reached the waters of the
St. Croix, until they found the enemy. They went but a short distance
each day, and encamped. On the evening of the seventh day, the scouts
discovered a large body of Sioux and Outagamies encamped on the lower
side of the portage of the great falls of the St. Croix. The discovery
was a surprise on both sides. The advance of the Chippewas had landed at
the upper end of the portage, intending to encamp there. The Sioux and
their allies had just preceded them, from the lower part of the stream
with the same object. The Foxes or Outagamies immediately fired, and a
battle ensued. It is a spot indeed, from which a retreat either way is
impracticable, in the face of an enemy. It is a mere neck of rugged
rock. The river forces a passage through this dark and solid barrier. It
is equally rapid and dangerous for canoes above and below. It cannot be
crossed direct. After the firing began, Wabojeeg landed and brought up
his men. He directed a part of them to extend themselves in the wood
around the small neck, or peninsula, of the portage, whence alone escape
was possible. Both parties fought with bravery; the Foxes with
desperation. But they were outnumbered, overpowered, and defeated. Some
attempted to descend the rapids, and were lost. A few only escaped. But
the Chippewas paid dearly for their victory. Wabojeeg was slightly
wounded in the breast: his brother was killed. Many brave warriors fell.
It was a most sanguinary scene. The tradition of this battle is one of
the most prominent and wide spread of the events of their modern
history. I have conversed with more than one chief, who dated his first
military honours in youth, to this scene. It put an end to their feud
with the Foxes, who retired from the intermediate rice lakes, and fled
down the Wisconsin. It raised the name of the Chippewa leader, to the
acme of his renown among his people: but Wabojeeg, as humane as he was
brave, grieved over the loss of his people who had fallen in the action.
This feeling was expressed touchingly and characteristically, in a war
song, which he uttered after this victory which has been preserved by
the late Mr. Johnston of St. Mary's, in the following stanzas.

    On that day when our heroes lay low--lay low,
      On that day when our heroes lay low,
    I fought by their side, and thought ere I died,
      Just vengeance to take on the foe,
      Just vengeance to take on the foe.

    On that day, when our chieftains lay dead--lay dead,
      On that day when our chieftains lay dead,
    I fought hand to hand, at the head of my band,
      And here, on my breast, have I bled,
      And here, on my breast, have I bled.

    Our chiefs shall return no more--no more,
      Our chiefs shall return no more,
    Nor their brothers of war, who can show scar for scar,
      Like women their fates shall deplore--deplore,
      Like women their fate shall deplore.

    Five winters in hunting we'll spend--we'll spend,
      Five winters in hunting we'll spend,
    Till our youth, grown to men, we'll to war lead again,
      And our days, like our fathers, we'll end,
      And our days, like our fathers, we'll end.

It is the custom of these tribes to go to war in the spring and summer,
which are, not only comparatively seasons of leisure with them, but it
is at these seasons that they are concealed and protected by the foliage
of the forest, and can approach the enemy unseen. At these annual
returns of warmth and vegetation, they also engage in festivities and
dances, during which the events and exploits of past years are sang and
recited; and while they derive fresh courage and stimulus to renewed
exertions, the young, who are listeners, learn to emulate their fathers,
and take their earliest lessons in the art of war. Nothing is done in
the summer months in the way of hunting. The small furred animals are
changing their pelt, which is out of season. The doe retires with her
fawns, from the plains and open grounds, into thick woods. It is the
general season of reproduction, and the red man for a time, intermits
his war on the animal creation, to resume it against man.

As the autumn approaches, he prepares for his fall hunts, by retiring
from the outskirts of the settlements, and from the open lakes, shores,
and streams, which have been the scenes of his summer festivities; and
proceeds, after a short preparatory hunt, to his wintering grounds. This
round of hunting, and of festivity and war, fills up the year; all the
tribes conform in these general customs. There are no war parties raised
in the winter. This season is exclusively devoted to securing the means
of their subsistence and clothing, by seeking the valuable skins, which
are to purchase their clothing and their ammunition, traps and arms.

The hunting grounds of the chief, whose life we are considering,
extended along the southern shores of Lake Superior from the Montreal
River, to the inlet of the Misacoda, or Burntwood River of Fond du Lac.
If he ascended the one, he usually made the wide circuit indicated, and
came out at the other. He often penetrated by a central route up the
Maskigo. This is a region still abounding, but less so than formerly, in
the bear, moose, beaver, otter, martin, and muskrat. Among the smaller
animals are also to be noticed the mink, lynx, hare, porcupine, and
partridge, and towards its southern and western limits, the Virginia
deer. In this ample area, the La Pointe, or Chagoimegon Indians hunted.
It is a rule of the chase, that each hunter has a portion of the country
assigned to him, on which he alone may hunt; and there are conventional
laws which decide all questions of right and priority in starting and
killing game. In these questions, the chief exercises a proper
authority, and it is thus in the power of one of these forest governors
and magistrates, where they happen to be men of sound sense, judgment
and manly independence, to make themselves felt and known, and to become
true benefactors to their tribes. And such chiefs create an impression
upon their followers, and leave a reputation behind them, which is of
more value than their achievements in war.

Wabojeeg excelled in both characters; he was equally popular as a civil
ruler and a war chief; and while he administered justice to his people,
he was an expert hunter, and made due and ample provision for his
family. He usually gleaned, in a season, by his traps and carbine, four
packs of mixed furs, the avails of which were ample to provide clothing
for all the members of his lodge circle, as well as to renew his supply
of ammunition and other essential articles.

On one occasion, he had a singular contest with a moose. He had gone
out, one morning early, to set martin traps. He had set about forty, and
was returning to his lodge, when he unexpectedly encountered a large
moose, in his path, which manifested a disposition to attack him. Being
unarmed, and having nothing but a knife and small hatchet, which he had
carried to make his traps, he tried to avoid it. But the animal came
towards him in a furious manner. He took shelter behind a tree, shifting
his position from tree to tree, retreating. At length, as he fled, he
picked up a pole, and quickly untying his moccasin strings, he bound his
knife to the end of the pole. He then placed himself in a favourable
position, behind a tree, and when the moose came up, stabbed him several
times in the throat and breast. At last, the animal, exhausted with the
loss of blood, fell. He then dispatched him, and cut out his tongue to
carry home to his lodge as a trophy of victory. When they went back to
the spot, for the carcass, they found the snow trampled down in a wide
circle, and copiously sprinkled with blood, which gave it the appearance
of a battle-field. It proved to be a male of uncommon size.

The domestic history of a native chief, can seldom be obtained. In the
present instance, the facts that follow, may be regarded with interest,
as having been obtained from residents of Chagoimegon, or from his
descendants. He did not take a wife till about the age of thirty, and he
then married a widow, by whom he had one son. He had obtained early
notoriety as a warrior, which perhaps absorbed his attention. What
causes there were to render this union unsatisfactory, or whether there
were any, is not known; but after the lapse of two years, he married a
girl of fourteen, of the totem of the bear, by whom he had a family of
six children. He is represented as of a temper and manners affectionate
and forbearing. He evinced thoughtfulness and diligence in the
management of his affairs, and the order and disposition of his lodge.
When the hunting season was over, he employed his leisure moments in
adding to the comforts of his lodge. His lodge was of an oblong shape,
ten fathoms long, and made by setting two rows of posts firmly in the
ground, and sheathing the sides and roof with the smooth bark of the
birch. From the centre rose a post crowned with the carved figure of an
owl, which he had probably selected as a bird of good omen, for it was
neither his own nor his wife's totem. This figure was so placed, that it
turned with the wind, and answered the purpose of a weather-cock.

In person Wabojeeg was tall, being six feet six inches, erect in
carriage, and of slender make. He possessed a commanding countenance,
united to ease and dignity of manners. He was a ready and fluent
speaker, and conducted personally the negotiations with the Fox and
Sioux nations. It was perhaps twenty years after the battle on the St.
Croix, which established the Chippewa boundary in that quarter, and
while his children were still young, that there came to his village, in
the capacity of a trader, a young gentleman of a respectable family in
the north of Ireland, who formed an exalted notion of his character,
bearing, and warlike exploits. This visit, and his consequent residence
on the lake, during the winter, became an important era to the chief,
and has linked his name and memory with numerous persons in civilized
life. Mr. Johnston asked the northern chief for his youngest daughter.
Englishman, he replied, my daughter is yet young, and you cannot take
her as white men have too often taken our daughters. It will be time
enough to think of complying with your request, when you return again to
this lake in the summer. My daughter is my favourite child, and I cannot
part with her, unless you will promise to acknowledge her by such
ceremonies as white men use. You must ever keep her, and never forsake
her. On this basis a union was formed, a union it may be said, between
the Erse and Algonquin races--and it was faithfully adhered to, till his
death, a period of thirty-seven years.

Wabojeeg had impaired his health in the numerous war parties which he
conducted across the wide summit which separated his hunting grounds
from the Mississippi valley. A slender frame, under a life of incessant
exertion, brought on a premature decay. Consumption revealed itself at a
comparatively early age, and he fell before this insidious disease, in a
few years, at the early age of about forty-five. He died in 1793 at his
native village of Chagoimegon.

The incident which has been named, did not fail to make the forest
chieftain acquainted with the leading truth of Christianity, in the
revelation it makes of a saviour for all races. On the contrary, it is a
truth which was brought to his knowledge and explained. It is, of
course, not known with what particular effects. As he saw his end
approaching, he requested that his body might not be buried out of
sight, but placed, according to a custom prevalent in the remoter bands
of this tribe, on a form supported by posts, or a scaffold. This trait
is, perhaps, natural to the hunter state.

    My friends when my spirit is fled--is fled
      My friends when my spirit is fled,
    Ah, put me not bound, in the dark and cold ground,
      Where light shall no longer be shed--be shed,
      Where day-light no more shall be shed.

    But lay me up scaffolded high--all high,
      Chiefs lay me up scaffolded high,
    Where my tribe shall still say, as they point to my clay,
      He ne'er from the foe sought to fly--to fly,
      He ne'er from the foe sought to fly.

    And children, who play on the shore--the shore,
      And children who play on the shore,
    As the war dance they beat, my name shall repeat,
      And the fate of their chieftain deplore--deplore,
      And the fate of their chieftain deplore.


The rules of utterance of these tribes, after all that has been said and
written on the subject, are very simple, and determine the orthography,
so far, at least, as relates to distinctions for the long and short
vowels. If, in writing Indian, the syllables be separated by hyphens,
there need be no uncertainty respecting their sounds, and we shall be
saved a world of somewhat over nice disquisition. A vowel preceded by a
consonant, is always long, a vowel followed by a consonant is always
short. A vowel between two consonants, is short. A vowel standing by
itself is always full or long. A few examples of well known words will
denote this.

  On ta´ ri o.
  Ni ag´ ar a.
  O we´ go.
  Ti ó ga.
  Os wé go.
  Wis con´ sin.
  Chi cá go.
  Wá bash.
  Pe ó ri a.
  Tí con de ró ga.
  Mis siss ip pi.
  O neí da.
  Al ab á ma.
  O tis´ co.
  Or´ e gon.

Write the words by whatever system of orthography you will, French,
English, or German, and the vowel sounds will vindicate this
distinction. If diphthongs have been used, for simple vowels, through
early mistake or redundancy, the rule is the same. If they appear as
proper diphthongs, they follow the rule of diphthongs. This principal of
utterance appears to be a general and fixed law in the Indian languages
as respects the sounds of e, i, o, u, and the two chief sounds of a, 1
and 3 of Walker's Key. As the letter a has four distinct sounds, as in
English, the chief discrepancies, seen above, will appear in the use of
this letter.




The Egyptians embalmed their dead in myrrh and spices, but the blessed
art of printing has given us a surer and less revolting method of
preserving and transmitting to posterity, all that is truly valuable in
the plaudits of virtue, worth, and honor. Books thus become a more
permanent memorial than marble, and by their diffusion scatter those
lessons among all mankind, which the age of mounds and hieroglyphics,
stone and papyrus, had confined to the tablet of a shaft, or the dark
recesses of a tomb or a pyramid. It is never to be forgotten, that in
the development of this new phasis in the history of the human race, it
was printing that first lit the lamp of truth, and has driven on the
experiment, till the boundaries of letters have well nigh become
co-extensive with the world. If we do not widely err, there is no part
of the globe, where books of all descriptions have become so cheap and
abundant as they are at this time in the United States, and, laying
aside all other considerations, we may find a proof of the position
stated in the fact, that our vernacular literature is no longer confined
to the production of school books, the annals of law and divinity, the
age of muddy pamphlets, or the motley pages of the newspaper. We have no
design to follow up these suggestions by showing how far the study of
the natural sciences, the discussion of political economy, or the
advances of belles-lettres, have operated to produce this result; far
less to identify those causes, in the progress of western arts and
commerce, which have concurred to bring down the price of books, and
scatter the blessings of an untrammelled press, among all classes. It is
sufficient for our purpose to say that even the lives of our
distinguished native chieftains have come in for a share of modern
notice, and, we feel proud to add, of a notice which, so far as it
reaches, is worthy of the subject. And should our contributions on this
head, for the last few years, be equally well followed up for a few
years to come, even the desponding strains of one of their own
impersonated heroes can no longer be repeated with perfect truth:

    "They sink, they pass, they fly, they go,
      Like a vapor at morning's dawn,
    Or a flash of light, whose sudden glow
      Is seen, admired, and gone.

    "They died; but if a brave man bleeds,
      And fills the dreamless grave,
    Shall none repeat his name, his deeds,
      Nor tell that he was brave?"

To no one in our literary annals is the public so much indebted for
rescuing from oblivion the traits and character of the four celebrated
chiefs whose names stand at the head of this article, as to the able
author of these biographies, William L. Stone. Gifted with a keen
perception of the questions of right and wrong, which turn upon the
planting of the colonies among barbarians, who more than idled away
their days upon a soil which they did not cultivate--with a deep
sympathy in their fate and fortunes, on the one hand, and the paramount
claims of letters and Christianity on the other, he has set himself to
the task of rendering justice to whom justice belongs, with the ardor of
a philanthropist, and the research of a historian. He appears to have
planned a series of biographies which, if completed, will give a
connected view of the leading tribes who occupied New York, Connecticut,
Rhode Island, and Massachusetts, with a range in the examination of
contemporary men and collateral topics, which embraces a wide circle.
And he has filled up the outlines of his plan, thus far, in a manner
which leaves but little to glean in the path which he has trod. If the
extension of this circle, and the large amount of contemporaneous matter
brought in, has, in the minds of some, abstracted too large a share of
attention, and left the biographies with less unity and compactness than
they would otherwise have assumed, this is exclusively the fault of
their plan, so far as it is acknowledged, and not of the execution. And
for this course of extension there is a plea to be found in the nature
of the subject, in the treatment of which, scantiness of material was
often sought to be supplied by the introduction of collateral and
sometimes extraneous matter.

We propose briefly to notice the series of these biographies in their
order of publication. In his first work on Brant, he has presented, in
living colors, the great Mohawk of 1776, who rose up to crush that
confederacy which Washington and his compeers had pledged their lives to
maintain. Brant was a man of power and capacities, mental and physical,
beyond his tribe; and was so situated, in the actual contest, as to
throw a greater weight into the scale against us, than any other, or all
of the hostile chiefs of the Red Race put together. If he could not,
like Ariel, call up the "spirits of the vasty deep," he could, at his
bidding, summon together the no less malignant spirits of the woods, who
fell upon our sleeping hamlets with the fury of demons. And whether at
Johnson Hall or Niagara, at Cherry Valley or Schoharie, on the waters of
the Oriskany or the Chemung, he was the ruling and informing spirit of
the contest. Such was the power he wielded as commander of a most
effective body of light troops (for such are all Indian warriors), who
were supported by large and well appointed armies, that, like the
electric flashes of the boding storm, he preceded the heavier outbreak
by sounding aloud the wild notes of terror and dismay. It was in this
manner that his name became a talisman on the frontiers, to conjure up
deeds of evil, and in this way also, doubtless, it became loaded with
reproaches, some of which, as the author has denoted, were due to other
actors in the contest. It is difficult, however, to disturb the
judgments of a preceding age, on the character of individuals who have
long passed off the stage of action, whether those judgments be
favorable or unfavorable; and it is, in fact, impossible to reverse
them. It is only necessary to glance backward a short way, on the track
of biography, to perceive that posterity never revises the opinions once
put on individual character, heroic or literary. It tries to forget all
it can, and every body it can, and never remembers a long time any name
which it is possible to forget. It is willing, we should infer, to
concede something to the great men among barbarian nations, whose names
have often burst upon civilized society with the fearful attractions of
the meteor, or the comet, producing admiration in the beholders, without
stopping to inquire the true cause. Such were the Tamerlanes, and the
Tippoo Saibs of the eastern world, of a prior age, as well as the
Mehemet Alis and Abdel Kaders of the present. And such were, also, with
reduced means of action, numbers of the American aboriginal chiefs, who,
between the days of Manco Capac and Micanopy have figured in the history
of the western world. Most of these men owe their celebrity to the mere
fact of their having dazzled or astounded, or like Brant himself,
excited the terror of those who opposed them. In the case of the latter,
a change of opinion in those particular traits which affect his
humanity, is less readily made, from the fact, yet generally remembered,
that he had received a Christian education; that he was, while a mere
boy, received into the best society, acquired the English language, and
had been instructed, first at a New England academy, and afterwards at
one of its most practically efficient colleges. Posterity holds the
Mohawk chief responsible to have carried the precepts thus obtained into
the forest, and to have diffused their blessings among those who had
perhaps his bravery, without his talents or his knowledge. Those who
fought against him were ill qualified, we confess, to be his judges. He
had not only espoused the wrong cause, wrong because it was adverse to
the progress of national freedom and those very principles his people
contended for; but he battled for it with a master's hand, and made the
force of his energy felt, as the author has more fully indicated than
was before known, from the banks of the Mohawk and the Niagara, to the
Ohio, the Miami, and the Wabash. Yet, if there was error in the extent
to which he failed to carry the precepts of civilization and
Christianity, it was meet it should be pointed out, although it will
also be admitted, the public have a right to look for the strongest of
these proofs of a kind and benevolent feeling towards his open enemies,
out of the range of his domestic circle. His family had carried the
incipient principles of civilization, which he gave them, too high--they
had exhibited to the next age, a too prominent example of cultivation
and refinement in every sense--not to feel deeply the obloquy cast upon
his name, by the poetic spirit of the times; and not to wish that one
who had, in verity, so many high and noble qualities, both in the
council and the field, should also be without a spot on his humanity. We
deem the feeling as honorable to all who have the blood of the chieftain
in their veins as it is praiseworthy in his biographer. We cannot,
however, consent to forget, that historical truth is very severe in its
requisitions, and is not to be put off, by friend or foe, with hearsay
testimony, or plausible surmises.

Brant cannot, like Xicotencal, be accused of having joined the invaders
of his country, who were recklessly resolved upon its subjugation; but
he overlooked the fact, that both the _invader_ and the _invaded_ in the
long and bloody border warfare of the revolution, were, in all that
constitutes character, the same people. They were of the same blood and
lineage, spoke the same language, had the same laws and customs, and the
same literature and religion, and he failed to see that the only real
point of difference between them was, who should wield the sceptre.
Whichever party gained the day in such a contest, letters and
Christianity must triumph, and as the inevitable result, barbarism must
decline, and the power of the Indian nation fall.

In Brant, barbarism and civilization evinced a strong and singular
contest. He was at one moment a savage, and at another a civilian, at
one moment cruel, and at another humane; and he exhibited, throughout
all the heroic period of his career, a constant vacillation and struggle
between good and bad, noble and ignoble feelings, and, as one or the
other got the mastery, he was an angel of mercy, or a demon of
destruction. In this respect, his character does not essentially vary
from that which has been found to mark the other leading red men who,
from Philip to Osceola, have appeared on the stage of action. Like them,
his reasoning faculties were far less developed than his physical
perceptions. And to attempt to follow or find anything like a fixed
principle of humanity, basing itself on the higher obligations that sway
the human breast, would, we fear, become a search after that which had
no existence in his mind; or if the germ was there, it was too feeble to
become predominant. We do not think it necessary, in commenting on his
life, to enter into any nice train of reasoning or motives to account
for this characteristic, or to reconcile cruelties of the most shocking
kind, when contrasted with traits of mildness and urbanity. They were
different moods of the man, and in running back over the eventful years
of his life, it becomes clear, that civilization had never so completely
gained the mastery over his mind and heart, as not to desert him,
without notice, the moment he heard the sound of the war-whoop. The fact
that he could use the pen, supplied no insuperable motive against his
wielding the war club. His tomahawk and his Testament lay on the same
shelf. The worst trait in his character is revealed in his tardiness to
execute acts of _purposed_ mercy. There was too often some impediment,
which served as an excuse, as when he had a ploughed field to cross to
save Wells and his family, or a lame heel, or gave up the design
altogether, as in the case of Wisner, whom he construed it into an act
of mercy to tomahawk.

That he was, however, a man of an extraordinary firmness, courage and
decision of character, is without doubt. But his fate and fortunes have
not been such as to give much encouragement to chiefs of the native race
in lending their influence to European, or Anglo-European powers, who
may be engaged in hostilities against each other on this continent.
Pontiac had realized this before him, and Tecumtha realized it after
him. Neither attained the object he sought. One of these chiefs was
assassinated, the other fell in battle, and Brant himself only survived
the defeat of his cause, to fret out his latter days in vain attempts to
obtain justice from the power which he had most loyally served, and
greatly benefited. Had he been knighted at the close of the contest,
instead of being shuffled from one great man to another, at home and
abroad, it would have been an instance of a noble exercise of that
power. But George III. seemed to have been fated, at all points, neither
to do justice to his friends nor his enemies.

Such was Brant, or Thayendanegea, symbolically, the Band of his
tribe,[10] to whose lot it has fallen to act a more distinguished part
in the Colonies, as a consummate warrior, than any other aboriginal
chieftain who has arisen. And his memory was well worthy of the
elaborate work in which his biographer has presented him, in the most
favourable points of view, amidst a comprehensive history of the border
wars of the revolution, without, however, concealing atrocities of which
he was, perhaps sometimes unwillingly, the agent.

     [10] The name is usually translated, two-sticks tied, or united.

A word, and but a word, will be added, as to some points connected with
this chief's character, which are not in coincidence with the generally
received opinion, or are now first introduced by way of palliation, or
vindication. We confess, that so far as the presence or absence of the
Great Mohawk in the massacre of Wyoming, is concerned, the statements
are either inconclusive, or less satisfactory than could be wished.
There was quite too much feeling sometimes evinced by his family, and
particularly his son John, to permit us to receive the new version of
the statement without some grains of allowance. An investigation is
instituted by Col. Stone as to the immediate ancestry of Brant, and much
importance is attached to the inquiry, whether he was descended from a
line of hereditary chiefs. We think the testimony adverse to such a
supposition, and it affords no unequivocal proof of talents, that
notwithstanding such an adventitious circumstance, certainly without
being of the line of _ruling_ chiefs, he elevated himself to be, not
only the head chief and leader of his tribe, but of the Six Nations.
Courtesy and popular will attach the title of chief or sachem to men of
talents, courage or eloquence among our tribes generally; and while mere
descent would devolve it upon a chiefs son, whatever might be his
character, yet this fact alone would be of little import, and give him
little influence, without abilities: whereas abilities alone are found
to raise men of note to the chieftainship, among all the North American
tribes, whose customs and character are known.

It has constituted no part of our object, in these general outlines, to
examine minor points of the biography or history, upon which the
information or the conclusions are not so satisfactory as could be
wished, or which may, indeed, be at variance with our opinions. One
fact, however, connected with this name, it is not deemed proper to pass
_sub silentio_. Brant is made to take a part in the Pontiac war, a
contest arising on the fall of the French power in Canada in 1759, and
which closed in 1763. Brant was at its close but twenty-one years of
age, and had not, it is probable, finally returned from his New England
tutors. At any rate, there is no reason to suppose, that, at that early
period of his life and his influence, he could have had any
participation in the events of that war.

In the life of Red Jacket, or Sagóyewata, we have a different order of
Indian intellect brought to view. He was an orator and a diplomatist,
and was at no period of his life noted for his skill as a warrior. Nay,
there are indubitable proofs that his personal courage could not always
be "screwed up to the sticking point." But in native intellect, he was
even superior to Brant. He was, indeed, the Brant of the council, and
often came down upon his opponents with bursts of eloquence, trains of
argument, or rhapsodies of thought, which were irresistible. And of him,
it may be symbolically said, that his tongue was his tomahawk, and the
grandiloquent vocabulary of the Seneca language, his war-club. Nor has
any native chieftain wielded the weapon to more purpose, or with a
longer continued effect than the great Seneca orator. The specimens of
his eloquence which have appeared in our newspapers for forty years or
more, are still fresh in the memory, and it was due and meet that these
should be collected and preserved in a permanent shape, together with
such particulars of his life and career as could be obtained. This task
has been performed by Col. Stone, in a manner which leaves nothing more
to be attempted on the subject. Much zeal and industry have been evinced
in eliciting facts from every quarter where it was probable information
could be had. And he has brought together a body of contemporaneous
proofs and reminiscences, touching this chief, which a few years would
have put beyond the power of recovery, and which a position less
prominent than he occupied as a public journalist, might have rendered
it difficult for another to collect. We need only refer to the names of
Gen. P.B. Porter, Rev. J. Breckenridge, Mr. Parish, and Mr. Hosmer, to
show the character of this part of his materials.

Other chiefs of the native stock, have produced occasional pieces of
eloquence, or admired oratory, but Red-Jacket is the only prominent
individual who has devoted his whole career to it. That he did, indeed,
excel, producing effects which no reported speech of his ever equalled
or did justice to, there are still many living to attest. In the
question of land sales, which arose between the white and red races,
there were frequent occasions to bring him out. And these, in the end,
assumed a complicated shape, from either the vague nature, or ill
understood conditions of prior grants. In all these discussions, he
preserved a unity and consistency in the set of opinions he had adopted.
He was opposed to further sales, to removal, to civilization, and to the
introduction of Christianity among his people. What Brant had done in
_politics_, Red-Jacket repeated in _morals_. Both took the wrong side,
and both failed. But it is to be said of the Seneca orator, that he did
not live to see the final defeat of that course of policy which he had
so long and so ably advocated.

It was remarked by Mr. Clinton, and the fact had impressed others, that
the Iroquois, or Six Nations, excelled the other natives in eloquence.
Of this, their history, during the Supremacy of Holland and England in
New York, as given by Colden, furnishes ample proofs. The speech of
Garangula, against the Governor General of Canada and his wily policy,
is unexcelled, as a whole, by anything which even Red-Jacket has left in
print, though much of the effect of it is due to the superior and heroic
position occupied by the tribes for whom he spoke. Logan, unexcelled by
all others for his pathos and simplicity, it must be remembered, was
also of this stock,--Mingo, or _Mengwe_, as the Delawares pronounced it,
being but a generic term for Iroquois; so that the transmission of this
trait, from the proud era of the Iroquois confederacy down to modern
days, is quite in keeping with the opinion quoted.

It is to be wished that Col. Stone would supply another link in the
chain of Iroquois history, by favoring the public with the life of the
noted Oneida chief, Shenandoah, for which materials must exist in the
Kirkland family.

The lives of the two men, Uncas and Miontonimo, whose leading acts are
described in one of the volumes named in our caption, belong to an
earlier period of history, and a different theatre of action. The scene
changes from western New York to the seaboard of Connecticut, Rhode
Island, and, to some extent, Massachusetts. Uncas was the good genius,
the tutelary spirit, if we may so say, of the colony of Connecticut; and
the best monument which that State could erect to his memory, would be
to change the unmeaning and worn out name of one of her counties, New
London, for that of the noble and friendly chief, of whose forest
kingdom it once formed a part. From the first day that the English
colonists set foot within it, to the hour of his death, Uncas was the
unwavering "friend of the white man," as his biographer justly calls
him. He was of that race, whom history has, without making a particle of
allowance for savage ignorance and hereditary prejudice, branded under
the name of Pequods. They were of that type of languages and lineage,
which was very well characterized generically, at least as far south as
the original country of the Delawares; but which assumed a sub-type
after crossing the Hudson, and was known east of that point under one of
its superinduced forms, as the Mohegan. This term had been dropped by
the Pequods, if it was ever their specific cognomen, but it is a proof,
and we think a very conclusive proof, of the yet freshly remembered
affiliation with Taminund[11] and the Manhattans, that Uncas, the moment
he revolted from King Sassacus, assumed the name of a Mohegan, and put
himself at the head of that tribe, as it then existed within the
boundaries of Connecticut. Or rather, he constituted the revolted
Pequods a new tribe, under an old and respected name, and he thus laid
the foundation of the Uncas dynasty. Placed thus by circumstances in a
position in which he sought an alliance with the early colonists, and
finding his security in theirs, he was in fact the only leading chief of
the times who, really, heartily, and faithfully sought their prosperity
and growth to the end. The rise of Uncas and Connecticut thus began at
one era; and as the alliance was founded on mutual interest and safety,
it only grew stronger with time. A man of less force of character or
natural sagacity than Uncas, would have vacillated when he saw the
colonists becoming more powerful and himself more weak as years rolled
on, and would have been seduced to enter into alliances for arresting
the white man's power, as other native chiefs had done. But all history
concurs in showing that, under every circumstance, and there were many
of the most trying kind, he carried himself well, and avoided even a
suspicion of his fidelity.

     [11] The name of this chief is Anglicised in the word Tammany.

Uncas was well qualified for a ruler both in mind and person. He
possessed a fine figure, over six feet in height, a commanding voice,
and a noble bearing. He was mild yet dignified in his manners. He was
not only wise in council, but brave[12] in war, as he evinced in many
instances, but particularly in the battle of Sachem's Plain, in which he
proved himself the bravest and most chivalrous of the brave. Yet his
wisdom and moderation in governing his people, and the well balanced
justice and consistency of his character, give him a still higher
reputation, and establish his best claim to remembrance. In all the
trials in which he was placed, in all the temptations he had to fly into
a rage, and act out the savage, he sustained this character for wise
deliberation; and by adhering to his first covenant with the English,
and laying all his plans and grievances before the colonial courts, he
raised himself in strength and reputation, and finally triumphed, first
over Sassacus, and then over Miontonimo, the two greatest and most
powerful of his immediate contemporaries.

     [12] The terms "brave" and "braves" used in a substantive sense,
     in this work, are neither English nor Indian. The Indian term
     should be translated strong-heart, its literal import; for it is
     one of the general rules of these languages, that the operation of
     the adjective, as well as action of the verb, is uniformly marked
     upon the substantive--there being, indeed, different inflections
     of each substantive, to denote whether this operation or action be
     caused by a noble or ignoble, or an animate or inanimate object.
     Still the general use of the Canadian term _Brave_, on our Indian
     border, may give it some poetic claims to introduction into our
     vernacular, burthened as it already is with more objectionable

If Uncas was the patron of Connecticut, Miontonimo, with his family of
the Narragansett chiefdom, was equally so of Rhode Island. And it is
from this obvious fact, probably, in part, that we find the historical
notices of him, from the last quarter, decidedly more favorable to his
general character than those emanating from the land of his enemy and
his conqueror, Uncas. While there is no disagreement as to any
historical fact of note, it is natural that some little shade of feeling
of this nature should remain. We have noticed a similar feeling with
respect to existing tribes and chiefs, in the western world, where the
inhabitants never fail to be imbued with those peculiar notions and
traditions of the particular tribe about them, which represent the
latter as the principal nation, and invest them with tribal traits of
superiority. It is a feeling which leans to the better side of one's
nature, and does honor to men's hearts; but the historian is obliged to
look at such questions with a colder eye, and can never abate a tittle
of the truth, although he may run counter to this local sympathy and
bias. We could name some remarkable instances of this prejudice, if we
were willing to digress.

If Miontonimo be compared to Uncas, it will at once be seen that he
lacked the latter's sagacity and firmness of character. Had the
Narragansett listened to Sassacus, and formed a league with him, he
would have crushed, for a time, the infant colony of Connecticut. This
he declined, apparently, because it had the specific character of
enabling Sassacus to put down Uncas. After the Pequod king had been
defeated and fled to the Mohawks, Miontonimo was left in a position to
assume the Pequod's policy, and then tried to bring Uncas into just such
a combination to fall on the colonists, as he had himself refused, when
the proposition came from Sassacus. As Uncas not only refused, but laid
the scheme before his allies, Miontonimo went to war against him, with a
large army. Uncas hastily prepared to meet him, with a smaller force.
They met on Sachem's Plain, on the banks of the Shawtucket. Uncas,
unwilling to see so many of his people slain in battle, nobly stepped
forward and proposed a personal combat, to decide the question of who
should rule, and who obey. It was declined, but the moment the reply was
made, he threw himself on the plain, a signal, it seems, for his men to
advance, and they came on with such an impulse, that he won the day and
took Miontonimo prisoner. This capture was the act of one of his minor
chiefs; but when his enemy was brought before him, he declined
exercising his right of putting him to death, but determined to refer
the matter to the authorities of Hartford. There it was found to be a
knotty question, and finally referred to the General Court at Boston.
The Court strengthened itself with the opinions of six distinguished
clergymen and several eminent civilians; and then decided, that the
Narragansett chief had justly forfeited his life, by violating his
political covenants with the colonies, but it might not be taken away
_by them_. He must be remanded to Uncas, within his jurisdiction, and by
him be executed; but it was enjoined, with a very poor compliment to the
known mildness of the character of Uncas, that no needless cruelty
should be practised. Here, then, the white man evinced less mercy than
the red had done. Miontonimo was now released from his confinement, and
conducted back to the very spot where he had first been taken prisoner,
as he approached which, one of the Mohegans who accompanied him, keeping
him in entire ignorance of his fate, raised his tomahawk as he walked
behind him, and laid him dead at a blow.

Whether the moral responsibility of this execution rests with the court,
or the executioner, we do not propose particularly to inquire, nor to
ascertain to what degree it was shuffled off, by directing an Indian to
commit an act which it was unlawful for a white man and a Christian to
perform. Had Uncas slain his adversary in cold blood, after the action,
the thing would have been in perfect accordance with Indian law. Had
Miontonimo been a subject of either of the colonies of Connecticut,
Rhode Island or Massachusetts, and levied war, or committed any overt
act of treason, his execution would have been in accordance with the
laws of civilized nations. Neither condition happened. It was, however,
felt, that the great disturber of the colonies, after Sassacus, had now
been caught. He had violated his covenant by going to war without
apprising them. They did not believe he would keep any future covenants.
The moral sense of the community would not be shocked, but rather
gratified by his execution. This point was strongly signified to the
court. But they could not legally compass it. English law opposed it.
The customs of civilized nations, in warring with _each other_, opposed
it. Should a different rule be observed towards the aborigines? Did the
dictates of sound judgment and common sense, did the precepts of
Christianity,--aye, "there was the rub,"--did the precepts of
Christianity sanction it? On full deliberation,--for the question was
not decided in haste,--neither of these points could be affirmatively
answered. But while policy--the policy of _expediency_, the lust of
power, and the offended moral sense of an exposed and suffering
community demanded, as it was thought, the death of the sachem, still it
was not found that one whom they had ever treated, and then viewed, as a
foreign prince, legally considered, could be thus deprived of his life.
Imprisonment was not, as a permanent policy, resolved on. There was one
course left to escape both dilemmas, and to avoid all censure. It was to
restore things to the precise footing they had before his surrender. It
was to hand him back to Uncas, without the expression of any decision,
leaving that chieftain to act as he deemed fit. They remanded him
indeed, but went one step too far, by first deciding in a formal court,
after months of deliberation, in the course of which the clergy and
gentry, (this is a term that would be proper to the times) had been
formally consulted, and directed his death, stipulating only that he
should not be killed with cruelty. If there was not something that
smacks of the want of true and noble dealing in this--if it accorded
with the bland precepts of Christianity, to do unto others as you would
that others should do unto you--if the act did not, in fine, partake of
the very spirit of Jesuitism in the worst sense in which the word has
been adopted into the language we have, we confess, formed a totally
wrong idea of its meaning.

A case, in some respects similar to this, happened in modern times which
may be thought to contrast rather strongly with the above example of
Puritan mercy. The reasons for a capital punishment, were, indeed, far
more cogent, and the community called out strongly for it, and would
have sustained it. It was the capture of Black Hawk, which, it will be
recollected, took place during the first Presidential term of General
Jackson. Black Hawk had levied war within the boundaries of one of the
States, on lands ceded by treaty, and organized a confederacy of Indian
tribes, which, though broken up in part, chiefly through the failure of
the other tribes to fulfil their engagements with him, yet required for
its suppression the entire disposable force of the Union. The Sac chief
was finally captured on Indian territory, in the act of fleeing west of
the Mississippi. He was imprisoned, and the case referred to the
Government for decision. He had broken his treaty covenants. He had not
only made war, but in its outbreak and its continuance, had been guilty
of countenancing, at least, the most shocking barbarities. He had,
indeed, opened the scene by cruelly murdering the agent of the
Government, the representative of the President, in the person of Mr.
St. Vrain. The community, the western States particularly, called
loudly for his execution. There could be no security, it was said, if
such a bloody fellow was allowed to roam at large. He had forfeited his
life a thousand times. There was, indeed, the same popular feeling
against him, which had existed in New England, one hundred and ninety
years before, against Miontonimo. But could he have been _legally_
executed? And if so, was it, indeed, the true policy? Was it noble--was
it high-minded? Was it meting out exact and equal justice to men with
red skins, as well as white? It was thought that all these questions
must be negatively answered; and the bold Sac insurgent was sent home,
accompanied by an officer of the army, to secure his comfort and safety,
and thus to see that a wise and merciful decision should be faithfully
carried out, and popular indignation be prevented from wreaking itself,
in the assassination of the chief.

In closing these remarks, it may appear selfish to express the hope,
that Mr. Stone, to whom we are already indebted for these spirited,
comprehensive, and well written volumes, should still further employ his
pen in adding to the sum of these obligations. But he has so well
studied the field in its historical bearing, so far at least as relates
to the eastern department of the Union, that we know of no one to whom
the labour would present less of the character of a task. We are in want
of a good account of Philip, or Metacom, the energetic sachem of the
Pokenokets, who impersonated so fully the wild Indian character, and
views, and battled so stoutly against the occupancy of New England by
the Saxon race. In showing up to modern times such a man, we think a
biography would derive very deep interest, and it would certainly be a
new experiment, to take up the aboriginal views and opinions of the
invading race, and thus write, as it were, from _within_, instead of
_without_ the circle of warlike action. In this way, their combinations,
efforts and power, would better appear, and redound more to the credit
of the aboriginal actors, as warriors and heroes. As it is, history only
alludes to them as conspirators, rebels, traitors, or culprits; as if
the fact of their opposing the egress of civilized nations, who were in
all respects wiser and better, were sufficient to blot out all their
right and claim to the soil and sovereignty of the land of their
forefathers, and they were in fact bound to stand back, and give it up
_nolens volens_.

We had designed to subjoin a few remarks on the biographical labors of
other writers in this department, particularly those of Thatcher and
Drake, but our limits are already exhausted, and we must abandon, or at
least, defer it.



The great Pine Plains, beginning not far south of the junction of the
Mohawk with the North River, are still infested by wolves, who harbour
in its deep gorges, from which they sally out at night, on the
sheep-folds of the farmers, and often put a whole neighbourhood in fear.
The railroad track from Albany to Schenectady, passes over a part of
these plains, which stretch away in the direction of the blue outlines
of the Helderberg mountains. It is many miles across the narrowest part
of them, and they reach down to the very outskirts of the city of
Albany, where they have of late years, and since Buel's day, begun to
cultivate them by sowing clover, planting fruit trees, and in other
ways. They constitute the table land of the county, and send out from
beneath their heavy mass of yellow sand and broken down sand stones,
mica slates, and granites, many springs and streams of the purest and
most crystalline waters, which find their outlets chiefly into the
valley of the Tawasentha, or, as the river is called in popular
language, the Norman's Kill, and are thus contributed to swell the noble
volume of the Hudson. These springs issue at the precise point where the
arenaceous mass rests on a clay or impervious basis. The effect, in
ancient years, has been that the sand is carried off, grain by grain,
till a deep ravine or gorge is formed. The sides of this gorge being
composed of mixed earth and some mould, and free from the aridity of the
surface, bear a dense and vigorous growth of hard wood trees and
shrubbery, and are often found to be encumbered with immense trunks of
fallen pines and other forest rubbish, which renders it very difficult
to penetrate them. It is into these dark gorges that the wolves retreat,
after scouring the plains and neighbouring farms for prey; and here they
have maintained their ancient empire from time immemorial. Such, at
least, was the state of things between the settlers and the wolves, at
the date of this story, in 1807.

Sometimes the whole country armed and turned out _en masse_, to ferret
them out of their fastnesses and destroy them; and truly the forces
assembled on some of these wolf-hunts were surprising, and, in one
respect, that is to say, the motley and uncouth character of their arms,
they would have put both Bonaparte and Wellington to flight. There was
nothing, from a pitchfork to a heavy blunderbuss, which they did not
carry, always excepting a good rifle, which I never remember to have
seen on these occasions. Indeed, these formal turn-outs were better
suited to frighten away, than to kill and capture the foe; so that there
was no just cause of surprise why the wolves remained, and even
increased. They still kept masters of the Plains--sheep were killed by
dozens, night after night, and the alarm went on.

It was at other times tried to trap them, and to bait them in sundry
ways. I recollect that we all had implicit faith in the village
schoolmaster, one Cleanthus, who knew some Latin, and a little of almost
every thing; and among other arts which he cherished, and dealt out in a
way to excite wonder for his skill, he knew how to make the wolves
follow his tracks, by smearing his shoes with æsofoedita, or some
other substance, and then ensconcing himself at night in a log pen,
where he might bid defiance to the best of them, and shoot at them
besides. But I never could learn that there were any of these
pestiferous animals killed, either by the schoolmaster and his party, or
any other party, except it was the luckless poor animal I am about to
write of, which showed its affinities to the canine race by turning
rabid, and rushing at night into the midst of a populous manufacturing

Iosco was eligibly seated on the summit and brow of a picturesque series
of low crowned hills, just on the southern verge of these great Plains,
where the tillable and settled land begins. It was, consequently, in
relation to these wolves, a perfect frontier; and we had not only
frequent alarms, but also the privilege and benefit of hearing all the
wonderful stories of wolf-adventure, to man and beast, for a wide
circle. Indeed, these stories often came back with interest, from the
German and Dutch along the Swarta Kill, and Boza Kill settlements, away
up to the foot of the Helderberg mountains. A beautiful and clear stream
of sparkling cold water, called the Hungerkill, after gathering its
crystal tributaries from the deep gorges of the plains, ran through the
village, and afforded one or two seats for mills, and after winding and
doubling on its track a mile or two, rendered its pellucid stores into
the Norman's Kill, or, as this stream was called by the ancient Mohawk
race, in allusion to their sleeping dead, the Tawasentha. No stream in
the country was more famous for the abundance of its fine brook trout,
and the neighbouring plains served to shelter the timid hare, and the
fine species of northern partridge, which is there always called a

The village was supported by its manufacturing interests, and was quite
populous. It had a number of long streets, some of which reached across
the stream, and over a spacious mill pond, and others swept at right
angles along the course of the great Cherry Valley turnpike. In its
streets were to be heard, in addition to the English, nearly all the
dialects of the German between the Rhine and the Danube; the Low Dutch
as spoken by the common country people on the manor of Rensselaerwyck,
the Erse and Gaelic, as not unfrequently used by the large proportion of
its Irish and Scotch, and what seemed quite as striking to one brought
up in seclusion from it, the genuine Yankee, as discoursed by the
increasing class of factory wood choppers, teamsters, schoolmasters, men
out at the elbows, and travelling wits. The latter were indeed but a
sorry representation of New England, as we have since found it. No small
amount of superstitions were believed and recited in the social meetings
of such a mixed foreign population. Accounts of instances of the second
sight, death-lights on the meadows and in the churchyard, the low
howling of premonitory dogs before funerals, and other legendary wares,
to say nothing of the actual and veritable number of downright spooks,
seen on various occasions, on the lands of the Veeders, the Van
Valkenburgs, the Truaxes, and the Lagranges, rendered it a terror to all
children under twelve to stir out of doors after dark. There were in the
annals of Iosco, several events in the historical way which served as
perfect eras to its inhabitants; but none, it is believed, of so
striking and general importance as the story of the Mad Wolf, of which I
am about to write.

There had been found, soon after the close of the revolutionary war, in
a dark wood very near the road, pieces of a cloth coat and metallic
buttons, and other things, which rendered it certain that a man had been
murdered at that spot, in consequence of which the place was shunned, or
hurried by, as if a spirit of evil had its abode there. On another
occasion, the body of a poor old man of the name of Homel, was found
drowned deep in the Norman's Kill, clasped in the arms of his wife, both
dead. A gentleman of standing, who ventured alone, rather groggy, one
dark night, over the long unrailed bridge that crossed the mill pond,
pitched upon some sharp pallisadoes in the water, and came to a
melancholy end. Hormaun, an Iroquois, who haunted the valley, had
killed, it was said, ninety-nine men, and was waiting an opportunity to
fill his count, by dispatching his hundredth man. This was a greatly
dreaded event, particularly by the boys. There was also the era, when a
Race Course had been established on a spot called the "Colonel's Farm,"
and the era of the "Deep Snow." There were many other events celebrated
in Iosco, such as the De Zeng era, the Van Rensselaer era, and the Van
Kleeck era, which helped the good mothers to remember the period when
their children were born; but none, indeed, of so notable a character to
youthful minds as the adventure of the mad wolf.

Wolf stories were in vogue, in fact, in the evening and tea party
circles of Iosco for many years; and if one would take every thing as it
was given, there had been more acts of bravery, conduct, and firm
decision of character and foresight, displayed in encountering these
wild vixens of the plains and valleys by night, than would, if united,
have been sufficient to repel the inroads of Burgoyne, St. Leger, or Sir
John Johnson, with Brant, and all his hosts of tories and Indians,
during the American revolution.

I chanced one night to have left the city of Albany, in company with
one of these heroic spirits. We occupied my father's chaise, an old
fashioned piece of gentility now out of vogue, drawn by a prime horse,
one which he always rode on parades. It was late before we got out of
the precincts of the city, and up the hill, and night overtook us away
in the pine woods, at Billy McKown's, a noted public-house seated half
way between the city and Iosco, where it was customary in those days to
halt; for besides that he was much respected, and one of the most
sensible and influential men in the town, it was not thought right,
whatever the traveller might require, that a _horse_ should be driven
eight miles without drawing breath, and having a pail of water. As I was
but young, and less of a charioteer than my valiant companion, he held
the whip and reins thus far; but after the wolf stories that poured in
upon us at McKown's that evening, he would hold them no longer. Every
man, he thought, was responsible to himself. He did not wish to be
wolf's meat that night, so he hired a fleet horse from our host, and a
whip and spurs, and set off with the speed of a Jehu, leaving me to make
my way, in the heavy chaise, through the sandy plains, as best I could.

In truth we had just reached the most sombre part of the plain, where
the trees were more thick, the sand deep and heavy, and _not_ a house
but one, within the four miles. To render it worse, this was the chief
locality of wolf insolence, where he had even ventured to attack men. It
was on this route too, that the schoolmaster had used his medical arts,
which made it better known through the country as the supposed centre of
their power. Nothing harmed me, however; the horse was fine, and I
reached home not only uneaten, but unthreatened by a wolf's jaw.

But I must confine myself to the matter in hand. A large and fierce wolf
sallied out of the plains one dark summer's night, and rushed into the
midst of the village, snapping to the right and left as he went, and
biting every animal that came in his way. Cows, swine, pigs,
geese--every species, whether on four legs, or two legs, shared its
malice alike. The animal seemed to have a perfect ubiquity--it was every
where, and seemed to have spared nothing. It is not recollected that
there was a single house, or barn-yard in the village, where something
had not been bitten. If he had come on an errand of retribution, for the
great and threatening wolf-parties which had gone out against his race,
and all the occult arts of the schoolmaster in trying to decoy them at
Barrett's hollow, he could not have dealt out his venomous snaps more

It must have been about midnight, or soon after, that the fearful
visitor came. Midnight, in a country village, finds almost every one in
bed, but such was the uproar among the animal creation, made by this
strange interloper, that _out_ of bed they soon come. The cattle
bellowed, the pigs squealed, the poultry cackled--there must be
something amiss. Santa Claus himself must be playing his pranks. "A
wolf!" was the cry--"a wolf is committing havoc." "It is mad!" came next
on the voices of the night. "A mad wolf!--a mad wolf!" Nothing but a
mad wolf could venture alone into the heart of the village, and do so
much mischief. Out ran the people into the streets, men, women and all.
Some caught up guns, some clubs, some pitchforks. If the tories and
Indians, in the old French war, had broke into the settlement with fire
and sword, there could not have been a greater tumult, and nothing but a
mad wolf would have stood his ground. Where is he? which way did he run?
who saw him? and a thousand like expressions followed. He had gone
south, and south the mob pushed after him. He was away over on the
street that leads up from the middle factory. It was a cloudy night, or
the moon only came out fitfully, and threw light enough to discern
objects dimly, as the clouds rolled before it. Indistinct murmurs came
on the breeze, and at length the scream of a woman. The cause of it soon
followed. The wolf had bitten Mrs. Sitz. Now Mrs. Sitz was a careful,
tall, rigid-faced, wakeful housewife, from the dutchy of Hesse
D'Armstadt, who had followed the fortunes of her husband, in trying his
mechanical skill in the precincts of Iosco; but while her husband Frank
laid fast asleep, under the influence of a hard day's labour, her ears
were open to the coming alarm. It was not long before she heard a tumult
in her goose pen. The rabid animal had bounded into the midst of them,
which created as great an outcry as if Rome had a second time been
invaded. Out she ran to their relief, not knowing the character of the
disturber, but naturally thinking it was some thief of a neighbour, who
wished to make provision for a coming Christmas. The animal gave her one
snap and leapt the pen. "Mein hemel!" screamed she, "er hat mein
gebissen!" Sure enough the wolf had bit her in the thigh.

The party in chase soon came up, and while some stopt to parley and
sympathize with her, others pushed on after the animal--the spitzbug, as
she spitefully called him. By this time the wolf had made a circuit of
the southern part of the village, and scampered down the old factory
road, by the mill dam, under the old dark bridge at the saw mill, and up
the hill by the old public store; and thus turned his course back
towards the north, into the thickest part of the village, where he had
first entered. He had made a complete circuit. All was valour, boasting,
and hot speed behind him, but the wolf had been too nimble for them.
Unluckily for him, however, while the main group pushed behind, just as
he was scampering up the old store hill, he was suddenly headed by a
party coming down it. This party was led by old Colonel S., a
revolutionary soldier, a field-officer of the county militia, and the
superintendent of the extensive manufacturing establishment from which
the village drew its prosperity. He was armed with a fusil of the olden
time, well charged, and having been roused from his bed in a hurry,
could not at the moment find his hat, and clapt on an old revolutionary
cocked hat, which hung in the room. His appearance was most opportune;
he halted on the brow of the hill; and as the wolf bounded on he
levelled his piece at the passing fugitive, and fired. He had aimed at
the shoulders; the fleetness of its speed, however, saved its vital
parts, but the shot took effect in the animal's hind legs. They were
both broken at a shot. This brought him down. The poor creature tried to
drag himself on by his fore paws, but his pursuers were too close upon
him, and they soon dispatched him with hatchets and clubs.

Thus fell the rabid wolf, to be long talked of by men and boys, and put
down as a chief item in village traditions. But the effects of his visit
did not end here. In due time, symptoms of madness seized the cattle and
other animals, which had come within the reach of his teeth. Many of the
finest milch cows were shot. Calves and swine, and even poultry went
rabid; and as things of this kind are generally overdone, there was a
perfect panic in the village on the subject, and numbers of valuable
animals were doubtless shot, merely because they happened to show some
restiveness at a very critical epoch.

But what, methinks the reader is ready to ask, became of Mrs. Sitz?
Whether it was, that she had brought over some mystical arts from the
Wild Huntsman of Bohemia, or had derived protection from the venom
through the carefully administered medicines of Dr. Crouse, who duly
attended the case, or some inherent influence of the stout hearted
woman, or the audacity of the bite itself, had proved more than a match
for the wolf, I cannot say; but certain it is, that while oxen and kine,
swine and fatlings, fell under the virus and were shot, she recovered,
and lived many years to scold her dozing husband Frank, who did not jump
up immediately, and come to her rescue at the goose pen.

       *       *       *       *       *

INDIAN POSSESSIONS.--The Ottoes own, at the latest accounts, a large
tract of country on the Big Platte, west of the Missouri; they are a
poor race of people, and receive a small annuity of $2,500. The Pawnees
are a powerful body, and number about 6,500 persons, divided into bands
under the names of Pawnee Loups, Grand Pawnees, Republican Pawnees,
Pawnee Pics, &c.; they are wild and furtive in their habits, and receive
provisions and goods. The Grand Nation is the Pottowattomies, or the
"united bands of the Chippewas, Ottawas, and Pottowattomies." They own
five millions of acres of prairie lands, along the Missouri river to the
Little Sioux, number about 2,000, and receive $42,000 a year for their
lands sold in Illinois and Michigan. They are a respectable body of
Indians, are good farmers, and educate their children. The payment of
the annuities is always a season of great hilarity and festivity.--
_N.O. Pic._

     It is a characteristic of some of the Indian legends, that they
     convey a _moral_ which seems clearly enough to denote, that a part
     of these legends were invented to convey instruction to the young
     folks who listen to them. The known absence of all harsh methods
     among the Indians, in bringing up their children, favours this
     idea. The following tale addresses itself plainly to girls; to whom
     it teaches the danger of what we denominate coquetry. It would seem
     from this, that beauty, and its concomitant, a passion for dress,
     among the red daughters of Adam and Eve, has the same tendency to
     create pride, and nourish self-conceit, and self-esteem, and assume
     a _tyranny over the human heart_, which writers tell us, these
     qualities have among their white-skinned, auburn-haired, and
     blue-eyed progeny the world over. This tale has appeared in the
     "Columbian." The term Moowis is one of the most derogative and
     offensive possible. It is derived from the Odjibwa substantive, mo,
     filth, or excrement.



In a large village, there lived a noted belle, or Ma mon dá go kwa, who
was the admiration of all the young hunters and warriors. She was
particularly admired by a young man, who from his good figure, and the
care he took in his dress, was called the Beau-Man, or Ma mon dá gin
in-e. This young man had a friend and companion, whom he made a
confidant of his affairs. "Come," said he, one day in a sportive mood,
"let us go a courting to her who is so handsome, perhaps she may fancy
one of us." But she would listen to neither of them, and when the
handsome young man rallied from the coldness of her air, and made an
effort to overcome her indifference, she put together her thumb and
three fingers, and raising her hand gracefully towards him, deliberately
opened them in his face. This gesticulatory mode of rejection is one of
the highest contempt, and the young hunter retired confused and abashed.
His sense of pride was deeply wounded, and he was the more piqued, that
it had been done in the presence of others, and the affair was soon
noised about the village, and became the talk of every lodge circle.
Besides, he was a very sensitive man, and the thing so preyed upon him,
that he became moody, and at last took to his bed. He was taciturn,
often lying for days without uttering a word, with his eyes fixed on
vacancy, and taking little or no food. From this state no efforts could
rouse him; he felt abashed and dishonoured, even in the presence of his
own relatives, and no persuasions could induce him to rise. So that when
the family prepared to take down the lodge to remove, he still kept his
bed, and they were compelled to lift it over his head, and leave him
upon his skin couch. It was a time of general removal and breaking up of
the camp, for it was only a winter's hunting camp, and as the season of
the hunt was now over, and spring began to appear, they all moved off,
as by one impulse, to the place of their summer village, and in a short
time, all were gone, and he was left alone. The last person to leave him
was his boon companion, and cousin, who has been mentioned as also one
of the admirers of the forest belle. But even _his_ voice was
disregarded, and as soon as his steps died away on the creaking snow,
the stillness and solitude of the wilderness reigned around.

As soon as all were gone, and he could no longer, by listening, hear the
remotest sounds of the departing camp, the Beau-Man arose. It is to be
understood that this young man was aided by a powerful guardian spirit,
or personal Moneto; and he resolved to make use of his utmost power to
punish and humble the girl. For she was noted in the tribe for her
coquetry, and had treated others, who were every way her equals, as she
had done him. He resolved on a singular stratagem, by way of revenge.
For this purpose, he walked over the deserted camp, and gathered up all
the bits of soiled cloth, clippings of finery, and cast off clothing,
and ornaments which had either been left or lost. These he carefully
picked out of the snow, into which some of them had been trodden and
partially buried, and conveyed them to one place. The motley heap of
gaudy and soiled stuffs, he restored to their original beauty, and
determined to make them into a coat and leggins, which he trimmed with
beads, and finished and decorated after the best fashion of his tribe.
He then made a pair of moccasins and garnished them with beads, a bow
and arrows, and a frontlet and feathers for the head. Having done this,
he searched about for cast out bones of animals, pieces of skins,
clippings of dried meat, and even dirt, and having cemented them
together with snow, he filled the clothes with these things, and pressed
the mass firmly in, and fashioned it externally in all respects, like a
tall and well framed man. He put a bow and arrows in his hands, and the
frontlet on his head. And having finished it, he brought it to life, and
the image stood forth, in the most favoured lineaments of his fellows.
Such was the origin of Moowis, or the Dirt and Rag Man.

"Follow me," said the Beau-Man, "and I will direct you, how you shall
act." He was indeed, a very sightly person, and as they entered the new
encampment, the many colours of his clothes, the profusion of ornaments
which he had managed to give him, and his fine manly step, and animated
countenance, drew all eyes. And he was received by all, both old and
young, with marks of attention. The chief invited him to his lodge, and
he was feasted on the moose's hump and the finest venison.

But no one was better pleased with the handsome stranger than Ma mon dá
go kwa. She fell in love with him at the first sight, and he was an
invited guest at the lodge of her mother, the very first evening of his
arrival. The Beau-man went with him, for it was under his patronage that
he had been introduced, and, in truth, he had another motive for
accompanying him, for he had not yet wholly subdued his feelings of
admiration for the object, against whom he had, nevertheless, exerted
all his necromantic power, and he held himself subject to any favourable
turn, which he secretly hoped the visit might take, in relation to
himself. But no such turn occurred. Moowis attracted the chief
attention, and every eye and heart were alert to entertain him. In this
effort on the part of his entertainers, they had well nigh revealed his
true character, and dissolved him into his original elements of rags,
and snow, and dirt; for he was assigned the most prominent place before
the fire: this was a degree of heat which he could by no means endure.
To ward it off he put a boy between himself and the fire. He shifted his
position frequently, and evaded, by dexterous manoeuvres, and timely
remarks, the pressing invitation of his host to sit up, and enjoy it. He
so managed these excuses, as not only to conceal his dread of immediate
dissolution, but to secure the further approbation of the fair forest
girl, who could not but admire one who had so brave a spirit of
endurance against the paralysing effects of cold.

The visit proved that the rejected lover had well calculated the effects
of his plan. He withdrew from the lodge, and Moowis triumphed. Before he
went, he saw him cross the lodge to the coveted _abinos_, or
bridegroom's seat. Marriage in the forest race, is a simple ceremony,
and where the impediments of custom are small, there is but little time
demanded for their execution. The dart which Ma mon dá go kwa had so
often delighted in sending to the hearts of her admirers, she was at
length fated herself to receive. She had married an image. As the
morning begun to break, the stranger arose and adjusted his warrior's
plumes, and took his forest weapons to depart. "I must go," said he,
"for I have an important business to do, and there are many hills and
streams between me and the object of my journey." "I will go with you,"
she replied. "It is too far," he rejoined, "and you are ill able to
encounter the perils of the way." "It is not so far, but that I can go,"
she responded, "and there are no dangers which I will not fully share
for you."

Moowis returned to the lodge of his master, and detailed to him the
events we have described. Pity, for a moment, seized the breast of the
rejected youth. He regretted that she should thus have cast herself away
upon an image and a shadow, when she might have been mistress of the
best lodge in the band. "But it is her own folly," he said, "she has
turned a deaf ear to the counsels of prudence, and she must submit to
her fate."

The same morning the Image-man set forth, and his wife followed him,
according to custom, at a distance. The way was rough and intricate, and
she could not keep up with his rapid pace; but she struggled hard, and
perseveringly to overtake him. Moowis had been long out of sight, when
the sun arose, and commenced upon his snow-formed body the work of
dissolution. He began to melt away, and fall to pieces. As she followed
him, piece after piece of his clothing were found in the path. She
first found his mittens, then his moccasins, then his leggins, then his
coat, and other parts of his garments. As the heat unbound them, they
had all returned also to their debased and filthy condition. The way led
over rocks, through wind falls, across marshes. It whirled about to all
points of the compass, and had no certain direction or object. Rags,
bones, leather, beads, feathers, and soiled ribbons, were found, but she
never caught the sight of Moowis. She spent the day in wandering; and
when evening came, she was no nearer the object of her search than in
the morning, but the snow having now melted, she had completely lost his
track, and wandered about, uncertain which way to go, and in a state of
perfect despair. Finding herself lost, she begun, with bitter cries, to
bewail her fate.

"Moowis, Moowis," she cried. "Nin ge won e win ig, ne won e win
ig"--that is--Moowis, Moowis, you have led me astray--you are leading me
astray. And with this cry she continued to wander in the woods.

Sometimes the village girls repeat the above words, varying the
expressions, till they constitute an irregular kind of song, which,
according to the versions of a friendly hand, may be set down as

    Moowis! Moowis!
      Forest rover,----
    Where art thou?
      Ah my bravest, gayest lover,
    Guide me now.

    Moowis! Moowis!
      Ah believe me,
    List my moan,
      Do not--do not, brave heart, leave me
    All alone.

    Moowis! Moowis!
      Foot-prints vanished,
    Whither wend I,
      Fated, lost, detested, banished,
    Must I die.

    Moowis! Moowis!
      Whither goest,
    Eye-bright lover,
      Ah thou ravenous bird that knowest,
    I see you hover.

      As I wander,
    But to spy
      Where I fall, and then to batten,
    On my breast.



A little orphan boy who had no one to care for him, was once living with
his uncle, who treated him very badly, making him do hard things and
giving him very little to eat; so that the boy pined away, he never grew
much, and became, through hard usage, very thin and light. At last the
uncle felt ashamed of this treatment, and determined to make amends for
it, by fattening him up, but his real object was, to kill him by
over-feeding. He told his wife to give the boy plenty of bear's meat,
and let him have the fat, which is thought to be the best part. They
were both very assiduous in cramming him, and one day came near choking
him to death, by forcing the fat down his throat. The boy escaped and
fled from the lodge. He knew not where to go, but wandered about. When
night came on, he was afraid the wild beasts would eat him, so he
climbed up into the forks of a high pine tree, and there he fell asleep
in the branches, and had an aupoway, or ominous dream.

A person appeared to him from the upper sky, and said, "My poor little
lad, I pity you, and the bad usage you have received from your uncle has
led me to visit you: follow me, and step in my tracks." Immediately his
sleep left him, and he rose up and followed his guide, mounting up
higher and higher into the air, until he reached the upper sky. Here
twelve arrows were put into his hands, and he was told that there were a
great many manitoes in the northern sky, against whom he must go to war,
and try to waylay and shoot them. Accordingly he went to that part of
the sky, and, at long intervals, shot arrow after arrow, until he had
expended eleven, in vain attempt to kill the manitoes. At the flight of
each arrow, there was a long and solitary streak of lightning in the
sky--then all was clear again, and not a cloud or spot could be seen.
The twelfth arrow he held a long time in his hands, and looked around
keenly on every side to spy the manitoes he was after. But these
manitoes were very cunning, and could change their form in a moment. All
they feared was the boy's arrows, for these were magic arrows, which had
been given to him by a good spirit, and had power to kill them, if aimed
aright. At length, the boy drew up his last arrow, settled in his aim,
and let fly, as he thought, into the very heart of the chief of the
manitoes; but before the arrow reached him, he changed himself into a
rock. Into this rock, the head of the arrow sank deep and stuck fast.

"Now your gifts are all expended," cried the enraged manito, "and I will
make an example of your audacity and pride of heart, for lifting your
bow against me"--and so saying, he transformed the boy into the
Nazhik-a-wä wä sun, or Lone Lightning, which may be observed in the
northern sky to this day.



     [These confessions of the Western Pythoness were made after she had
     relinquished the prophetic office, discarded all the ceremonies of
     the Indian _Medáwin_ and _Jesukeéwin_, and united herself to the
     Methodist Episcopal church, of which, up to our latest dates, she
     remained a consistent member. They are narrated in her own words.]

When I was a girl of about twelve or thirteen years of age, my mother
told me to look out for something that would happen to me. Accordingly,
one morning early, in the middle of winter, I found an unusual sign, and
ran off, as far from the lodge as I could, and remained there until my
mother came and found me out. She knew what was the matter, and brought
me nearer to the family lodge, and bade me help her in making a small
lodge of branches of the spruce tree. She told me to remain there, and
keep away from every one, and as a diversion, to keep myself employed in
chopping wood, and that she would bring me plenty of prepared bass wood
bark to twist into twine. She told me she would come to see me, in two
days, and that in the meantime I must not even taste snow.

I did as directed; at the end of two days she came to see me. I thought
she would surely bring me something to eat, but to my disappointment she
brought nothing. I suffered more from _thirst_, than hunger, though I
felt my stomach gnawing. My mother sat quietly down and said (after
ascertaining that I had not tasted anything, as she directed), "My
child, you are the youngest of your sisters, and none are now left me of
all my sons and children, but you _four_" (alluding to her two elder
sisters, herself and a little son, still a mere lad). "Who," she
continued, "will take care of us poor women? Now, my daughter, listen to
me, and try to obey. Blacken your face and fast _really_, that the
Master of Life may have pity on you and me, and on us all. Do not, in
the least, deviate from my counsels, and in two days more, I will come
to you. He will help you, if you are determined to do what is right, and
tell me, whether you are favored or not, by the _true_ Great Spirit; and
if your visions are not good, reject them." So saying, she departed.

I took my little hatchet and cut plenty of wood, and twisted the cord
that was to be used in sewing _ap puk way oon un_, or mats, for the use
of the family. Gradually, I began to feel less appetite, but my thirst
continued; still I was fearful of touching the snow to allay it, by
sucking it, as my mother had told me that if I did so, though secretly,
the Great Spirit would see me, and the lesser spirits also, and that my
fasting would be of no use. So I continued to fast till the fourth day,
when my mother came with a little tin dish, and filling it with snow,
she came to my lodge, and was well pleased to find that I had followed
her injunctions. She melted the snow, and told me to drink it. I did so,
and felt refreshed, but had a desire for more, which she told me would
not do, and I contented myself with what she had given me. She again
told me to get and follow a good vision--a vision that might not only do
us good, but also benefit mankind, if I could. She then left me, and for
two days she did not come near me, nor any human being, and I was left
to my own reflections. The night of the sixth day, I fancied a voice
called to me, and said: "Poor child! I pity your condition; come, you
are invited this way;" and I thought the voice proceeded from a certain
distance from my lodge. I obeyed the summons, and going to the spot from
which the voice came, found a thin shining path, like a silver cord,
which I followed. It led straight forward, and, it seemed, upward. No.
3. After going a short distance I stood still, and saw on my right hand
the new moon, with a flame rising from the top like a candle, which
threw around a broad light. No. 4. On the left appeared the sun, near
the point of its setting. No. 11. I went on, and I beheld on my right
the face of _Kau ge gag be qua_, or the everlasting woman, No. 5, who
told me her name, and said to me, "I give you my name, and you may give
it to another. I also give you that which I have, life everlasting. I
give you long life on the earth, and skill in saving life in others. Go,
you are called on high."

I went on, and saw a man standing with a large circular body, and rays
from his head, like horns. No. 6. He said, "Fear not, my name is Monedo
Wininees, or the Little man Spirit. I give this name to your first son.
It is my life. Go to the place you are called to visit." I followed the
path till I could see that it led up to an opening in the sky, when I
heard a voice, and standing still, saw the figure of a man standing near
the path, whose head was surrounded with a brilliant halo, and his
breast was covered with squares. No. 7. He said to me: "Look at me, my
name is _O Shau wau e geeghick_, or the Bright Blue Sky. I am the veil
that covers the opening into the sky. Stand and listen to me. Do not be
afraid. I am going to endow you with gifts of life, and put you in array
that you may withstand and endure." Immediately I saw myself encircled
with bright points which rested against me like needles, but gave me no
pain, and they fell at my feet. No. 9. This was repeated several times,
and at each time they fell to the ground. He said, "wait and do not
fear, till I have said and done all I am about to do." I then felt
different instruments, first like awls, and then like nails stuck into
my flesh, but neither did they give me pain, but like the needles, fell
at my feet, as often as they appeared. He then said, "that is good,"
meaning my trial by these points. "You will see length of days. Advance
a little farther," said he. I did so, and stood at the commencement of
the opening. "You have arrived," said he, "at the limit you cannot pass.
I give you my name, you can give it to another. Now, return! Look around
you. There is a conveyance for you. No. 10. Do not be afraid to get on
its back, and when you get to your lodge, you must take that which
sustains the human body." I turned, and saw a kind of fish swimming in
the air, and getting upon it as directed, was carried back with
celerity, my hair floating behind me in the air. And as soon as I got
back, my vision ceased.

In the morning, being the sixth day of my fast, my mother came with a
little bit of dried trout. But such was my sensitiveness to all sounds,
and my increased power of scent, produced by fasting, that before she
came in sight I heard her, while a great way off, and when she came in,
I could not bear the smell of the fish or herself either. She said, "I
have brought something for you to eat, only a mouthful, to prevent your
dying." She prepared to cook it, but I said, "Mother, forbear, I do not
wish to eat it--the smell is offensive to me." She accordingly left off
preparing to cook the fish, and again encouraged me to persevere, and
try to become a comfort to her in her old age and bereaved state, and
left me.

I attempted to cut wood, as usual, but in the effort I fell back on the
snow, from weariness, and lay some time; at last I made an effort and
rose, and went to my lodge and lay down. I again saw the vision, and
each person who had before spoken to me, and heard the promises of
different kinds made to me, and the songs. I went the same path which I
had pursued before, and met with the same reception. I also had another
vision, or celestial visit, which I shall presently relate. My mother
came again on the seventh day, and brought me some pounded corn boiled
in _snow water_, for she said I must not drink water from lake or river.
After taking it, I related my vision to her. She said it was good, and
spoke to me to continue my fast three days longer. I did so; at the end
of which she took me home, and made a feast in honor of my success, and
invited a great many guests. I was told to eat sparingly, and to take
nothing too hearty or substantial; but this was unnecessary, for my
abstinence had made my senses so acute, that all animal food had a gross
and disagreeable odor.

After the seventh day of my fast (she continued), while I was lying in
my lodge, I saw a dark round object descending from the sky like a round
stone, and enter my lodge. As it came near, I saw that it had small feet
and hands like a human body. It spoke to me and said, "I give you the
gift of seeing into futurity, that you may use it, for the benefit of
yourself and the Indians--your relations and tribes-people." It then
departed, but as it went away, it assumed wings, and looked to me like
the red-headed woodpecker.

In consequence of being thus favored, I assumed the arts of a medicine
woman and a prophetess; but never those of a Wabeno. The first time I
exercised the prophetical art, was at the strong and repeated
solicitations of my friends. It was in the winter season, and they were
then encamped west of the Wisacoda, or Brule river of Lake Superior, and
between it and the plains west. There were, besides my mother's family
and relatives, a considerable number of families. They had been some
time at the place, and were near starving, as they could find no game.
One evening the chief of the party came into my mother's lodge. I had
lain down, and was supposed to be asleep, and he requested of my mother
that she would allow me to try my skill to relieve them. My mother spoke
to me, and after some conversation, she gave her consent. I told them to
build the _Jee suk aun_, or prophet's lodge, _strong_, and gave
particular directions for it. I directed that it should consist of ten
posts or saplings, each of a different kind of wood, which I named. When
it was finished, and tightly wound with skins, the entire population of
the encampment assembled around it and I went in, taking only a small
drum. I immediately knelt down, and holding my head near the ground, in
a position as near as may be prostrate, began beating my drum, and
reciting my songs or incantations. The lodge commenced shaking
violently, by supernatural means. I knew this, by the compressed current
of air above, and the noise of motion. This being regarded by me, and by
all without, as a proof of the presence of the spirits I consulted, I
ceased beating and singing, and lay still, waiting for questions, in the
position I had at first assumed.

The first question put to me, was in relation to the game, and _where_
it was to be found. The response was given by the orbicular spirit, who
had appeared to me. He said, "How short-sighted you are! If you will go
in a _west_ direction, you will find game in abundance." Next day the
camp was broken up, and they all moved westward, the hunters, as usual,
going far ahead. They had not proceeded far beyond the bounds of their
former hunting circle, when they came upon tracks of moose, and that
day, they killed a female and two young moose, nearly full-grown. They
pitched their encampment anew, and had abundance of animal food in this
new position.

My reputation was established by this success, and I was afterwards
noted in the tribe, in the art of a medicine woman, and sung the songs
which I have given to you. About four years after, I was married to O
Mush Kow Egeezhick, or the Strong Sky, who was a very active and
successful hunter, and kept his lodge well supplied with food; and we
lived happy. After I had had two children, a girl and a boy, we went
out, as is the custom of the Indians in the spring, to visit the white
settlements. One night, while we were encamped at the head of the
portage at Pauwating (the Falls of St. Mary's), angry words passed
between my husband and a half Frenchman named Gaultier, who, with his
two cousins, in the course of the dispute, drew their knives and a
tomahawk, and stabbed and cut him in four or five places, in his body,
head and thighs. This happened the first year that the Americans came to
that place (1822). He had gone out at a late hour in the evening, to
visit the tent of Gaultier. Having been urged by one of the trader's men
to take liquor that evening, and it being already late, I desired him
not to go, but to defer his visit till next day; and after he had left
the lodge, I felt a sudden presentiment of evil, and I went after him,
and renewed my efforts in vain. He told me to return, and as I had two
children in the lodge, the youngest of whom, a boy, was still in his
cradle, and then ill, I sat up with him late, and waited and waited,
till a late hour, and then fell asleep from exhaustion. I slept very
sound. The first I knew, was a violent shaking from a girl, a niece of
Gaultier's, who told me my husband and Gaultier were all the time
quarrelling. I arose, and went up the stream to Gaultier's camp fire. It
was nearly out, and I tried in vain to make it blaze. I looked into his
tent, but all was dark and not a soul there. They had suddenly fled,
although I did not at the moment know the cause. I tried to make a light
to find my husband, but could find nothing dry, for it had rained very
hard the day before. After being out a while my vision became clearer,
and turning toward the river side, I saw a dark object lying near the
shore, on a grassy opening. I was attracted by something glistening,
which turned out to be his ear-rings. I thought he was asleep, and in
stooping to awake him, I slipped and fell on my knees. I had slipped in
his blood on the grass, and putting my hand on his face, found him dead.
In the morning the Indian agent came with soldiers from the fort, to see
what had happened, but the murderer and all his bloody gang of relatives
had fled. The agent gave orders to have the body buried in the old
Indian burial ground, below the Falls.

My aged mother was encamped about a mile off, at this time. I took my
two children in the morning, and fled to her lodge. She had just heard
of the murder, and was crying as I entered. I reminded her that it was
an act of providence, to which we must submit. She said it was for me
and my poor helpless children that she was crying--that I was left as
she had been, years before, with nobody to provide for us. With her I
returned to my native country at Chegoimegon on Lake Superior.

Thus far, her own narrative. We hope, in a future number, to give
further particulars of her varied, and rather eventful life; together
with specimens of her medicine, and prophetic songs.


Died, on the 13th inst. (August, 1841), at his residence on the St.
Mary's, four and a half miles south-west of this city, John B.
Richardville, principal chief of the Miami nation of Indians, aged about
eighty years.

Chief Richardville, or "_Piskewah_" (which is an Indian name, meaning in
English "wild-cat"), was born on the point across the Maumee river,
opposite this city, under or near a large apple tree, on the farm of the
late Colonel Coles; and at a very early age, by succession, became the
chief of the tribe, his mother being chieftainess at the time of his
birth. His situation soon brought him in contact with the whites, and he
was in several engagements, the most important of which was the
celebrated slaughter on the St. Joseph River, one mile north of this
city, designated as "Harmar's Defeat," where several hundred whites,
under General Harmar, were cut off in attempting to ford the river, by
the Indians, who lay in ambush on the opposite shore, by firing upon the
whites when in the act of crossing; which slaughter crimsoned the river
a number of days for several miles below with the blood of the
unfortunate victims.

The Chief is universally spoken of as having been kind and humane to
prisoners--far more so than most of his race; and as soon as peace was
restored, became a worthy citizen, and enjoyed the confidence of the
whites to the fullest extent. He spoke good French and English, as well
as his native tongue; and for many years his house, which is pleasantly
situated on the banks of the St. Mary's, and which was always open for
the reception of friends--was a place of resort for parties of pleasure,
who always partook of the hospitality of his house.

The old man was strictly honest, but remarkably watchful of his
interest, and amassed a fortune exceeding probably a million of dollars,
consisting of nearly $200,000 in specie on hand, and the balance in the
most valuable kind of real estate, which he has distributed by "will"
among his numerous relations with "even-handed justice." He had always
expressed a great anxiety to live, but when he became conscious that the
time of his departure was near at hand, he resigned himself with perfect
composure, saying that it was ordered that all must die, and he was then
ready and willing to answer the call of the "Great Spirit." His remains
were deposited in the Catholic burying-ground with religious
ceremonies.--_Fort Wayne (Ind.) Sentinel._



At the time that the Ottowas inhabited the Manatoline Islands, in Lake
Huron, there was a famous magician living amongst them whose name was
Masswäwëinini, or the Living Statue. It happened, by the fortune of war,
that the Ottowa tribe were driven off that chain of islands by the
Iroquois, and obliged to flee away to the country lying between Lake
Superior and the Upper Mississippi, to the banks of a lake which is
still called, by the French, and in memory of this migration, _Lac
Courtorielle_, or the lake of the Cut-ears, a term which is their _nom
de guerre_ for this tribe. But the magician Masswäwëinini remained
behind on the wide-stretching and picturesque Manatoulins, a group of
islands which had been deemed, from the earliest times, a favorite
residence of the manitoes or spirits. His object was to act as a
sentinel to his countrymen, and keep a close watch on their enemies, the
Iroquois, that he might give timely information of their movements. He
had with him two boys; with their aid he paddled stealthily around the
shores, kept himself secreted in nooks and bays, and hauled up his canoe
every night, into thick woods, and carefully obliterated his tracks upon
the sand.

One day he rose very early, and started on a hunting excursion, leaving
the boys asleep, and limiting himself to the thick woods, lest he should
be discovered. At length he came unexpectedly to the borders of an
extensive open plain. After gazing around him, and seeing no one, he
directed his steps across it, intending to strike the opposite side of
it; while travelling, he discovered a man of small stature, who appeared
suddenly on the plain before him, and advanced to meet him. He wore a
red feather on his head, and coming up with a familiar air, accosted
Masswäwëinini by name, and said gaily, "Where are you going?" He then
took out his smoking apparatus, and invited him to smoke. "Pray," said
he, while thus engaged, "wherein does your strength lie." "My strength,"
answered Masswäwëinini, "is similar to the human race, and common to the
strength given to them, and no stronger." "We must wrestle," said the
man of the red feather. "If you should make me fall, you will say to me,
I have thrown you, _Wa ge me na_."

As soon as they had finished smoking and put up their pipe, the
wrestling began. For a long time the strife was doubtful. The strength
of Masswäwëinini was every moment growing fainter. The man of the red
feather, though small of stature, proved himself very active, but at
length he was foiled and thrown to the ground. Immediately his adversary
cried out, "I have thrown you: _wa ge me na_;" and in an instant his
antagonist had vanished. On looking to the spot where he had fallen, he
discovered a crooked ear of _mondamin_, or Indian corn, lying on the
ground, with the usual red hairy tassel at the top. While he was gazing
at this strange sight, and wondering what it could mean, a voice
addressed him from the ground. "Now," said the speaking ear, for the
voice came from it, "divest me of my covering--leave nothing to hide my
body from your eyes. You must then separate me into parts, pulling off
my body from the spine upon which I grow. Throw me into different parts
of the plain. Then break my spine and scatter it in small pieces near
the edge of the woods, and return to visit the place, after _one moon_."

Masswäwëinini obeyed these directions, and immediately set out on his
return to his lodge. On the way he killed a deer, and on reaching his
canoe, he found the boys still asleep. He awoke them and told them to
cook his venison, but he carefully concealed from them his adventure. At
the expiration of the moon he again, _alone_, visited his wrestling
ground, and to his surprise, found the plain filled with the spikes and
blades of new grown corn. In the place where he had thrown the pieces of
cob, he found pumpkin vines growing in great luxuriance. He concealed
this discovery also, carefully from the young lads, and after his return
busied himself as usual, in watching the movements of his enemies along
the coasts of the island. This he continued, till summer drew near its
close. He then directed his canoe to the coast of that part of the
island where he had wrestled with the Red Plume, drew up his canoe, bid
the lads stay by it, and again visited his wrestling ground. He found
the corn in full ear, and pumpkins of an immense size. He plucked ears
of corn, and gathered some of the pumpkins, when a voice again addressed
him from the cornfield. "Masswäwëinini, you have conquered me. Had you
not done so, your existence would have been forfeited. Victory has
crowned your strength, and from henceforth you shall never be in want of
my body. It will be nourishment for the human race." Thus his ancestors
received the gift of corn.

Masswäwëinini now returned to his canoe, and informed the young men of
his discovery, and showed them specimens. They were astonished and
delighted with the novelty.

There were, in those days, many wonderful things done on these islands.
One night, while Masswäwëinini was lying down, he heard voices speaking,
but he still kept his head covered, as if he had not heard them. One
voice said, "This is Masswäwëinini, and we must get his heart." "In what
way can we get it?" said another voice. "You must put your hand in his
mouth," replied the first voice, "and draw it out that way."
Masswäwëinini still kept quiet, and did not stir. He soon felt the hand
of a person thrust in his mouth. When sufficiently far in, he bit off
the fingers, and thus escaped the danger. The voices then retired, and
he was no further molested. On examining the fingers in the morning,
what was his surprise to find them long wampum beads, which are held in
such high estimation by all the Indian tribes. He had slept, as was his
custom, in the thick woods. On going out to the open shore, at a very
early hour, he saw a canoe at a small distance, temporarily drawn up on
the beach; on coming closer, he found a man in the bows and another in
the stern, with their arms and hands extended in a fixed position. One
of them had lost its fingers: it was evidently the man who had attempted
to thrust his arm down his throat. They were two Pukwudjininees, or
fairies. But on looking closer, they were found to be transformed into
statues of stone. He took these stone images on shore, and set them up
in the woods.

Their canoe was one of the most beautiful structures which it is
possible to imagine, four fathoms in length, and filled with bags of
treasures of every description and of the most exquisite workmanship.
These bags were of different weight, according to their contents. He
busied himself in quickly carrying them into the woods, together with
the canoe, which he concealed in a cave. One of the fairy images then
spoke to him and said: "In this manner, the Ottowa canoes will hereafter
be loaded, when they pass along this coast, although your nation are
driven away by their cruel enemies the Iroquois." The day now began to
dawn fully, when he returned to his two young companions, who were still
asleep. He awoke them, and exultingly bid them cook, for he had brought
abundance of meat and fish, and other viands, the gifts of the fairies.

After this display of good fortune, he bethought him of his aged father
and mother, who were in exile at the Ottowa lake. To wish, and to
accomplish his wish, were but the work of an instant with Masswäwëinini.

One night as he lay awake, reflecting on their condition, far away from
their native fields, and in exile, he resolved to visit them, and bring
them back to behold and to participate in his abundance. To a common
traveller, it would be a journey of twenty or thirty days, but
Masswäwëinini was at their lodge before daylight. He found them asleep,
and took them up softly in his arms and flew away with them through the
air, and brought them to his camp on the Manatolines, or Spirit's
Islands. When they awoke, their astonishment was at its highest pitch;
and was only equalled by their delight in finding themselves in their
son's lodge, in their native country, and surrounded with abundance.

Masswäwëinini went and built them a lodge, near the corn and wrestling
plain. He then plucked some ears of the corn, and taking some of the
pumpkins, brought them to his father and mother. He then told them how
he had obtained the precious gift, by wrestling with a spirit in red
plumes, and that there was a great abundance of it in his fields. He
also told them of the precious canoe of the fairies, loaded with sacks
of the most costly and valuable articles. But one thing seemed necessary
to complete the happiness of his father, which he observed by seeing him
repeatedly at night looking into his smoking pouch. He comprehended his
meaning in a moment. "It is tobacco, my father, that you want. You shall
also have this comfort in two days." "But where," replied the old man,
"can you get it--away from all supplies, and surrounded by your
enemies?" "My enemies," he answered, "shall supply it--I will go over to
the Nadowas of the Bear totem, living at Penetanguishine."

The old man endeavored to dissuade him from the journey, knowing their
blood-thirsty character, but in vain. Masswäwëinini determined
immediately to go. It was now winter weather, the lake was frozen over,
but he set out on the ice, and although it is forty leagues, he reached
Penetanguishine the same evening. The Nadowas discerned him coming--they
were amazed at the swiftness of his motions, and thinking him somewhat
supernatural, feared him, and invited him to rest in their lodges, but
he thanked them, saying that he preferred making a fire near the shore.
In the evening they visited him, and were anxious to know the object of
his journey, at so inclement a season. He said it was merely to get some
tobacco for his father. They immediately made a contribution of the
article and gave it to him. During the night they however laid a plot to
kill him. Some of the old men rushed into his lodge, their leader crying
out to him, "You are a dead man." "No, I am not," said Masswäwëinini,
"but you are," accompanying his words with a blow of his tomahawk, which
laid the Nadowa dead at his feet. Another and another came, to supply
the place of their fallen comrade, but he despatched them in like
manner, as quickly as they came, until he had killed six. He then took
all the tobacco from their smoking pouches. By this time, the day began
to dawn, when he set out for his father's lodge, which he reached with
incredible speed, and before twilight, spread out his trophies before
the old man.

When spring returned, his cornfield grew up, without planting, or any
care on his part, and thus the _maize_ was introduced among his people
and their descendants, who have ever been noted, and are at this day,
for their fine crops of this grain, and their industry in its
cultivation. It is from their custom of trading in this article, that
this tribe are called Ottowas.


The zea, mais, originally furnished the principal article of subsistence
among all the tribes of this race, north and south. It laid at the
foundation of the Mexican and Peruvian types of civilization, as well as
the incipient gleamings of it, among the more warlike tribes of the
Iroquois, Natchez, Lenapees, and others, of northern latitudes. They
esteem it so important and divine a grain, that their story-tellers
invented various tales, in which this idea is symbolized under the form
of a special gift from the Great Spirit. The Odjibwa-Algonquins, who
call it Mon-dá-min, that is, the Spirit's grain or berry, have a pretty
story of this kind, in which the stalk in full tassel, is represented as
descending from the sky, under the guise of a handsome youth, in answer
to the prayers of a young man at his fast of virility, or coming to

It is well known that corn-planting, and corn-gathering, at least among
all the still _uncolonized_ tribes, are left entirely to the females and
children, and a few superannuated old men. It is not generally known,
perhaps, that this labour is not compulsory, and that it is assumed by
the females as a just equivalent, in their view, for the onerous and
continuous labour of the other sex, in providing meats, and skins for
clothing, by the chase, and in defending their villages against their
enemies, and keeping intruders off their territories. A good Indian
housewife deems this a part of her prerogative, and prides herself to
have a store of corn to exercise her hospitality, or duly honour her
husband's hospitality, in the entertainment of the lodge guests.

The area of ground planted is not, comparatively, large. This matter is
essentially regulated by the number of the family, and other
circumstances. Spring is a leisure season with them, and by its genial
and reviving influence, invites to labour. An Indian female has no cows
to milk, no flax to spin, no yarn to reel. Even those labours, which, at
other seasons fall to her share, are now intermitted. She has apukwas to
gather to make mats. Sugar-making has ended. She has no skins to dress,
for the hunt has ended, the animals being out of season. It is at this
time that the pelt grows bad, the hair becomes loose and falls off, and
nature itself teaches the hunter, that the species must have repose, and
be allowed a little time to replenish. Under these circumstances the
mistress of the lodge and her train, sally out of the lodge into the
corn-field, and with the light pemidge-ag akwut, or small hoe, open up
the soft ground and deposit their treasured mondamin.

The Indian is emphatically a superstitious being, believing in all sorts
of magical, and secret, and wonderful influences. Woman, herself, comes
in for no small share of these supposed influences. I shrewdly suspect
that one half of the credit we have been in the habit of giving the
warrior, on the score of virtue, in his treatment of captives, is due
alone to his superstitions. He is afraid, at all times, to spoil his
luck, cross his fate, and do some untoward act, by which he might,
perchance, fall under a bad spiritual influence.

To the wéwun, or wife--the equá, or woman, to the guh or mother,--to the
equázas, or girl, and to the dánis, or daughter, and shéma, or sister,
he looks, as wielding, in their several capacities, whether kindred or
not, these mystic influences over his luck. In consequence of this, the
female never walks in the path before him. It is an unpropitious sign.
If she cross his track, when he is about to set out on a hunting, or war
excursion, his luck is gone. If she is ill, from natural causes, she
cannot even stay in the same wigwam. She cannot use a cup or a bowl
without rendering it, in his view, unclean.

A singular proof of this belief, in both sexes, of the mysterious
influence of the steps of a woman on the vegetable and insect creation,
is found in an ancient custom, which was related to me, respecting
corn-planting. It was the practice of the hunter's wife, when the field
of corn had been planted, to choose the first dark or overclouded
evening, to perform a secret circuit, sans habilement, around the field.
For this purpose she slipt out of the lodge in the evening, unobserved,
to some obscure nook, where she completely disrobed. Then taking her
matchecota, or principal garment in one hand, she dragged it around the
field. This was thought to ensure a prolific crop, and to prevent the
assaults of insects and worms upon the grain. It was supposed they could
not creep over the charmed line.

But if corn-planting be done in a lively and satisfied, and not a
slavish spirit, corn-gathering and husking is a season of decided
thankfulness and merriment. At these gatherings, the chiefs and old men
are mere spectators, although they are pleased spectators, the young
only sharing in the sport. Who has not seen, the sedate ogema in such a
vicinage, smoking a dignified pipe with senatorial ease. On the other
hand, turning to the group of nature's red daughters and their young
cohorts, it may be safely affirmed that laughter and garrulity
constitute no part of the characteristics of civilization. Whatever else
custom has bound fast, in the domestic female circle of forest life, the
tongue is left loose. Nor does it require, our observation leads us to
think, one tenth part of the wit or drollery of ancient Athens, to set
their risible faculties in motion.

If one of the young female huskers finds a _red_ ear of corn, it is
typical of a brave admirer, and is regarded as a fitting present to some
young warrior. But if the ear be _crooked_, and tapering to a point, no
matter what colour, the whole circle is set in a roar, and _wa ge min_
is the word shouted aloud. It is the symbol of a thief in the cornfield.
It is considered as the image of an old man stooping as he enters the
lot. Had the chisel of Praxitiles been employed to produce this image,
it could not more vividly bring to the minds of the merry group, the
idea of a pilferer of their favourite mondámin. Nor is there any doubt
on these occasions, that the occurrence truly reveals the fact that the
cornfield has actually been thus depredated on.

The term wagemin, which unfolds all these ideas, and reveals, as by a
talisman, all this information, is derived in part, from the tri-literal
term Waweau, that which is bent or crooked. The termination in g, is the
animate plural, and denotes not only that there is more than one object,
but that the subject is noble or invested with the importance of
animated beings. The last member of the compound, min, is a shortened
sound of the generic meen, a grain, or berry. To make these coalesce,
agreeably to the native laws of euphony, the short vowel i, is thrown
in, between the verbal root and substantive, as a connective. The
literal meaning of the term is, a mass, or crooked ear of grain; but the
ear of corn so called, is a conventional type of a little old man
pilfering ears of corn in a cornfield. It is in this manner, that a
single word or term, in these curious languages, becomes the fruitful
parent of many ideas. And we can thus perceive why it is that the word
wagemin is alone competent to excite merriment in the husking circle.

This term is taken as the basis of the cereal chorus or corn song, as
sung by the northern Algonquin tribes. It is coupled with the phrase
Paimosaid,--a permutative form of the Indian substantive made from the
verb, pim-o-sa, to walk. Its literal meaning is, he who walks, or the
walker; but the ideas conveyed by it, are, he who walks at night to
pilfer corn. It offers, therefore, a kind of parallelism in expression,
to the preceding term. The chorus is entirely composed of these two
terms, variously repeated, and may be set down as follows:


When this chant has been sung, there is a pause, during which someone
who is expert in these things, and has a turn for the comic or ironic,
utters a short speech, in the manner of a recitative, in which a
peculiar intonation is given, and generally interrogates the supposed
pilferer, as if he were present to answer questions, or accusations.
There can be no pretence, that this recitative part of the song is
always the same, at different times and places, or even that the same
person should not vary his phraseology. On the contrary, it is often an
object to vary it. It is a perfect improvisation, and it may be supposed
that the native composer is always actuated by a desire to please, as
much as possible by novelty. The whole object indeed is, to keep up the
existing merriment, and excite fun and laughter.

The following may be taken as one of these recitative songs, written
out, on the plan of preserving the train of thought, and some of those
peculiar interjections in which these languages so much abound. The
chorus alone, it is to be observed, is fixed in its words and metre,
however transposed or repeated, and, unlike an English song, precedes
the stanza or narrative.


  Cereal chorus.    Wagemin! wagemin!
                    Thief in the blade,
                    Blight of the cornfield

  Recitative.       See you not traces, while pulling the leaf,
                    Plainly depicting the TAKER and thief?
                    See you not signs by the ring and the spot,
                    How the man crouched as he crept in the lot?
                    Is it not plain by this mark on the stalk,
                    That he was heavily bent in his walk?
                    Old man be nimble! the old should be good,
                    But thou art a cowardly thief of the wood.

  Cereal Chorus.    Wagemin! wagemin!
                    Thief in the blade,
                    Blight of the cornfield

  Recitative.       Where, little TAKER of things not your own--
                    Where is your rattle, your drum, and your bone?
                    Surely a WALKER so nimble of speed,
                    Surely he must be a Meta[13] indeed.
                    See how he stoops, as he breaks off the ear,
                    Nushka![14] he seems for a moment in fear;
                    Walker, be nimble--oh! walker be brief,
                    Hooh![15] If it is plain the old man is the thief.

  Cereal chorus.    Wagemin! wagemin!
                    Thief in the blade,
                    Blight of the cornfield

  Recitative.       Wabuma![16] corn-taker, why do you lag?
                    None but the stars see you--fill up your bag!
                    Why do you linger to gaze as you pull,
                    Tell me, my little man, is it most full?
                    A-tia![17] see, a red spot on the leaf,
                    Surely a warrior cannot be a thief!
                    Ah, little night-thief, be deer your pursuit,
                    And leave here no print of your dastardly foot.

     [13] A Juggler.

     [14] A sharp exclamation quickly to behold something striking.

     [15] A derogatory exclamation.

     [16] Behold thou.

     [17] A masculine exclamation, to express surprise.



    Health! dearest of the heavenly powers,
    With thee to pass my evening hours,
        Ah! deign to hear my prayer;
    For what can wealth or beauty give,
    If still in anguish doomed to live
        A slave to pain and care.

    Not sovereign power, nor charms of love,
    Nor social joys the heart can move,
        If thou refuse thy aid;
    E'en friendship, sympathy divine!
    Does, in thy absence, faintly shine,
        Thou all-inspiring maid.

    Return then, to my longing soul,
    Which sighs to feel thy sweet control
        Transfused through every pore;
    My muse, enraptured, then shall sing
    Thee--gift of heaven's all bounteous king,
        And gratefully adore.

_February 4, 1807._


The Indian, who takes his position as an orator, in front of his people,
and before a mixed assemblage of white men, is to be regarded, in a
measure, as an actor, who has assumed a part to perform. He regards
himself as occupying a position in which all eyes are directed upon him,
in scrutiny, and he fortifies himself for the occasion, by redoubled
efforts in cautiousness and studied stoicism. Rigid of muscle, and
suspicious of mind by nature, he brings to his aid the advantages of
practised art, to bear him out in speaking for his tribe, and to quit
him manfully of his task by uttering sentiments worthy of them and of
himself. This is the statue-like and artistic phasis of the man. It is
here that he is, truly

"A man without a fear--a stoic of the wood."

All this is laid aside, so far as it is assumed, when he returns from
the presence of the "pale-faces," and rejoins his friends and kindred,
in his own village, far away from all public gaze, in the deep recesses
of the forest. Let us follow the man to this retreat, and see what are
his domestic manners, habits, amusements, and opinions.

I have myself visited an Indian camp, in the far-off area of the
North-west, in the dead of winter, under circumstances suited to allay
his suspicions, and inspire confidence, and have been struck with the
marked change there is in his social temper, character, and feelings.
And I have received the same testimony from Indian traders, who have
spent years among them in these secluded positions, and been received by
them as friends and kindred. All indeed, who have had frequent and full
opportunities of witnessing the red man on his hunting grounds, concur
in bearing evidence to his social, hospitable, and friendly habits and
manners. Viewed in such positions, the most perfect sincerity and
cheerfulness prevail; and their intercourse is marked with the broadest
principles of charity and neighborly feeling. The restraint and ever
watchful suspicion which they evince at the frontier post, or in other
situations exposed to the scrutiny and cupidity of white men, is thrown
aside and gives way to ease, sociability and pleasantry. They feel while
thus ensconced in the shades of their native forests, a security unknown
to their breasts in any other situations. The strife seems to be, who
shall excel in offices of friendship and charity, or in spreading the
festive board. If one is more fortunate than the other, in taking meat,
or wielding the arrow or spear, the spoil is set apart for a feast, to
which all the adults, without distinction, are invited. When the set
time of the feast arrives, each one, according to ancient custom, takes
his dish and spoon, and proceeds to the entertainer's lodge. The
victuals are served up with scrupulous attention that each receives a
portion of the best parts. While at the meal, which is prolonged by
cheerful conversation, anecdote, and little narrations of personal
adventure, the females are generally listeners; and none, except the
aged, ever obtrude a remark. The young women and girls show that they
partake in the festivity by smiles, and are scrupulous to evince their
attention to the elder part of the company. Conversation is chiefly
engrossed by the old men and chiefs, and middle-aged men. Young men, who
are desirous to acquire a standing, seldom offer a remark, and when they
_do_, it is with modesty. The topics discussed at these public meals
relate generally to the _chace_, to the _news_ they have heard, or to
personal occurrences about the village; or to deeds, "real or fabulous,"
of "old lang syne;" but the matters are discussed in a lively, and not
in a grave style. Business, if we may be allowed that term for what
concerns their trade and government intercourse, is never introduced
except in _formal councils_, convened specially; and opened formally by
smoking the pipe. It seems to be the drift of conversation, in these
sober festivities (for it must be recollected that we are speaking of
the Indians on their wintering grounds and beyond the reach, certainly
beyond the free or ordinary use of ardent spirits), to extract from
their hunts and adventures, whatever will admit of a pleasant turn, draw
forth a joke, or excite a laugh. Ridiculous misadventures, or comical
situations, are sure to be applauded in the recital. Whatever is
anti-social, or untoward, is passed over, or if referred to by another,
is parried off, by some allusion to the scene before them.

Religion (we use this term for what concerns the great spirit, sacred
dreams, and the ceremonies of the Meda or medicine dance), like
business, is reserved for its proper occasion. It does not form, as with
us, a free topic of remark, at least among those who are professors of
the dance. Thus they cheat away the hours in pleasantry, free, but not
tumultuous in their mirth, but as ardently bent on the enjoyment of the
present moment, as if the sum of life were contained in these three
words, "eat, drink, and be merry." When the feast is over, the women
return to their lodges, and leave the men to smoke. On their return,
they commence a conversation on what they have heard the men advance,
and thus amuse themselves till their husbands return. The end of all is
generally some good advice to the children.

The company in these ordinary feasts is as general, with respect to the
rank, age or standing of the guests, as the most unlimited equality of
rights can make it. All the aged and many of the young are invited.
There is, however, another feast instituted, at certain times during
the season, to which young persons only are invited, or admitted, except
the entertainer and his wife, and generally two other aged persons, who
preside over the feast and administer its rites. The object of this
feast seems to be instruction, to which the young and thoughtless are
induced to listen for the anticipated pleasure of the feast. Before this
feast commences, the entertainer, or some person fluent in speech, whom
he has selected for the purpose, gets up and addresses the youth of both
sexes on the subject of their course through life. He admonishes them to
be attentive and respectful to the aged and to adhere to their counsels:
never to scoff at the decrepit, deformed, or blind: to obey their
parents: to be modest in their conduct: to be charitable and hospitable:
to fear and love the great Spirit, who is the giver of life and every
good gift. These precepts are dwelt upon at great length, and generally
enforced by examples of a good man and woman and a bad man and woman,
and after drawing the latter, it is ever the custom to say, "you will be
like one of these." At the end of every sentence, the listeners make a
general cry of haá. When the advice is finished, an address, or kind of
prayer to the great Spirit is made, in which he is thanked for the food
before them, and for the continuance of life. The speaker then says,
"Thus the great Spirit supplies us with food; act justly, and conduct
well, and you will ever be thus bountifully supplied." The feast then
commences, and the elders relax their manner and mix with the rest, but
are still careful to preserve order, and a decent, respectful behavior
among the guests.

Let it not be supposed, however, that the Indian's life, while on his
wintering grounds, is a round of feasting. Quite the contrary; and his
feasts are often followed by long and painful fasts, and the severity of
the seasons, and scarcity of game and fish, often reduce himself and
family to the verge of starvation, and even death. When the failure of
game, or any other causes, induce the hunter to remove to a new circle
of country, the labor of the removal falls upon the female part of the
family. The lodge, utensils and fixtures of every kind, are borne upon
the women's backs, sustained by a strap of leather around the forehead.
On reaching the intended place of encampment, the snow is cleared away,
cedar branches brought and spread for a flooring, the lodge set up, the
moveables stowed away, wood collected, and a fire built, and then, and
not until then, can the females sit down and warm their feet and dry
their moccasins. If there be any provisions, a supper is cooked. If
there be none, all studiously strive to conceal the exhibition of the
least concern on this account, and seek to divert their thoughts by
conversation quite foreign to the subject. The little children are the
only part of the family who complain, and who are privileged to
complain, but even they are taught at an early age to suffer and be
silent. Generally, something is reserved by the mother, when food
becomes scarce, to satisfy their clamors, and they are satisfied with
little. On such occasions, if the family have gone supperless to rest,
the father and elder sons rise early in the morning in search of
something. If one has the luck to kill even a partridge or a squirrel,
it is immediately carried to the lodge, cooked, and divided into as many
parts as there are members of the family. On these occasions, the elder
ones often make a merit of relinquishing their portions to the women and
children. If nothing rewards the search, the whole day is spent by the
father upon his snow-shoes, with his gun in his hands, and he returns at
night, fatigued, to his couch of cedar branches and rush mats. But he
does not return to complain, either of his want of success, or his
fatigue. On the following day the same routine is observed, and days and
weeks are often thus consumed without being rewarded with anything
capable of sustaining life. Instances have been well authenticated, when
this state of wretchedness has been endured by the head of a family
until he has become so weak as to fall in his path, and freeze to death.
When all other means of sustaining life are gone, the skins he has
collected to pay his credits, or purchase new supplies of clothing or
ammunition, are eaten. They are prepared by removing the pelt, and
roasting the skin until it acquires a certain degree of crispness. Under
all their sufferings, the pipe of the hunter is his chief solace, and is
a solace often resorted to. Smoking parties are frequently formed, when
there is a scarcity of food not tending, as might be supposed, to
destroy social feeling and render the temper sour. On these occasions
the entertainer sends a message to this effect: "Come and smoke with me.
I have no food; but we can pass away the evening very well without it."
All acknowledge their lives to be in the hand of the great Spirit; feel
a conviction that all comes from him, and that although he allows them
to suffer, he will again supply them. This tends to quiet their
apprehensions; they are fatalists, however, under long reverses, and
submit patiently and silently to what they believe to be their destiny.
When hunger and misery are past, they are soon forgotten, and their
minds are too eagerly intent on the enjoyment of the present good, to
feel any depression of spirits from the recollection of the past, or to
hoard up anything to provide against want for the future. No people are
more easy, or less clamorous under sufferings of the deepest dye, and
none more happy, or more prone to evince their happiness, when
prosperous in their affairs.

October 29th, 1826.




This is the principal game of hazard among the northern tribes. It is
played with thirteen pieces, hustled in a vessel called onágun, which is
a kind of wooden bowl. They are represented, and named, as follows.

[Illustration: GAME PIECES]

The pieces marked No. 1, in this cut, of which, there are two, are
called Ininewug, or men. They are made tapering, or wedge-shaped in
thickness, so as to make it possible, in throwing them, that they may
stand on their base. Number 2, is called Gitshee Kenabik, or the Great
Serpent. It consists of two pieces, one of which is fin-tailed, or a
water-serpent, the other truncated, and is probably designed as
terrestrial. They are formed wedge-shaped, so as to be capable of
standing on their bases length-wise. Each has four dots. Number 3, is
called Pugamágun, or the war club. It has six marks on the handle, on
the _red side_, and four radiating from the orifice of the club end; and
four marks on the handle of the _white side_; and six radiating marks
from the orifice on the club-end, making ten on each side. Number 4 is
called Keego, which is the generic name for a fish. The four circular
pieces of brass, slightly concave, with a flat surface on the apex, are
called Ozawábiks. The three bird-shaped pieces, Sheshebwug, or ducks.

All but the circular pieces are made out of a fine kind of bone. One
side of the piece is white, of the natural colour of the bones, and
polished, the other red. The brass pieces have the convex side bright,
the concave black. They are all shaken together, and thrown out of the
onágun, as dice. The term pugasaing denotes this act of throwing. It is
the participial form of the verb.--The following rules govern the game:

1. When the pieces are turned on the red side, and one of the Ininewugs
stands upright on the bright side of one of the brass pieces, it counts

2. When all the pieces turn red side up, and the Gitshee Kenabik with
the tail stands on the bright side of the brass piece, it counts 138.

3. When all turn up red, it counts 58 whether the brass pieces be bright
or black side up.

4. When the Gitshee Kenabik and his associate, and the two Ininewugs
turn up white side, and the other pieces red, it counts 58, irrespective
of the concave or convex position of the brass pieces.

5. When all the pieces turn up white, it counts 38, whether the
Ozawábiks, be bright or black.

6. When the Gitshee Kenabik and his associate turn up red, and the other
white, it counts 38, the brass pieces immaterial.

7. When one of the Ininewugs stands up, it counts 50, without regard to
the position of all the rest.

8. When either of the Gitshee Kenabiks stands upright, it counts 40,
irrespective of the position of the others.

9. When all the pieces turn up white, excepting one, and the Ozawábiks
dark, it counts 20.

10. When all turn up red, except one, and the brass pieces bright, it
counts 15.

11. When the whole of the pieces turn up white, but one, with the
Ozawábiks bright, it counts 10.

12. When a brass piece turns up dark, the two Gitshee Kenabiks and the
two men red, and the remaining pieces white, it counts 8.

13. When the brass piece turns up bright, the two Gitshee Kenabiks and
one of the men red, and all the rest white, it is 6.

14. When the Gitshee Kenabik in chief, and one of the men turn up red,
the Ozawábiks, bright, and all the others white, it is 4.

15. When both the Kenabiks, and both men, and the three ducks, turn up
red, the brass piece black, and either the Keego, or a duck white, it is

16. When all the pieces turn up red, but one of the Ininewugs, and the
brass piece black, it counts 2.

The limit of the game is stipulated. The parties throw up for the play.

This game is very fascinating to some portions of the Indians. They
stake at it their ornaments, weapons, clothing, canoes, horses, every
thing in fact they possess; and have been known, it is said, to set up
their wives and children, and even to forfeit their own liberty. Of such
desperate stakes, I have seen no examples, nor do I think the game
itself in common use. It is rather confined to certain persons, who hold
the relative rank of gamblers in Indian society--men who are not noted
as hunters or warriors, or steady providers for their families. Among
these are persons who bear the term of Ienadizze-wug, that is, wanderers
about the country, braggadocios, or fops. It can hardly be classed with
the popular games of amusement, by which skill and dexterity are
acquired. I have generally found the chiefs and graver men of the
tribes, who encouraged the young men to play ball, and are sure to be
present at the customary sports, to witness, and sanction, and applaud
them, speak, lightly and disparagingly of this game of hazard. Yet, it
cannot be denied, that some of the chiefs, distinguished in war and the
chase, at the west, can be referred to, as lending their example to its
fascinating power.

An analysis of this game, to show its arithmetical principles and powers
might be gone into; but it is no part of the present design to take up
such considerations here, far less to pursue the comparison and
extension of customs of this kind among the modern western tribes. It
may be sufficient to say, from the foregoing rules, that there seems to
be no unit in the throw, and that the count proceeds by _decimals_, for
all numbers over 8. Doubtless these rules, are but a part of the whole
series, known to experienced players. They comprise, however, all that
have been revealed to me.

"Gambling is not peculiar to our race,
The Indian gambles with as fixed a face."

       *       *       *       *       *

Herodotus says of the ancient Thracians--that "the most honourable life,
with them, is a life of war and plunder; the most contemptible that of a
husbandman. Their supreme delight is war and plunder." Who might not
suppose, were the name withheld, that this had been said by some modern
writer of the Pawnees, or the Camanches?


There lived a noted chief at Michilimackinac, in days past, called
Gitshe Naygow, or the Great-Sand-Dune, a name, or rather nick-name,
which he had, probably, derived from his birth and early residence at a
spot of very imposing appearance, so called, on the southern shore of
Lake Superior, which is east of the range of the Pictured Rocks. He was
a Chippewa, a warrior and a counsellor, of that tribe, and had mingled
freely in the stirring scenes of war and border foray, which marked the
closing years of French domination in the Canadas. He lived to be very
old, and became so feeble at last, that he could not travel by land,
when Spring came on and his people prepared to move their lodges, from
their sugar-camp in the forest, to the open lake shore. They were then
inland, on the waters of the Manistee river, a stream which enters the
northern shores of Lake Michigan. It was his last winter on earth; his
heart was gladdened by once more feeling the genial rays of Spring, and
he desired to go with them, to behold, for the last time, the expanded
lake and inhale its pure breezes. He must needs be conveyed by hand.
This act of piety was performed by his daughter, then a young woman. She
carried him on her back from their camp to the lake shore, where they
erected their lodge and passed their spring, and where he eventually
died and was buried.

This relation I had from her own lips, at the agency of Michilimackinac,
in 1833. I asked her how she had carried him. She replied, with the
Indian apekun, or head-strap. When tired she rested, and again pursued
her way, on-wa-be-win by on-wa-be-win, or rest by rest, in the manner
practised in carrying heavy packages over the portages. Her name was
Nadowákwa, or the female Iroquois. She was then, perhaps, about
fifty-five years of age, and the wife of a chief called Saganosh, whose
home and jurisdiction were in the group of the St. Martin's Islands,
north of Michilimackinac.

The incident was not voluntarily told, but came out, incidentally, in
some inquiries I was making respecting historical events, in the
vicinity. One such incident goes far to vindicate the affections of this
people, and should teach us, that they are of the same general lineage
with ourselves, and only require letters and Christianity, to exalt them
in the scale of being.

       *       *       *       *       *

The first words of men, says Harris in his Hermes, like their first
ideas, had an immediate reference to sensible objects; in after days,
when they began to discern with their intellect, they took those words
which they found already made, and transferred them by metaphor, to
intellectual conceptions.


Many persons among the Indian race, have attracted notice from their
exploits on the war-path. Andaig Weos was not among the number of these,
or if he had mingled in such events, his deeds of daring are now lost
amid the remembrance of better qualities. He was a chief of the once
prominent and reigning band of Odjibwa Algonquins, who are called
Chippewas, located at Chegoimgon, on Lake Superior, where his name is
cherished in local tradition, for the noble and disinterested deeds
which he performed in former days. He lived in the latter part of the
18th century.

It was perhaps forty years ago--said my informant, it was while the late
Mr. Nolin, of Sault Ste. Maries was a trader in the Chippewa country,
between lake Superior and the Mississippi, that he wintered one year low
down on the Chippewa river. On his way down this stream, and while he
was still on one of its sources, cold weather set in suddenly, the ice
formed, and he was unable to get on with his goods. He consequently put
them _en cache_, according to the custom of the country, and proceeded
on foot, with his men to the lower part of the river, to the spot at
which he had determined to winter. Here he felled trees, and built his
house, and having made all things ready, he set out with his men on his
return to his _cache_, in order to bring down his goods.

On the way he fell in with an Indian hunter and his wife, who followed
him to the place where he had secreted his goods. On reaching this, he
filled a bottle with spirits and gave a glass to each of his men, took
one himself, and then filling the glass presented it to the Indian. This
was done after the camp had been made for the night. It so happened that
the Indian was taken suddenly ill that night, and before day light died.
Nolin and his men buried him, and then proceeded back to his wintering
house below, each man carrying a pack of goods; and the widow rejoined
her friends.

After the Indians had taken their credits, and dispersed to their
several wintering grounds, it was rumoured amongst them, that the trader
had administered poison to the Indian who died so suddenly after taking
the glass of spirits. And this opinion gained ground, although the widow
woman repeatedly told the Indians, that the liquor given to her deceased
husband was from the same bottle and glass, that all the French people
had drank from. But it was of no avail; the rumour grew, and Mr. Nolin
began to be apprehensive, as he had already learnt that the Indians
meant to kill him. To confirm this suspicion a party of forty men, soon
after, entered his house, all armed, painted black, and with war dresses
on. They were all presented with a piece of tobacco, as was customary,
when each of them threw it into the fire. No alternative now appeared to
remain to avert the blow, which he was convinced must soon follow.
Almost at the same instant, his men intimated that another party, of six
men more, were arriving.

It proved to be the chief Andaig Weos, from near Lac du Flambeau, in
search of a trader, for a supply of tobacco and ammunition. On entering,
the chief eyed the warriors, and asked Mr. N. whether he had given them
tobacco. He replied that he _had_, and that they had all, to a man,
thrown it in the fire, and, he added, that they intended to kill him.
The chief asked for some tobacco, which he threw down before the
warriors, telling them to smoke it, adding in an authoritative voice,
that when Indians visited traders, it was with an intention of getting
tobacco from them to _smoke_ and not to _throw into the fire_; and that,
for his part, he had been a long time without smoking, and was very
happy to find a trader to supply him with that article. This present
from him, with the rebuke, was received with silent acquiescence,--no
one venturing a reply.

The chief next demanded liquor of the trader, saying, "that he intended
to make them drink." The politic Frenchman remonstrated, saying, "that
if this was done, he should surely be killed." "Fear not, Frenchman,"
replied the chief, boldly. "These are not _men_ who want to kill you:
they are _children_. I, and my warriors will guard you." On these
assurances, a keg of liquor was given, but with the greatest reluctance.
The chief immediately presented it to the war-party, but cautioned them
to drink it at a distance, and not to come nigh the trader during the
night. They obeyed him. They took it a short distance and drank it, and
kept up a dreadful yelling all night, but did not molest the house.

The next morning Andaig Weos demanded tobacco of the still uneasy
_marchand voyageur_, and ordered one of his young men to distribute it
to the Indians in the war-dress. He then rose and addressed them in an
energetic and authoritative speech, telling them to march off, without
tasting food; that they were _warriors_, and needed not any thing of the
kind; and if they did, they were _hunters_,--they had guns, and might
hunt, and kill and eat. "You get nothing more here," he added. "This
trader has come here to supply your wants, and you seek to kill him--a
poor reward for the trouble and the anxiety he has undergone! This is no
way of requiting white people." They all, to a man started, and went
off, and gave the trader no farther molestation while he remained in the

On another occasion Andaig Weos was placed in a situation which afforded
a very different species of testimony to his principles and integrity. A
French trader had entered lake Superior so late in the season, that with
every effort, he could get no farther than _Pointe La Petite Fille_,
before the ice arrested his progress. Here he was obliged to build his
wintering house, but he soon ran short of provisions, and was obliged to
visit La Pointe, with his men, in order to obtain fish--leaving his
house and storeroom locked, with his goods, ammunition, and liquors, and
resolving to return immediately. But the weather came on so bad, that
there was no possibility of his immediate return, and the winter proved
so unfavourable that he was obliged to spend two months at that post.

During this time, the chief Andaig Weos, with fifteen of his men, came
out from the interior, to the shores, of the lake, for the purpose of
trading, each carrying a pack of beaver, or other furs. On arriving at
the point La Petite Fille, they found the trader's house locked and no
one there. The chief said to his followers.--It is customary for traders
to invite Indians into their house, and to receive them politely; but as
there is no one to receive us, we must act according to circumstances.
He then ordered the door to be opened, with as little injury as
possible, walked in, with his party, and caused a good fire to be built
in the chimney. On opening the store-door he found they could be
supplied with all they wanted. He told his party, on no account to
touch, or take away any thing, but shut up the door, and said, "that he
would, on the morrow, act the trader's part."

They spent the night in the house. Early the next morning, he arose and
addressed them, telling them, that he would now commence trading with
them. This he accordingly did, and when all was finished, he carefully
packed the furs, and piled the packs, and covered them with an oilcloth.
He then again addressed them, saying that it was customary for a trader
to give tobacco and a keg of spirits, when Indians had traded
handsomely. He, therefore, thought himself authorized to observe this
rule, and accordingly gave a keg of spirits and some tobacco. "The
spirits," he said, "must not be drank here. We must take it to our
hunting camp," and gave orders for returning immediately. He then caused
the doors to be shut, in the best manner possible, and the outer door to
be barricaded with logs, and departed.

When the trader returned, and found his house had been broken open, he
began to bewail his fate, being sure he had been robbed; but on entering
his store room and beholding the furs, his fears were turned to joy. On
examining his inventory, and comparing it with the amount of his furs,
he declared, that had he been present, he could not have traded to
better advantage, nor have made such a profit on his goods.

These traits are not solitary and accidental. It happened at another
time, that a Mr. Lamotte, who had wintered in the Folle-avoine country,
unfortunately had a quarrel with the Indians, at the close of the
season, just when he was about to embark on his return with his furs. In
the heat of their passion the Indians broke all his canoes in pieces,
and confined him a prisoner, by ordering him to encamp on an island in
the St. Croix river.

In this situation he remained, closely watched by the Indians, till all
the _other_ traders had departed and gone out of the country to renew
their supplies, when the chief Andaig Weos arrived. He comprehended the
case in an instant, and having found that the matter of offence was one
of no importance, he immediately went to the Indian village, and in a
loud and authoritative tone of voice, so as to be heard by all,
commanded suitable canoes to be taken to the imprisoned trader--a
summons which was promptly obeyed. He then went to Mr. Lamotte and told
him to embark fearlessly, and that he himself would see that he was not
further hindered, at the same time lamenting the lateness of his return.

The general conduct of this chief was marked by kindness and urbanity.
When traders arrived at Chagoimegon, where he lived, it was his custom
to order his young men to cover and protect their baggage lest any thing
should be injured or stolen. He was of the lineage of the noted
war-chief, Abojeeg, or Wab Ojeeg. He lived to be very old, so that he
walked nearly bent double--using a cane. The present ruling chief of
that place, called Pezhickee, is his grandson. These anecdotes were
related by Mr. Cadotte, of Lapointe, in the year 1829, and are believed
to be entitled to full confidence.

       *       *       *       *       *

The Tartars cannot pronounce the letter b. Those of Bulgaria pronounce
the word _blacks_ as if written _ilacs_. It is noticeable, that the
Odjibwas and their cognate tribes at the north, not only make great use
of the letter b, in native words, but when they come to pronounce
English words, in which the letter v occurs, they invariably substitute
the b for it, as in village, and vinegar.

There are three letters in the English alphabet which the above tribes
do not pronounce. They are f, r, and l. For f, they substitute, in their
attempts to pronounce foreign words, p. The sound of r, they change to
broad a, or drop. L is changed to n.

Singing and dancing are applied to political and to religious purposes
by the Indians. When they wish to raise a war-party, they meet to sing
and dance: when they wish to supplicate the divine mercy on a sick
person, they assemble in a lodge, to sing and dance. No grave act is
performed without singing and dancing.





The following traditions of the creation of man, and of the Red Race; of
the order of precedence and relationship among the tribes, and the
notice of the first arrival of Europeans on the continent, together with
the allegories of Good and Evil, and of Civilization and Barbarism, are
extracted from a private journal, kept during the period of my official
intercourse with the various tribes.

  Superintendency Indian Affairs,
  Detroit, January 30th, 1837.

A delegation of three Wyandot chiefs visited me, this day, from their
location near Amherstburg in Canada, with their interpreter, George C.
Martin. Their names were O-ri-wa-hen-to, or Charlo, On-ha-to-tun-youh,
or Round Head, son of Round Head, the brother of Splitlog, and
Ty-er-on-youh, or Thomas Clark. They informed me, in reply to a
question, that the present population of their band, at that location,
was eighty-six souls. After transacting their business, I proposed
several questions to them respecting their origin and history.

1. What is the origin of the Indians? We believe that all men sprang
from one man and woman, who were made by God, in parts beyond the sea.
But in speaking of the Indians we say, how did they cross the sea
without ships? and when did they come? and from what country? What is
your opinion on the subject?

Oriwahento answered: "The old chief, Splitlog, who could answer you, is
not able to come to see you from his age and feebleness; but he has sent
us three to speak with you. We will do the best we can. We are not able
to read and write, like white men, and what you ask is not therefore to
be found in black and white." (This remark was probably made as they
observed I took notes of the interview.)

"There was, in ancient times, something the matter with the earth. It
has changed. We think so. We believe God created it, and made men out of
it. We think he made the Indians in this country, and that they did not
come over the sea. They were created at a place called MOUNTAINS. It
was eastward. When he had made the earth and those mountains, he covered
something over the earth, as it were, with his hand. Below this, he put
man. All the different tribes were there. One of the young men found his
way out to the surface. He saw a great light, and was delighted with the
beauty of the surface. While gazing around, he saw a deer running past,
with an arrow in his side. He followed it, to the place where it fell
and died. He thought it was a harmless looking animal. He looked back to
see its tracks, and he soon saw other tracks. They were the foot prints
of the person who had shot the deer. He soon came up. It was the creator
himself. He had taken this method to show the Indians what they must do,
when they came out from the earth. The creator showed him how to skin
and dress the animal, bidding him do so and so, as he directed him. When
the flesh was ready, he told him to make a fire. But he was perfectly
ignorant. God made the fire. He then directed him to put a portion of
the meat on a stick, and roast it before the fire. But he was so
ignorant that he let it stand till it burned on one side, while the
other was raw.

Having taught this man the hunter's art, so that he could teach it to
others, God called the Indians forth out of the earth. They came in
order, by tribes, and to each tribe he appointed a chief. He appointed
one Head Chief to lead them all, who had something about his neck, and
he instructed him, and put it into his head what to say to the tribes.
That he might have an opportunity to do so, a certain animal was killed,
and a feast made, in which they were told to eat it all. The leader God
had so chosen, told the tribes what they must do, to please their maker,
and what they must not do.

Oriwahento further said: God also made Good and Evil. They were
brothers. The one went forth to do good, and caused pleasant things to
grow. The other busied himself in thwarting his brother's work. He made
stony and flinty places, and caused bad fruits, and made continual
mischief among men. Good repaired the mischief as fast as it was done,
but he found his labour never done. He determined to fly upon his
brother and destroy him, but not by violence. He proposed to run a race
with him. Evil consented, and they fixed upon the place. But first tell
me, said Good, what is it you most dread. Bucks horns! replied he, and
tell me what is most hurtful to you. Indian grass braid! said Good. Evil
immediately went to his grandmother, who made braid, and got large
quantities of it, which he put in the path and hung on the limbs that
grew by the path where Good was to run. Good also filled the path of his
brother with the dreaded horns. A question arose who should run first.
I, said Good, will begin, since the proposition to try our skill first
came from me. He accordingly set out, his brother following him. But as
he began to feel exhausted at noon, he took up the grass braid and eat
it. This sustained him, and he tired down his brother before night, who
entreated him to stop. He did not, however, cease, till he had
successfully reached the goal.

The next day Evil started on his path. He was encountered every where by
the horns, which before noon had greatly weakened him. He entreated to
be relieved from going on. Good insisted on his running the course. He
sustained himself 'till sunset, when he fell in the path, and was
finally dispatched by one of the horns wielded by his brother.

Good now returned in triumph to his grandmother's lodge. But she was in
an ill humour, as she always was, and hated him and loved his brother
whom he had killed. He wanted to rest, but at night was awoke by a
conversation between her and the ghost of Evil. The latter pleaded to
come in, but although he felt for him, he did not allow his fraternal
feelings to get the better, and resolutely denied admission. Then said
Evil "I go to the north-west, and you will never see me more, and all
who follow me will be in the same state. They will never come back.
Death will for ever keep them."

Having thus rid himself of his adversary, he thought he would walk out
and see how things were going on, since there was no one to oppose his
doing good. After travelling some time he saw a living object a-head. As
he drew nearer, he saw more plainly. It was a naked man. They began to
talk to each other. "I am walking to see the creation, which I have
made," said Good, "but who are you?" "Clothed man," said he, "I am as
powerful as you, and have made all that land you see." "Naked man," he
replied, "I have made all things, but do not recollect making you." "You
shall see my power," said the naked man, "we will try strength. Call to
yonder mountain to come here, and afterwards I will do the same, and we
will see who has the greatest power." The clothed man fell down on his
knees, and began to pray, but the effort did not succeed, or but
partially. Then the naked man drew a rattle from his belt, and began to
shake it and mutter, having first blindfolded the other. After a time,
now said he, "look!" He did so, and the mountain stood close before him,
and rose up to the clouds. He then blindfolded him again, and resumed
his rattle and muttering. The mountain had resumed its former distant

The clothed man held in his left hand a sword, and in his right hand the
law of God. The naked man had a rattle in one hand, and a war club in
the other. They exchanged the knowledge of the respective uses of these
things. To show the power of the sword, the clothed man cut off a rod,
and placed it before him. The naked man immediately put the parts
together and they were healed. He then took his club, which was flat,
and cut off the rod, and again healed the mutilated parts. He relied on
the rattle to answer the same purpose as the other's book. The clothed
man tried the use of the club, but could not use it with skill, while
the naked man took the sword and used it as well as the other.

Oriwahento continued:--It is said that Evil killed his mother at his
birth. He did not enter the world the right way, but bursted from the
womb. They took the body of the mother and laid it upon a scaffold. From
the droppings of her decay, where they fell on the ground, sprang up
corn, tobacco, and such other vegetable productions as the Indians have.
Hence we call corn, our mother. And our tobacco propagates itself by
spontaneous growth, without planting; but the clothed man is required to
labour in raising it.

Good found his grandmother in no better humor when he came back from the
interview with the naked man. He therefore took and cast her up, and she
flew against the moon, upon whose face the traces of her are still to be

This comprised the first interview; after a recess during which they
were permitted to refresh themselves and smoke their pipes, I returned
to the office and resumed the inquiries.

2. Where did your tribe first see white men on this continent? The
French say you lived on the St. Lawrence, and afterwards went to the
north, from whence you afterwards came down to the vicinity of Detroit.
That you possess the privilege of lighting up the general council fire
for the Lake tribes; and that you were converted to the catholic faith.
Oriwahento again answered.

When the tribes were all settled, the Wyandots were placed at the head.
They lived in the interior, at the mountains east, about the St.
Lawrence. They were the first tribe of old, and had the first
chieftainship. The chief said to their nephew, the Lenapees, Go down to
the sea coast and look, and if you see any thing bring me word. They had
a village near the sea side, and often looked, but saw nothing except
birds. At length they espied an object, which seemed to grow and come
nearer, and nearer. When it came near the land it stopped, but all the
people were afraid, and fled to the woods. The next day, two of their
number ventured out to look. It was lying quietly on the water. A
smaller object of the same sort came out of it, and walked with long
legs (oars) over the water. When it came to land two men came out of it.
They were different from us and made signs for the others to come out of
the woods. A conference ensued. Presents were exchanged. They gave
presents to the Lenapees, and the latter gave them their skin clothes as
curiosities. Three distinct visits, at separate times, and long
intervals, were made. The mode in which the white men got a footing, and
power in the country was this. First, room was asked, and leave given to
place a chair on the shore. But they soon began to pull the lacing out
of its bottom, and go inland with it; and they have not yet come to the
end of the string. He exemplified this original demand for a cession of
territory and its renewal at other epochs, by other figures of speech,
namely, of a bull's hide, and of a man walking. The first request for a
seat on the shore, was made he said of the Lenapees; alluding to the
cognate branches of this stock, who were anciently settled at the
harbour of New York, and that vicinity.

To the question of their flight from the St. Lawrence, their settlement
in the north, and their subsequent migration to, and settlement on, the
straits of Detroit, Oriwahento said:

The Wyandots were proud. God had said that such should be beaten and
brought low. This is the cause why we were followed from the east, and
went up north away to Michilimackinac, but as we had the right before,
so when we came back, the tribes looked up to us, as holding the council

     [18] This is certainly a dignified and wise answer; designed as it
     was, to cover their disastrous defeat and flight from the St.
     Lawrence valley to the north. The precedence to which he alludes,
     on reaching the straits of Detroit, as having been theirs before,
     is to be understood, doubtless, of the era of their residence on
     the lower St. Lawrence, where they were at the head of the French
     and Indian confederacy against the Iroquois. Among the latter,
     they certainly had no precedency, so far as history reaches. Their
     council fire was kept by the Onondagas.

3. What relationship do you acknowledge, to the other western tribes?

Answer by Oriwahento: We call the Lenapees, _nephews_; we call the
Odjibwas (Chippewas), Ottawas, Miamis &c., _Younger Brother_. We call the
Shawnees, _the Youngest Brother_. The Wyandots were the first tribe in
ancient times. The first chieftainship was in their tribe.


1. Are the Wyandot and Mohawk languages, alike in sounds. You say, you
speak both.

Ans. Not at all alike. It is true there are a few words so, but the two
languages do not seem to me more akin than English and French. You know
some English and French words are alike. The Mohawk language is on the
_tongue_, the Wyandot is in _the throat_.

2. Give me some examples: Read some of this translation of the Mohawk,
(handing him John's Gospel printed by the American Bible Society in
1818.) He complied, reading it fluently, and appearing to have been
acquainted with the translation.

Further conversation, in which his attention was drawn to particular
facts in its structure and principles, made him see stronger analogies
between the two tongues. It was quite evident, that he had never
reflected on the subject, and that there were, both grammatically, and
philologically, coincidences beyond his depth.



There are some curious traditions related by the race of people living
on that part of the continent lying north and west of Athabasca lake,
and the river Unjigah. Mackenzie has described that branch of them, who
are called by the trivial name of Che-pe-wyans. This is an Algonquin
term, meaning puckered blankets, and has reference only to the most
easterly and southerly division of the race. They are but the van of an
extensive race. All that gives identity to their general traditions, and
distinctive character and language, relates as well to the Dogribs, the
Coppermines, the Strongbows, the Ambawtawoots, the Hares, the
Brushwoods, the Sursees, the Tacullies, the Nateotetains, and other
tribes located north of them, extending to the Arctic Ocean, and west
through the Peace river pass of the Rocky Mountains. Philology brings
into one group all these dialects of a wide spread race, who extend from
the borders of the Atnah nation on the Columbia, across the Rocky
Mountains eastwardly to the Lake of the Hills and the Missinipi or
Churchill river, covering many degrees of latitude and longitude. In the
absence of any generic name for them, founded on language or character,
I shall allude to them under the geographical phrase of ARCTIDES.

This stock of people have proceeded from the direction of the North
Pacific towards the Atlantic waters, in a general eastern direction, in
which respect, their history forms a striking exception to the other
great stocks of the eastern part of the United States, the Canadas, and
Hudson's bay, who have been in a continual progress towards the WEST and
NORTHWEST. The Arctides, on the contrary, have proceeded EAST and
SOUTHEAST. They may be supposed, therefore, to bring their traditions
more directly from opposite portions of the continent, and from Asia,
and it may be inferred, from more unmixed and primitive sources. Some of
these traditions are, at least, of a curious and striking character.
They believe, like the more southerly tribes, in the general tradition
of a deluge, and of a paradise, or land of future bliss. They have
apparently, veiled the Great Spirit, or creator of the globe, under the
allegory of a gigantic bird. They believe, that there was originally
nothing visible but one vast ocean. Upon this the bird descended from
the sky, with a noise of his wings which produced sounds resembling
thunder. The earth, as he alighted, immediately rose above the waters.
This bird of creative power, then made all the classes of animals, who
were made out of earth. They all had precedency to man. Man alone, the
last in the series, was created from the integument of a dog. This, they
believe, was their own origin, and hence, as Mackenzie tells us, they
will not eat the flesh of this animal, as is done by the other tribes of
the continent. To guard and protect them, he then made a magic arrow,
which they were to preserve with great care, and hold sacred. But they
were so thoughtless, they add, as to carry it away and lose it, upon
which the great bird took his flight, and has never since appeared. This
magic arrow is doubtless to be regarded as a symbol of something else,
which was very essential to their safety and happiness. Indian history
is often disguised under such symbolic forms.

They have also a tradition that they originally came from a foreign
country, which was inhabited by a wicked people. They had to cross a
great lake, or water, which was shallow, narrow, and full of islands.
Their track lay also through snow and ice, and they suffered miserably
from cold. They first landed at the mouth of the Coppermine river. The
earth thereabouts was then strewed with metallic copper, which has since

They believe that, in ancient times, men lived till their feet were worn
out with walking, and their throats with eating. They represent their
ancestors as living to very great ages. They describe a deluge, in which
the waters spread over the whole earth, except the highest mountains, on
which their progenitors were saved.

Their notions of a future state coincide generally with the other
stocks. But their paradise is clothed with more imaginative traits. They
believe, that at death they pass immediately to another world, where
there is a large river of water to cross. They must embark in a stone
canoe, and are borne along into a wide lake, which has an island in its
centre. This is the island of the blest, and the object of the
disembodied soul is to reach it. If their lives have been good, they
will be fortunate, and make it. If bad, they will sink; but they will
only sink to the depth of their chins, so that they may be permitted to
behold the happy land, and strive in vain to reach it. Eternity is
passed in this vain endeavour.

They have also some notion of the doctrine of transmigration. Such are
the traditionary notions of this numerous family of the Red Race, which
are sufficiently distinctive and peculiar,--and while they resemble in
many traits, yet in others they contradistinguish them from the great
Algic race of the eastern part of the continent. The most advanced
branch of these tribes in their geographical position, call themselves,
as reported by Capt. Franklin, People of the Rising Sun, or

It seems singular, that the farther north we go, the greater evidences
do we behold of imagination, in the aboriginal race, together with some
foreshadowings of future punishment.


Of all the existing branches of the Algonquin stock in America, this
extensive and populous tribe appears to have the strongest claims to
intellectual distinction, on the score of their traditions, so far, at
least, as the present state of our inquiries extends. They possess, in
their curious fictitious legends and lodge-tales, a varied and
exhaustless fund of tradition, which is repeated from generation to
generation. These legends hold, among the wild men of the north, the
relative rank of story-books; and are intended both to amuse and
instruct. This people possess also, the art of picture writing, in a
degree which denotes that they have been, either more careful, or more
fortunate, in the preservation of this very ancient art of the human
race. Warriors, and the bravest of warriors, they are yet an
intellectual people.

Their traditions and belief, on the origin of the globe, and the
existence of a Supreme Being, are quite accordant with some things in
our own history and theory. They believe that the Great Spirit created
material matter, and that he made the earth and heavens, by the power of
his will. He afterwards made animals and men, out of the earth, and he
filled space with subordinate spirits, having something of his own
nature, to whom he gave a part of his own power. He made one great and
master spirit of evil, to whom he also gave assimilated and subordinate
evil spirits, to execute his will. Two antagonist powers, they believe,
were thus placed in the world who are continually striving for the
mastery, and who have power to affect the fortunes and lives of men.
This constitutes the ground-work of their religion, sacrifices and

They believe that animals were created before men, and that they
originally had rule on the earth. By the power of necromancy, some of
these animals were transformed to men, who, as soon as they assumed this
new form, began to hunt the animals, and make war against them. It is
expected that these animals will resume their human shapes, in a future
state, and hence their hunters, feign some clumsy excuses, for their
present policy of killing them. They believe that all animals, and birds
and reptiles, and even insects, possess reasoning faculties, and have
souls. It is in these opinions, that we detect the ancient doctrine of

Their most intelligent priests tell us, that their forefathers
worshipped the sun; this luminary was regarded by them, as one of their
Medas told me, as the symbol of divine intelligence, and the figure of
it is drawn in their system of picture writing, to denote the Great
Spirit. This symbol very often occurs in their pictures of the medicine
dance, and the wabeno dance, and other sacred forms of their rude

They believe, at least to some extent, in a duality of souls, one of
which is fleshly, or corporeal, the other is incorporeal or mental. The
fleshly soul goes immediately, at death, to the land of spirits, or
future bliss. The mental soul abides with the body, and hovers round the
place of sepulture. A future state is regarded by them, as a state of
rewards, and not of punishments. They expect to inhabit a paradise,
filled with pleasures for the eye, and the ear, and the taste. A strong
and universal belief in divine mercies absorbs every other attribute of
the Great Spirit, except his power and ubiquity; and they believe, so
far as we can gather it, that this mercy will be shown to all. There is
not, in general, a very discriminating sense of moral distinctions and
responsibilities, and the faint out-shadowings, which we sometimes hear
among them, of a deep and sombre stream to be crossed by the adventurous
soul, in its way to the land of bliss, does not exercise such a
practical influence over their lives, as to interfere with the belief of
universal acceptance after death. So firm is this belief, that their
proper and most reverend term for the Great Spirit, is Gézha Monedo,
that is to say, Merciful Spirit. Gitchy Monedo, which is also employed,
is often an equivocal phrase. The term Wäzheáud, or Maker, is used to
designate the Creator, when speaking of his animated works. The compound
phrase Wäosemigóyan, or universal Father, is also heard.

The great spirit of evil, called Mudje Monedo, and Matche Monito, is
regarded as a _created_, and not a pre-existing being. Subordinate
spirits of evil, are denoted by using the derogative form of the word,
in _sh_ by which Moneto is rendered Monetosh. The exceeding flexibility
of the language is well calculated to enable them to express distinction
of this nature.

This tribe has a general tradition of a deluge, in which the earth was
covered with water, reaching above the highest hills, or mountains, but
not above a tree which grew on the latter, by climbing which a man was
saved. This man was the demi-god of their fictions, who is called
Manabozho, by whose means the waters were stayed and the earth
re-created. He employed for this purpose various animals who were sent
to dive down for some of the primordial earth, of which a little was,
at length, brought up by the beaver, and this formed the germ or nucleus
of the new, or rather rescued planet. What particular allegories are hid
under this story, is not certain; but it is known that this, and other
tribes, are much in the habit of employing allegories, and symbols,
under which we may suspect, they have concealed parts of their
historical traditions and beliefs. This deluge of the Algonquin tribes,
was produced, as their legends tell, by the agency of the chief of the
evil spirits, symbolized by a great serpent, who is placed, throughout
the tale, in an antagonistical position to the demi-god Manabosho. This
Manabozho, is the same, it is thought, with the Abou, and the Michabou,
or the Great Hare of elder writers.

Of their actual origin and history, the Chippewas have no other certain
tradition, than that they came from Wabenong, that is to say, the land
of the EAST. They have no authentic history, therefore, but such
remembered events, as must be placed subsequent to the era of the
discovery of the continent. Whether this tradition is to be interpreted
as an ancient one, having reference to their arrival on the continent,
or merely to the track of their migration, after reaching it, is a
question to be considered. It is only certain, that they came to their
present position on the banks of Lake Superior, from the direction of
the Atlantic seaboard, and were, when discovered, in the attitude of an
invading nation, pressing westward and northward. Their distinctive name
sheds no light on this question. They call themselves _Od-jib-wäg_,
which is the plural of Odjibwa,--a term which appears to denote a
peculiarity in their voice, or manner of utterance. This word has been
pronounced Chippewa by the Saxon race in America, and is thus recorded
in our treaties and history. They are, in language, manners and customs,
and other characteristics, a well marked type of the leading Algonquin
race, and indeed, the most populous, important, and wide spread existing
branch of that family now on the continent. The term Chippewa, may be
considered as inveterately fixed by popular usage, but in all
disquisitions which have their philology or distinctive character in
view, the true vernacular term of Od-jib-wa, will be found to possess
advantages to writers. The word Algonquin is still applied to a small
local band, at the Lake of Two Mountains, on the Utawas river, near
Montreal, but this term, first bestowed by the French, has long been a
generic phrase for the entire race, who are identified by the ties of a
common original Language in the United States and British America.

One of the most curious opinions of this people is their belief in the
mysterious and sacred character of fire. They obtain sacred fire, for
all national and ecclesiastical purposes, from the flint. Their national
pipes are lighted with this fire. It is symbolical of purity. Their
notions of the boundary between life and death, which is also
symbolically the limit of the material verge between this and a future
state, are revealed in connection with the exhibition of flames of
fire. They also make sacrifices by fire of some part of the first fruits
of the chase. These traits are to be viewed, perhaps, in relation to
their ancient worship of the sun, above noticed, of which the traditions
and belief, are still generally preserved. The existence among them of
the numerous classes of jossakeeds, or mutterers--(the word is from the
utterance of sounds low on the earth,) is a trait that will remind the
reader of a similar class of men, in early ages, in the eastern
hemisphere. These persons constitute, indeed, the Magii of our western
forests. In the exhibition of their art, and of the peculiar notions
they promulgate on the subject of a sacred fire, and the doctrine of
transmigration, they would seem to have their affiliation of descent
rather with the disciples of Zoroaster and the fruitful Persian stock,
than with the less mentally refined Mongolian hordes.



     [19] New York Lit. & Theo. Review.

It is known that the Indian tribes of this continent live in a state of
mental bondage to a class of men, who officiate as their priests and
soothsayers. These men found their claims to supernatural power on early
fastings, dreams, ascetic manners and habits, and often on some real or
feigned fit of insanity. Most of them affect a knowledge of charms and
incantations. They are provided with a sack of mystic implements, the
contents of which are exhibited in the course of their ceremonies, such
as the hollow bones of some of the larger anseres, small carved
representations of animals, cowrie and other sea-shells, &c. Some of
these men acquire a character for much sanctity, and turn their
influence to political purposes, either personally or through some
popular warrior, as was instanced in the success of the sachems
Buchanjahela, Little Turtle and Tecumthè.

We have recently had an opportunity of conversing with one of this class
of sacred person, who has within late years embraced Christianity; and
have made some notes of the interview, which we will advert to for the
purpose of exhibiting his testimony, as to the true character of this
class of impostors. Chusco, the person referred to, is an Ottawa Indian
who has long exercised the priestly office, so to say, to his brethren
on the northern frontiers. He is now a man turned of seventy. He is of
small stature, somewhat bent forward, and supports the infirmities of
age by walking with a staff. His sight is impaired, but his memory
accurate, enabling him to narrate with particularity events which
transpired more than half a century ago. He was present at the great
convocation of northern Indians at Greenville, which followed Gen.
Wayne's victories in the west--an event to which most of these tribes
look back, as an era in their history. He afterwards returned to his
native country in the upper lakes, and fixed his residence at
Michilimackinac, where in late years, his wife became a convert to the
Christian faith, and united herself to the mission church on that
island. A few years after, the old prophet, who despised this mode of
faith, and thought but little of his wife's sagacity in uniting herself
to a congregation of believers, felt his own mind arrested by the same
truths, and finally also embraced them, and was propounded for
admission, and afterwards kept on trial before the session. It was about
this time, or soon after he had been received as an applicant for
membership, that the writer visited his lodge, and entered into a full
examination of his sentiments and opinions, contrasting them freely with
what they had formerly been. We requested him to narrate to us the facts
of his conversion to the principles of Christianity, indicating the
progress of truth on his mind, which he did in substance, through an
interpreter, as follows:

"In the early part of my life I lived very wickedly, following the META,
the JEESUKAN, and the WABENO, the three great superstitious observances
of my people. I did not know that these societies were made up of errors
until my wife, whose heart had been turned by the missionaries, informed
me of it. I had no pleasure in listening to her on this subject, and
often turned away, declaring that I was well satisfied with the religion
of my forefathers. She took every occasion of talking to me on the
subject. She told me that the Indian societies were bad, and that all
who adhered to them were no better than open servants of the Evil
Spirit. She had, in particular, _four_ long talks with me on the
subject, and explained to me who God was, and what sin was, as it is
written in God's book. I believed before, that there was One Great
Spirit who was the Master of life, who had made men and beasts. But she
explained to me the true character of this Great Spirit, the sinfulness
of the heart, and the necessity of having it changed from evil to good
by praying through Jesus Christ. By degrees I came to understand it. She
told me that the Ghost of God or Holy Spirit only could make the heart
better, and that the souls of all who died, without having felt this
power, would be burned in the fires. The missionaries had directed her
to speak to me and put words in her mouth; and she said so much that,
at length, I did not feel satisfied with my old way of life. Amongst
other things she spoke against drinking, which I was very fond of.

"I did not relish these conversations, but I could not forget them. When
I reflected upon them, my heart was not as fixed as it used to be. I
began to see that the Indian Societies were bad, for I knew from my own
experience, that it was not a good Spirit that I had relied upon. I
determined that I would not undertake to _jeesukà_ or to look into
futurity any longer for the Indians, nor practice the _Meta's_ art.
After a while I began to see more fully that the Indian ceremonies were
all bad, and I determined to quit them altogether, and give heed to what
was declared in God's book.

"The first time that I felt I was to be condemned as a sinner, and that
I was in danger of being punished for sin by God, is clearly in my mind.
I was then on the Island of Bois Blanc, making sugar with my wife. I was
in a conflict of mind, and hardly knew what I was about. I walked around
the kettles, and did not know what I walked for. I felt sometimes like a
person wishing to cry, but I thought it would be unmanly to cry. For the
space of two weeks, I felt in this alarmed and unhappy mood. It seemed
to me sometimes as if I must die. My heart and my bones felt as if they
would burst and fall asunder. My wife asked me if I was sick, and said I
looked pale. I was in an agony of body and mind, especially during _one_
week. It seemed, during this time, as if an evil spirit haunted me. When
I went out to gather sap, I felt conscious that this spirit went with me
and dogged me. It appeared to animate my own shadow.

"My strength was failing under this conflict. One night, after I had
been busy all day, my mind was in great distress. This shadowy influence
seemed to me to persuade me to go to sleep. I was tired, and I wished
rest, but I could not sleep. I began to pray. I knelt down and prayed to
God. I continued to pray at intervals through the night; I asked to know
the truth. I then laid down and went to sleep. This sleep brought me
rest and peace. In the morning my wife awoke me, telling me it was late.
When I awoke I felt placid and easy in mind. My distress had left me. I
asked my wife what day it was. She told me it was the Sabbath (in the
Indian, prayer-day). I replied, 'how I wish I could go to the church at
the mission! Formerly I used to avoid it, and shunned those who wished
to speak to me of praying to God, but now my heart longs to go there.'
This feeling did not leave me.

"After three days I went to the mission. The gladness of my heart
continued the same as I had felt it the first morning at the camp. My
first feeling when I landed, was pity for my drunken brethren, and I
prayed that they might also be brought to find the true God. I spoke to
the missionary, who at subsequent interviews explained to me the truth,
the rite of baptism, and other principles. He wished, however, to try
me by my life, and I wished it also. It was the following autumn, that I
was received into the church."

We now turned his mind to the subject of intemperance in drinking,
understanding that it had been his former habit. He replied that he had
been one of the greatest drunkards. He had not been satisfied with a ten
days' drink. He would go and drink as long as he could get it. He said,
that during the night in which he first prayed, it was one of the first
subjects of his prayers, that God would remove this desire with his
other evil desires. He added, "God did so." When he arose that morning
the desire had left him. The evil spirit then tempted him by suggesting
to his mind--"Should some one now enter and offer you liquor, would you
not taste it?" He averred he could, at that moment, firmly answer No! It
was now seven years since he had tasted a drop of strong drink. He
remarked that when he used first to visit the houses of Christians, who
gladly opened their doors to him, they were in the habit of asking him
to drink a glass of cider or wine, which he did. But this practice had
nearly ruined him. On one occasion he felt the effects of what he had
thus been prevailed on to drink. The danger he felt himself to be in was
such, that he was alarmed and gave up this practice also.

He detailed some providential trials which he had been recently exposed
to. He had observed, he said, that those of his people who had professed
piety and had subsequently fallen off, had nevertheless prospered in
worldly things, while he had found it very hard to live. He was often in
a state of want, and his lodge was so poor and bad, that it would not
keep out the rain. Both he and his wife were feeble, and their clothes
were worn out. They had now but a single blanket between them. But when
these trials came up in his mind, he immediately resorted to God, who
satisfied him.

Another trait in the character of his piety, may here be mentioned. The
autumn succeeding his conversion, he went over to the spot on the island
where he had planted potatoes. The Indian method is, not to visit their
small plantations from the time that their corn or potatoes are
_hilled_. He was pleased to find that the crop in this instance promised
to yield abundantly, and his wife immediately commenced the process of
raising them. "Stop!" exclaimed the grateful old man, "dare you dig
these potatoes until we have thanked the Lord for them?" They then both
knelt in prayer, and afterwards gathered the crop.

This individual appeared to form a tangible point in the intellectual
chain between Paganism and Christianity, which it is felt important to
examine. We felt desirous of drawing from him such particulars
respecting his former practice in necromancy and the prophetic art, as
might lead to correct philosophical conclusions. He had been the great
juggler of his tribe. He was now accepted as a Christian. What were his
own conceptions of the power and arts he had practised? How did these
things appear to his mind, after a lapse of several years, during which
his opinions and feelings had undergone changes, in many respects so
striking? We found not the slightest avoiding of this topic on his part.
He attributed all his ability in deceptive arts to the agency of the
Evil Spirit; and he spoke of it with the same settled tone that he had
manifested in reciting other points in his personal experience. He
believed that he had followed a spirit whose object it was to deceive
the Indians and make them miserable. He believed that this spirit had
left him and that he was now following, in the affections of his heart,
the spirit of Truth.

Numerous symbols of the classes of the animate creation are relied on by
the Indian _metays_ and _wabenos_, to exhibit their affected power of
working miracles and to scrutinize the scenes of futurity. The objects
which this man had appealed to as personal spirits in the arcanum of his
lodge, were the tortoise, the swan, the woodpecker and the crow. He had
dreamed of these at his initial fast in his youth, during the period set
apart for this purpose, and he believed that a satanic influence was
exerted, by presenting to his mind one or more of these solemnly
appropriated objects at the moment of his invoking them. This is the
theory drawn from his replies. We solicited him to detail the _modus
operandi_, after entering the juggler's lodge. This lodge resembles an
acute pyramid with the apex open. It is formed of poles, covered with
tight-drawn skins. His replies were perfectly ingenuous, evincing
nothing of the natural taciturnity and shyness of the Indian mind. The
great object with the operator is to agitate this lodge, and cause it to
move and shake without uprooting it from its basis, in such a manner as
to induce the spectators to believe that the _power of action is
superhuman_. After this manifestation of spiritual _presence_, the
priest within is prepared to give oracular responses. The only articles
within were a drum and rattle. In reply to our inquiry as to the mode of
procedure, he stated that his first essay, after entering the lodge, was
to strike the drum and commence his incantations. At this time his
personal manitos assumed their agency, and received, it is to be
inferred, _a satanic energy_. Not that he affects that there was any
visible form assumed. But he felt their spirit-like presence. He
represents the agitation of the lodge to be due to currents of air,
having the irregular and gyratory power of a whirlwind. He does not
pretend that his responses were guided by truth, but on the contrary
affirms that they were given under the influence of the evil spirit.

We interrogated him as to the use of physical and mechanical means in
effecting cures, in the capacity of a meta, or a medicine man. He
referred to various medicines, some of which he thinks were antibilious
or otherwise sanatory. He used two bones in the exhibition of his
physical skill, one of which was _white_ and the other _green_. His
arcanum also embraced two small stone images. He affected to look _into_
and _through_ the flesh, and to draw from the body fluids, as bile and
blood. He applied his mouth in suction. He characterized both the _meta_
or medicine dances and the _wabeno_ dances by a term which may be
translated _deviltry_. Yet he discriminated between these two popular
institutions by adding that the _meta_ included the use of medicines,
good and bad. The _wabeno_, on the contrary, consisted wholly in a wild
exhibition of mere braggadocio and trick. It is not, according to him,
an ancient institution. It originated, he said, with a Pottawattomie,
who was sick and lunatic a month. When this man recovered he pretended
that he had ascended to heaven, and had brought thence divine arts, to
aid his countrymen.

With respect to the opinion steadfastly maintained by this venerable
subject of Indian reformation, that his deceptive arts were rendered
effectual in the way he designed, by _satanic agency_, we leave the
reader to form his own conclusions. In his mode of stating the facts, we
concede much to him, on the score of long established mental habits, and
the peculiarities arising from a mythology, exceeding even that of
ancient Greece, for the number, variety and ubiquity of its objects. But
we perceive nothing, on Christian theories, heterodox in the general
position. When the truth of the gospel comes to be grafted into the
benighted heart of a pagan, such as Chusco was, it throws a fearful
light on the objects which have been cherished there. The whole system
of the mythological agency of the gods and spirits of the heathen world
and its clumsy machinery is shown to be a sheer system of demonology,
referable, in its operative effects on the minds of individuals, to the
"Prince of the power of the air." As such the Bible depicts it. We have
not been in the habit of conceding the existence of demoniacal
possessions, _in the present era of Christianity_, and have turned over
some scores of chapters and verses to satisfy our minds of the
_abrogation of these things_. But we have found no proofs of such a
withdrawal of evil agency short of the very point where our subject
places it--that is, the dawning of the light of Christianity in the
heart. We have, on the contrary, found in the passages referred to, the
declaration of the full and free existence of such an agency in the
general import, and apprehend that it cannot be plucked out of the
sacred writings.

The language of such an agency appears to be fully developed among the
northern tribes. _Spirit-ridden_ they certainly are; and the mental
slavery in which they live, under the fear of an invisible agency of
evil spirits, is, we apprehend, greater even than the bondage of the
body. The whole mind is bowed down under these intellectual fetters
which circumscribe its volitions, and bind it as effectually as with the
hooks of steel which pierce a whirling Hindoo's flesh. Whatever is
wonderful, or past comprehension to their minds, is referred to the
agency of a spirit. This is the ready solution of every mystery in
nature, and of every refinement of mechanical power in art. A watch is,
in the intricacy of its machinery, a spirit. A piece of blue cloth--cast
and blistered steel--a compass, a jewel, an insect, &c., are,
respectively, a spirit. Thunder consists, in their transcendental
astronomy, of so many distinct spirits. The aurora borealis is a body of
dancing spirits, or rather ghosts of the departed.

Such were the ideas and experiences of Chusco, after his union with the
church; and with these views he lived and died, having given evidence,
as was thought, of the reception of the Saviour, _through faith_.

To give some idea of the Indian mythology as above denoted, it is
necessary to conceive every department of the universe to be filled with
invisible spirits. These spirits hold in their belief nearly the same
relation to matter that the soul does to the body: they pervade it. They
believe not only that every man, but also _that every animal, has a
soul_; and as might be expected under this belief, they make no
distinction between _instinct_ and _reason_. Every animal is supposed to
be endowed with a reasoning faculty. The movements of birds and other
animals are deemed to be the result, not of mere instinctive animal
powers implanted and limited by the creation, without inherent power to
_exceed_ or _enlarge_ them, but of a process of ratiocination. They go a
step farther, and believe that animals, particularly birds, can look
into, and are familiar with the vast operations of the world above.
Hence the great respect they pay to birds as agents of omen, and also to
some animals, whose souls they expect to encounter in another life. Nay,
it is the settled belief among the northern Algonquins, that animals
will fare better in another world, in the precise ratio that their lives
and enjoyments have been curtailed in this life.

Dreams are considered by them as a means of direct communication with
the spiritual world; and hence the great influence which dreams exert
over the Indian mind and conduct. They are generally regarded as
friendly warnings of their personal manitos. No labor or enterprise is
undertaken against their indications. A whole army is turned back if the
dreams of the officiating priest are unfavorable. A family lodge has
been known to be deserted by all its inmates at midnight, leaving the
fixtures behind, because one of the family had dreamt of an attack, and
been frightened with the impression of blood and tomahawks. To give more
solemnity to his office the priest or leading _meta_ exhibits a sack
containing the carved or stuffed images of animals, with medicines and
bones constituting the sacred charms. These are never exhibited to the
common gaze, but, on a march, the sack is hung up in plain view. To
profane the medicine sack would be equivalent to violating the altar.
Dreams are carefully sought by every Indian, whatever be their rank, at
certain periods of youth, with fasting. These fasts are sometimes
continued a great number of days, until the devotee becomes pale and
emaciated. The animals that appear propitiously to the mind during these
dreams, are fixed on and selected as personal manitos, and are ever
after viewed as guardians. This period of fasting and dreaming is deemed
as essential by them as any religious rite whatever employed by
Christians. The initial fast of a young man or girl holds the relative
importance of baptism, with this peculiarity, that it is a free-will, or
self-dedicatory rite.

The naming of children has an intimate connection with the system of
mythological agency. Names are usually bestowed by some aged person,
most commonly under the supposed guidance of a particular spirit. They
are often derived from the mystic scenes presented in a dream, and refer
to aerial phenomena. Yellow Thunder, Bright Sky, Big Cloud, Spirit Sky,
Spot in the Sky, are common names for males. Females are more commonly
named from the vernal or autumnal landscape, as Woman of the Valley,
Woman of the Rock, &c. Females are not excluded from participation in
the prophetical office or jugglership. Instances of their having assumed
this function are known to have occurred, although it is commonly
confined to males. In every other department of life they are apparently
regarded as inferior or _inclusive_ beings. Names bestowed with ceremony
in childhood are deemed sacred, and are seldom pronounced, out of
respect, it would seem, to the spirit under whose favor they are
supposed to have been selected. Children are usually called in the
family by some name which can be familiarly used. A male child is
frequently called by the mother, a bird, or young one, or old man, as
terms of endearment, or bad boy, evil-doer, &c., in the way of light
reproach; and these names often adhere to the individual through life.
Parents avoid the true name often by saying my son, my younger, or my
elder son, or my younger or my elder daughter, for which the language
has separate words. This subject of a reluctance to tell their names is
very curious and deserving of investigation.

The Indian "art and mystery" of hunting is a tissue of necromantic or
mythological reliances. The personal spirits of the hunter are invoked
to give success in the chace. Images of the animals sought for are
sometimes carved in wood, or drawn by the metas on tabular pieces of
wood. By applying their mystic medicines to these, the animals are
supposed to be drawn into the hunter's path; and when animals have been
killed, the Indian feels, that although they are an authorized and
lawful prey, yet there is something like accountability to the animal's
_suppositional soul_. An Indian has been known to ask the pardon of an
animal, which he had just killed. Drumming, shaking the rattle, and
dancing and singing, are the common accompaniments of all these
superstitious observances, and are not peculiar to one class alone. In
the wabeno dance, which is esteemed by the Indians as the most
latitudinarian co-fraternity, love songs are introduced. They are never
heard in the medicine dances. They would subject one to utter contempt
in the war dance.

The system of _manito worship_ has another peculiarity, which is
illustrative of Indian character. During the fasts and ceremonial dances
by which a warrior prepares himself to come up to the duties of war,
everything that savors of effeminacy is put aside. The spirits which
preside over bravery and war are alone relied on, and these are supposed
to be offended by the votary's paying attention to objects less stern
and manly than themselves. Venus and Mars cannot be worshipped at the
same time. It would be considered a complete desecration for a warrior,
while engaged in war, to entangle himself by another, or more tender
sentiment. We think this opinion should be duly estimated in the general
award which history gives to the chastity of warriors. We would record
the fact to their praise, as fully as it has been done; but we would
subtract something from the _motive_, in view of his paramount
obligations of a sacred character, and also the fear of the ridicule of
his co-warriors.

In these leading doctrines of an oral and mystic school of wild
philosophy may be perceived the ground-work of their mythology, and the
general motive for selecting familiar spirits. Manito, or as the
Chippewas pronounce it, monédo, signifies simply a spirit, and there is
neither a good nor bad meaning attached to it, when not under the
government of some adjective or qualifying particle. We think, however,
that so far as there is a meaning distinct from an invisible existence,
the tendency is to a bad meaning. A bad meaning is, however, distinctly
conveyed by the inflection, _osh_ or _ish_. The particle _wee_, added in
the same relation, indicates a witch. Like numerous other nouns, it has
its diminutive in _os_, its plural in _wug_, and its local form in
_ing_. To add "great," as the Jesuit writers did, is far from deciding
the moral character of the spirit, and hence modern translators prefix
_gezha_, signifying merciful. Yet we doubt whether the word God should
not be carried boldly into translations of the scriptures. In the
conference and prayer-room, the native teachers use the inclusive
pronominal form of Father, altogether. Truth breaks slowly on the mind,
sunk in so profound a darkness as the Indians are, and there is danger
in retaining the use of words like those which they have so long
employed in a problematical, if not a derogative sense.

The love for mystery and magic which pervades the native ceremonies, has
affected the forms of their language. They have given it a power to
impart life to dead masses. Vitality in their forms of utterance is
deeply implanted in all these dialects, which have been examined; they
provide, by the process of inflection, for keeping a perpetual
distinction between the animate and inanimate kingdoms. But where
vitality and spirituality are so blended as we see them in their
doctrine of animal souls, the inevitable result must be, either to exalt
the principle of life, in all the classes of nature, into immortality,
or to sink the latter to the level of mere organic life. Indian
word-makers have taken the former dilemma, and peopled their paradise
not only with the souls of men, but with the souls of every imaginable
kind of beasts. Spirituality is thus clogged with sensual accidents. The
human soul _hungers_, and it must have food deposited upon the grave.
_It suffers from cold_, and the body must be wrapped about with cloths.
It is in _darkness_, and a light must be kindled at the head of the
grave. It wanders through plains and across streams, subject to the
providences of this life, in quest of its place of enjoyment, and when
it reaches it, it finds every species of sensual trial, which renders
the place not indeed a _heaven of rest_, but _another experimental
world_--very much like this. Of punishments, we hear nothing; rewards
are looked for abundantly, and the idea that the Master of life, or the
merciful Spirit, will be alike merciful to all, _irrespective of the
acts of this life_, or the degree of _moral turpitude_, appears to leave
for their theology a belief in restorations or universalism. There is
nothing to refer them to a Saviour; that IDEA was beyond their
conception, and of course there was no occasion for the offices of the
Holy Ghost. Darker and more chilling views to a theologian, it would be
impossible to present. Yet it may be asked, what more benign result
could have been, or can now be, anticipated in the hearts of an
ignorant, uninstructed and wandering people, exposed to sore
vicissitudes in their lives and fortunes, and without the guidance of
the light of Revelation?

Of their mythology proper, we have space only to make a few remarks.
Some of the mythologic existences of the Indians admit of poetic uses.
Manabozho may be considered as a sort of terrene Jove, who could perform
all things whatever, but lived some time on earth, and excelled
particularly in feats of strength and manual dexterity. All the animals
were subject to him. He also survived a deluge, which the traditions
mention, having climbed a tree on an extreme elevation during the
prevalence of the waters, and sent down various animals for some earth,
out of which he re-created the globe. The four cardinal points are so
many demi-gods, of whom the West, called KABEUN, has priority of age.
The East, North and South are deemed to be his sons, by a maid who
incautiously exposed herself to the west wind. IAGOO (Iagoo) is the god
of the marvellous, and many most extravagant tales of forest and
domestic adventure are heaped upon him. KWASIND is a sort of Samson, who
threw a huge mass of rock such as the Cyclops cast at Mentor. WEENG is
the god of sleep, who is represented to have numerous small emissaries
at his service, reminding us of Pope's creation of gnomes. These minute
emissaries climb up the forehead, and wielding a tiny club, knock
individuals to sleep. PAUGUK is death, in his symbolic attitude. He is
armed with a bow and arrows. It would be easy to extend this

The mental powers of the Indian constitutes a topic which we do not
design to discuss. But it must be manifest that some of their
peculiarities are brought out by their system of mythology and
spirit-craft. War, public policy, hunting, abstinence, endurance and
courageous adventure, form the leading topics of their mental efforts.
These are deemed the appropriate themes of men, sages and warriors. But
their intellectual essays have also a domestic theatre of exhibition. It
is here that the Indian mind unbends itself and reveals some of its less
obvious traits. Their public speakers cultivate a particular branch of
oratory. They are careful in the use of words, and are regarded as
standards of purity in the language. They appear to have an accurate ear
for sounds, and delight in rounding off a period, for which the
languages afford great facilities, by their long and stately words, and
multiform inflexions. A drift of thought--an elevation of style, is
observable in their public speaking which is dropt in private
conversation. Voice, attitude and motion, are deemed of the highest
consequence. Much of the meaning of their expressions is varied by the
vehement, subdued, or prolonged tone in which they are uttered. In
private conversation, on the contrary, all is altered. There is an
equanimity of tone, and easy vein of narration or dialogue, in which the
power of mimicry is most strikingly brought out. The very voice and
words of the supposed speakers, in their fictitious legends, are
assumed. Fear, supplication, timidity or boasting, are exactly depicted,
and the deepest interest excited. All is ease and freedom from
restraint. There is nothing of the coldness or severe formality of the
council. The pipe is put to its ordinary use, and all its symbolic
sanctity is laid aside with the wampum belt and the often reiterated
state epithets, "Nosa" and "Kosinan," i. e. _my father_ and _our

Another striking trait of the race is found in their legends and tales.
Those of the aboriginal race who excel in private conversation, become
to their tribes oral chroniclers, and are relied on for historical
traditions as well as tales. It is necessary, in listening to them, to
distinguish between the gossip and the historian, the narrator of real
events, and of nursery tales. For they gather together everything from
the fabulous feats of Manebozho and Misshozha, to the hair-breadth
escapes of a Pontiac, or a Black Hawk. These narrators are generally men
of a good memory and a certain degree of humor, who have experienced
vicissitudes, and are cast into the vale of years. In the rehearsal of
their tales, transformations and transmigrations are a part of the
machinery relied on; and some of them are as accurately adapted to the
purposes of amusement or instruction, as if Zoroaster or Ovid himself
had been consulted in their production. Many objects in the inanimate
creation, according to these tales, were originally men and women. And
numerous animals had other forms in their first stages of existence,
which they, as well as human beings, forfeited, by the power of
necromancy and transmigration. The evening star, it is fabled, was
formerly a woman. An ambitious boy became one of the planets. Three
brothers, travelling in a canoe, were translated into a group of stars.
The fox, lynx, hare, robin, eagle and numerous other species, retain
places in the Indian system of astronomy. The mouse obtained celestial
elevation by creeping up the rainbow, which Indian story makes a flossy
mass of bright threads, and by the power of gnawing them, he relieved a
captive in the sky. It is a coincidence, which we note, that _ursa
major_ is called by them the bear.

These legends are not confined to the sky alone. The earth also is a
fruitful theatre of transformations. The wolf was formerly a boy, who,
being neglected by his parents, was transformed into this animal. A
shell, lying on the shore, was transformed to the raccoon. The brains of
an adulteress were converted into the _addikumaig_, or white fish.

The power of transformation was variously exercised. It most commonly
existed in magicians, of whom Abo, Manabosh or Manabozha, and Mishosha,
retain much celebrity. The latter possessed a magic canoe which would
rush forward through the water on the utterance of a charm, with a speed
that would outstrip the wind. Hundreds of miles were performed in as
many minutes. The charm which he uttered, consisted of a monosyllable,
containing one consonant, which does not belong to the language; and
this word has no definable meaning. So that the language of magic and
demonology has one feature in common in all ages and with every nation.

Man, in his common shape, is not alone the subject of their legends. The
intellectual creations of the Indians admit of the agency of giants and
fairies. Anak and his progeny could not have created more alarm in the
minds of the ten faithless spies, than do the race of fabulous Weendigos
to the Indian tribes. These giants are represented as cannibals, who ate
up men, women and children. Indian fairies are of two classes,
distinguished as the place of their revels is either the land or water.
Land-fairies are imagined to choose their residences about promontories,
water-falls and solemn groves. The water, besides its appropriate class
of aquatic fairies, is supposed to be the residence of a race of beings
called Nibanaba which have their analogy, except as to sex, in the
mermaid. The Indian word indicates a male. Ghosts are the ordinary
machinery in their tales of terror and mystery. There is, perhaps, a
glimmering of the idea of retributive justice in the belief that ghosts
and spirits are capable of existing in fire.


By far the most numerous relics of the Red Race, now found in those
parts of our country from which it has disappeared, are the small stones
with which they headed their arrows. Being made of the most durable
substances, they have generally remained in the soil, unaffected by time
and the changes of season. They most abound in those rich meadows which
border some of our rivers, and in other spots of peculiar fertility,
though of less extent, where the pasture, or other attractions,
collected game for the Red men. The stones most commonly used were
quartz and flint, which were preferred on account of the facility of
shaping them, the keenness of the points and edges, which they readily
present under the blows of a skilful manufacturer, as well as their
superior hardness and imperishable nature. Multitudes of specimens still
exist, which show the various forms and sizes to which the Red men
reduced stones of these kinds: and they excite our admiration, by their
perfect state of preservation, as well by the skilfulness of their

Other stones, however, were not unfrequently used; and a collection
which we have been making for many years, presents a considerable
variety of materials, as well as of sizes, shapes and colors. Hard
sandstone, trap or graacke, jasper and chalcedony, appear occasionally;
some almost transparent. One of the larger size is made of steatite, and
smooth, as if cut or scraped with a knife, contrary to the common
method, of gradually chipping off small fragments of more brittle stone,
by light blows often repeated. These arrow heads were fastened to the
shaft, by inserting the butt into the split end, and tying round it a
string of deer's sinews. A groove or depression is commonly observable
in the stone, designed to receive the string. But it is sometimes
difficult to imagine how the fastening was effected, as some perfect
arrow-heads show no such depressions, and their forms are not well
adapted to such a purpose. This peculiarity, however, is most frequently
to be observed in specimens of small size, the larger, and especially
such as are commonly supposed to have been the heads of spears, being
usually well shaped for tying.

It is remarkable that some spots have been found, where such relics were
surprizingly numerous. In Hartford, Connecticut, about thirty years ago,
many were picked up in a garden, at the corner of Front and Mill
streets. The spot was indeed on the bank of the Little River, probably
at the head of Indian Canoe navigation: but yet no rational conjecture
could be formed, to account for the discovery, except one. It was
concluded that the place was an ancient burying ground. Many bits of
coarse earthen-ware were found, such as are common in many parts of the
country. About two miles below Middletown, Connecticut, on the slope of
a hill on the southern side of the Narrows, we discovered, some years
since, a great number of small fragments of white quartz, scattered
thickly over the surface of the ground, perhaps for half an acre. Among
them were several arrowheads of various forms, most of them imperfect,
and many pieces of stone, which at first sight resembled them, but, on
closer inspection, seemed to have been designed for arrow heads, but
spoiled in the making. Some had one good edge, or a point or barb, while
the other parts of the same stones showed only the natural form and
fracture. In many instances, it was easy to see that the workman might,
well have been discouraged from proceeding any farther, by a flaw, a
break or the nature of the stone. Our conclusion was, that the spot had
long been a place where Indian arrow heads were made, and that we saw
around us the refuse fragments rejected by the workmen. Other spots have
been heard of resembling this.

If such relics were found nowhere else but in our own country, they
would be curious, and worthy of preservation and attention: but it is an
interesting fact, not however generally known, that they exist in many
other parts of the world. Stone arrow and spear heads have been found in
England for hundreds of years, and are believed to have been made and
used by the Britons, who, in respect to civilization, were nearly on a
level with our Indians. These relics are called by the common people
Celts, from the race whose memory they recall; and particular accounts
of them are given, with drawings, in several antiquarian works. They
bear a striking resemblance to our Indian arrow heads; and many of them
could be hardly, if at all, distinguished from those of America.

African arrows have been brought to this country, in which the points
were of the same forms and materials, and fastened in the same manner.
About twelve years ago a vessel from Stonington was attacked by a party
of Patagonians, who threw arrows on board. One of these which we
procured, was pointed with a head of milky quartz, exactly corresponding
with specimens picked up in New England.

Among the relics found in excavating the low mounds on the plain of
Marathon, as we were informed by one of our countrymen, who was at
Athens some years ago, there were spear heads made of flint, which, he
declared, were like those he had often seen ploughed up in his native
fields. These, it was conjectured, might have been among the weapons of
some of the rude Scythians in the Persian army, which met its defeat on
that celebrated battle ground.

A negro, from an obscure group of islands, just north of New Guinea, in
describing the weapons in use among his countrymen, drew the forms of
spear heads, which he said were often made of stones; and, when shown
specimens from our collection, declared that they were very much like

It has been thought, that certain instruments would naturally be
invented by men in particular states of society and under certain
circumstances, as the result of their wants and the means at hand to
supply them. It is not, however, always easy to reconcile this doctrine
with facts. For example, the black race of the islands north of New
Holland, (of which so little is yet known,) appear to require the use of
the bow as much as any other savage people, yet they are entirely
ignorant of it, though it has been thought one of the simple, most
natural and most indispensable instruments in such a condition of

We are therefore left in doubt, in the present state of our knowledge,
whether the manufacture and use of stone arrow heads have been so
extensively diffused over the globe by repeated inventions, or by an
intercourse between portions of the human race long since ceased, or by
both causes. To whichever of these opinions we may incline, the subject
must still appear to us worthy of investigation, as the history of these
relics must necessarily be closely connected with that of different
families and races of men in every continent and in every zone.

We would invite particular attention to the position and circumstances
of Indian remains which may hereafter be found; and would express a wish
that they might be recorded and made known. Our newspapers offer a most
favorable vehicle for the communication of such discoveries and
observations, and our editors generally must have taste and judgment
enough to give room for them.

It was remarked in some of our publications a few years ago, that no
unequivocal remains of the Red men had yet been discovered in the earth,
below the most recent strata of soil, excepting cases in which they had
been buried in graves, &c. Perhaps later observations may furnish
evidence of the longer presence of that race on our continent than such
a statement countenances.

One of the most interesting objects of enquiry, with some antiquaries,
is whether there are any ancient indications of Alphabetical writing in
our continent. A small stone found in the Grave-Creek Mound, and others
of a more doubtful character, are quite sufficient to awaken interest
and stimulate enquiry.

A few specimens of rude sculpture and drawing have been found in
different parts of the U. States; and shells, ornaments, &c., evidently
brought from great distances. There may be others, known to individuals,
of which antiquaries are not aware. After perusing the foregoing pages,
it will be easy to realize that all such remains may be worthy of
attention. Not only copies should be made and dimensions taken, but
descriptions should be written, local information and traditions
collected, measures taken to preserve the originals, and some notice
given which may reach persons interested in such subjects.


No. I.

The North American tribes have the elements of music and poetry. Their
war songs frequently contain flights of the finest heroic sentiment,
clothed in poetic imagery. And numbers of the addresses of the speakers,
both occasional and public, abound in eloquent and poetic thought. "We
would anticipate eloquence," observes a modern American writer, "from an
Indian. He has animating remembrances--a poetry of language, which
exacts rich and apposite metaphorical allusions, even for ordinary
conversation--a mind which, like his body, has never been trammelled and
mechanized by the formalities of society, and passions which, from the
very outward restraint imposed upon them, burn more fiercely within."
Yet, it will be found that the records of our literature, scattered as
they are, in periodicals and ephemeral publications, rather than in
works of professed research, are meagre and barren, on these topics. One
of the first things we hear of the Indians, after their discovery, is
their proneness to singing and dancing. But however characteristic these
traits may be, and we think they are eminently so, it has fallen to the
lot of but few to put on record specimens, which may be appealed to, as
evidences of the current opinion, on these heads. With favourable
opportunities of observation among the tribes, we have but to add our
testimony to the difficulties of making collections in these
departments, which shall not compromit the intellectual character of the
tribes, whose efforts are always oral, and very commonly extemporaneous.
These difficulties arise from the want of suitable interpreters, the
remoteness of the points at which observations must be made, the heavy
demands made upon hours of leisure or business by such inquiries, and
the inconvenience of making notes and detailed memoranda on the spot.
The little that it is in our power to offer, will therefore be submitted
as contributions to an inquiry which is quite in its infancy, and rather
with the hope of exciting others to future labours, than of gratifying,
to any extent, an enlightened curiosity on the subject.

Dancing is both an amusement and a religious observance, among the
American Indians, and is known to constitute one of the most wide spread
traits in their manners and customs. It is accompanied, in all cases,
with singing, and, omitting a few cases, with the beating of time on
instruments. Tribes the most diverse in language, and situated at the
greatest distances apart, concur in this. It is believed to be the
ordinary mode of expressing intense passion, or feeling on any subject,
and it is a custom which has been persevered in, with the least
variation, through all the phases of their history, and probably exists
among the remote tribes, precisely at this time, as it did in the era of
Columbus. It is observed to be the last thing abandoned by bands and
individuals, in their progress to civilization and Christianity. So true
is this, that it may be regarded as one of the best practical proofs of
their advance, to find the native instruments and music thrown by, and
the custom abandoned.

Every one has heard of the war dance, the medicine dance, the wabeno
dance, the dance of honour (generally called the begging dance,) and
various others, each of which has its appropriate movements, its air,
and its words. There is no feast, and no religious ceremony, among them,
which is not attended with dancing and songs. Thanks are thus expressed
for success in hunting, for triumphs in war, and for ordinary
providential cares. Public opinion is called to pressing objects by a
dance, at which addresses are made, and in fact, moral instructions and
advice are given to the young, in the course of their being assembled at
social feasts and dances. Dancing is indeed the common resource,
whenever the mass of Indian mind is to be acted on. And it thus stands
viewed in its necessary connection with the songs and addresses, in the
room of the press, the newspaper, and the periodical. The priests and
prophets have, more than any other class, cultivated their national
songs and dances, and may be regarded as the skalds and poets of the
tribes. They are generally the composers of the songs, and the leaders
in the dance and ceremonies, and it is found, that their memories are
the best stored, not only with the sacred songs and chants, but also
with the traditions, and general lore of the tribes.

Dancing is thus interwoven throughout the whole texture of Indian
society, so that there is scarcely an event important or trivial,
private or public, which is not connected, more or less intimately, with
this rite. The instances where singing is adopted, without dancing, are
nearly confined to occurrences of a domestic character. Among these, are
wails for the dead, and love songs of a simple and plaintive character.
Maternal affection evinces itself, by singing words, to a cheerful air,
over the slumbers of the child, which, being suspended in a kind of
cradle receives, at the same time a vibratory motion. Children have
likewise certain chants, which they utter in the evenings, while playing
around the lodge door, or at other seasons of youthful hilarity. Some of
the Indian fables are in the shape of duets, and the songs introduced in
narrating their fictitious tales, are always sung in the recital.

Their instruments of music are few and simple. The only wind instrument
existing among them is the Pibbegwon, a kind of flute, resembling in
simplicity the Arcadian pipe. It is commonly made of two
semi-cylindrical pieces of cedar, united with fish glue, and having a
snake skin, in a wet state, drawn tightly over it, to prevent its
cracking. The holes are eight in number, and are perforated by means of
a bit of heated iron. It is blown like the flagolet, and has a similar
orifice or mouth piece.

The TAYWA´EGUN, (struck-sound-instrument,) is a tamborine, or one-headed
drum, and is made by adjusting a skin to one end of the section of a
moderate sized hollow tree. When a heavier sound is required, a tree of
larger circumference is chosen, and both ends closed with skins. The
latter is called MITTIGWUKEEK, i.e. Wood-Kettle-Drum, and is
appropriately used in religious ceremonies, but is not, perhaps,
confined to this occasion.

To these may be added a fourth instrument, called the SHESHEGWON, or
Rattle, which is constructed in various ways, according to the purpose
or means of the maker. Sometimes it is made of animal bladder, from
which the name is derived, sometimes of a wild gourd; in others, by
attaching the dried hoofs of the deer to a stick. This instrument is
employed both to mark time, and to produce variety in sound.


Common as the Indian songs are, it is found to be no ordinary
acquisition to obtain accurate specimens of them. Even after the
difficulties of the notation have been accomplished, it is not easy to
satisfy the requisitions of a correct taste and judgment, in their
exhibition. There is always a lingering fear of misapprehension, or
misconception, on the part of the interpreter--or of some things being
withheld by the never sleeping suspicion, or the superstitious fear of
disclosure, on the part of the Indian. To these must be added, the
idiomatic and imaginative peculiarities of this species of wild
composition--so very different from every notion of English
versification. In the first place there is no unity of theme, or plot,
unless it be that the subject, war for instance, is kept in the singer's
mind. In the next place both the narration and the description, when
introduced, is very imperfect, broken, or disjointed. Prominent ideas
flash out, and are dropped. These are often most striking and beautiful,
but we wait in vain for any sequence. A brief allusion--a shining
symbol, a burst of feeling or passion, a fine sentiment, or a bold
assertion, come in as so many independent parts, and there is but little
in the composition to indicate the leading theme which is, as it were,
kept in mental reserve, by the singer. Popular, or favourite expressions
are often repeated, often transposed, and often exhibited with some new
shade of meaning. The structure and flexibility of the language is
highly favourable to this kind of wild improvisation. But it is
difficult to translate, and next to impossible to preserve its spirit.
Two languages more unlike in all their leading characteristics, than the
English and the Indian were never brought into contact. The one
monosyllabic, and nearly without inflections--the other polysyllabic,
polysynthetic and so full of inflections of every imaginative kind, as
to be completely transpositive--the one from the north of Europe, the
other, probably, from Central Asia, it would seem that these families of
the human race, had not wandered wider apart, in their location, than
they have in the sounds of their language, the accidence of their
grammar and the definition of their words. So that to find equivalent
single words in translation, appears often as hopeless as the quadrature
of the circle.

The great store-house of Indian imagery is the heavens. The clouds, the
planets, the sun, and moon, the phenomena of lightning, thunder,
electricity, aerial sounds, electric or atmospheric, and the endless
variety produced in the heavens by light and shade, and by elemental
action,--these constitute the fruitful themes of allusion in their songs
and poetic chants. But they are mere allusions, or broken description,
like touches on the canvass, without being united to produce a perfect
object. The strokes may be those of a master, and the colouring
exquisite; but without the art to draw, or the skill to connect, it will
still remain but a shapeless mass.

In war excursions great attention is paid to the flight of birds,
particularly those of the carnivorous species, which are deemed typical
of war and bravery, and their wing and tail feathers are appropriated as
marks of honor, by the successful warrior. When the minds of a war party
have been roused up to the subject, and they are prepared to give
utterance to their feelings by singing and dancing, they are naturally
led to appeal to the agency of this class of birds. Hence the frequent
allusions to them, in their songs. The following stanza is made up of
expressions brought into connection, from different fragments, but
expresses no more than the native sentiments:

    The eagles scream on high,
      They whet their forked beaks,
    Raise--raise the battle cry,
      'Tis fame our leader seeks.

Generally the expressions are of an exalted and poetic character, but
the remark before made of their efforts in song, being discontinuous and
abrupt, apply with peculiar force to the war songs. To speak of a brave
man--of a battle--or the scene of a battle, or of the hovering of birds
of prey above it, appears sufficient to bring up to the warrior's mind,
all the details consequent on personal bravery or heroic achievement. It
would naturally be expected, that they should delight to dwell on scenes
of carnage and blood: but however this may be, all such details are
omitted or suppressed in their war songs, which only excite ideas of
noble daring.

    The birds of the brave take a flight round the sky,
      They cross the enemy's line,
    Full happy am I--that my body should fall,
      Where brave men love to die.

[Illustration: _Savony & Major Lith._ _117 Fulton St. New York._


Very little effort in the collocation and expansion of some of their
sentiments, would impart to these bold and unfettered rhapsodies, an
attractive form, among polished war songs.

The strain in which these measures are sung, is generally slow and grave
in its commencement and progress, and terminates in the highest note.
While the words admit of change, and are marked by all the fluctuation
of extempore composition, the air and the chorus appear to be permanent,
consisting not only of a graduated succession of fixed sounds, but,
always exact in their enunciation, their quantity, and their wild and
startling musical expression. It has always appeared to me that the
Indian music is marked by a nationality, above many other traits, and it
is a subject inviting future attention. It is certain that the Indian
ear is exact in noting musical sounds, and in marking and beating time.
But little observation at their dances, will be sufficient to establish
this fact. Nor is it less certain, by attention to the philology of
their language, that they are exact in their laws of euphony, and
syllabical quantity. How this remark may consist with the use of
unmeasured and fluctuating poetry in their songs, it may require studied
attention to answer. It is to be observed, however, that these songs are
rather _recited_, or _chanted_, than sung. Increments of the chorus are
not unfrequently interspersed, in the body of the line, which would
otherwise appear deficient in quantity; and perhaps rules of metre may
be found, by subsequent research, which are not obvious, or have been
concealed by the scantiness of the materials, on this head, which have
been examined. To determine the airs and choruses and the character of
the music, will prove one of the greatest facilities to this inquiry.
Most of the graver pieces, which have been written out, are arranged in
metres of sixes, sevens, and eights. The lighter chants are in threes or
fours, and consist of iambics and trochees irregularly. Those who have
translated hymns into the various languages, have followed the English
metres, not always without the necessity of elision, or employing
constrained or crampt modes of expression. A worse system could not have
been adopted to show Indian sentiment. The music in all these cases has
been like fetters to the free, wild thoughts of the native singer. As a
general criticism upon these translations, it may be remarked that they
are often far from being literal, and often omit parts of the original.
On the other hand, by throwing away adjectives, in a great degree, and
dropping all incidental or side thoughts, and confining the Indian to
the leading thought or sentiment, they are, sometimes, rendered more
simple, appropriate, and effective. Finally, whatever cultivated minds
among the Indians, or their descendants may have done, it is quite
evident to me, from the attention I have been able to give the subject,
that the native compositions were without metre. The natives appear to
have sung a sufficient number of syllables to comply with the air, and
effected the necessary pauses, for sense or sound, by either slurring
over, and thus shortening, or by throwing in floating particles of the
language, to eke out the quantity, taken either from the chorus, or from
the general auxiliary forms of the vocabulary.

Rhyme is permitted by the similarity of the sounds from which the
vocabulary is formed, but the structure of the language does not appear
to admit of its being successfully developed in this manner. Its forms
are too cumbrous for regularly recurring expressions, subjected at once
to the laws of metre and rhyme. The instances of rhyme that have been
observed in the native songs are few, and appear to be the result of the
fortuitous positions of words, rather than of art. The following
juvenile see-saw is one of the most perfect specimens noticed, being
exact in both particulars:

     Ne osh im aun
     Ne way be naun.

These are expressions uttered on sliding a carved stick down snow banks,
or over a glazed surface of ice, in the appropriate season; and they may
be rendered with nearly literal exactness, thus:

     My sliding stick
     I send quick--quick.

Not less accurate in the rhyme, but at lines of six and eight feet,
which might perhaps be exhibited unbroken, is the following couplet of a
war song:

     Au pit she Mon e tög
     Ne mud wa wa wau we ne gög.

     The Spirit on high,
     Repeats my warlike name.

In the translation of hymns, made during the modern period of missionary
effort, there has been no general attempt to secure rhyme; and as these
translations are generally due to educated natives, under the inspection
and with the critical aid of the missionary, they have evinced a true
conception of the genius of the language, by the omission of this
accident. Eliot, who translated the psalms of David into the
Massachusetts language, which were first printed in 1661, appears to
have deemed it important enough to aim at its attainment: but an
examination of the work, now before us, gives but little encouragement
to others to follow his example, at least while the languages remain in
their present rude and uncultivated state. The following is the XXIII
Psalm from this version:

    1. Mar teag nukquenaabikoo
         shepse nanaauk God.
       Nussepsinwahik ashkoshqut
         nuttinuk ohtopagod

    2. Nagum nukketeahog kounoh
         wutomohkinuh wonk
       Nutuss [8]unuk ut sampoi may
         newutch [8]wesnonk.

    3. Wutonkauhtamut pomushaon
         mupp[8]onk [8]nauhkoe
       Woskehettuonk mo nukqueh tam[8]
         newutch k[8]wetomah:

    4. Kuppogkomunk kutanwohon
         nish n[8]nenehikquog
       K[8]noch[8] hkah anquabhettit
         wame nummatwomog

    5. Kussussequnum nuppuhkuk
         weetepummee nashpea
       Wonk woi God n[8]tallamwaitch
         pomponetupohs hau

    6. [8]niyeuonk monaneteonk
       Tohsohke pomantam wekit God
         michem nuttain pish[20].

     [20] Eliot employed the figure 8, set horizontally, to express a
     peculiar sound. Otherwise he used the English alphabet in its
     ordinary powers.

[Transcriber's Note: As indicated in the footnote above, the original
text displayed the infinity symbol in place of a unique vowel sound. In
the text transcription of this book, the infinity symbol is represented
as the numeral eight within brackets: [8].]

This appears to have been rendered from the version of the psalms
appended to an old edition of King James' Bible of 1611, and not from
the versification of Watts. By comparing it with this, as exhibited
below, there will be found the same metre, eights and sixes, the same
syllabical quantity, (if the notation be rightly conceived,) and the
same coincidence of rhyme at the second and fourth lines of each verse;
although it required an additional verse to express the entire psalm. It
could therefore be sung to the ordinary tunes in use in Eliot's time,
and, taken in connection with his entire version, including the Old and
New Testament, evinces a degree of patient assiduity on the part of that
eminent missionary, which is truly astonishing:

       The Lord is my shepherd, I'll not want;
         2. He makes me down to lie
       In pastures green: he leadeth me
         the quiet waters by.

    3. My soul he doth restore again
         and me to walk doth make
       Within the paths of righteousness
         E'en for his own name's sake.

    4. Yea, though I walk in death's dark vale,
         yet will I fear none ill;
       For thou art with me and thy rod
         and staff me comfort still.

    5. My table thou hast furnished
         in presence of my foes;
       My head thou dost with oil annoint,
         and my cup overflows.

    6. Goodness and mercy all my life
         shall surely follow me;
       And in God's house forevermore
         my dwelling place shall be.

The harmony of numbers has always detracted from the plain sense, and
the piety of thought, of the scriptures, which is the probable cause of
so many failures on the subject. In the instance of this Psalm, it will
be observed, by a comparison, that Watts, who has so generally
succeeded, does not come up, in any respect, to the full literal meaning
of the original, which is well preserved, with the requisite harmony, in
the old version.

There is one species of oral composition existing among all the tribes,
which, from its peculiarities, deserves to be separately mentioned. I
allude to the hieratic chants, choruses and incantations of their
professed prophets, medicine men and jugglers--constituting, as these
men do, a distinct order in Indian society, who are entitled by their
supposed skill, wisdom or sanctity, to exercise the offices of a
priesthood. Affecting mystery in the discharge of their functions, their
songs and choruses are couched in language which is studiously obscure,
oftentimes cabalistic, and generally not well understood by any but
professed initiates.

Nothing, however, in this department of my inquiries, has opened a more
pleasing view of society, exposed to the bitter vicissitudes of Indian
life, than the little domestic chants of mothers, and the poetic
see-saws of children, of which specimens are furnished. These show the
universality of the sentiments of natural affection, and supply another
proof, were any wanting, to demonstrate that it is only ignorance,
indolence and poverty, that sink the human character, and create the
leading distinctions among the races of men. Were these affections
cultivated, and children early taught the principles of virtue and
rectitude, and the maxims of industry, order and cleanliness, there is
no doubt that the mass of Indian society would be meliorated in a
comparatively short period; and by a continuance of efforts soon exalted
from that state of degradation, of which the want of letters and
religion have been the principal causes.

In presenting these specimens of songs, gathered among the recesses of
the forest, it is hoped it will not be overlooked, by the reader, that
they are submitted _as facts_ or _materials_, in the mental condition
of the tribes, and not as evidences of attainment in the arts of metre
and melody, which will bear to be admitted or even criticised by the
side of the refined poetry of civilized nations. And above all, not as
efforts to turn Indian sentiments to account, in original composition.
No such idea is entertained. If materials be supplied from which some
judgment may be formed of the actual state of these songs and rude oral
compositions, or improvisations, the extent of the object will have been
attained. But even here, there is less, with the exception of a single
department, i.e. versification and composition by cultivated natives,
than it was hoped to furnish. And this little, has been the result of a
species of labour, in the collection, quite disproportionate to the
result. It is hoped at least, that it may indicate the mode in which
such collections may be made, among the tribes, and become the means of
eliciting materials more worthy of attention.

This much seemed necessary to be said in introducing the following
specimens, that there might not appear, to the reader, to be an undue
estimate placed on the literary value of these contributions, and
translations, while the main object is, to exhibit them in the series,
as illustrations of the mental peculiarities of the tribes. To dismiss
them, however, with a bare, frigid word for word translation, such as is
required for the purposes of philological comparison, would by no means
do justice to them, nor convey, in any tolerable degree, the actual
sentiments in the minds of the Indians. That the opposite error might
not, at the same time, be run into, and the reader be deprived
altogether of this means of comparison, a number of the pieces are left
with literal prose translations, word for word as near as the two
languages will permit. Others exhibit both a literal, and a versified

       *       *       *       *       *

All the North American Indians know that there is a God; but their
priests teach them that the devil is a God, and as he is believed to be
very malignant, it is the great object of their ceremonies and
sacrifices, to appease him.

The Indians formerly worshipped the Sun, as the symbol of divine

Fire is an unexplained mystery to the Indian; he regards it as a
connecting link between the natural and spiritual world. His
traditionary lore denotes this.

Zoroaster says: "When you behold secret fire, without form, shining
flashingly through the depths of the whole world--hear the voice of
fire." One might suppose this to have been uttered by a North American


In the hot summer evenings, the children of the Chippewa Algonquins,
along the shores of the upper lakes, and in the northern latitudes,
frequently assemble before their parents' lodges, and amuse themselves
by little chants of various kinds, with shouts and wild dancing.
Attracted by such shouts of merriment and gambols, I walked out one
evening, to a green lawn skirting the edge of the St. Mary's river, with
the fall in full view, to get hold of the meaning of some of these
chants. The air and the plain were literally sparkling with the
phosphorescent light of the fire-fly. By dint of attention, repeated on
one or two occasions, the following succession of words was caught. They
were addressed to this insect:

    Wau wau tay see!
    Wau wau tay see!
    E mow e shin
    Tshe bwau ne baun-e wee!
    Be eghaun--be eghaun--ewee!
    Wa wau tay see!
    Wa wau tay see!
    Was sa koon ain je gun
    Was sa koon ain je gun.


Flitting-white-fire-insect! waving-white-fire-bug! give me light before
I go to bed! give me light before I go to sleep. Come, little
dancing[21] white-fire-bug! Come little flitting-white-fire-beast! Light
me with your bright white-flame-instrument--your little candle[22].

     [21] In giving the particle wa, the various meanings of "flitting,"
     "waving," and "dancing," the Indian idiom is fully preserved. The
     final particle see, in the term wa wa tai see, is from the generic
     root asee, meaning a living creature, or created form, not man. By
     prefixing Ahw to the root, we have the whole class of quadrupeds,
     and by pen, the whole class of birds, &c. The Odjibwa Algonquin term
     for a candle, was sa koon ain je gun, is literally rendered from its
     elements--"bright--white--flamed--instrument." It is by the very
     concrete character of these compounds that so much meaning results
     from a few words, and so considerable a latitude in translation is
     given to Indian words generally.

     [22]  Fire-fly, fire-fly! bright little thing,
           Light me to bed, and my song I will sing.
           Give me your light, as you fly o'er my head,
           That I may merrily go to my bed.
           Give me your light o'er the grass as you creep,
           That I may joyfully go to my sleep.
           Come little fire-fly--come little beast--
           Come! and I'll make you to-morrow a feast.
           Come little candle that flies as I sing,
           Bright little fairy-bug--night's little king;
           Come, and I'll dance as you guide me along,
           Come, and I'll pay you, my bug, with a song.

Metre there was none, at least, of a regular character: they were the
wild improvisations of children in a merry mood.




A prospectus for this work was issued in 1842. While the title is
slightly modified, the design and plan of its execution have not been
essentially changed. The principal object aimed at, under the general
idea of the history and geography of the Aboriginal Race, is to furnish
a general and standard reference-book, or short encyclopædia of topics
relative to the entire race, alphabetically arranged. By the insertion
of the name of each family of tribes, nation, sub-tribe, or important
clan, the occasion will be presented of noticing the leading or
characteristic events, in their history, numbers, government, religion,
languages, arts or distinctive character.

Where the scene or era of their expansion, growth and decay has been so
extensive, embracing as it does, the widest bounds and remotest periods,
their antiquities have also called for a passing notice. Nor could any
thing like a satisfactory accomplishment of the plan be effected,
without succinct notices of the lives and achievements of their
principal chiefs, rulers, and leading personages.

Language is an important means of denoting the intricate thread of
history in savage nations. Mr. Pritchard considers it more important
than physiological structure and peculiarities. It is, at least, found
often to reveal ethnological affinities, where both the physical type,
and the light of tradition, afford but little aid. The words and names
of a people, are so many clues to their thoughts and intellectual
structure; this branch of the subject, indeed, formed the original germ
of the present plan, which was at first simply geographical, and has
been rather expanded and built upon, than, if we may so say, supplied
the garniture of the edifice. In a class of transpositive languages,
which are very rich in their combinations, and modes of concentrated
description, it must needs happen, that the names of places would often
recall both associations and descriptions of deep interest in
contemplating the fate and fortunes of this unfortunate race. Without
intruding upon the reader disquisitions which would be out of place, no
opportunity has been omitted, from the consideration of their names, to
throw around the sites of their former or present residence, this
species of interest.

But half the work would have been done, it is conceived, to have
confined the work to North America; and it must necessarily have lost,
by such a limitation, more than half its interest. We are just beginning
in truth to comprehend the true character and bearing of that unique
type of civilization which existed in Mexico, Peru, and Yucatan. The
rude hand with which these embryo kingdoms of the native race were
overturned, in consequence of their horrid idolatries, necessarily led
to the destruction of much of their monumental, and so far as their
picture writing reached, some of their historical materials, of both of
which, we now feel the want. It is some relief, to know, as the
researches of Mr. Gallatin, which are now in progress, demonstrate, that
by far the greatest amount of the ancient Mexican picture writings, as
they are embraced in the elaborate work of Lord Kingsborough, relate to
their mythology and superstitions, and are of no historical value
whatever. And if the portions destroyed in the Mexican and Peruvian
conquests, were as liberally interspersed with similar evidences of
their wild polytheism, shocking manners, and degraded worship, neither
chronology nor history have so much to lament.

The early, strong and continued exertions which were made by the
conquerors to replace this system of gross superstition and idolatry, by
the Romish ritual, filled Mexico and South America with missions of the
Catholic Church, which were generally under the charge of zealous and
sometimes of learned and liberal-spirited superintendants, who have
accumulated facts respecting the character and former condition of the
race. These missions, which were generally spread parallel to the sea
coasts of the Atlantic and Pacific, reaching inland along the banks of
the great rivers and plains, have confessedly done much to ameliorate
the manners and condition of the native race, to foster a spirit of
industry, and to enlighten their minds. Still, it is scarcely known,
that numerous and powerful tribes, stretching through wide districts of
the Andes and the Cordilleras, never submitted to the conqueror, and yet
exist in their original state of barbarism.

In this department of inquiry, the geographical and historical work of
De Alcedo, which, so far as the Spanish and Portuguese missions are
concerned, is both elaborate and complete in its details, has been taken
as a basis. No one can write of South America and its native tribes,
without reference to Humboldt. Other standard writers have been
consulted, to give this part of the work as much value as possible, not
excepting the latest voyages and travels. The design has been, without
aiming at too much, to compress a body of leading and characteristic
facts, in the shortest practicable compass, which should, at the same
time, present an ethnological view of the various families and groups of
the race.

In each department of inquiry, which admitted of it, the author has
availed himself of such sources and opportunities of personal
observation and experience, as his long residence in the Indian
territories, and his study of the Indian history have afforded. And he
is not without the hope, that his inquiries and researches on this head
may be found to be such as to merit approval.


AB, often pronounced with the sound of we, before it,--a particle which,
in geographical names, in the family of the Algonquin dialects, denotes
light, or the east. It is also the radix of the verb wab, to see, as
well as of the derivatives, a-ab, an eye-ball, and wabishka, a white
substance, &c.,--ideas which either in their origin or application, are
closely allied.

ABACARIS, a settlement of Indians in the Portuguese possessions of the
province of Amazon. These people derive their name from a lake, upon
which they reside. It is a peculiarity of this lake, that it has its
outlet into the river Madiera which, after flowing out of the province
turns about and again enters it, forming, in this involution, the large
and fertile island of Topanambes. This tribe is under the instruction of
the Carmelites. They retain many of their early peculiarities of manners
and modes of life. They subsist by the cultivation of maize, and by
taking fish in the waters of the Abacaris; or Abacactes in addition to
these means, they rely upon tropical fruits. The latest notices of them
come down to 1789. But little is known of their numbers, or present

ABACHES, or Apaches, an erratic tribe of Indians, who infest the
prairies of western Texas and New Mexico. They are supposed by some, to
consist of not less than 15,000 souls. They are divided into petty
bands, known under various names. They are the most vagrant of all the
wild hunter tribes of the general area denoted. They do not live in
fixed abodes, but shift about in search of game or plunder, and are
deemed a pest by the Santa Fe traders. They raise nothing and
manufacture nothing. Those of them who are east of the Rio del Norte,
subsist on the baked root of the mauguey, and a similar plant called
Mezcal, and hence they are called Mezcaleros.

Another division of them, and by far the greatest, rove west of that
stream, where they are called Coyoteros, from their habit of eating the
coyote, or prairie wolf. They extend west into California and Sonora.
They bear a bad character wherever they are known. If on the outskirts
of the ranches and haciendas, they steal cattle and sheep. If on the
wide and destitute plains which they traverse, they thieve and murder.
Sometimes they are pursued and punished; more frequently, they escape.
The Mexican authorities keep some sort of terms with them by treaties,
which the vagrants, however, break and disregard, whenever they are
excited by hunger, or the lust of plunder. For Indians bearing the name,
formerly from the U. States, see Apaches.

ABACO, one of the Bahama islands. The native inhabitants of this, and
the adjacent groups of islands, were, early after the discovery,
transported to the main, to work in the mines. In 1788 this island,
known to nautical men as the locality of the Hole in the Wall, had a
population of 50 whites, and 200 Africans.

ABACOOCHE, or COOSA, a stream rising in Georgia. It flows into Alabama,
and after uniting with the Tallapoosa, a few miles below Wetumpka it
forms the Alabama river. The word is, apparently, derived from Oscooche,
one of the four bands into which the Muscogees, were anciently divided.

ABANAKEE, or Eastlanders, a distinct people, consisting of a plurality
of tribes, who formerly occupied the extreme north eastern part of the
United States. The word is variously written by early writers. See
Abenakies, Abernaquis, Wabunakies.

ABANCAY, the capital of a province of the same name 20 leagues from
Cuzco, in Peru. It is memorable for the victories gained in the vicinity
by the king's troops in 1542 and 1548 against Gonzalo Pizarro. It lies
in a rich and spacious valley, which was inhabited by the subjects of
the Inca, on the conquest.

ABASCA, or RABASCA, a popular corruption, in the northwest, of
Athabasca, which see.

ABASES, an unreclaimed nation of Indians, living in the plains of St.
Juan, to the north of the Orinoco, in New Grenada. They are of a docile
character, and good disposition, lending a ready ear to instruction, but
have not embraced the Catholic religion. They inhabit the wooded shores
of the river, and shelter themselves from the effects of a tropical sun,
in the open plains, by erecting their habitations in the small
copse-wood. They are bounded towards the west, by the Andaquies and
Caberras, and east by the Salivas.

ABANGOUI, a large settlement of the Guarani nation of Indians, on the
shores of the river Taquani, in Paraguay. This stream and its
inhabitants were discovered by A. Numez, in 1541.

ABECOOCHI, see Abacooche.

ABEICAS, an ancient name for a tribe of Indians, in the present area of
the United States, who are placed in the earlier geographies, _south_ of
the Alabamas and _west_ of the Cherokees. They dwelt at a distance from
the large rivers, yet were located in the districts of the cane, out of
the hard substance of which they made a kind of knife, capable of
answering the principal purposes of this instrument. They were at enmity
with the Iroquois.

ABENAKIES, a nation formerly inhabiting a large part of the territorial
area of the states of New Hampshire and Maine. There were several
tribes, of this nation the principal of which were the Penobscots, the
Norredgewocks, and the Ameriscoggins. They were at perpetual hostilities
with the New England colonists. They had received missionaries, at an
early day, from the French in Canada, and acted in close concert with
the hostile Indians from that quarter. At length in 1724, the government
of Massachusetts organized an effective expedition against them, which
ascended the Kennebec, attacked the chief town of the Norredgewocks, and
killed a large number of their bravest warriors. Among the slain, was
found their missionary Sebastian Rasle, who had taken up arms in their
defence. There was found, among his papers, a copious vocabulary of the
language, which has recently been published under the supervision of Mr.
Pickering. In the year 1754, all the Abenakies, except the Penobscots,
removed into Canada. This nation had directed their attention, almost
exclusively, to hunting. At the mouth of the Kennebec they absolutely
planted nothing. Their language, as observed by Mr. Gallatin, has strong
affinities with those of the Etchemins, and of the Micmacs, of New
Brunswick and Nova Scotia; there are fewer resemblances in its
vocabulary to the dialects south of them. This nation appears to have
been called Tarrenteens, by the New England Indians. Their generic name
for themselves, if they had one, is unknown. The term Abenakie, is one
manifestly imposed by Algonquin tribes living west and south of them. It
is derived from wabanung, the east, or a place of light, and akee, land.

ABEKAS, a name applied, so late as 1750, to a band of the Muscogees,
living on the river Tombigbee, within the present area of Alabama.

ABERNAQUIS, a settlement of the expatriated Abenakies of New England, in
Lower Canada. They subsist themselves at this time in a great measure by
agriculture, and manifest a disposition to improve. From a report made
in 1839 by the American Board of Foreign missions of Boston who employ a
missionary and teacher among them, sixty persons attend Protestant
worship, of which number, 24 are church members. Twenty of the youth
attend a daily school.

ABIGIRAS, an Indian mission formerly under the charge of the order of
Jesuits, in the governmental department of Quito. It is situated on the
river Curasari, 30 leagues from its mouth, and 240 from Quito. It was
founded in 1665 by father Lorenzo Lucero.

ABINGAS, or WABINGAS, a name for a band, or sub-tribe of the River
Indians, of the Mohegan, or Mohekinder stock, who formerly inhabited the
present area of Dutchess county, N.Y., and some adjacent parts of the
eastern shores of the Hudson, above the Highlands.

ABIPONES, an unreclaimed nation of Indians, who inhabit the south shores
of the river Bermejo, in the province of Tucuman, Buenos Ayres. This
nation is said, perhaps vaguely, to have formerly numbered 100,000
souls, but was, at the last accounts, about A.D. 1800, much reduced.
They present some peculiar traits, living as nearly in a state of nature
as possible. The men go entirely naked, subsisting themselves by hunting
and fishing, and passing much of their time in idleness or war. The
women wear little ornamented skins called _queyapi_. Physically, the
people are well formed, of a lofty stature and bearing, robust and good
featured. They paint their bodies profusely, and take great pains to
inspire hardihood. For this purpose they cut and scarify themselves from
childhood; they esteem tiger's flesh one of the greatest dainties,
believing its properties to infuse strength and valor. In war they are
most cruel, sticking their captives on the top of high poles, where,
exposed to the scorching rays of the sun, they are left to die the most
horrid death.

They have no knowledge of God, of laws, or of policy, yet they believe
in the immortality of the soul, and in a land of future bliss, where
dancing and diversions shall prevail. Widows observe celibacy for a
year, during which time they abstain from fish. The females occupy
themselves in sewing hides, or spinning rude fabrics. When the men are
intoxicated--a prevalent vice--they conceal their husbands' knives to
prevent assassinations. They rear but two or three children, killing all
above this number.

ABISCA, an extensive mountainous territory of Peru, lying between the
Yetau and Amoramago rivers, east of the Andes, noted from the earliest
times, for the number of barbarous nations who occupy it. It is a wild
and picturesque region, abounding in forests, lakes and streams, and
affording facilities for the chase, and means of retreat from
civilization, so congenial to savage tribes. An attempt to subjugate
these fierce tribes made by Pedro de Andia in 1538, failed. The same
result had attended the efforts of the emperor Yupanqui.

ABITANIS, a mountain in the province of Lipas, in Peru. In the Quetchuan
tongue, it signifies the ore of gold, from a mine of this metal, which
is now nearly abandoned.

ABITTIBI, the name of one of the tributaries of Moose River, of James'
Bay, Canada. Also a small lake in Canada West, near the settlement of
Frederick, in north latitude 48°, 35' and west longitude 82°: also, a
lake north of lake Nepissing, in the direction to Moose Fort. It is a
term, apparently derived from nibee, water, and wab, light.

ABITIGAS, a fierce and warlike nation of Indians, in the province of
Tarma in Peru, of the original Quetche stock. They are situated 60
leagues to the east of the Andes. They are barbarians, roving from place
to place, without habits of industry, and delighting in war. They are
numerous, as well as warlike; but like all the non-agricultural tribes
of the region, they are often in want and wretchedness. They are
bounded on the south by their enemies the Ipilcos.

ABO, ABOUOR MICHABO, or the Great Hare, a personage rather of
mythological, than historical note, in the traditions of the Lake
Algonquin tribes. It is not clear, although probable, that he is to be
regarded as identical with Manabosho, or Nanabosho.

ABOJEEG, a celebrated war and hereditary chief of the Chippewa nation,
who flourished during the last century; more commonly written Wabojeeg,
which see.

ABRAHAM, a chief of the Mohawks, who, after the fall of king Hendrick,
so called, at the battle of lake George, in 1755, between the English
and French armies, became the ruling chief of that nation. He was the
younger brother of Hendrick, and lived at the lower Mohawk Castle. He
was of small stature, but shrewd and active, and a fluent speaker.
Numbers of his speeches are preserved, which he delivered, as the ruling
chief of his tribe, in various councils, during the stormy era of 1775,
which eventuated in the American revolution. In the events of that era,
his name soon disappears: as he was then a man of advanced years, he
probably died at his village. It is not known that he excelled in war,
and, at all events, he was succeeded, about this time, in fame and
authority, by a new man in the chieftainship, who rose in the person of
Thyendanegea, better known as Joseph Brant. Abraham, or little Abraham,
as he was generally called, appears from his speeches and policy, to
have thoroughly adopted the sentiments and policy of Sir William
Johnson, of whom, with his tribe generally, he was the friend and
admirer. He was, as his speeches disclose, pacific in his views,
cautious in policy, and not inclined, it would seem, to rush headlong
into the great contest, which was then brewing, and into which, his
popular successor, Brant, went heart and hand. With less fame than his
elder brother Hendrick, and with no warlike reputation, yet without
imputation upon his name, in any way, he deserves to be remembered as a
civilian and chieftain, who bore a respectable rank; as one of a proud,
high spirited, and important tribe. Little Abraham was present at the
last and _final_ council of the Mohawks, with the American
Commissioners, at Albany, in September 1775, and spoke for them on this
occasion--which is believed to have been the last peaceable meeting
between the Americans and the Mohawk tribe, prior to the war.

     [NOTE.--Accents are placed over all words of North American origin,
     when known. Vowels preceding a consonant, or placed between two
     consonants, are generally short: following a consonant, or ending a
     syllable or word, they are generally long. Diphthongs are used with
     their ordinary power.]

ABSECON, a beach of the sea coast of New Jersey, sixteen miles
south-west of Little Egg Harbor. The word is a derivative from Wabisee,
a Swan, and Ong, a Place.

ABSORÓKA, a name for the Minnetaree tribe of Indians on the river
Missouri. They are philologically of the Dacotah family. See Minnetaree.

ABUCEES, a mission of the Sucumbias Indians, in the province of Quixos,
Quito, which was founded by the order of Jesuits. It is situated on the
shores of a small river, which enters the Putumago, in north latitude 0°
36' longitude 79° 2' west.

ABURRA, a town, in a rich valley of the same name, in New Grenada,
discovered in 1540, by Robledo. In its vicinity are found many huacas,
or sepulchres of the Indians, in which great riches, such as gold
ornaments, are found deposited. There are, in the vicinity, some streams
of saline water, from which the Indians manufacture salt.

ABWOIN, or BWOIN, a name of the Chippewas, Ottawas, and other modern
Algonquin tribes of the upper Lakes, for the Dacotah or Sioux nation. It
is rendered plural in ug. The word is derived from abwai, a stick used
to roast meat, and is said to have been given to this tribe, in reproach
from the ancient barbarities practised towards their prisoners taken
captive in war. For an account of this tribe, see Dacotah and Sioux.

ABWOINAC; ABWOINA: Terms applied to the general area between the
Mississippi and Missouri, lying north of the St. Peter's, occupied by
Sioux tribes. In the earlier attempts of Lord Selkirk, to plant a colony
in parts of this region, the compound term Assinaboina, was, to some
extent, but unsuccessfully employed. The two former terms are
derivatives from Abwoin, a Sioux, and akee, earth; the latter has the
prefix assin, (ossin,) a stone.

ACAQUATO, a settlement of Indians in the district of Tancitars, in Peru,
reduced in 1788, to fifteen families, who cultivated maize and

ACAMBARO, a settlement of 490 families of Indians, and 80 of _Mustees_,
belonging to the order of St. Francis, in the district of Zelaya, in the
province and bishopric of Mechoacan, seven leagues S. of its capital.

ACAMISTLAHUAC, a settlement of 30 Indian families in the district of
Tasco, attached to the curacy of its capital, from whence it is two
leagues E.N.E.

ACHAMUCHITLAN, a settlement of 60 families of Indians in the district of
Texopilco, and civil division of Zultepec. They sell sugar and
honey--the district also produces maize and vegetables. It is 5 leagues
N. of its head settlement.

ACANTEPEC, the head settlement of Tlapa, embracing 92 Indian families,
including another small settlement in its vicinity, all of whom maintain
themselves by manufacturing cotton stuffs.

ACAPETLAHUALA, a settlement of 180 Indian families, being the principal
settlement of the district of Escateopan, and civil district of

ACARI, a settlement in a beautiful and extensive valley of Camana, in
Peru, noted for a lofty mountain called Sahuacario, on the skirts of
which the native Indians had constructed two fortresses, prior to their
subjugation by the Spanish. This mountain is composed of "misshapen
stones, and sand," and is reported, at certain times of the year to emit
loud sounds, as if proceeding from pent up air, and it is thought to
have, in consequence, attracted the superstitious regard of the ancient
Indian inhabitants.

ACATEPEC. There are five Indian settlements of this name, in Spanish

1. A settlement comprising 860 Indian families, of the order of St.
Francis, in the district of Thehuacan. Forty of these families live on
cultivated estates stretching a league in a spacious valley, four
leagues S.S.W. of the capital.

2. A settlement in the district of Chinantla, in the civil jurisdiction
of Cogamaloapan. It is situated in a pleasant plain, surrounded by three
lofty mountains. The number of its inhabitants is reduced. The Indians
who live on the banks of a broad and rapid river, which intercepts the
great road to the city of Oxaca, and other jurisdictions, support
themselves by ferrying over passengers in their barks and canoes. It is
10 leagues W. of its head settlement.

3. A settlement of 100 Indian families, in the same kingdom, situated
between two high ridges. They are annexed to the curacy of San Lorenzo,
two leagues off.

4. A settlement of 39 Indian families annexed to, and distant one league
and a half N. of the curacy of Tlacobula. It is in a hot valley, skirted
by a river, which is made to irrigate the gardens and grounds on its

5. A settlement of 12 Indian families in the _mayorate_ of Xicayun of
the same kingdom.

ACATEPEQUE, ST. FRANCISCO, DE, a settlement of 140 Indian families in
the mayorate of St. Andres de Cholula, situated half a league S. of its

ACATLAN, six locations of Indians exist, under this name, in Mexico.

1. A settlement of 850 families of Indians in the _alcaldia_ of this
name, embracing some 20 Spaniards and _Mustees_. In the vicinity are
some excellent salt grounds. The climate is of a mild temperature, and
the surrounding country is fertile, abounding in fruits, flowers, and
pulse, and is well watered. It is 55 leagues E.S.E. of Mexico.

2. A settlement of 180 Indian families in Xalapa of the same kingdom,
(now republic.) It occupies a spot of clayey ground of a cold moist
temperature, in consequence of which, and its being subject to N. winds,
fruits, in this neighbourhood, do not ripen. Other branches of
cultivation succeed from the abundance of streams of water, and their
fertilizing effects on the soil. This settlement has the dedicatory
title of St. Andres.

3. SAN PEDRO, in the district of Malacatepec, and _alcaldia_ of Nexapa.
It contains 80 Indian families, who trade in wool, and the fish called
_bobo_, which are caught, in large quantities, in a considerable river
of the district.

4. ZITLALA. It consists of 198 Indian families, and is a league and a
half N. of its head settlement of this name.

5. SENTEPEC, a settlement 15 leagues N.E. of its capital. The
temperature is cold. It has 42 Indian families.

6. ATOTONILCO, in the _alcaldia mayor_ of Tulanzingo. It contains 115
Indian families, and has a convent of the religious order of St.
Augustine. It is 2 leagues N. of its head settlement.

ACATLANZINGO, a settlement of 67 Indian families of Xicula of the
_alcaldia mayor_ of Nexapa, who employ themselves in the culture of
cochineal plants. It lies in a plain, surrounded on all sides by

ACAXEE, a nation of Indians in the province of Topia. They are
represented to have been converted to the catholic faith by the society
of Jesuits in 1602. They are docile and of good dispositions and
abilities. One of their ancient customs consisted of bending the heads
of their dead to their knees, and in this posture, putting them in
caves, or under a rock and at the same time, depositing a quantity of
food for their supposed journey in another state. They also exhibited a
farther coincidence with the customs of the northern Indians, by placing
a bow and arrows with the body of the dead warrior, for his defence.
Should an Indian woman happen to die in child-bed, they put the
surviving infant to death, as having been the cause of its mother's
decease. This tribe rebelled against the Spanish in 1612, under the
influence of a native prophet, but they were subdued by the governor of
the province, Don Francisco de Ordinola.

ACAXETE, SANTA MARIA DE, the head settlement of the district of Tepcaca,
on the slope of the _sierra_ of Tlascala. It consists of 176 Mexican
Indians, 7 Spanish families, and 10 Mustees and Mulatoes. In its
vicinity there is a reservoir of hewn stone, to catch the waters of the
mountain, which are thence conducted to Tepcaca, three leagues N.N.W.

ACAXUCHITLAN, a curacy consisting of 406 Indian families of the
bishopric of La Peubla de los Angelos. It is in the _alcaldia_ of
Tulanzingo, lying 4 leagues E. of its capital.

ACAYUCA, the capital of a civil division of New Spain, in the province
of Goazacoalco, embracing, in its population, 296 families of Indians,
30 of Spaniards, and 70 of mixed bloods. It lies a little over 100
leagues S.E. of Mexico, in lat. 17° 53' N.

ACAZINGO, ST. JUAN DE, a settlement of the district of Tepcaca,
consisting of 700 families of Indians, 150 of Spaniards, 104 of Mustees,
and 31 of Mulatoes. It is situated in a plain of mild temperature, well
watered, and has a convent and fountain, and a number of "very ancient

ACCÓCESAWS, a tribe of Indians of erratic habits, of Texas, whose
principal location was formerly on the west side of the Colorado, about
200 miles S.W. of Nacogdoches. At a remoter period they lived near the
gulf of Mexico: they made great use of fish, and oysters. Authors
represent the country occupied, or traversed by them, as exceedingly
fertile and beautiful, and abounding in deer of the finest and largest
kind. Their language is said to be peculiar to themselves; they are
expert in communicating ideas by the system of signs. About A.D. 1750
the Spanish had a mission among them, but removed it to Nacogdoches.

ACCOMAC, a county of Virginia, lying on the eastern shores of Chesapeak
bay. This part of the sea coast was inhabited by the Nanticokes, who
have left their names in its geography. We have but a partial vocabulary
of this tribe, which is now extinct. It has strong analogies, however,
to other Algonquin dialects. Aco, in these dialects, is a generic term,
to denote a goal, limit, or fixed boundary. Ahkee, in the Nanticoke, is
the term for earth, or land. Auk, is a term, in compound words of these
dialects, denoting wood. The meaning of accomac, appears to be _as far
as the woods reach_, or, the boundary between meadow and woodlands.

ACCOMACS, one of the sub tribes inhabiting the boundaries of Virginia on
its discovery and first settlement. Mr. Jefferson states their numbers
in 1607 at 80. In 1669, when the legislature of Virginia directed a
census of the Indian population, within her jurisdiction, there appears
no notice of this tribe. They inhabited the area of Northampton county.
They were Nanticokes--a people whose remains united themselves or at
least took shelter with the Lenapees, or Delawares.

ACCOHANOCS, a division or tribe of the Powhetanic Indians, numbering 40,
in 1607. They lived on the Accohanoc river, in eastern Virginia.

ACCOMENTAS, a band, or division of the Pawtucket Indians inhabiting the
northerly part of Massachusetts in 1674. (Gookin.)

ACHAGUA, a nation of Indians of New Grenada, dwelling in the plains of
Gazanare and Meta, and in the woods of the river Ele. They are bold and
dexterous hunters with the dart and spear, and in their contests with
their enemies, they poison their weapons. They are fond of horses, and
rub their bodies with oil, to make their hair shine. They go naked
except a small _azeaun_ made of the fibres of the aloe. They anoint
their children with a bituminous ointment at their birth, to prevent the
growth of hair. The brows of females are also deprived of hair, and
immediately rubbed with the juice of _jagua_, which renders them bald
ever after. They are of a gentle disposition but addicted to
intoxication. The Jesuits formerly reduced many of them to the Catholic
faith, and formed them into settlements in 1661.

ACHAFALAYA, the principal western outlet of the Mississippi river. It is
a Choctaw word, meaning, "the long river," from _hucha_, river, and
_falaya_, long. (Gallatin.)

ACKOWAYS, a synonym for a band of Indians of New France, now Canada. See

ACKEEKSEEBE, a remote northern tributary of the stream called Rum river,
which enters the Mississippi, some few miles above the falls of St.
Anthony, on its left banks. It is a compound phrase, from Akeek, a
kettle, and seebe, a stream. It was on the margin of this stream, in a
wide and spacious area, interspersed with beaver ponds, that a
detachment of Gen. Cass's exploring party in July 1820, encamped; and
the next morning discovered an Indian pictorial letter, written on bark,
detailing the incidents of the march.

ACKEEKO, or the Kettle chief, a leading Sauc chief who exercised his
authority in 1820, at an important Indian village, situated on the right
banks of the Mississippi, at Dubuque's mines.

ACHQUANCHICÓLA, the name of a creek in Pennsylvania; it signifies in the
Delaware or Lenapee language, as given by Heckewelder, the brush-net
fishing creek.

ACHWICK, a small stream in central Pennsylvania. It denotes in the
Delaware language, according to Heckewelder, brushy, or difficult to

ACOBAMBA, a settlement in the province of Angaraes in Peru, near which
are some monumental remains of the ancient race, who inhabited the
country prior to its conquest by the Spanish. They consist, chiefly, of
a pyramid of stones, and the ruins of some well sculptured stone
couches, or benches, now much injured by time.

ACOLMAN, San Augustin de, a settlement of 240 families of Indians of
Tezcoco in Mexico. It is situated in a pleasant valley, with a benign
temperature, and has a convent of Augustine monks.

ACOMES, a fall in the river Amariscoggin, Maine, denoting, in the
Indian, as is supposed, a rest, or place of stopping. From aco, a bound
or point.

ACOMULCO, a village of 12 Indian families in Zochicoatlan, New Spain,
two leagues W. of its capital.

ACONICHI, the name of a settlement of Indians formerly living on the
river Eno, in North Carolina.

ACOTITLAN, a settlement of 15 Indian families, in the _alcaldia_ of
Autlan, Mexico. They employ themselves in raising cattle, making sugar
and honey, and extracting oil from the _cacao_ fruit.

ACOUEZ, a name formerly applied by the French to a band of Indians in
New France. Believed to be identical with Ackoways.

ACQUACKINAC, or ACQUACKINUNK, the Indian name of a town on the W. side
of the Passaic river, New Jersey, ten miles N. of Newark and 17 from New
York. From aco, a limit, misquak, a red cedar, and auk, a stump or trunk
of a tree.

ACQUINOSHIÓNEE, or United People, the vernacular name of the Iroquois
for their confederacy. It appears, from their traditions, communicated
to the Rev. Mr. Pyrlaus, a Dutch missionary of early date, that this
term had not been in use above 50 years prior to the first settlement of
the country: and if so, we have a late date, not more remote than 1559
for the origin of this celebrated union. But this may be doubted.
Cartier discovered the St. Lawrence in 1534, and found them at the site
of Montreal; Verrizani, is said to have entered the bay of New York ten
years before. Hudson entered the river in 1609. Jamestown was founded
the year before. The Pilgrims landed at Plymouth 14 years later. It is
more probable that the 50 years should be taken from the period of the
earlier attempts of the French settlements, which would place the origin
of the confederacy about A.D. 1500. (See Iroquois.)

ACTOPAN, or OCTUPAN, a town and settlement of the Othomies Indians,
situated 23 leagues N.N.E. of Mexico. Its population is put by Alcedo
in 1787, at 2750 families. These are divided into two parties, separated
by the church. It also contains 50 families of Spaniards, Mustees, and
Mulatoes. The temperature is mild, but the ground is infested with the
cactus, thorns and teasel, which leads the inhabitants to devote their
attention to the raising of sheep and goats. In this vicinity are found
numbers of the singular bird, called _zenzontla_ by the Mexican Indians.

ACTUPAN, a settlement of 210 families of Indians in the district of
Xocimilco, Mexico.

ACUIAPAN, a settlement of 58 Indian families, in the _alcaldia mayor_ of
Zultepec, annexed to the curacy of Temascaltepec. They live by dressing
hides for the market--ib.

ACUILPA, a settlement of 92 Indian families, in the magistracy of Tlapa,
Mexico. It is of a hot and moist temperature, yielding grain, and the
white medicinal earth called _chia_, in which they carry on a trade.

ACUIO, a considerable settlement of Spaniards, Mustees, Mulatoes, and
Negroes, 30 leagues W. of Cinaqua, in the curacy of Tauricato, Mexico;
embracing 9 Indian families.

ACULA, SAN PEDRO DE, an Indian settlement of 305 families, four leagues
E. of Cozamaloapan, its capital. It is situated on a high hill, bounded
by a large lake of the most salubrious water, called _Peutla_ by the
natives. This lake has its outlet into the sea through the sand banks of
Alvarado, and the lake is subject to overflow its banks in the winter

ACUTITLAN, an Indian settlement of 45 families, in the district of
Tepuxilco, Mexico, who trade in sugar, honey, and maize. It is five
leagues N.E. of Zultepec, and a quarter of a league from Acamuchitlan.

ACUTZIO, an Indian settlement of Tiripitio, in the magistracy of
Valladolid, and bishopric of Mechoacan, Mexico. It contains 136 Indian
families, and 11 families of Spaniards and Mustees. Six cultivated
estates in this district, producing wheat, maize, and other grains,
employ most of this population, who also devote part of their labour to
the care of large and small cattle.

ADAES, or ADAIZE, a tribe of Indians, who formerly lived forty miles
south west from Natchitoches, in the area of country, which now
constitutes a part of the republic of Texas. They were located on a
lake, which communicates with the branch of Red-river passing Bayou
Pierre. This tribe appears to have lived at that spot, from an early
period. Their language is stated to be difficult of acquisition, and
different from all others, in their vicinity. They were at variance with
the ancient Natchez, and joined the French in their assault upon them in
1798. They were intimate with the Caddoes, and spoke _their_ language.
At the last dates (1812,) they were reduced to twenty men, with a
disproportionate number of women. The synonyms for this now extinct
tribe are, Adayes; Adees; Adaes; Adaize.

ADARIO, a celebrated chief of the Wyandot nation, who was at the height
of his usefulness and reputation, about 1690. He was able in the
councils of his tribe, shrewd and wily in his plans, and firm and
courageous in their execution. The Wyandots, or Hurons as they are
called by the French, were then living at Michilimackinac, to which
quarter they had been driven by well known events in their history. The
feud between them and their kindred, the Iroquois, still raged. They
remained the firm allies of the French; but they were living in a state
of expatriation from their own country, and dependent on the friendship
and courtesy of the Algonquins of the upper lakes, among whom they had
found a refuge. Adario, at this period, found an opportunity of making
himself felt, and striking a blow for the eventual return of his nation.

To understand his position, a few allusions to the history of the period
are necessary.

In 1687, the English of the province of New York, resolved to avail
themselves of a recent alliance between the two crowns, to attempt a
participation in the fur trade of the upper lakes. They persuaded the
Iroquois to set free a number of Wyandot captives to guide them through
the lakes, and open an intercourse with their people. Owing to the high
price and scarcity of goods, this plan was favored by Adario and his
people, and also by the Ottowas and Pottowattomis, but the enterprise
failed. Major McGregory, who led the party, was intercepted by a large
body of French from Mackinac, the whole party captured and their goods
were distributed gratuitously to the Indians. The lake Indians, who had,
covertly countenanced this attempt, were thrown back entirely on the
French trade, and subjected to suspicions which made them uneasy in
their councils, and anxious to do away with the suspicions entertained
of their fidelity by the French. To this end Adario marched a party of
100 men from Mackinac against the Iroquois. Stopping at fort Cadarackui
to get some intelligence which might guide him, the commandant informed
him that the governor of Canada, Denonville, was in hopes of concluding
a peace with the Five Nations, and expected their ambassadors at
Montreal in a few days. He therefore advised the chief to return. Did
such a peace take place, Adario perceived that it would leave the
Iroquois to push the war against his nation, which had already been
driven from the banks of the St. Lawrence to lake Huron. He dissembled
his fears, however, before the commandant, and left the fort, not for
the purpose of returning home, but to waylay the Iroquois delegates, at
a portage on the river where he knew they must pass. He did not wait
over four or five days, when the deputies arrived, guarded by 40 young
warriors, who were all surprised, and either killed or taken prisoners.
His next object was to shift the blame of the act on the governor of
Canada, by whom he told his prisoners, he had been informed of their
intention to pass this way, and he was thus prepared to lie in wait for
them. They were much surprised at this apparent act of perfidy,
informing him at the same time, that they were truly and indeed on a
message of peace. Adario affected to grow mad with rage against
Denonville, declaring that he would some time be revenged on him for
making him a tool, in committing so horrid a treachery. Then looking
steadfastly on the prisoners, among whom was Dekanefora, the head chief
of the Onondaga tribe, "Go," said he, "my brothers, I untie your bonds,
and send you home again, although our nations be at war. The French
governor has made me commit so black an action, that I shall never be
easy after it, until the Five Nations have taken full revenge." The
ambassadors were so well persuaded of the perfect truth of his
declarations, that they replied in the most friendly terms, and said the
way was opened to their concluding a peace between their respective
tribes, at any time. He then dismissed his prisoners, with presents of
arms, powder and ball, keeping but a single man (an adopted Shawnee) to
supply the place of the only man he had lost in the engagement. By one
bold effort he thus blew up the fire of discord between the French and
their enemies, at the moment it was about to expire, and laid the
foundation of a peace with his own nation. Adario delivered his slave to
the French on reaching Mackinac, who, to keep up the old enmity between
the Wyandots and the Five Nations, ordered him to be shot. On this
Adario called up an Iroquois prisoner who was a witness of this scene,
and who had long been detained among them, and told him to escape to his
own country, and give an account of the cruelly of the French, from whom
it was not in his power to save a prisoner he had himself taken.

This increased the rage of the Five Nations to such a pitch, that when
Mons. Denonville sent a message to disown the act of Adario, they put no
faith in it, but burned for revenge. Nor was it long before the French
felt the effects of their rage. On the 26th of July, 1688, they landed
with 1200 men on the upper end of the island of Montreal, and carried
destruction wherever they went. Houses were burnt, plantations sacked,
and men, women and children massacred. Above a thousand of the French
inhabitants were killed, and twenty-six carried away prisoners, most of
whom were burnt alive. In October of the same year, they renewed their
incursion, sweeping over the lower part of the island as they had
previously done the upper. The consequences of these inroads were most
disastrous to the French, who were reduced to the lowest point of
political despondency. They burnt their two vessels on Cadarackui lake,
abandoned the fort, and returned to Montreal. The news spread far and
wide among the Indians of the upper lakes, who, seeing the fortunes of
the French on the wane, made treaties with the English, and thus opened
the way for their merchandise into the lakes.--[Colden.]

Such were the consequences of a single enterprise, shrewdly planned and
vigorously executed. The fame of its author spread abroad, and he was
every where regarded as a man of address, courage and abilities. And it
is from this time, that the ancient feud between the Wyandots and their
kindred, the Five Nations, began to cool. They settled on the straits of
Detroit, where they so long, and up to the close of the late war (1814,)
exercised a commanding influence among the lake tribes, as keepers of
the general council fire of the nations.

La Hontan, in his Travels in New France, relates some conversations with
this chief, on the topic of religion, which may be regarded, almost
exclusively, as fabulous.

ADAYES, ADAES, and ADEES, forms of orthography, occurring in various
writers, for the Adaize Indians, which see.

ADEQUATÁNGIE, a tributary of the eastern head waters of the river
Susquehanna in New-York. The word is Iroquois.

ADDEES, the number of this tribe, residing on the waters of Red River,
in Louisiana, in 1825, is stated, in an official report, from the war
department of that year, at twenty-seven.

ADÓLES, a settlement of Indians in the province of Orinoco. They were of
the Saliva nation. The settlement was destroyed by the Caribs in 1684.

ADIRÓNDACKS, the name of the Iroquois tribes for the Algonquins. The
consideration of their history and characteristics, as a family of
tribes, will be taken up, under the latter term.

ADIRONDACK MOUNTAINS, a name bestowed, in the geological survey of New
York, upon the mountains at the source of the Hudson River.

ADIK, IÁ-BA. See Iaba Wadik.

ADIKÍMINIS, or Cariboo Island; an island situated in the north eastern
part of lake Superior, which is invested with no other importance than
it derives from Indian mythology and superstition. It is small and has
seldom been visited. The Chippewas believe that this is one of the
places of residence of their local manitoes, and that it was formerly
inhabited by Michabo or Manabosho. Early travellers, who notice this
belief, represent its shores to be covered with golden sands, but that
these sands are guarded by powerful spirits, who will not permit the
treasure to be carried away. Many fanciful tales are told of its having
been once attempted, when a huge spirit strode into the water, and
reclaimed the shining treasure. This is Carver's version, who, however,
confounds it with another contiguous island. Henry, who visited it in
his search after silver mines, in 1765, says that the Indians told him
that their ancestors had once landed there, being driven by stress of
weather, but had great difficulty in escaping from the power of enormous
snakes. He calls it the Island of Yellow Sands. It abounded certainly
with hawks in his day, one of whom was so bold as to pluck his cap from
his head. He found nothing to reward his search but a number of
Cariboos, which is the American reindeer, of which no less than 13 were
killed, during his stay of three days. He represented it to be 12 miles
in circumference, low, and covered with ponds, and to be sixty miles
distant from the north shore of the lake. He thinks it is perhaps the
same island which the French called _Isle de Pontchartrain_.

AFFAGOULA, a small village of Indians, of Louisiana, who were located in
1783 near Point Coupé, on the Mississippi.

AGACES, a nation of Indians of the province of Paraguay. They are
numerous, valiant, and of a lofty stature. They were, in ancient times,
masters of the banks of the Paraguay, waging war against the Guavanies,
and keeping the Spaniards at bay, but were at last subjugated in 1542,
by Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca, governor of the province.

AGARIATA, an Iroquois chief, who, having gone on an embassy of peace
about 1688, to Canada, the governor, Monsieur Coursel, being
exasperated against him, on account of bad faith and a violation of a
treaty, caused him to be hanged in the presence of his countrymen.

AGAMENTIGUS, a mountain of considerable elevation, eight miles from York
harbour, Maine; also, a river of the same vicinity, which derives its
waters chiefly from the influx of Piscataqua bay. The termination of the
name in _us_, is foreign, and not in accordance with the Abenakie
dialects of this coast.

AGAMUNTIC, the name of a small lake, or pond, of Maine, which discharges
its waters through the west branch of the Chaudiere river.

AGAWAMS, a band of Indians of the Pokenoket, or Wampanoag type, who
formerly lived at various periods, in part in Sandwich, in part in
Ipswich, and in part in Springfield, Massachusetts. The word is written
with some variety, in old authors, the chief of which, are, the addition
of another g, and the change of the penultimate a to o.

AGIOCOCHOOK, a name of the Indians, for the White Mountains of
New-Hampshire; of which the penultimate ok, is the plural. This group is
also called, according to President Allen, Waumbek--a word, which in
some of the existing dialects of the Algonquin, is pronounced Waubik,
that is, White Rock.

AGNALOS, a tribe of infidel Indians, inhabiting the mountains north of
the river Apure, in New Grenada.

AGRIAS, a tribe of Indians, formerly very numerous, of the government of
Santa Marta, to the north of the Cienegra Grande. They are, at present,
considerably reduced.

AGUA DE CULEBRA, San Francisco Xavier De La, a _reduccion_ of Indians of
the Capuchins, of the province of Venezuela. The vicinity produces, in
abundance, cacao, yucao, and other vegetable productions.

AGUACAGUA, an Indian mission, on a branch of the Oronoco, called Caroni.

AGUACATLAN, an Indian mission of Xala, in Mexico. In 1745, it contained
80 families of Indians, who cultivated maize and French beans.

AGUALULCO, the capital of the jurisdiction of Izatlan, New Galicia,
which in 1745, contained 100 Indian families.

AGUANOS, a settlement in the province of Mainas, Quito, so called from
the Indians of whom it is composed.

AGUARICO, an Indian mission of the Jesuits, on the shores of the river
Napo, of the province of Máinás, Quito.

AGUARINGUA, an ancient and large settlement of Indians of the Taironas
nation, in Santa Marta.

AGUILUSCO, a settlement of the district of Arantzan, in the province of
Mechoacan, which contains 36 Indian families. They subsist by sowing
seed, cutting wood, making saddle trees, and manufacturing vessels of
fine earthen ware.

AHAPOPKA, a lake of Florida, having its outlet through the Oclawaha
river of the St. John's.

AHASIMUS, an ancient Indian name, for the present site of Jersey city,
Hudson county, New Jersey.

AHOME, or Ahoma, a nation of Indians, living on the banks of the river
Zaque, in the province of Cinaloa, of California. They are located four
leagues from the gulf, in extensive and fertile plains, and are said to
be superior, by nature, to the other Indians of New Spain. Some of their
customs denote this. They abhor poligamy, they hold virginity in the
highest estimation. Unmarried girls, by way of distinction, wear a small
shell suspended to their neck, until the day of their nuptials, when it
is taken off by the bridegroom. They wear woven cotton. They bewail
their dead a year, at night and morning. They are gentle and faithful in
their covenants and engagements.

AHOUANDÁTE, a name for the tribe of the Wyandots, which is found on
ancient maps of the Colonies.

AHUACATLAN, the name of four separate settlements of Mexico, containing,
respectively, 51, 13, 450, and 160 families of Indians.

AHUACAZALCA, Nueva Espána. At this place, 56 families of Indians live by
raising rice and cotton. It is in the district of San Luis de la Costa.

AHUACAZINGO, in the district of Atengo, Nueva Espána, contains 46 Indian

AHUALICAN, of the same province, has 36 Indian families.

AHUATELCO, ib. Has 289 families, who cultivate wheat and raise cattle.

AHUATEMPA, ib. Has 39 families.

AHUATEPEC, ib. Has 32 families.

AHUAZITLA, ib. Has 36 families, who trade in _chia_, a white medicinal
earth, grain and earthen-ware.

AHWAHAWA, a tribe of Indians who were found in 1805 to be located a few
miles above the Mandans, on the south west banks of the Missouri. They
are believed to have been a band of the Minnitares. They numbered at
that date 200. They were at war with the Snake Indians. They claim to
have once been a part of the Crow nation. They professed to have been
long residents of the spot occupied. The name has not been kept up, and
does not appear in recent reports from that quarter. Their history is,
probably, to be sought in that of the Mandans and the Minnetares.

AIAHUALTEMPA, a settlement of Chalipa, Mexico, containing 36 Indian

AIAHUALULCO, ib. Two settlements of this name, contain, respectively, 70
and 42 Indian families.

AIAPANGO, ib. contains 100 Indian families.

AIATEPEC, ib. has 45 families of natives.

AIAUTLA, ib. has 100 families.

AICHES, a settlement of Indians of Texas, situated on the main road to

AIECTIPAC, Mexico. Twenty-one Indian families reside here.

AINSE, a Chippewa chief of Point St. Ignace, Michilimackinac county,
Michigan. The population of this band, as shown by the government census
rolls in 1840, was 193, of whom 33 were men, 54 women, and 106 children.
They support themselves by the chase and by fishing. They cultivate
potatoes only. They receive, together with the other bands, annuities
from the government, in coin, provisions, salt, and tobacco, for which
purpose they assemble annually, on the island of Michilimackinac. The
name of this chief is believed to be a corruption from Hans.

AIOCUESCO, an Indian settlement of Chalipa, Mexico. Has 400 Indian

AIOCTITLAN, ib. Has 76 ditto.

AIOZINAPA, ib. Has 34 ditto.

AIOZINGO, ib. Has 120 ditto.

AIRICOS, a nation of Indians inhabiting the plains of Cazanare and Meta
in the new kingdom of Grenada, to the east of the mountains of Bogota.
They inhabit the banks of the river Ele. They are numerous and warlike,
and feared by all their neighbours, for their valour and dexterity in
the use of arms. In 1662 Antonio de Monteverde, a Jesuit, established a
mission among them, and baptized numbers.

AISHQUÁGONABEE, a Chippewa chief, of some note, of a mild and dignified
carriage, living on Grand Traverse Bay, on the east shores of lake
Michigan. In 1836 he formed a part of the delegation of Chippewa and
Ottowa chiefs, who proceeded to Washington city, and concluded a treaty
ceding their lands to the U.S. from Grand river on lake Michigan, to
Chocolate river on lake Superior. The name signifies, the first feather,
or feather of honour. The population of his village in 1840, as shown by
the census rolls, was 207, of whom 51 were men, or heads of families, 49
women, and 107 children. They receive annuities annually at
Michilimackinac. They subsist by the chase, by planting corn, beans and
potatoes, and by fishing.

AISHKEBUGÉKOZH, or the Flat Mouth, called Guelle Platte, in the patois
of the Fur Trade. The Head chief of the band of the Chippewas, called
Mukundwas or Pilligers, who are situated at Leech Lake, on the sources
of the Mississippi. This band, it is estimated, can furnish 200
warriors. They are a brave and warlike people, and are at perpetual war
with their western neighbours, the Sioux. They subsist by the chase, and
by taking white fish in the lake. Some corn and potatoes are also raised
by the women and the old and superannuated men of the band. They are a
fierce, wild, untamed race, strong in their numbers, and proud and
confident in their success in war, and the comparative ease with which
they procure a subsistence from the chase. They adhere to their ancient
religious ceremonies and incantations, and are under the government of
their native priests, jossakeeds and seers. Aishkebugekozh, has for many
years exercised the political sway over them, leading them, sometimes to
war, and presiding, at all times, in their councils. He is a shrewd man,
of much observation and experience in the affairs of the frontiers. He
is of a large, rather stout frame, broad shoulders and chest, and broad
face, with a somewhat stern countenance, denoting decision of character
and capacity to command. Thin and extended lips, parted in a right line
over a prominent jaw, render the name, which his people have bestowed on
him, characteristic. By the term Kozh, instead of Odoan, the true
meaning of it is rather muzzle, or snout, than mouth, a distinction
which the French have preserved in the term _Guelle_.

AIUINOS, a nation of Indians, of the government of Cinaloa, New Spain.
They live in the north part of the province. They formerly dwelt in
lofty mountains, to escape the effects of war with other nations. In
1624, the Jesuits established a mission amongst them. They are docile,
well inclined, and of good habits.

AIUTLA, a settlement of New Spain, containing 187 Indian families.
Another location of the same name contains 23 families.

AJOUES, a tribe of Indians of Louisiana, in its ancient extent, while it
existed under the government of the French. The word, as expressed in
English orthography, is Iowas, and the tribe will be considered under
that head.

AKÓSA, an Odjibwa chief, living on the peninsula of Grand Traverse Bay,
lake Michigan, known for his good will towards the mission established
near his village, by the American Board, in 1839. In the recess periods
of hunting, he is attentive on the means of instruction furnished at
that station. He enjoins on his children attendance at the school. He
bestows a punctual care in planting his corn-field and garden. He has
erected a good dwelling house of logs, and supplied it with several
articles of plain household furniture. He is of a mild and pleasing
character, and appreciates and acknowledges the superiority of
agriculture and civilization over the uncertainties of the chase.
Without distinction in war, or eloquence, or a genealogy of warriors to
refer to, and consequently, of but little general note or fame in his
tribe, he is an active hunter, and stable, temperate man, and may be
regarded as a fair average specimen, physically and mentally, of the
race. The band of Akosa mustered 160 souls, on the pay rolls of 1840, of
which number, 37 were men, 42 women, and 89 children. They receive their
annuities at Michilimackinac.

AKANSA, a synonym of Arkansas.

ALABÁMA, one of the United States of America. The name is derived from a
tribe of Indians, who formerly inhabited the banks of the river of the
same name. This river, on its junction with the Tombigbee, forms the
Mobile. The Alabama Indians, were succeeded in the occupancy of this
river by the Creeks, or Muscogees. They withdrew towards the west. In
1790 their descendants lived in a village, eligibly situated, on several
swelling green hills on the banks of the Mississippi. No accounts of
them are given in recent reports. They appear to have continued their
route westward by the way of Red River. The precise period of their
crossing the Mississippi is not known. They came to Red River about the
same time as the Bolixies and Appalaches. Their language is represented
to be the Mobilian, as denominated by Du Pratz, that is the Chacta. Part
of them lived, at the end of the 18th century, on Red River, sixteen
miles above Bayou Rapide. Thence they went higher up the stream, and
settled near the Caddoes, where they raised good crops of corn. Another
party, of about 40 men, lived in Apalousas district, where they
cultivated corn, raised and kept horses, hogs and cattle, and exhibited
a quiet and pacific character. From a statement published in a paper, at
Houston, the seat of government of Texas, in 1840, their descendants
were then settled on the river Trinity, in that republic, where they are
associated with the Coshattas, forming two villages, numbering two
hundred warriors, or about 1000 souls. They preserve, in this new
location, the pacific and agricultural traits noticed during their
residence in Louisiana.

ALACHUA, an extensive level prairie, in Florida, about 75 miles west of
St. Augustine. The ancient Indian town of Alachua, stood on its borders,
but its inhabitants removed to a more healthful position at Cuscowilla.

ALACLATZALA, a settlement in the district of St. Lewis, New Spain,
containing 125 Indian families.

ALAHUITZLAN, ib. a settlement having 270 Indian families.

ALAPAHA, one of the higher tributary streams of the Suwannee river, in

ALASKE, or ONALASKA, a long peninsula on the N.W. coast of America. At
its termination, are a number of islands, which form a part of the
cluster called the northern Archipelago.

ALBARRADA, a settlement of Indians in the kingdom of Chile, situated on
the shores of the river Cauchupil. Also a settlement of New Spain,
containing 22 Indian families.

ALEMPIGON, improperly written for Nipigon, a small lake north of lake

ALFAXAIUCA, a settlement of New Spain, containing 171 Indian families.

ALGANSEE, a township of the county of Branch, Michigan. It is a compound
derivative from Algonkin, gan, a particle denoting a lake, and
mushcodainse, a prairie.

ALGIC, an adjective term used by the writer, to denote a genus or family
of tribes who take their characteristic from the use of the Algonquin
language. It is a derivative from the words _Algonquin_, and _Akee_,
earth, or land.

ALGONQUIN, a nation of Indians who, on the discovery and settlement of
Canada, were found to occupy the north banks of the St. Lawrence between
Quebec, Three Rivers, and the junction of the Utawas. Quebec itself is
believed to be a word derived from this language, having its origin in
Kebic, the fearful rock or cliff. When the French settled at Quebec,
fifteen hundred fighting men of this nation lived between that nation
and Sillery. They were reputed, at this era, to be the most warlike and
powerful people in North America, and the most advanced in their policy
and intelligence. Colden speaks of them as excelling all others. On the
arrival of Champlain, who, although not the discoverer of the country,
was the true founder of the French power in Canada, they were supplied
with fire arms, and even led to war, by that chivalric officer, against
their enemies, the Iroquois. They were stimulated to renewed exertions
in various ways, by the arrival of this new power, and carried the
terror of their arms towards the south and south-west. They were in
close alliance with the Wyandots, a people who, under the names of
Quatoghies and Hurons, on Cartier's arrival in 1534, were seen as low
down the St. Lawrence as the island of Anticosti, and bay Chaleur. But
as soon as the Iroquois had been supplied with the same weapons, and
learned their use, the Algonquins were made to feel the effects of their
courage, and combined strength. The Wyandots were first defeated in a
great battle fought within two leagues of Quebec. The Iroquois next
prepared to strike an effective blow against the collective tribes of
kindred origin, called Algonquins. Under the pretence of visiting the
Governor of Canada, they introduced a thousand men into the valley of
the St. Lawrence, when, finding their enemies separated into two bodies,
the one at the river Nicolet, and the other at Trois Rivière, they fell
upon them unawares, and defeated both divisions. In this defeat the
Nipercerinians (Nipessings) and the Atawawas (Ottowas) who then lived on
the banks of the St. Lawrence, participated. The former, who were indeed
but the Algonquins, under their proper name, drew off towards the
north-west. The Atawawas migrated to the great chain of the Manatoulines
of lake Huron, whence they have still proceeded further towards the west
and south, until they reached L'arbre Croche and Grand River of
Michigan, their present seats. The Quatoghies or Wyandots fled to the
banks of the same Lake (Huron) which has derived its name from the
celebrity of their flight to, and residence on its banks.

Of the Algonquins proper who remained on the St. Lawrence, and who are
specifically entitled to that name, but a limited number survive. About
the middle of the 17th century, they were reduced to a few villages near
Quebec, who were then said to be "wasted, and wasting away under the
effects of ardent spirits." Subsequently, they were collected, by the
Catholic Church, into a mission, and settled at the Lake of Two
Mountains, on the Utawas or Grand River of Canada, where they have been
instructed in various arts, and effectually civilized. There, their
descendants still remain. They are a tall, active, shrewd, lithe,
energic race. Parties of them have been engaged as voyagers and hunters,
within modern times, and led in the prosecution of the fur trade into
the remote forests of the north-west. In these positions, they have
manifested a degree of energy, hardihood, and skill in the chase, far
beyond that possessed by native, unreclaimed tribes. The Algonquin
women, at the Lake of Two Mountains, make very ingenious basket and bead
work, in which the dyed quills of the porcupine, and various coloured
beads of European manufacture, are employed. They also make finger rings
out of moose hair, taken from the breast tuft of this animal, in which
mottoes or devices are worked. They have melodious soft voices, in
chanting the hymns sung at the mission. This tribe is called
Odishkuaguma, that is, People-at-the-end-of-the-waters, by the Odjibwas.
They were called Adirondacks, by the Six Nations. The term Algonquin,
which we derive from the French, is not of certain etymology. It appears
at first to have been a _nom de guerre_, for the particular people, or
tribe, whose descendants are now confined to the position at the Lake of
Two Mountains. It was early applied to all the tribes of kindred origin.
And is now a generic term for a family or primitive stock of tribes in
North America, who either speak cognate dialects, or assimilate in the
leading principles of their languages.

The number of these tribes still existing, is very large, and viewed in
the points of their greatest difference, the variations in the
consonantal and diphthongal sounds of their languages, are considerable.
As a general geographical area, these tribes, at various periods from
about 1600, to the present time, ethnographically covered the Atlantic
coast, from the northern extremity of Pamlico-sound to the Straits of
Bellisle, extending west and north-west, to the banks of the Missinipi
of Hudson's Bay, and to the east borders of the Mississippi, as low as
the junction of the Ohio. From this area, the principal exceptions are
the Iroquois of New York, the Wyandots west, and the Winnebagoes and
small bands of the Docotahs. The grammatical principles of these
dialects, coincide. As a general fact, in their lexicography the letters
f, r and v are wanting. The dialects derive their peculiarities, in a
great measure, from interchanges between the sounds of l and n, b and p,
d and t, g and k, in some of which, there is a variance even in distant
bands of the same tribe. The language is transpositive. In its
conjugations, the pronouns are incorporated with the verb, either as
prefixes or suffixes. Its substantives are provided with adjective
inflections, denoting size and quality. Its verbs, on the other hand,
receive substantive inflections. Gender is, as a rule, lost sight of, in
the uniform attempt, to preserve, by inflections, a distinction between
animate and inanimate, and personal or impersonal objects. It is
remarkable for the variety of its compounds, although the vocabulary
itself, is manifestly constructed from monosyllabic roots. All its
substantives admit of diminutives, but, in no instance, of
augmentatives. They also admit of derogative and prepositional
inflections. The comparison of adjectives, is not, on the contrary, made
by inflections, but by separate words. There is no dual number, but in
all the dialects, so far as examined, a distinction is made in the
plural of the first person, to denote the inclusion or exclusion of the
object. There is no distinction between the pronoun, singular and
plural, of the third person. The language has some redundancies, which
would be pruned off by cultivation. It has many liquid and labial
sounds. It has a soft flow and is easy of attainment. It is peculiarly
rich and varied, in its compound terms for visible objects, and their
motions or acts. Streams, mountains, vallies, and waters, in all their
variety of appearance, are graphically described. It is equally suited
to describe the phenomena of the heavens, the air, tempests, sounds,
light, colours, motion, and the various phases of the clouds and
planetary bodies. It is from this department, that a large portion of
their personal names are taken.

It is true that many of the grammatical principles of the Algonquin
languages, are also developed in other stocks. Yet these stocks are not
as well known. It was chiefly in the area of the Algonquin tribes, that
the British and French, and Dutch and Swedish colonists settled, and the
result of enquiry, through a long period, has accumulated most materials
in relation to this type of the American languages. Specific notices of
each of the subdivisions of this stock, will be given under the
appropriate names.

The general synonyms for this nation are but few. The principal
differences in the orthography, between the French and English writers
consist in the latter's spelling the last syllable _quin_, while the
former employ _kin_. In old encyclopædias and gazetteers, the phrase
Algonquinensis, is used. The term Abernaquis, is also a French mode of
annotation for the same word, but is rather applied at this time to a
specific band. The word Algic, derived from the same root, has been
applied by the writer to the entire circle of the Algonquin tribes, in
their utmost former extent in North America. Mr. Gallatin has proposed
the term "Algonkin-Lenape," as a philological denomination for this
important family. Their own name for the race, is a question of some
diversity of opinion. Those particular tribes, who were found on the
Atlantic coast between the Chesapeak-bay and the Hudson, called
themselves Lenapes, generally with the prefixed or qualifying noun of
Linno, or Lenno. Other tribes extending over the largest area of the
union, and of British America, inhabited by this stock, denote
themselves as a race, by the term Anishinábá, that is, the common

The term Lenápe, signifies a male, and is identical in sense with the
Algonquin word Iába. If Lenno, or Linno be, as some contend, a term
denoting _original_, they must be conceded to have had more forethought,
and a greater capacity for generalization, than other stocks have
manifested, by calling themselves, Original Men. If, however, it only
implies, as others acquainted with this language, assert, _common_ or
_general_, then is here perceived to be a perfect identity in the
meaning of the two terms.

ALGONAC, a village of the county of St. Clair, Michigan, which is
pleasantly situated on the banks of the river St. Clair. It is a term
derived from the word Algonquin, and _akee_, earth or land.

ALGONQUINENSIS, a term used in old gazetteers and geographical
dictionaries, for the Algonquins.

ALIETANS, a name for the Shoshones, or Snake Indians. See Ietans.

ALIBAMONS, or ALIBAMIS, ancient forms of orthography for the tribe of
the Alabamas.

ALINA, a settlement of Pinzandare, New Spain, containing 20 Indian
families, who have a commerce in maize and wax.

ALIPKONCK, an Indian village which, in 1659, stood on the east banks of
the river Hudson, between the influx of the Croton, then called by the
Dutch Saehkill, and the Indian village of Sing Sing. [Osinsing.]
Aneebikong? place of leaves, or rich foliage.

ALLCA, an ancient province of the kingdom of Peru, south of Cuczo,
inhabited by a race of natives, who made a vigorous stand against Manco
Capac, the fourth emperor of the Incas, and called the conqueror. In
this defence, they were favoured by the rugged character of the country,
which abounds in woods, mountains, lakes, and gold and silver mines.

ALLEGAN, an agricultural and milling county of the state of Michigan,
bordering on the east shores of lake Michigan. It is a derivative word,
from Algonkin, and _gan_ the penultimate syllable of the Odjibwa term
Sa-gí-é-gan, a lake.

ALLEGHANY, the leading chain of mountains of the United States east of
the Mississippi, also one of the two principal sources of the Ohio
river. Indian tradition attributes the origin of this name to an ancient
race of Indians who were called Tallegewy, or Allegewy. This nation,
tradition asserts, had spread themselves east of the Mississippi and of
the Ohio. They were a warlike people, and defended themselves in long
and bloody wars, but were overpowered and driven south by a confederacy
of tribes, whose descendants still exist in the Algonquin and Iroquois
stocks. Such is the account of the Delawares.

ALMOLOIA, a settlement of Zultepec in New Spain, of 77 Indian families;
also, in Metepec, in the same kingdom, of 156 families.

ALMOLOLOAIAN, a settlement in the district of Colima, New Spain, of 60
Indian families.

ALOTEPEC, ib. has 67 families.

ALOZOZINGO, ib. has 110 families.

ALPIZAGUA, ib. has 36 families.

ALPOIECA, ib. has 42 families. Another, same name, of 115 families.

ALPOIECAZINGO, ib. has 140 families.

ALPONECA, ib. has 30 families. Another, same name, 77 families.

ALTAMAHA, a river of Georgia.

ALTOTONGA, the name of a settlement of Xalapa, in New Spain. The word
signifies in the Mexican language, hot and saltish water, and this comes
from the intermingled qualities of two streams which originate in a
mountain near to each other, and form by their junction a river which
runs into the lake of Alchichica.

ALZOUI, a settlement of 190 Indian families, of Tlapa, in New Spain, or
Mexico. They are industrious, cultivating maize, cotton, French beans
and rice.

ALMOUCHICO, the Indian name for New England, on the map of "Novi
Belgii," published at Amsterdam in 1659.

AMACACHES, a nation of Indians of Brazil, of the province of Rio
Janiero. They inhabit the mountains south of the city. They are
numerous, and much dreaded, on account of the desperate incursions they
have made into the Portuguese settlements. Their weapons are darts, and
macanaw, a kind of club made of a very heavy wood. They poison their
arrows and lances.

AMALISTES, a band of Algonquins, living on the St. Lawrence, and
numbering 500 in 1760.

AMANALCO, an Indian settlement of the district of Metepeque, Mexico, of
1224 families.

AMAPAES, a barbarous nation of Indians in New Andalusia, to the west of
the river Orinoco, near the mountains of Paria. They are valiant and
hardy; sincere and faithful in their engagements. They live by the chace
and by fishing. They make arms, which are tipped by vegetable poisons.
They are at war with the Isaperices. Their territory is called, after
them, Amapaya.

AMAPILCAN, a settlement of Tlapa, Mexico, containing 15 Indian families.

AMATEPEC, an Indian settlement of Zultepec, Mexico, situated on the top
of a mountain, consisting of 80 families. Another settlement, of the
same name, in the district of Toltontepec, has 15 Indians families. Both
have a cold temperature.

AMATICLAN, a settlement of Huitepec, in Mexico, containing 43 Indian

AMATINCHAN, a settlement of Tlapa, Mexico, containing 62 Indian

AMATLAN, a settlement of Tanzitaro, Mexico, containing 60 Indian
families. Another settlement of San Louis, has 380 families. Another, in
the district of Cordova, has 220. Another, in Zacatlan 248. Another, in
Cozamaopan has 150. All these bear the same name, with the prefix of the
dedicatory patron, Santa Ana.

AMBOY, a bay of New Jersey. This part of the state was occupied, in
ancient time, by a tribe or band of the Minci, who were called

AMEALCO, a settlement of Querataro, Mexico, containing 38 Indian

AMECA, a settlement of Autlan, Mexico, containing 43 Indian families.

AMECAMECA, a settlement of Chalco, Mexico, containing 570 Indian

AMECAQUE, a settlement of Calpa, Mexico, containing 275 Indian families.

AMERICA; no nation of Indians on this continent, had, so far as we know,
ever generalized sufficiently to bestow a generic name on the continent.
The Algonquin terms "Our Country," AINDANUKEYAN, and "The West," KABEAN,
were probably the most comprehensive which their intercourse or ideas
required. Equivalents for these phrases might be, perhaps, successfully
sought among all the most advanced tribes. The instances here given are
from the Odjibwa dialect.

AMICWAYS, or AMICAWAES, a tribe or family of Indians, who are spoken of
by the French writers as having formerly inhabited the Manatonline chain
of islands in lake Huron. The term is from Amik, a beaver. The Ottowas
settled here, after their discomfiture, along with the Adirondacks, on
the St. Lawrence.

AMIK-EMINIS, the group of Beaver islands of Lake Michigan. The
easternmost of this group is called Amik-aindaud, or the Beaver-house.
These islands are inhabited by Chippewas. In 1840, they numbered 199
souls, of whom 39 were men, 51 women, and 109 children. All were engaged
in the chase, or in fishing, and none in agriculture. Their chief was
called Kinwabekizze.

AMIKWUG, a wild roving nation northwest of the sources of the
Mississippi. See Beaver Indians.

AMILPA, a settlement of Xochimilco, in Mexico, containing 730 Indian
families, who live by agriculture.

AMILTEPEC, a settlement of Juquila, M., containing 14 Indian families.

AMIXOCORES, a barbarous nation of Indians of Brazil. They inhabit the
woods and mountains south of Rio Janerio. They are cruel and
treacherous. They are at continual war with the Portuguese. Very little
is known of the territory they inhabit, or of their manners.

AMMOUGKAUGEN, a name used in 1659, for the southern branch of the
Piscataqua river.

AMOLA, or AMULA, a judicial district in Guadaxalara, Mexico. In the
Mexican tongue, it signifies the land of many trees, as it abounds in
trees. The change from o to u in the word, is deemed a corruption.

AMOLTEPEC, a settlement of Teozaqualco, Mexico, containing 96 Indian

AMONOOSUCK, an Indian name which is borne by two rivers of New
Hampshire. Both take their rise in the White Mountains. The upper
Amonoosuck enters the Connecticut River, at Northumberland, near upper
Coos. The lower, or Great Amonoosuck, enters the same river above the
town of Haverhill, in lower Coos.

AMOPOCAN, a settlement of Indians of Cuyo, in Chili, situated along the
shores of a river.

AMOZAQUE, a settlement of Puebla de los Angelos, in a hot and dry
temperature, containing 586 Indian families.

AMPONES, a barbarous nation of Indians, in Paraguay. They inhabit the
forest to the south of the Rio de la Plata. They are of small stature.
They are divided into several tribes. They are courageous. They live on
wild tropical fruits, and on fish which are taken in certain lakes. They
preserve these by smoking. They enjoy a fine country and climate. They
find gold in the sand of their rivers, and have some traffic with the
city of Conception. Some converts have been made to the Catholic faith.

AMUES, a settlement and silver mine of San Luis de la Paz, in Mexico. It
has 43 Indian families, besides 93 of Mustees and Mullatoes. They
subsist by digging in the mines.

AMURCAS, a nation of barbarous Indians, descended from the Panches, in
New Grenada. They live in the forests to the south of the river
Magdalena. But little is known of them.

AMUSKEAG, the Indian name of a fall in the river Merrimack, New
Hampshire, 16 miles below Concord, and 7 miles below Hookset falls.

ANA, SANTA. Of the fifty-five names of places in Mexico, or New Spain,
mentioned by Alcedo, which bear this name, seven are the seat of a joint
population of 544 Indian families. Of these, 31 are in Zaqualpa; 117 in
Zultepec; 124 in Toluca; 134 in Cholula; 18 in Yautepec; 25 in Mitla; 70
in Amaqueca; and 149 in Huehuetlan.

ANAHUAC, the ancient Indian name of New Spain, or Mexico. The valley of
Mexico, or Tenochtitlan, is, according to Humboldt, situated in the
centre of the cordillera of Anahuac. This valley is of an oval form. Its
length is 18-3/4 leagues, estimating from the entry of the Rio Tenango
into lake Chalco to the foot of the Cerro de Sincoque, and 12-1/2
leagues in breadth, from St. Gabriel to the sources of the Rio de
Escapusalco. Its territorial extent is 244-1/2 square leagues, of which
only 22 square leagues are occupied by lakes, being less than a tenth
of the whole surface. The circumference of the valley, estimating around
the crest of the mountains, is 67 leagues. This crest is very elevated
in most parts, and embraces the great volcanoes of La Puebla,
Popocatepetl, and Iztacchihuatl. There are five lakes in this valley, of
which, that of Tezcuco is the largest. All are much diminished in the
quantity of water they yield, since the 16th century, which is owing, in
part, to the destruction of trees by the Spaniards, but most directly to
the canal of Huehuetoco, cut through a mountain, by which the waters are
drawn into the river Panuco, and thus find their way into the Atlantic.
By this work, the city of Mexico itself was freed from all effects of
periodical inundation, and the site enlarged and rendered better suited
to streets and carriages. The waters of lake Tezcuco are impregnated
with muriate and carbonate of soda. Those of Xochimilco are the most
pure and limpid. Humboldt found their specific gravity to be 1.0009,
when distilled water at the temperature of 54° Fahrenheit, was 1.000,
and that of Tezcuco 1.0215.

Of the five lakes mentioned, Xochimilco and Chalco contain 6-1/2 square
leagues; Tezcuco, 10-1/10; San Christoval, 3-6/10; and Zumpango, 1-3/10.
The valley is a basin, surrounded by an elevated wall of porphyry
mountains. The bottom of this basin is 2,277 metres, or 7,468 feet above
the sea.

ANALCO, a settlement of Guadalaxara, in Mexico, containing 40 Indian

ANASAGUNTAKOOK, a band of the Abenaki, on the sources of the
Androscoggin, in Maine.

ANCAMARES, a nation of Indians inhabiting the shores of the river
Madera. They are very warlike and robust. In 1683 they attacked the
Portuguese, and compelled them to give up the navigation of the river.
They are divided into different tribes. The most numerous are the
Ancamares, who inhabit the shores of the river Cayari.

ANCAS, a nation of Indians in Peru, who, on the 6th January, 1725, were
overwhelmed and destroyed by the ruins of a mountain which burst forth
by an earthquake. Fifteen thousand souls perished on that occasion.

ANCE, or HANCE'S band of Chippewas, living at Point St. Ignace, on the
straits of Michilimackinac, in Michigan. This band, in 1840, as denoted
by the annuity pay rolls, numbered 193; of whom, 33 were men, 54 women,
and 106 children. They subsist in part by hunting the small furred
animals still existing in the country, and in part by fishing. They
migrate from place to place, as the season varies, plant very little,
and are addicted to the use of ardent spirits.

ANCLOTE, an island on the southwest coast of Florida; also, a river
flowing into the gulf at that locality, which is also called, in the
Seminole dialect, the Est-has-hotee.

ANCUTERES, a nation of infidel Indians inhabiting the forests of the
river Napo, in Quito. They are numerous, savage, treacherous, and

ANDASTES, a nation formerly inhabiting the territory on the southern
shores of lake Erie, southwest of the Senecas. They were extirpated by
the Iroquois.

ANDAIG WEOS, or CROW'S FLESH, a hereditary chief of the Chippewa nation,
living towards the close of the last century at the ancient Indian
village of La Pointe Chegoimegon, on lake Superior. He possessed
qualities, which, under a different phasis of society, would have
developed themselves in marked acts of benevolence. Numbers of
anecdotes, favourable to his character, are related of him, and have
been handed down by tradition among the French residents on that remote
frontier. Although a warrior, engaged in frequent expeditions against
the enemies of his tribe, he opposed the shedding of the blood of white
men who were encountered, in a defenceless state, in the pursuits of
trade. He also resisted the plunder of their property. He had a strong
natural sense of justice, accompanied with moral energy, and gave
utterance to elevated and ennobling sentiments in his intercourse.

ANDREAS, SAN, a settlement of Texupilco, in Mexico, containing 77 Indian
families; another of Toluco, of 134; another in Tlatotepec, of 33;
another in Tuxtla, of 1170; another in Guejozingo, of 15; another in
Papalotepec, of 20; another in Hiscoutepec, of 68; another in
Tepehuacan, of 40; all under the same dedicatory name.

ANDROSCOGGIN, the main western source of the river Kennebec, in Maine.

ANGAGUA, SANTIAGO DE, a settlement of Valladolid, Mexico, containing 22
Indian families.

ANGAMOCUTIRO, a settlement of the same district with the preceding,
containing 106 Indian families.

ANGARAES, a province of Peru, containing six curacies or parishes of

ANGELES, PUEBLA DE LOS, the capitol of the province of Tlaxcala, in New
Spain, or Mexico, founded in 1533. The entire number of Indian families
within this important jurisdiction is 3,200, which, at the ordinary rate
of the estimation of Indian population here, that is, five souls to a
family, gives an aggregate of 16,000. These are descendants of the
ancient Azteecs, who inhabited the country on its conquest.

This is, however, but the population of the chief town or capital. The
entire intendency of Pueblos de los Angeles contained, in 1793, 508,098
souls. Of this number, 373,752 were Indians of pure blood, divided into
187,531 males, and 186,221 females. There were also 77,908 of the mixed
race, divided into 37,318 males, and 40,590 females. But 54,980 were
Spaniards, or whites, exclusive of 585 secular ecclesiastics, 446 monks,
and 427 nuns.

This preponderance of the native Indian population is still more
striking in the government of Ilaxcala, which, of course, includes the
capital above named. In 1793, it contained a population of 59,177 souls;
of which, 42,878 were Indians, divided into 21,849 males, and 21,029
females. The town is governed by a Cacique, and four Indian Alcaldes,
who represent the ancient heads of the four quarters, still called
Teepectipac, Ocotelalco, Quiahtuitztlan, and Tizatlan. By virtue of a
royal cedula of 16th April, 1585, the whites have no seat in the
municipality. The Cacique, or Indian Governor, enjoys the honors of an
_alferez real_. Notwithstanding the zeal of a Spanish intendant general,
the progress of the inhabitants in industry and prosperity has been
extremely slow. The secret of this is, perhaps, revealed in the fact
that four fifths of the whole property belongs to mort-main proprietors,
that is to say, to communities of monks, to chapters, corporations, and
hospitals. Their trade is also depressed by the enormous price of
carriage from the table lands, and the want of beasts of burden.

The geology and antiquities of this part of Mexico, are equally
interesting. The intendency of Puebla is traversed by the high
cordilleras of Anahuac, which, beyond the 18th degree of latitude,
spreads into a plain, elevated from 1,800 to 2,000 metres above the
level of the ocean, or from 5,905 to 6,561 feet. In this intendency is
also the Popocatepetl, the highest mountain in Mexico. Humboldt's
measurement of this volcano makes it 600 metres (1,968 feet,) higher
than the most elevated summit of the old continent. It is, indeed, only
exceeded between Panama and Behring's Straits, by Mt. St. Elias.

The table land of Puebla exhibits remarkable vestiges of ancient
civilization. The fortifications of Tlaxcala are posterior in the date
of their construction to the great pyramid of Cholula. This pyramid, or
teocalli, is the most stupendous monument erected by the race. Its
squares are arranged in exact accordance with the astronomical
parallels. It is constructed in stages or terraces, the highest of which
is 177 feet above the plain. It has a base of 1423 feet. By a passage
excavated into the north side of it, a few years ago, it is found to be
solid, and to consist of alternate layers of brick and clay. Its centre
has not, however, been reached. Its height exceeds the third of the
great Egyptian pyramids of the group of Ghiza. In its base, however, it
exceeds that of all other edifices found by travellers in the old
continent; it is almost double that of the great pyramid of Cheops. To
conceive of the vastness of the structure, let the traveller imagine a
square four times the size of the Place Vendome, piled up with brick, in
terraces, twice the utmost height of the palace of the Louvre.

The Indians of the province of Tlaxcala speak three languages, differing
from one another, namely: the Mexican, Totonac, and Tlapanac. The first
is peculiar to the inhabitants of Puebla, Cholula, and Tlascalla; the
second to the inhabitants of Zacatlan; and the third is preserved in the
environs of Tlapa. The population of the entire intendency of Puebla, in
1803, that is, ten years after the census above noted, had advanced to
813,300 in an extent of 2,696 square leagues, giving 301 inhabitants to
the square league. Small as this may appear, it is four times greater
than that of Sweden, and nearly equal to that of the Kingdom of Arragon.

ANIALIS, a barbarous nation of South American Indians, in the llanos of
Casanare and Meta, in the new kingdom of Grenada. They are descended
from the Betoyes. They are very numerous, and of a gentle nature. The
Jesuits established a mission among them in 1722.

ANNACIOIS, or ANNACOUS, a barbarous nation of Indians, of the province
of Puerto Seguro, in Brazil. They inhabit the woods and mountains to the
west, and near the rivers Grande and Yucara. They are in a constant
state of warfare, night and day. They are irreconcileable enemies of the
Portuguese, whose colonies and cultivated lands they continually infest,
and which they destroyed in 1687.

ANNEMOSING, the name of the Ottowas, and Chippewas, for the Fox Islands,
of lake Michigan. It is derived of Annemose, a young dog or fox, and
_ing_, a particle denoting place, or locality.

ANNEMIKEENS, a Chippewa hunter of Red River, in Hudson's bay, who
survived a conflict with a grisly bear. After being terribly lacerated,
in his face and limbs, but not deprived of consciousness, he affected
death. The animal then seized him gently by the neck, and dragged him to
a thicket, where he was left, as it was thought, to be eaten when the
calls of hunger should demand. From this position he arose, first
setting up, and binding parts of his lacerated flesh down, and
afterwards rose, and succeeded in reaching his wigwam, where, by skill
in the use of simples, his wounds were entirely healed. The name
signifies little thunder, being a compound from Annimikee, thunder, and
the diminutive inflection in us.

ANNUTTELIGO, a hammock brought to notice in the late war with the
Seminoles, in Florida. It is situated east of the Withlacooche river.

ANOLAIMA, a settlement of Iocaima, in New Granada, containing a small,
but indefinite population of Indians.

ANTALIS, a barbarous and warlike nation of Indians, in the kingdom of
Chile, to the west of Coquimbo. They valorously opposed the progress of
the Inca Yupanqui, compelling him, in the end, to terminate his
conquests on the other side of the river Maule, the last boundary of

ANTIQUITIES. See the articles Grave Creek, Marrietta, Circleville, &c.

ANTHONY, ST., the falls of, being the fourth and lowermost of the
perpendicular, or prominent falls of the Mississippi, and by far the

The first fall of this stream is the Kakabika, situated about half a
day's journey below Itasca lake; the second is called Pukägama, and
occurs below the influx of the Leech lake branch. The third is below
Elk river and is passable in boats and canoes. St. Anthony's is the most
considerable of the series, and the only one which presents an abrupt
plunge of the stream from horizontal rocks. They were thus named by
Hennepin, about 1680. By the Dacotah Indians, who inhabit the country,
they are called Haha. It is at this point, that the Mississippi, which
gathers its waters from high table lands, and has its course, for
several hundreds of miles, through diluvions superimposed on the
primitive, first plunges into the great secondary formation. For more
than a thousand miles, in its way southward, its banks are rendered
imposing and precipitous by this formation. At or near the Grand Tower,
and its adjunct precipice, on the Missouri shore, this formation ceases,
and the river enters the great delta, which still confines it, for a
like distance, before it expands itself, by its bifurcations, and final
exit, in the Gulf of Mexico, at the Balize.

ANTONIO, SAN. The following statistical facts, denote the Indian
population, of sundry settlements, bearing this name, within the former
government of New Spain, now Mexico. In the limits of Toliman, 32
families; in Tampolomon, 128; in Toluca 51; in Metepec 261; in
Coronango, 44; in Huehuetlan, 140; in Chapala, 27.

APACAHUND, or WHITE EYES, a Delaware chief of note, of the era of the
American revolution, who is frequently mentioned in documents of the

APACES, SAN JUAN BAUTISTA DE, a settlement of Zelaga in the province and
bishopric of Mechoacan, containing 135 Indian families. Another
settlement, of the same name, with the dedicatory title of Santa Maria,
in the district of Zitaguaro, contains 24 families.

APACHES, a nation of Indians, located between the Rio del Norte and the
sources of the Nuaces, who were reported, in 1817, at 3,500. In an
official report submitted to Congress, in 1837, their numbers "within
striking distance of the western frontier," are vaguely put at, 20,280.

APALLACHIANS, a nation of Indians who formerly inhabited the extreme
southern portion of the United States, and have left their name in the
leading range of the Apallachian mountains. In 1539 De Soto found them
in Florida, a term at that era comprehending also the entire area of the
present states of Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and other portions of
the southern territory. They were numerous, fierce, and valorous. They
were clothed in the skins of wild beasts. They used bows and arrows,
clubs and spears. They did not, as many nations of barbarians do, poison
their darts. They were temperate, drinking only water. They did not make
wars on slight pretences, or for avarice, but to repress attacks, or
remedy injustice. They treated their prisoners with humanity, and like
other persons of their households. They were long lived, some persons
reaching a hundred years. They worshipped the sun, to which they sang
hymns, morning and evening. These facts are to be gleaned from the
narrative. What were their numbers, how far they extended their
jurisdiction, what were their affiliations by language, customs, and
institutions with other tribes, cannot be accurately decided. Much that
is said of their civil and military polity, buildings, ceremonies and
other traits, applies to the Floridian Indians generally, and may be
dismissed as either vague, or not characteristic of the Appalachians. A
quarto volume was published in London in 1666, by John Davies, under the
title of a "History of the Caribby Indians," in which he traces the
caribs of the northern groups of the West Indies, to the Apallachians,
and relates many incidents, and narrates a series of surprising wars and
battles, reaching, in their effects, through the Mississippi valley up
to the great lakes, which have the appearance of fable. How much of this
account, which speaks of "cattle" and "herds," may be grafted on ancient
traditions, it is impossible to tell. There are some proofs of such an
ancient civilisation in the Ohio valley and other sections of the
country, but they are unconnected with any Indian traditions, which have
survived, unless we consider the mounds and remains of antique forts as
monumental evidences of these reputed wars. The Lenapee accounts of
these ancient wars with the Tallagees or Allegewy, may be thought to
refer to this ancient people, who had, if this conjecture be correct,
extended their dominion to the middle and northern latitudes of the
present area of the United States, prior to the appearance of the
Algonquin and Iroquies races. Mr. Irving has suggested the name of
Apallachia, or Allegania, derived from the stock, for this division of
the continent.



The course of lectures, of which the following are part, were delivered
before the St. Mary's committee of the Algic Society. Two of them only
have been published. They are here continued from the article "Indian
Languages," at page 202 of the "Narrative of the Discovery of the actual
Source of the Mississippi, in Itasca Lake," published by the Harpers, in
1834. The family of languages selected as the topic of inquiry, is the
Algonquin. All the examples employed are drawn from that particular type
of it which is called Chippewa, in our transactions with them, but which
they uniformly pronounce themselves, Od-jib-wa. These terms are employed
as perfect synonyms. The phrase "Odjibwa-Algonquin," wherever it occurs,
is intended to link, in the mind of the inquirer, the species and the
genus (if we may borrow a term from natural history) of the language,
but is not fraught with, or intended to convey, any additional idea. The
three terms relate to one and the same people.


     Observations on the Adjective--Its distinction into two classes
     denoted by the presence or absence of vitality--Examples of the
     animates and inanimates--Mode of their conversion into
     substantives--How pronouns are applied to these derivatives, and
     the manner of forming compound terms from adjective bases, to
     describe the various natural phenomena--The application of these
     principles in common conversation, and in the description of
     natural and artificial objects--Adjectives always preserve the
     distinction of number--Numerals--Arithmetical capacity of the
     language--The unit exists in duplicate.

1. It has been remarked that the distinction of words into animates and
inanimates, is a principle intimately interwoven throughout the
structure of the language. It is, in fact, so deeply imprinted upon its
grammatical forms, and is so perpetually recurring, that it may be
looked upon, not only as forming a striking peculiarity of the language,
but as constituting the fundamental principle of its structure, from
which all other rules have derived their limits, and to which they have
been made to conform. No class of words appears to have escaped its
impress. Whatever concords other laws impose, they all agree, and are
made subservient in the establishment of this.

It might appear to be a useless distinction in the adjective, when the
substantive is thus marked; but it will be recollected that it is in the
plural of the substantive only, that the distinction is marked. And we
shall presently have occasion to show, that redundancy of forms, are, to
considerable extent, obviated in practice.

For the origin of the principle itself, we need look only to nature,
which endows animate bodies with animate properties and qualities, and
vice versa. But it is due to the tribes who speak this language, to have
invented one set of adjective symbols to express the ideas peculiarly
appropriate to the former, and another set applicable, exclusively, to
the latter; and to have given the words good and bad, black and white,
great and small, handsome and ugly, such modifications as are
practically competent to indicate the general nature of the objects
referred to, whether provided with, or destitute of the vital principle.
And not only so, but by the figurative use of these forms, to exalt
inanimate masses into the class of living beings, or to strip the latter
of the properties of life--a principle of much importance to their
public speakers.

This distinction is shown in the following examples, in which it will be
observed, that the inflection _izzi_, generally denotes the personal,
and _au_, _un_, or _wud_, the impersonal forms.

              Adj: _Inanimate_.     Adj: _Animate_.
  Bad         Monaud         ud     Monaud         izzi.
  Ugly        Gushkoonaug   wud     Gushkoonaug   oozzi.
  Beautiful   Bishegaindaug wud     Bishegaindaug oozzi.
  Strong      Söng           un     Söng           izzi.
  Soft        Nök            un     Nök            izzi.
  Hard        Mushkow        au     Mushkow        izzi.
  Smooth      Shoiskw        au     Shoisk        oozzi.
  Black       Mukkuddäw      au     Mukkuddäw      izzi.
  White       Waubishk       au     Waubishk       izzi.
  Yellow      Ozahw          au     Ozahw          izzi.
  Red         Miskw          au     Miskw          izzi.
  Blue        Ozhahwushkw    au     Ozhahwushkw    izzi.
  Sour        Sheew          un     Sheew          izzi.
  Sweet       Weeshkob       un     Weeshkob       izzi.
  Light       Naung          un     Naung          izzi.

It is not, however, in all cases, by mere modifications of the
adjective, that these distinctions are expressed. Words totally
different in sound, and evidently derived from radically different
roots, are, in some few instances, employed, as in the following

              Adj: _Inanimate_.    Adj: _Animate_.
  Good        Onisheshin           Minno.
  Bad         Monaudud             Mudjee.
  Large       Mitshau              Mindiddo.
  Small       Pungee               Uggaushi.
  Old         Geekau               Gitizzi.

It may be remarked of these forms, that although the impersonal will, in
some instances, take the personal inflections, the rule is not
reciprocated, and minno, and mindiddo, and gitizzi, and all words
similarly situated, remain unchangeably animates. The word pungee, is
limited to the expression of quantity, and its correspondent uggaushi,
to size, or quality. Kisheda, (hot) is restricted to the heat of a fire;
keezhauta, to the heat of the sun. There is still a third term to
indicate the natural heat of the body, _Kizzizoo_. Mitshau (large) is
generally applied to countries, lakes, rivers, &c. Mindiddo, to the
body, and gitshee, indiscriminately. Onishishin, and its correspondent
onishishsha, signify, handsome or fair, as well as good. Kwonaudj a. a.
and kwonaudj ewun a. i. mean, strictly, handsome, and imply nothing
further. Minno, is the appropriate personal form for good. Mudgee and
monaudud, may reciprocally change genders, the first by the addition of
i-e-e, and the second by altering ud to izzi.

Distinctions of this kind are of considerable importance in a practical
point of view, and their observance or neglect, are noticed with
scrupulous exactness by the Indians. The want of inanimate forms to such
words as happy, sorrowful, brave, sick &c., creates no confusion, as
inanimate nouns cannot, strictly speaking, take upon themselves such
qualities, and when they do--as they sometimes do, by one of those
extravagant figures of speech, which are used in their tales of
transformations, the animate forms answer all purposes. For in these
tales the whole material creation may be clothed with animation. The
rule, as exhibited in practice, is limited, with sufficient accuracy, to
the boundaries prescribed by nature.

To avoid a repetition of forms, were the noun and the adjective both to
be employed in their usual relation, the latter is endowed with a
pronominal, or substantive inflection. And the use of the noun, in its
separate form, is thus wholly superceded. Thus onishishin, a. i. and
onishishsha, a. a. become Wanishishing, that which is good, or fair, and
Wanishishid, he who is good or fair. The following examples will exhibit
this rule, under each of its forms.

      Compound or Noun-Adjective Animate.
  Black    Mukkuddaw izzi    Makuddaw  izzid.
  White    Waubishk  izzi    Wyaubishk izzid.
  Yellow   Ozahw     izzi    Wazauw    izzid.
  Red      Miskw     izzi    Mashk     oozzid.
  Strong   Söng      izzi    Söng      izzid.

          Noun-Adjective Inanimate.
  Black    Mukkuddäw au      Mukkuddäw aug.
  White    Waubishk  au      Wyaubishk aug.
  Yellow   Ozahw     au      Wäzhauw   aug.
  Red      Mishkw    au      Mishkw    aug.

The animate forms in these examples will be recognized, as exhibiting a
further extension of the rule, mentioned in the preceding chapter, by
which substantives are formed from the indicative of the verb by a
permutation of the vowels. And these forms are likewise rendered plural
in the manner there mentioned. They also undergo changes to indicate the
various persons. For instance onishisha is thus declined to mark the

  Wänishish-eyaun    I (am) good or fair.
  Wänishish-eyun     Thou (art) good or fair.
  Wänishish-id       He (is) good or fair.
  Wänishish-eyang    We (are) good or fair (ex.)
  Wänishish-eyung    We (are) good or fair (in.)
  Wänishish-eyaig    Ye (are) good or fair.
  Wänishish-idigj    They (are) good or fair.

The inanimate forms, being without person, are simply rendered plural by
_in_, changing maiskwaug, to maiskwaug-in, &c., &c. The verbal
signification which these forms assume, as indicated in the words am,
art, is, are, is to be sought in the permutative change of the first
syllable. Thus o is changed to wä, muk to mäk, waub to wy-aub, ozau to
wäzau, misk to maisk, &c. The pronoun, as is usual in the double
compounds, is formed wholly by the inflections eyaun, eyun, &c.

The strong tendency of the adjective to assume a personal, or
pronomico-substantive form, leads to the employment of many words in a
particular, or exclusive sense. And in any future practical attempts
with the language, it will be found greatly to facilitate its
acquisition if the adjectives are arranged in distinct classes,
separated by this characteristic principle of their application. The
examples we have given are chiefly those which may be considered
strictly animate, or inanimate, admit of double forms, and are of
general use. Many of the examples recorded in the original manuscripts
employed in these lectures, are of a more concrete character, and, at
the same time, a more limited use. Thus shaugwewe, is a weak person,
nökaugumme, a weak drink, nokaugwud, a weak, or soft piece of wood.
Sussägau, is fine, but can only be applied to personal appearance:
beesau, indicates fine grains. Keewushkwa is giddy, and keewushkwäbee,
giddy with drink, both being restricted to the third person. Söngun and
songizzi, are the personal and impersonal forms of strong, as given
above. But Mushkowaugumme, is strong drink. In like manner the two words
for hard, as above, are restricted to solid substances. Sunnuhgud is
hard (to endure,) waindud, is easy (to perform.) Söngedää is brave,
Shaugedää cowardly, keezhinzhowizzi, active, kizhekau, swift,
onaunegoozzi lively, minwaindum happy, gushkwaindum, sorrowful, but all
these forms are confined to the third person of the indicative,
singular. Pibbigwau, is a rough or knotted substance. Pubbiggoozzi, a
rough person. Keenwau is long, or tall, (any solid mass.) Kaynozid is a
tall person. Tahkozid a short person. Wassayau is light; wassaubizzoo,
the light of the eye; wasshauzhä, the light of a star, or any luminous
body. Keenau is sharp, keenaubikud, a sharp knife, or stone.
Keezhaubikeday, is hot metal, a hot stove, &c. Keezhaugummeda, is hot
water. Aubudgeetön, is useful,--a useful thing. Wauweeug is frivolous,
any thing frivolous in word, or deed. Tubbushish, appears to be a
general term for low. Ishpimming is high in the air. Ishpau, is applied
to any high fixture, as a house, &c. Ishpaubikau is a high rock.
Taushkaubikau, a split rock.

These combinations and limitations meet the inquirer at every step. They
are the current phrases of the language. They present short, ready, and
often beautiful modes of expression. But as they shed light, both upon
the idiom and genius of the language, I shall not scruple to add further
examples and illustrations. Ask a Chippewa, the name for rock, and he
will answer _awzhebik_. The generic import of aubik, has been explained.
Ask him the name for red rock, and he will answer miskwaubik,--for white
rock, and he will answer waubaubik, for black rock mukkuddäwaubik,--for
yellow rock, ozahwaubik,--for green rock, ozhahwushkwaubik,--for bright
rock, wassayaubik, for smooth rock, shoishkwaubik, &c., compounds in
which the words red, white, black, yellow, &c., unite with aubik. Pursue
this inquiry and the following forms will be elicited.

  Miskwaubik-ud.        It (is) a red rock.
  Waubaubik-ud.         It (is) a white rock.
  Mukkuddäwaubik-ud.    It (is) a black rock.
  Ozahwaubik-ud.        It (is) a yellow rock.
  Wassayaubik-ud.       It (is) a bright rock.
  Shoiskwaubik-ud.      It (is) a smooth rock.

  Miskwaubik-izzi.      He (is) a red rock.
  Waubaubik-izzi.       He (is) a white rock.
  Mukkuddäwaubik-izzi.  He (is) a black rock.
  Ozahwaubik-izzi.      He (is) a yellow rock.
  Wassayaubik-izzi.     He (is) a bright rock.
  Shoiskwaubik-izzi.    He (is) a smooth rock.

Add _bun_ to these terms, and they are made to have passed
away,--prefix _tah_ to them, and their future appearance is indicated.
The word "is" in the translations, although marked with brackets, is not
deemed wholly gratuitous. There is, strictly speaking, an idea of
existence given to these compounds, by the particle au in aubic, which
seems to be indirectly a derivative from that great and fundamental root
of the language iau. Bik, is, apparently, the radix of the expression
for "rock."

Let this mode of interrogation be continued, and extended to other
adjectives, or the same adjectives applied to other objects, and results
equally regular and numerous will be obtained. Minnis, we shall be told,
is an island: miskominnis, a red island; mukkaddäminnis, a black island;
waubeminnis, a white island, &c. Annokwut, is a cloud; miskwaunakwut, a
red cloud; mukkuddawukwut, a black cloud; waubahnokwut, a white cloud;
ozahwushkwahnokwut, a blue cloud, &c. Neebe is the specific term for
water; but is not generally used in combination with the adjective. The
word _guma_, like _aubo_, appears to be a generic term for water, or
potable liquids. Hence the following terms:--

  Gitshee,    Great.     Gitshiguma,     Great water.
  Nokun,      Weak.      Nôkauguma,      Weak drink.
  Mushkowau,  Strong.    Mushkowauguma,  Strong drink.
  Weeshkobun, Sweet.     Weeshkobauguma, Sweet drink.
  Sheewun,    Sour.      Sheewauguma,    Sour drink.
  Weesugun,   Bitter.    Weesugauguma,   Bitter drink.
  Minno,      Good.      Minwauguma,     Good drink.
  Monaudud    Bad.       Mahnauguma,     Bad drink.
  Miskwau,    Red.       Miskwauguma,    Red drink.
  Ozahwau,    Yellow.    Ozahwauguma,    Yellow drink.
  Weenun,     Dirty.     Weenauguma,     Dirty water.
  Peenud,     Clear.     Peenauguma,     Clear Water.

From minno, and from monaudud, good and bad, are derived the following
terms. Minnopogwud, it tastes well; minnopogoozzi, he tastes well.
Mauzhepogwud, it tastes bad; mawzhepogoozzi, he tastes bad.
Minnomaugwud, it smells good; minnomaugoozzi, he smells good;
magghemaugawud, it smells bad; mawhemaugoozzi, he smells bad. The
inflections gwud, and izzi, here employed, are clearly indicative, as in
other combinations, of the words it and _him_.

Baimwa is sound. Baimwäwa, the passing sound. Minwäwa, a pleasant sound.
Maunwawa, a disagreeable sound. Mudwayaushkau, the sound of waves
dashing on the shore. Mudwayaunnemud, the sound of winds. Mudway au
kooskau, the sound of falling trees. Mudwäkumigishin, the sound of a
person falling upon the earth. Mudwaysin, the sound of any inanimate
mass falling on the earth. These examples might be continued ad
infinitum. Every modification of circumstances--almost every peculiarity
of thought is expressed by some modification of the orthography. Enough
has been given to prove that the adjective combines itself with the
substantive, the verb and the pronoun--that the combinations thus
produced are numerous, afford concentrated modes of conveying ideas, and
oftentimes happy terms of expression. Numerous and prevalent as these
forms are, they do not, however, preclude the use of adjectives in their
simple forms. The use of the one, or of the other appears to be
generally at the option of the speaker. In most cases brevity or euphony
dictates the choice. Usage results from the application of these
principles. There may be rules resting upon a broader basis, but if so,
they do not appear to be very obvious. Perhaps the simple adjectives are
oftenest employed before verbs and nouns, in the first and second
persons singular.

  Ningee minno neebau-nabun,              I have slept well.
  Ningee minno weesin,                    I have eaten a good meal.
  Ningee minno pimmoossay,                I have walked well,
                                          or a good distance.
  Kägät minno geeghigud,                  It (is) a very pleasant day.
  Kwunaudj ningödahs,                     I have a handsome garment.
  Ke minno iau nuh?                       Are you well?
  Auncende ain deyun?                     What ails you?
  Keezhamonedo aupädushshäwainenik,       God prosper you.
  Aupädush Shäwaindaugoozzeyun,           Good luck attend you.
  Aupädush nau kinwainzh pimmaudizziyun,  May you live long.
  Onauneegoozzin,                         Be (thou) cheerful.
  Ne miuwaindum waubumaun,                I (am) glad to see you.
  Kwanaudj Kweeweezains,                  A pretty boy.
  Kägät Söngeedää,                        He (is) a brave man.
  Kägät onishishsha,                      She (is) handsome.
  Gitshee kinözee,                        He (is) very tall.
  Uggausau bäwizzi,                       She (is) slender.
  Gitshee sussaigau,                      He (is) fine dressed.
  Bishegaindaugooziwug meegwunug,         They (are) beautiful feathers.
  Ke daukoozzinuh?                        Are you sick?
  Monaudud maundun muskeekee,             This (is) bad medicine.
  Monaudud aindauyun,                     My place of dwelling (is) bad.
  Aindauyaun mitshau,                     My place of dwelling is large.
  Ne mittigwaub onishishsha,              My bow (is) good.
  Ne bikwukön monaududön,                 But my arrows (are) bad.
  Ne minwaindaun appaukoozzegun,          I love mild, or mixed,
  Kauweekau neezhikay ussämau             But I never smoke pure
  ne sugguswaunausee,                     tobacco.
  Monaudud maishkowaugumig,               Strong drink (is) bad.
  Keeguhgee baudjeëgonaun,                It makes us foolish.
  Gitshee Monedo nebee ogee ozhetön,      The Great Spirit made water.
  Inineewug dush ween ishkädäwaubo        But man made whiskey.
  ogeo ozhetönahwaun.

These expressions are put down promiscuously, embracing verbs and nouns
as they presented themselves; and without any effort to support the
opinion--which may, or may not be correct--that the elementary forms of
the adjectives are most commonly required before verbs and nouns in the
first and second persons. The English expression is thrown into Indian
in the most natural manner, and of course, without always giving
adjective for adjective, or noun for noun. Thus, God is rendered, not
"Monedo," but, "Geezha Monedo," _Merciful Spirit_. Good luck, is
rendered by the compound phrase "Shäwaindaugoozzeyun," indicating, in a
very general sense _the influence of kindness or benevolence on success
in life_. "Söngedää" is alone, _a brave man_; and the word "Kägät,"
prefixed, is an adverb. In the expression "mild tobacco," the adjective
is entirely dispensed with in the Indian, the sense being sufficiently
rendered by the compound noun "appaukoozzegun," which always means the
Indian weed, or smoking mixture. "Ussamau," on the contrary, without the
adjective, signifies, "pure tobacco." "Bikwakön," signifies blunt, or
lumpy-headed arrows. Assowaun is the barbed arrow. Kwonaudj
kweeweezains, means, not simply "pretty boy," but _pretty little boy_;
and there is no mode of using the word boy but in this diminutive
form--the word itself being a derivative, from kewewe, conjugal with the
regular diminutive in _ains_. "Onaunegoozzin" embraces the pronoun, verb
and adjective, _be thou cheerful_. In the last phrase of the examples,
"man," is rendered men (inineewug) in the translation, as the term _man_
cannot be employed in the general plural sense it conveys in this
connection, in the original. The word "whiskey," is rendered by the
compound phrase ishködawaubo, literally, _fine-liquor_, a generic for
all kinds of ardent spirits.

These aberrations from the literal term, will convey some conceptions of
the difference of the two idioms, although, from the limited nature and
object of the examples, they will not indicate the full extent of this
difference. In giving anything like the spirit of the original, much
greater deviations, in the written forms, must appear. And in fact, not
only the structure of the language, but the mode and _order of thought_
of the Indians is so essentially different, that any attempts to
preserve the English idiom--to give letter for letter, and word for
word, must go far to render the translation pure nonsense.

2. Varied as the adjective is, in its changes it has no comparative
inflection. A Chippewa cannot say that one substance is hotter or colder
than another; or of two or more substances unequally heated, that this,
or that is the hottest or coldest, without employing adverbs, or
accessory adjectives. And it is accordingly by adverbs, and accessory
adjectives, that the degrees of comparison are expressed.

Pimmaudizziwin, is a very general substantive expression, in indicating
_the tenor of being or life_. Izzhewäbizziwin, is a term near akin to
it, but more appropriately applied to the _acts, conduct, manner, or
personal deportment of life_. Hence the expressions:

  Nin bimmaudizziwin,             My tenor of life.
  Ke bimmaudizziwin,              Thy tenor of life.
  O Pimmaudizziwin,               His tenor of life, &c.
  Nin dizekewäbizziwin,           My personal deportment.
  Ke dizhewäbizziwin,             Thy personal deportment.
  O Izzhewäbizziwin,              His personal deportment, &c.

To form the positive degree of comparison for these terms minno, good,
and mudjee, bad, are introduced between the pronoun and verb, giving
rise to some permutations of the vowels and consonants, which affect the
sound only. Thus:--

  Ne minno pimmaudizziwin,        My good tenor of life.
  Ke minno pimmaudizziwin,        Thy good tenor of life.
  Minno pimmaudizziwin,           His good tenor of life.
  Ne mudjee pimmaudizziwin,       My bad tenor of life.
  Ke mudjee pimmaudizziwin,       Thy bad tenor of life.
  Mudjee pimmaudizziwin,          His bad tenor of life.

To place these forms in the comparative degree, nahwudj, more, is
prefixed to the adjective; and the superlative is denoted by mahmowee,
an adverb, or an adjective as it is variously applied, but the meaning
of which, is, in this connexion, most. The degrees of comparison may be
therefore set down as follows:--

  _Positive_,  Kishedä,           Hot, (restricted to the heat of a
  _Comp_.      Nahwudj Kishedä,   More hot.
  _Super_.     Mahmowee Kishedä,  Most hot.

  Your manner of life is good,    Ke dizzihewäbizziwin onishishin.
  Your manner of life is better,{ Ke dizzhewäbizziwin nahwudj
                                { onishishin.
  Your manner of life is best,    Ke dizzhewäbizziwin mahmowee
  His manner of life is best,     Odizzhewäbizziwin mahmowee
  Little Turtle was brave,        Mikkenoköns söngedääbun.
  Tecumseh was braver,            Tecumseh nahwidj söngedääbun.
  Pontiac was bravest,            Pontiac mahmowee söngedääbun.

3. The adjective assumes a negative form when it is preceded by the
adverb. Thus the phrase söngedää, he is brave, is changed to, Kahween
söngedää-see, he is not brave.

    _Positive_.             _Negative_.
  Neebwaukah,         Kahween neebwaukah-see,
    He is wise.         He is not wise.
  Kwonaudjewe,        Kahween kwonaudjewe-see,
    She is handsome.    She is not handsome.
  Oskineegee,         Kahween oskineegee-see,
    He is young.        He is not young.
  Shaugweewee,        Kahween Shaugweewee-see,
    He is feeble.       He is not feeble.
  Geekkau,            Kahween Geekkau-see,
    He is old.          He is not old.
  Mushkowizzi,        Kahween Mushkowizzi-see,
    He is strong.      He is not strong.

From this rule the indeclinable adjectives--by which is meant those
adjectives which do not put on the personal and impersonal forms by
inflection, but consist of radically different roots--form exceptions.

  Are you sick?                   Ke dahkoozzi nuh?
  You are not sick!               Kahween ke dahkoozzi-see!
  I am happy.                     Ne minwaindum.
  I am unhappy.                   Kahween ne minwuinduz-see.
  His manner of life is bad.      Mudjee izzhewabizzi.
  His manner of life is not bad.  Kahween mudjee a izzhewabizzi-see.
  It is large.                    Mitshau muggud.
  It is not large.                Kahween mitshau-seenön.

In these examples the declinable adjectives are rendered negative in
_see_. The indeclinable, remain as simple adjuncts to the verbs, and the
_latter_ put on the negative form.

4. In the hints and remarks which have now been furnished respecting the
Chippewa adjective, its powers and inflections have been shown to run
parallel with those of the substantive, in its separation into animates
and inanimates,--in having the pronominal inflections,--in taking an
inflection for tense--(a topic, which, by the way, has been very
cursorily passed over,) and in the numerous, modifications to form the
compounds. This parallelism has also been intimated to hold good with
respect to number--a subject deeply interesting in itself, as it has its
analogy only in the ancient languages, and it was therefore deemed best
to defer giving examples till they could be introduced without
abstracting the attention from other points of discussion.

Minno and mudjee, good and bad, being of the limited number of personal
adjectives, which modern usage permits being applied, although often
improperly applied, to inanimate objects, they as well as a few other
adjectives, form exceptions to the use of number. Whether we say a good
man or a bad man, good men or bad men, the words minno and mudjee,
remain the same. But all the declinable and coalescing adjectives--
adjectives which join on, and, as it were, _melt into_ the body of the
substantive, take the usual plural inflections, and are governed by the
same rules in regard to their use, as the substantive, personal
adjectives requiring personal plurals, &c.

                     Adjectives Animate.

  Onishishewe mishemin,                 Good apple.
  Kwonaudjewe eekwä,                    Handsome woman.
  Songedää inine,                       Brave man.
  Bishegaindaugoozzi peenasee,          Beautiful bird.
  Ozahwizzi ahmo,                       Yellow bee.

  Onishishewe-wug mishemin-ug,          Good apples.
  Kwonaudjewe-wug eekwä-wug,            Handsome women.
  Songedää-wug inine-wug,               Brave men.
  Bishegaindaugoozzi-wug peenasee-wug,  Beautiful birds.
  Ozahwizzi-wug ahm-ög,                 Yellow bees.

                     Adjectives Inanimate.

  Onishishin mittig,                    Good tree.
  Kwonaudj tshemaun,                    Handsome canoe.
  Monaudud ishkoda,                     Bad fire.
  Weeshkobun aidetaig,                  Sweet fruit.

  Onishishin-ön mittig-ön,              Good trees.
  Kwonaudjewun-ön tshemaun-un,          Handsome canoes.
  Monaudud-ön ishkod-än,                Bad fires.
  Weeshkobun-ön aidetaig-in,            Sweet fruits.

Peculiar circumstances are supposed to exist, in order to render the use
of the adjective, in this connexion with the noun, necessary and proper.
But in ordinary instances, as the narration of events, the noun would
precede the adjective, and oftentimes, particularly where a second
allusion to objects previously named became necessary, the compound
expressions would be used. Thus instead of saying the yellow bee,
wäyzahwizzid, would distinctly convey the idea of that insect, _had the
species been before named_. Under similar circumstances kainwaukoozzid,
agausheid söngaunemud, mushkowaunemud, would respectively signify, a
tall tree, a small fly, a strong wind, a hard wind. And these terms
would become plural in _jig_, which, as before mentioned, is a mere
modification of _ig_, one of the five general animate plural inflections
of the language.

Kägat wahwinaudj abbenöjeeug, is an expression indicating _they are very
handsome children_. Bubbeeweezheewug monetösug, denotes _small insects_.
Minno neewugizzi, is good tempered, he is good tempered.
Mawshininewugizzi, is bad tempered, both having their plural in _wug_.
Nin nuneenahwaindum, I am lonesome. Nin nuneenahwaindaumin, we
(excluding you) are lonesome. Waweea, is a term generally used to
express the adjective sense of _round_. Kwy, is the scalp. (_Weenikwy_
his scalp.) Hence Weewukwon, hat; Wayweewukwonid, a wearer of the hat;
and its plural Wayeewukwonidjig, wearers of the hats--the usual term
applied to Europeans, or white men generally. These examples go to
prove, that under every form in which the adjective can be traced,
whether in its simplest or most compound state, it is susceptible of

The numerals of the language are converted into adverbs, by the
inflection _ing_, making _one_, _once_, &c. The unit exists in

  Päzhik, One, general unit  }  Aubeding, Once.
  Ingoot, One, numerical unit}
  Neesh, Two.                   Neeshing, Twice.
  Niswee, Three.                Nissing, Thrice.
  Neewin, Four.                 Neewing, Four-times.
  Naunun, Five.                 Nauning, Five-times.
  N´goodwaswä, Six.             N´goodwautshing, Six-times.
  Neeshwauswä, Seven.           Neeshwautshing, Seven-times.
  Shwauswe, Eight.              Shwautshing, Eight-times.
  Shongusswe, Nine.             Shongutshing, Nine-times.
  Meetauswee, Ten.              Meetaushing, Ten-times.

These inflections can be carried as high as they can compute numbers.
They count decimally. After reaching ten, they repeat, ten and one, ten
and two, &c., to twenty. Twenty is a compound signifying two tens,
thirty, three tens, &c., a mode which is carried up to one hundred,
_n´goodwak_. Wak, then becomes the word of denomination, combining with
the names of the digits, until they reach a thousand, _meetauswauk_,
literally, _ten hundred_. Here a new compound term is introduced made by
prefixing twenty to the last denomination, neshtonnah duswak, which
doubles the last term, thirty triples it, forty quadruples it, &e., till
the computation reaches to ten thousand, n´goodwak dushing n´goodwak,
_one hundred times one hundred_. This is the probable extent of all
certain computation. The term _Gitshee_, (great,) prefixed to the last
denomination, leaves the number indefinite.

There is no form of the numerals corresponding to second, third,
fourth, &c. They can only further say, _nittum_ first, and _ishkwaudj_,


     Nature and principles of the pronoun--Its distinction into
     preformative and subformative classes--Personal pronouns--The
     distinction of an inclusive and exclusive form in the number of the
     first person plural--Modifications of the personal pronouns to
     imply existence, individuality, possession, ownership, position and
     other accidents--Declension of pronouns to answer the purpose of
     the auxiliary verbs--Subformatives, how employed, to mark the
     persons--Relative pronouns considered--Their application to the
     causative verbs--Demonstrative pronouns--their separation into two
     classes, animates and inanimates--Example of their use.

Pronouns are buried, if we may so say, in the structure of the verb. In
tracing them back to their primitive forms, through the almost infinite
variety of modifications which they assume, in connexion with the verb,
substantive and adjective, it will facilitate analysis, to group them
into preformative and subformative, which include the pronominal
prefixes and suffixes, and which admit of the further distinction of
separable and inseparable. By separable is intended those forms, which
have a meaning by themselves, and are thus distinguished from the
inflective and subformative pronouns, and pronominal particles
significant only, in connection with another word.

1. Of the first class, are the personal pronouns Neen (I,) Keen (thou,)
and Ween or O (he or she.) They are declined to form the plural persons
in the following manner:

  I,          Neen.         We    Keen owind (in.)
                            We    Neen owind (ex.)
  Thou,       Keen.         Ye    Keen owau.
  He or She,  Ween or O.    They  Ween owau.

Here the plural persons are formed by a numerical inflection of the
singular. The double plural of the first person, of which both the rule
and examples have been incidentally given in the remarks on the
substantive, is one of those peculiarities of the language, which may,
perhaps, serve to aid in a comparison of it, with other dialects,
kindred and foreign. As a mere conventional agreement, for denoting
whether the person addressed, be included, or excluded, it may be
regarded as an advantage to the language. It enables the speaker, by the
change of a single consonant, to make a full and clear discrimination,
and relieves the narration from doubts and ambiguity, where doubts and
ambiguity would otherwise often exist. On the other hand, by
accumulating distinctions, it loads the memory with grammatical forms,
and opens a door for improprieties of speech. We are not aware of any
inconveniences in the use of a general plural. But in the Indian it
would produce confusion. And it is perhaps to that cautious desire of
personal discrimination, which is so apparent in the structure of the
language, that we should look for the reason of the duplicate forms of
this word. Once established, however, and both the distinction, and the
necessity of a constant and strict attention to it, are very obvious and
striking. How shall he address the Deity? If he say--"_Our father who
art in heaven_" the inclusive form of "our" makes the Almighty one of
the suppliants, or family. If he use the exclusive form, it throws him
out of the family, and may embrace every living being but the Deity.
Yet, neither of these forms can be used well in prayer, as they cannot
be applied directly _to_ the object addressed. It is only when speaking
_of_ the Deity, under the name of father, to other persons, that the
inclusive and exclusive forms of the word "our" can be used. The dilemma
may be obviated, by the use of a compound descriptive phrase--Wä ö se
mig o yun, signifying--THOU WHO ART THE FATHER OF ALL. Or, universal

In practice, however, the question is cut short, by those persons who
have embraced Christianity. It has seemed to them, that by the use of
either of the foregoing terms, the Deity would be thrown into too remote
a relation to them, and I have observed, that, in prayer, they
invariably address Him, by the term used by children for the father of a
family, that is, NOSA, my father.

The other personal pronouns undergo some peculiar changes, when employed
as preformatives before nouns and verbs, which it is important to
remark. Thus neen, is sometimes rendered ne or _nin_, and sometimes
_nim_. Keen, is rendered ke or _kin_. In compound words the mere signs
of the first and second pronouns, N and K, are employed. The use of
_ween_ is limited; and the third person, singular and plural, is
generally indicated by the sign, O.

The particle _suh_ added to the complete forms of the disjunctive
pronouns, imparts a verbal sense to them; and appears in this instance,
to be a succedaneum for the substantive verb. Thus Neen, I, becomes
Neensuh, it is I. Keen, thou, becomes Keensuh, it is thou, and Ween, he
or she, Weensuh, it is he or she. This particle may also be added to the
plural forms.

  Keenowind suh.      It is we (in.)
  Neenowind suh.      It is we (ex.)
  Keenowa suh.        It is ye, or you.
  Weenowau suh.       It is they.

If the word _aittah_ be substituted for _suh_, a set of adverbial
phrases are formed.

  Neen aittah.  I only.            Neen aittah wind.  We &c. (ex.)
                                   Keen aittah wind,  We &c. (in.)
  Keen aittah,  Thou only.         Keen aittah wau,   You &c.
  Ween aittah,  He or she only.    Ween aittah wau,   They &c.

In like manner _nittum_ first, and _ishkwaudj_ last, give rise to the
following arrangement of the pronoun:

  Neen nittum,            I first.
  Keen nittum,            You or thou first.
  Ween nittum,            He or she first.
  Keen nittum ewind,      We first, (in.)
  Neen nittum ewind,      We first, (ex.)
  Keen nittum ewau,       Ye or you first.
  Ween nittum ewau,       They first.

  Neen ishkwaudj,         I last,
  Keen ishkwaudj,         Thou last.
  Ween ishkwandj,         He or she last.
  Keenowind ishkwaudj,    We last (in.)
  Neenowind ishkwaudj,    We last (ex.)
  Keenowau ishkwaudj,     Ye or you last.
  Weenowau ishkwaudj,     They last.

The disjunctive forms of the pronoun are also sometimes preserved before
verbs and adjectives.

         NEEZHIKA. Alone, (_an_.)
  Neen neezhika,          I alone.
  Keen neezhika,          Thou alone.
  Ween neezhika,          He or she alone.
  Keenowind neezhika,     We alone (in.)
  Neenowind neezhika,     We alone (ex.)
  Keenowau neezhika,      Ye or you alone.
  Weenowau neezhika,      They alone.

To give these expressions a verbal form, the substantive verb, with its
pronominal modifications, must be superadded. For instance, _I am_
alone, &c., is thus rendered:

  Neen neezhika nindyau,  I am alone, × aumin.
  Keen neezhika keedyau,  Thou art alone, × aum.
  Ween neezhika Iyau,     He or she is alone, &c., × wug.

In the subjoined examples the noun ow, body, is changed to a verb, by
the permutation of the vowel, changing ow to auw, which last takes the
letter d before it, when the pronoun is prefixed.

  I am a man,             Neen nin dauw.
  Thou art a man,         Keen ke dauw.
  He is a man,            Ween ah weeh.
  We are men, (in.)       Ke dauw we min.
  We are men, (ex.)       Ne dauw we min.
  Ye are men,             Ke dauw min.
  They are men,           Weenowau ah weeh wug.

In the translation of these expressions "man" is used as synonymous with
person. If the specific term _inine_, had been introduced in the
original, the meaning thereby conveyed would be, in this particular
connexion, I am a man with respect to _courage_ &c., in opposition to
effeminacy. It would not be simply declarative of _corporeal existence_,
but of existence in a _particular state or condition_.

In the following phrases, the modified forms, or the signs only, of the
pronouns are used:

  N´ debaindaun,          I own it.
  Ke debaindaun,          Thou ownest it.
  O debaindaun,           He or she owns it.
  N´ debaindaun-in,       We own it (ex.)
  Ke debaindaun-in,       We own it (in.)
  Ke debaindaun-ewau.     Ye own it.
  O debaindaun-ewau,      They own it.

These examples are cited as exhibiting the manner in which the prefixed
and preformative pronouns are employed, both in their full and
contracted forms. To denote possession, nouns specifying the things
possessed, are required; and, what would not be anticipated, had not
full examples of this species of declension been given in another place,
the purposes of distinction are not effected by a simple change of the
pronoun, as _I_ to _mine_, &c., but by a subformative inflection of the
_noun_, which is thus made to have a reflective operation upon the
pronoun-speaker. It is believed that sufficient examples of this rule,
in all the modifications of inflection, have been given under the head
of the substantive. But as the substantives employed to elicit these
modifications were exclusively _specific_ in their meaning, it may be
proper here, in further illustration of an important principle, to
present a generic substantive under their compound forms.

I have selected for this purpose one of the primitives. IE-AÚ, is the
abstract term for existing matter. It is in the animate form and
declarative. Its inanimate correspondent is IE-EÉ. These are two
important roots. And they are found in combination, in a very great
number of derivative words. It will be sufficient here, to show their
connexion with the pronoun, in the production of a class of terms in
very general use.

                           Animate Forms.

               _Singular_.                     _Plural_.
        {Nin dyë aum,  Mine.          Nin dyë auminaun, Ours, (ex.)
  Poss. {                             Ke dyë auminaun,  Ours, (in.)
        {Ke dyë aum,   Thine.         Ke dyë aumewau,   Yours.
  Obj.   O dyëaum-un,  His or Hers.   O dye aumewaun,   Theirs.

                          Inanimate Forms.

               _Singular_.                   _Plural_.
        {Nin dyë eem,  Mine.        Nin dyë eeminaun, Ours, (ex.)
  Poss. {                           Ke dyë eeminaun,  Ours, (in.)
        {Ke dyë eem,   Thine.       Ke dyë eemewau,   Yours.
  Obj.   O dyë eem-un, His or       O dyë eemewaun,   Theirs.
                       Hers.                          _Poss. in._

In these forms the noun is singular throughout. To render it plural, as
well as the pronoun, the appropriate general plurals _ug_ and _un_ or
_ig_ and _in_, must be superadded. But it must be borne in mind, in
making these additions, "that the plural inflection to inanimate nouns
(which have no objective case,) forms the objective case to animates,
which have no number in the third person," [p. 30.] The particle _un_,
therefore, which is the appropriate plural for the inanimate nouns in
these examples, is only the objective mark of the animate.

The plural of I, is _naun_, the plural of thou and he, _wau_. But as
these inflections would not coalesce smoothly with the possessive
inflections, the connective vowels i. and e. are prefixed, making the
plural of I, _inaun_, and of thou, &c., _ewau_.

If we strike from these declensions the root IE, leaving its animate and
inanimate forms AU, and EE, and adding the plural of the noun, we shall
then,--taking the _animate_ declension as an instance, have the
following formula of the pronominal declensions.

  |     |      |           |    Obj.  |        |   Plu. |       |       |
  |     | Place|           |  inflec. |        | inflec.|  Obj. |Plural |
  |Pron.|of the|Possessive |  to the  |Connect.| of the |inflec.|of the |
  |Sing.| Noun.|inflection.|noun sing.| vowel. |pronoun.|n. plu.|Noun.  |
  | Ne  | ---- |    aum    |   ----   | --i--  | --naun | ----  | --ig. |
  | Ke  | ---- |    aum    |   ----   | --e--  | --wau  | ----  | --g.  |
  | O   | ---- |    aum    |    un    |        |        |       |       |
  | O   | ---- |    aum    |   ----   | --e--  | --wau  |  --n  |       |

To render this formula of general use, six variations, (five in
addition to the above) of the possessive inflection, are required,
corresponding to the six classes of substantives, whereby aum would be
changed to am, eem, im, öm, and oom, conformably to the examples
heretofore given in treating of the substantive. The objective
inflection, would also be sometimes changed to _een_ and sometimes to

Having thus indicated the mode of distinguishing the person, number,
relation, and gender--or what is deemed its technical equivalent, the
mutation words undergo, not to mark the distinctions of _sex_, but the
presence or absence of _vitality_, I shall now advert to the inflections
which the pronouns take for _tense_, or rather, to form the auxiliary
verbs, have, had, shall, will, may, &c. A very curious and important
principle, and one, which clearly demonstrates that no part of speech
has escaped the transforming genius of the language. Not only are the
three great modifications of time accurately marked in the verbal forms
of the Chippewas, but by the inflection of the pronoun they are enabled
to indicate some of the oblique tenses, and thereby to conjugate their
verbs with accuracy and precision.

The particle _gee_ added to the first, second, and third persons
singular of the present tense, changes them to the perfect past,
rendering I, thou, He, I did--have--or had. Thou didst,--hast--or hadst,
He, or she did--have, or had. If _gah_, be substituted for _gee_, the
first future tense is formed, and the perfect past added to the first
future, forms the conditional future. As the eye may prove an auxiliary
in the comprehension of forms, which are not familiar, the following
tabular arrangement of them, is presented.

               _First Person, I._
  Nin gee,          I did--have--had.
  Nin gah,          I shall--will.
  Nin gah gee,      I shall have--will have.

             _Second Person, Thou._
  Ke gee,           Thou didst--hast--hadst.
  Ke gah,           Thou shalt--wilt.
  Ke gah gee,       Thou shalt have--wilt have.

            _Third Person, He, or She._
  O gee,            He or she did--has--had.
  O gah,            He or she did--has--had.
  O gah gee,        He or she shall have--will have.

The present and imperfect tense of the potential mood, is formed by
_dau_, and the perfect by _gee_, suffixed as in other instances.

               _First Person, I._
  Nin dau,          I may--can, &c.
  Nin dau gee,      I may have--can have, &c.

             _Second Person, Thou._
  Ke dau,           Thou mayst--canst, &c.
  Ke dau gee,       Thou mayst have--canst have, &c.

            _Third Person,  He, or She._
  O dau,            He or she may--can, &c.
  O dau gee,        He or she may have--can have, &c.

In conjugating the verbs through the plural persons, the singular terms
for the pronoun remain, and they are rendered plural by a retrospective
action of the pronominal inflections of the verb. In this manner the
pronoun-verb auxiliary, has a general application, and the necessity of
double forms is avoided.

The preceding observations are confined to the formative or _prefixed_
pronouns. The inseparable suffixed or subformative are as follows--

  Yaun,          My.
  Yun,           Thy.
  Id, or d,      His, or hers.
  Yaung,         Our. (ex.)
  Yung,          Our. (in.)
  Yaig,          Your.
  Waud,          Their.

These pronouns are exclusively employed as suffixes,--and as suffixes to
the descriptive compound substantives, adjectives and verbs. Both the
rule and examples have been stated under the head of the substantive, p.
43. and adjective, p. 81. Their application to the verb will be shown,
as we proceed.

2. Relative Pronouns. In a language which provides for the distinctions
of person by particles prefixed or suffixed to the verb, it will
scarcely be expected, that separate and independent relative pronouns
should exist, or if such are to be found, their use, as separate parts
of speech, must, it will have been anticipated, be quite
limited--limited to simple interrogatory forms of expression, and not
applicable to the indicative, or declaratory. Such will be found to be
the fact in the language under review; and it will be perceived, from
the subjoined examples, that in all instances, requiring the relative
pronoun _who_, other than the simple interrogatory forms, this relation
is indicated by the inflections of the verb, or adjective, &c. Nor does
there appear to be any declension of the separate pronoun, corresponding
to _whose_, and _whom_.

       *       *       *       *       *

The word Ahwaynain, may be said to be uniformly employed in the sense of
_who_, under the limitations we have mentioned. For instance.

  Who is there?              Ahwaynain e-mah ai-aud?
  Who spoke?                 Ahwaynain kau keegoedood?
  Who told you?              Ahwaynain kau ween dumoak?
  Who are you?               Ahwaynain iau we yun?
  Who sent you?              Ahwaynain waynönik?
  Who is your father?        Ahwaynain kös?
  Who did it?                Ahwaynain kau tödung?
  Whose dog is it?           Ahwaynain way dyid?
  Whose pipe is that?        Ahwaynain döpwaugunid en-eu?
  Whose lodge is it?         Ahwaynain way weegewomid?
  Whom do you seek?          Ahwaynain nain dau wau bumud?
  Whom have you here?        Ahwaynain oh omau ai auwaud?

Not the slightest variation is made in these phrases, between who,
whose, and whom.

Should we wish to change the interrogative, and to say, he who is there;
he who spoke; he who told you, &c., the separable personal pronoun ween
(he) must be used in lieu of the relative, and the following forms will
be elicited.

  Ween, kau unnönik,         He (who) sent you.
  Ween, kau geedood,         He (who) spoke.
  Ween, _ai_-aud e-mah,      He (who) is there.
  Ween, kau weendumoak,      He (who) told you.
  Ween, kau tö dung,         He (who) did it, &c.

If we object that, that in these forms, there is no longer the relative
pronoun _who_, the sense being simply, he sent you, he spoke, &c., it is
replied that if it be intended only to say, he sent you, &c., and not he
_who_ sent you, &c., the following forms are used.

  Ke gee unnönig,      He (sent) you.
  Ainnözhid,           He (sent) me.
  Ainnönaud,           He (sent) him, &c.
  Iau e-mau,           He is there.
  Ke geedo,            He (spoke.)
  Kegeeweendumaug,     He (told) you.
  Ke to dum,           He did it.

We reply, to this answer of the native speaker, that the particle _kau_
prefixed to a verb denotes the past tense,--that in the former series of
terms, in which this particle appears, the verbs are in the perfect
indicative,--and in the latter, they are in the present indicative,
marking the difference only between _sent_ and _send_, _spoke_ and
_speak_, &c. And that there is absolutely no relative pronoun, in either
series of terms. We further observe, that the personal pronoun ween,
prefixed to the first set of terms, may be prefixed with equal
propriety, to the second set, and that its use or disuse, is perfectly
optional with the speaker, as he may wish to give additional energy or
emphasis to the expression. To these positions, after reflection,
discussion and examination, we receive an assent, and thus the
uncertainty is terminated.

We now wish to apply the principle thus elicited to verbs causative, and
other compound terms--to the adjective verbs, for instance--and to the
other verbal compound expressions, in which the objective and the
nominative persons, are incorporated as a part of the verb, and are not
prefixes to it. This may be shown in the causative verb, _To make

  Mainwaindumëid,            He (who) makes _me_ happy.
  Mainwaindumëik,            He (who) makes _thee_ happy.
  Mainwaindumëaud,           He (who) makes _him_ happy.
  Mainwaindumëinung,         He (who) makes _us_ happy. (inclusive.)
  Mainwaindumëyaug,          He (who) makes _us_ happy. (exclusive.)
  Mainwaindumëinnaig,        He (who) makes _ye_ or _you_ happy.
  Mainwaindumëigowaud,       He (who) makes _them_ happy.

And so the forms might be continued, throughout all the objective

  Mainwaindumëyun,           Thou (who) makest me happy, &c.

The basis of these compounds is _minno_, good, and _aindum_, the mind.
Hence minwaindum, he happy. The adjective in this connexion, cannot be
translated "good," but its effect upon the noun, is to denote that state
of the mind, which is at rest with itself. The first change from this
simple compound, is to give the adjective a verbal form; and this is
effected by a permutation of the vowels of the first syllable--a rule of
very extensive application--and by which, in the present instance, the
phrase _he happy_, is changed to _he makes happy_, (mainwaindum.) The
next step is to add the suffix personal pronouns, id, ik, aud, &c.,
rendering the expressions, he makes _me_ happy, &c. But in adding these
increments, the vowel e, is thrown between the adjective-verb, and the
pronoun suffixed, making the expression, not mainwaindum-yun, but
mainwaindumëyun. Generally the vowel e in this situation, is a
connective, or introduced merely for the sake of euphony. And those who
maintain that it is here employed as a personal pronoun, and that the
relative _who_, is implied by the final inflection; overlook the
inevitable inference, that if the marked e, stands for _me_ in the first
phrase, it must stand for _thee_ in the second, _he_ in the third, _us_
in the fourth, &c. As to the meaning and office of the final inflections
id, ik, &c.--whatever they may, in an involuted sense _imply_, it is
quite clear, by turning to the list of _suffixed personal pronouns_ and
_animate plurals_, that they mark the persons, I, thou, he, &c., we, ye,
they, &c.

Take for example, minwaindumëigowaud. He (who) makes them happy. Of this
compound, minwaindum, as before shown, signifies _he makes happy_. But
as the verb is in the singular number, it implies that but _one person_
is made happy, and the suffixed personal pronouns _singular_, mark the
distinctions between _me_, _thee_, and he, or him.

Minwaindum-e-ig is the verb plural, and implies that several persons
are made happy, and, in like manner, the suffixed personal pronouns
_plural_, mark the distinctions between we, ye, they, &c. For it is a
rule of the language, that a strict concordance must exist between the
number of the verb, and the number of the pronoun. The termination of
the verb consequently always indicates, whether there be one or many
objects, to which its energy is directed. And as animate verbs can be
applied only to animate objects, the numerical inflections of the verb,
are understood to mark the number of persons. But this number is
indiscriminate, and leaves the sense vague, until the pronominal
suffixes are superadded. Those who, therefore, contend for the sense of
the relative pronoun "who," being given in the last mentioned phrase,
and all phrases similarly formed, by a succedaneum, contend for
something like the following form of translation:--He makes them
happy--him! or Him--he (meaning who) makes them happy.

The equivalent for what, is _Waygonain_.

  What do you want?          Waygonain wau iauyun?
  What have you lost?        Waygonain kau wonetöyun?
  What do you look for?      Waygonain nain dahwaubundamun?
  What is this?              Waygonain ewinain maundun?
  What will you have?        Waygonain kau iauyun?
  What detained you?         Waygonain kau oon dahme egöyun?
  What are you making?       Waygonain wayzhetöyun?
  What have you there?       Waygonain e-mau iauyun?

The use of this pronoun, like the preceding, appears to be confined to
simple interrogative forms. The word _auneen_, which sometimes supplies
its place, or is used for want of the pronoun _which_, is an adverb, and
has considerable latitude of meaning. Most commonly it may be considered
as the equivalent for _how_, in what manner, or at what time.

  What do you say?                          Auneen akeedöyun?
  What do you call this?                    Auneen aizheneekaudahmun
                                            maundun? (i.)
  What ails you?                            Auneen aindeeyun?
  What is your name?                        Auneen aizheekauzoyun?
  Which do you mean; this or that? (an.)    Auneen ah-ow ainud, woh-ow
                                            gämau ewidde?
  Which do you mean; this or that? (in.)    Auneen eh-eu ewaidumun oh-oo
                                            gämau ewaidde?
  Which boy do you mean?                    Auneen ah-ow-ainud?

By adding to this word, the particle _de_, it is converted into an
adverb of place, and may be rendered _where_.

  Where do you dwell?        Auneende aindauyun?
  Where is your son?         Auneende ke gwiss?
  Where did you see him?     Auneende ke waubumud?

[Transcriber's Note: See note at end of text re original typesetting for
this section of the text (pages 286-8).]

becomes quite necessary in writing the language. And in the following
sentences, the substantive is properly employed after the pronoun.

  This dog is very lean,          Gitshee bukaukdoozo woh-ow annemoosh.
  These dogs are very lean,       Gitshee bukauddoozowug o-goo
  Those dogs are fat,             Ig-eu annemooshug ween-in-oawug.
  That dog is fat,                Ah-ow annemoosh ween-in-ao.
  This is a handsome knife,       Gagait onishishin maundun mokomahn.
  These are handsome knives,      Gagait wahwinaudj o-noo mokomahnun.
  Those are bad knives,           Monaududön in-euwaidde mokomahnun.
  Give me that spear,             Meezhishin eh-eu ahnitt.
  Give me those spears,           Meezhishin in-eu unnewaidde ahnitteen.
  That is a fine boy,             Gagait kwonaudj ah-ow kweewezains.
  Those are fine boys,            Gagait wahwinaudj ig-euwaidde
  This boy is larger than that,   Nahwudj mindiddo woh-ow kweewezains
                                  ewaidde dush.
  That is what I wanted,          Meeh-eu wau iauyaumbaun.
  This is the very thing          Mee-suh oh-oo wau iauyaumbaun.
  I wanted,

In some of these expressions, the pronoun combines with an adjective, as
in the compound words, ineuwaidde, and igeuwaidde, _those yonder_, (in.)
and _those yonder_ (an.) Compounds which exhibit the full pronoun in
coalescence with the word _Ewaidde_ yonder.


  Columbus discovered the West Indies, Oct. 12, 1492.
  Americo Vespucio, discovered the coast of South America, 1497.
  Cabot discovered the North American coast, 1497.
  De Leon discovered Florida, 1512.
  Cortes, enters the city of Mexico, after a seige, Aug. 13, 1521.
  Verrizani, is said to have entered the bay of New York, 1524.
  Cartier discovered the St. Lawrence, 1534.
  Jamestown, in Virginia, is founded, 1608.
  Acknowledged date of the settlement of Canada, 1608.
  Hudson discovers the river bearing his name, 1609.
  The Dutch build a fort near Albany, 1614.
  The Pilgrims land at Plymouth, Dec. 22, 1620.
  New Amsterdam taken from the Dutch by the Duke of York and Albany
  and named New York, 1664.
  La Salle discovers the Illinois in upper Louisiana, 1678;
  discovers Lower Louisiana, and is killed, 1685.


Ke-wa-kons, a chief of the straits of St. Mary's, told me, during an
interview, in 1827, that but seven generations of red men had passed
away, since the French first appeared on those straits. If we take the
date of Cartier's first visit to the St. Lawrence, as the era of their
acquaintance with this nation, A.D. 1534, we should have 56 years as
the period of an Indian generation. Should we take, instead of this, the
time of La Salle's first arrival on the upper lakes, 1778, there would,
on the contrary, be but a fraction over 22 years for a generation. But
neither of these periods, can be truly said to coincide with the
probable era of the chief's historical reminiscences. The first is too
early, the last too late. An average of the two, which is required to
apply the observation properly, gives 38 years as the Indian generation.
This nearly assimilates it to the results among Europeans, leaving 8
years excess. Further data would probably reduce this; but it is a
department in which we have so little material, that we must leave it
till these be accumulated. It may be supposed that the period of Indian
longevity, before the introduction of ardent spirits, was equal,
perhaps, a little superior, to that of the European; but it did not
exceed it, we think, by 8 years.

Ke-wa-kons, whom I knew very well, was a man of shrewd sense, and
respectable powers of observation. He stated, at the same interview,
that his tribe, who were of the Odjibwa type of the Algonquins, laid
aside their Akeeks, or clay cooking-vessels, at _that time_, and adopted
in lieu of them, the light brass kettle, which was more portable and
permanent. And from that time, their skill in pottery declined, until,
in our day, it is entirely lost. It is curious to reflect, that within
the brief period of 150 years, a living branch of coarse manufacture
among them, has thus been transferred into an object of antiquarian
research. This fact, should make historians cautious in assigning very
remote periods of antiquity to the monumental evidences of by-gone

It is by such considerations that we get a glimpse of some of the
general principles which attended the early periods of discovery and
settlement, in all parts of the continent. Adventurers came to find
gold, or furs, to amass wealth, get power, or to perform mere exploits.
Nobody cared much for the native race, beyond the fact of their being
the medium to lead to these specified objects. There were none, to
record accurately, their arts, and other peculiarities, which now excite
intense interest. They died away very fast, whole tribes becoming
extinct within a generation or two. The European fabrics, then
introduced, were so much superior to their own, that they, at once,
discontinued such rude arts as they practised, at least in our northern
latitudes. New adventurers followed in the track of Columbus, Amerigo,
Cabot, and their compeers and followers, who, in the lapse of time,
picked up, from the soil, pieces of coarse pottery, pestles and such
like things, and holding them up, said,--"See these!--here are evidences
of very great skill, and very high antiquity."

It is not the intention by any means, to assert, that there were not
antiquities of a far higher era, and nobler caste, but merely to impress
upon inquirers, the necessity of discriminating the different eras in
the chronology of our antiquities. All Indian pottery, north of the
capes of Florida and the Gulf of Mexico, is of, or preceding the era of
the discovery; but there is found in graves, a species of pottery, and
vitrified ware, which was introduced, in the early stages of traffic, by
Europeans. Of this transition era between the dying away of the Indian
arts, and the introduction of the European, are the rude pastes, enamel
and glass beads, and short clay pipes of coarse texture, found in Indian
cemeteries, but not in the tumuli. In place of these, our ancient
Indians used wrought and unwrought sea shells of various species, and
pipes carved out of steatites and other soft materials.

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. Anderson remarks in his biography of Catharine Brown, that "the
Cherokees are said to possess a language, which is more precise and
powerful than any into which learning has poured richness of thought, or
genius breathed the enchantments of fancy and eloquence."

David Brown, in one of his letters, in the same volume, terms his people
the Tsallakee, of which we must therefore take "Cherokee," to be a
corruption. It is seen by the Cherokee alphabet, that the sound of _r_
does not occur in that language.


When Chusco was converted to Christianity at the mission of
Michilimackinac, he had planted a field of potatoes on one of the
neighbouring islands in lake Huron. In the fall he went over in his
canoe, with his aged wife, to dig them--a labour which the old woman set
unceremoniously about, as soon as they got into the field. "Stop!" cried
the little old man, who had a small tenor voice and was bent nearly
double by age,--"dare you begin to dig, till we have thanked the Lord
for their growth." They then both knelt down in the field, while he
lifted up his voice, in his native language, in thanks.


The native tribes who occupy the borders of the great lakes, are very
ingenious in converting to the uses of superstition, such masses of
loose rock, or boulder stones, as have been fretted by the action of
water into shapes resembling the trunks of human bodies, or other
organic forms.

There appears, at all times, to have been a ready disposition to turn
such masses of rude natural sculpture, so to call them, to an idolatrous
use; as well as a most ingenious tact, in aiding the effect of the
natural resemblance, by dots or dabs of paint, to denote eyes, and other
features, or by rings of red ochre, around their circumference, by way
of ornament.

In the following figures, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, some of these masses are

[Illustration: IMAGE STONES]

Number 3. was brought to the office of the Indian Agent at
Michilimackinac in 1839, and placed among objects of analogous interest
to visiters. It consisted of a portion of a vein or mass of gneiss or
granite, from which both mica and feldspar were nearly absent, existing
only in trace, while the quartzy portion predominated, and had, by its
superior hardness, resisted the elemental action. The mode of the
formation of such masses is very well known to geologists, resulting, in
almost every case, from the unequal degree of hardness of various parts
of a mass, submitted to an equal force of attrition, such as is
ordinarily given by the upheaving and rolling force of waves on a lake,
or ocean beach. To the natives, who are not prone to reason from cause
to effect, such productions appear wonderful. All that is past
comprehension, or wonderful, is attributed by them to the supernatural
agency of spirits. The hunter or warrior, who is travelling along the
coast, and finds one of these self-sculptured stones, is not sure that
it is not a direct interposition of his God, or guardian Manito, in his
favour. He is habitually a believer in the most subtle forms of
mysterious power, which he acknowledges to be often delegated to the
native priests, or necromancers. He is not staggered by the most
extraordinary stretch of fancy, in the theory of the change or
transformation of animate into inanimate objects, and vice versa. All
things, "in heaven and earth," he believes to be subject to this subtle
power of metamorphosis. But, whatever be the precise operating cause of
the respect he pays to the imitative rolled stones, which he calls
Shingaba-wossins, and also by the general phrase of Muz-in-in-a-wun, or
images, he is not at liberty to pass them without hazarding something,
in his opinion, of his chance of success in life, or the fortune of the
enterprize in hand.

If the image be small, it is generally taken with him and secreted in
the neighborhood of his lodge. If large and too heavy for this purpose,
it is set up on the shore, generally in some obscure nook, where an
offering of tobacco, or something else of less value, may be made _to_
it, or rather _through_ it, to the spirit.

In 1820 one of these stones (No. 2.) was met by an expedition of the
government sent north, that year, for the purpose of interior discovery
and observation, at the inner Thunder Bay island, in Lake Huron. It was
a massy stone, rounded, with a comparatively broad base and entablature
but not otherwise remarkable. It was set up, under a tree on the island,
which was small, with the wide and clear expanse of the lake in plain
view. The island was one of those which were regarded as desert, and was
probably but seldom stopped at. It was, indeed, little more than a few
acres of boulders and pebbles, accumulated on a limestone reef, and
bearing a few stunted trees and shrubs. The water of the lake must, in
high storms, have thrown its spray over this imaged stone. It was, in
fine, one of those private places which an Indian might be supposed to
have selected for his secret worship.

In No. 3. is figured an object of this kind, which was found in 1832, in
the final ascent to the source of the Mississippi, on the right cape, in
ascending this stream into lac Traverse--at the distance of about 1000
miles above the falls of St. Anthony. I landed at the point to see it,
having heard, from my interpreter, that such an object was set up and
dedicated to some unknown Manito there. It was a pleasant level point of
land shaded with trees, and bearing luxuriant grass and wild shrubbery
and flowers. In the middle of this natural parterre the stone was
placed, and was overtopped by this growth, and thus concealed by it. A
ring of red paint encircled it, at the first narrowed point of its
circumference, to give it the resemblance of a human neck; and there
were some rude dabs to denote other features. The Indian is not precise
in the matter of proportion, either in his drawing, or in his attempts
at statuary. He seizes upon some minute and characteristic trait, which
is at once sufficient to denote the species, and he is easily satisfied
about the rest. Thus a simple cross, with a strait line from shoulder to
shoulder, and a dot, or circle above, to serve for a head, is the symbol
of the human frame; and without any adjunct of feet, or hands, it could
not have been mistaken for any thing else--certainly for any other
object in the animal creation.




The practice of the North American tribes, of drawing figures and
pictures on skins, trees, and various other substances, has been noticed
by travellers and writers from the earliest times. Among the more
northerly tribes, these figures are often observed on that common
substitute for the ancient papyrus, among these nations, the bark of the
betula papyracea, or white birch: a substance possessing a smooth
surface, easily impressed, very flexible, and capable of being preserved
in rolls. Often these devices are cut, or drawn in colours on the trunks
of trees, more rarely on rocks or boulders. According to Colden and
Lafitou records of this rude character were formerly to be seen on the
blazed surface of trees, along some of the ancient paths and portages
leading from the sources of the Atlantic rivers into the interior, or in
the valley of the St. Lawrence; but these, after satisfying a transient
curiosity, have long since yielded to the general fate of these simple
and unenduring monuments. Pictures and symbols of this kind are now to
be found only on the unreclaimed borders of the great area west of the
Alleghanies and the Lakes, in the wide prairies of the west, or along
the Missouri and the upper Mississippi. It is known that such devices
were in use, to some extent, at the era of the discovery, among most of
the tribes, situated between the latitudes of the capes of Florida, and
Hudson's Bay, although they have been considered as more particularly
characteristic of the tribes of the Algonquin type. In a few instances,
these pictorial inscriptions have been found to be painted or stained on
the faces of rocks, or on loose boulders, and still more rarely, devices
were scratched or pecked into the surface, as is found to be the case
still at Dighton and Venango. Those who are intent on observations of
this kind, will find figures and rude hieroglyphics invariably at the
present time, on the grave posts which mark the places of Indian
sepulchre at the west and north. The nations who rove over the western
prairies, inscribe them on the skins of the buffalo. North of latitude
42°, the bark of the birch, which furnishes at once the material of
canoes, tents, boxes, water-dippers, and paper, constitutes the common
medium of their exhibition. Tablets of hard wood are confined to such
devices as are employed by their priests and prophets, and medicine men;
and these characters uniformly assume a more mystical or sacred import.
But the recent discovery, on one of the tributaries of the Susquehanna,
of an Indian map, drawn on stone, with intermixed devices, a copy of
which appears in the 1st volume of the collections of the Historical
Committee of the American Philosophical Society, proves that stone was
also employed in that branch of inscription. This discovery was on the
area occupied by the Lenapees.

Colden, in his history of the Five Nations,[23] informs us that when, in
1696, the Count de Frontenac marched a well appointed army into the
Iroquois country, with artillery and all other means of regular military
offence, he found, on the banks of the Onondaga, now called Oswego
river, a tree, on the trunk of which the Indians had depicted the French
army, and deposited two bundles of cut rushes at its foot, consisting of
1434 pieces--an act of defiance on their part, which was intended to
inform their invaders, that they would have to encounter this number of
warriors. In speaking in another passage of the general traits of the
Five Nations, he mentions the general custom prevalent among the Mohawks
going to war, of painting, with red paint, on the trunk of a tree, such
symbols, as might serve to denote the object of their expedition. Among
the devices was a canoe pointed towards the enemies' country. On their
return, it was their practice to visit the same tree, or precinct, and
denote the result: the canoe being, in this case, drawn with its bows in
the opposite direction. Lafitou, in his account of the nations of
Canada, makes observations on this subject to which we shall more
particularly refer hereafter, which denote the general prevalence of the
custom in that quarter. Other writers, dating as far back as Smith and
de Bre, bear a passing testimony to the existence of this trait among
the northern tribes. Few have however done more than notice it, and none
are known to have furnished any amount of connected details.

     [23] London, 1747, p. 190.

A single element in the system attracted early notice. I allude to the
institution of the Totem, which has been well known among the Algonquin
tribes from the settlement of Canada. By this device, the early
missionaries observed, that the natives marked their division of a tribe
into clans, and of a clan into families, and the distinction was thus
very clearly preserved. Affinities were denoted and kept up, long after
tradition had failed in its testimony. This distinction, which is
marked with much of the certainty of heraldic bearings in the feudal
system, was seen to mark the arms, the lodge, and the trophies of the
chief and warrior. It was likewise employed to give identity to the
_clan_ of which he was a member, on his ad-je-da-teg or grave-post. This
record went but little farther; a few strokes or geometric devices were
drawn on these simple monuments, to denote the number of men he had
slain in battle.

It has not been suspected in any notices to which I have had access,
that there was a pictorial alphabet, or a series of homophonous figures,
in which, by the juxtaposition of symbols representing acts, as well as
objects of action, and by the introduction of simple adjunct signs, a
series of disjunctive, yet generally connected ideas, were denoted; or
that the most prominent incidents of life and death could be recorded so
as to be transmitted from one generation to another, as long at least as
the monument and the people endured. Above all, it was not anticipated
that there should have been found, as will be observed in the subsequent
details, a system of symbolic notation for the songs and incantations of
the Indian metas and priests, making an appeal to the memory for the
preservation of language.

Persons familiar with the state of the western tribes of this continent,
particularly in the higher northern latitudes, have long been aware that
the songs of the Indian priesthood, and wabenoes, were sung from a kind
of pictorial notation, made on bark. It is a fact which has often come
to the observation of military officers performing duties on those
frontiers, and of persons exercising occasional duties in civil life,
who have passed through their territories. But there is no class of
persons to whom the fact of such notations being made, is so well known,
as the class of Indian traders and interpreters who visit or reside a
part of the season at the Indian villages. I have never conversed with
any of this latter class of persons to whom the fact of such
inscriptions, made in various ways, was not so familiar as in their view
to excite no surprise or even demand remark.

My attention was first called to the subject in 1820. In the summer of
that year I was on an exploring journey through the lake country. At the
mouth of the small river Huron, on the banks of Lake Superior, there was
an Indian grave fenced around with saplings, and protected with much
care. At its head stood a post, or tabular stick, upon which was drawn
the figure of the animal which was the symbol of the clan to which the
deceased chief belonged. Strokes of red paint were added to denote,
either the number of war parties in which he had been engaged, or the
number of scalps which he had actually taken from the enemy. The
interpreter who accompanied us, and who was himself tinctured with
Indian blood, gave the latter, as the true import of these marks.

On quitting the river St. Louis, which flows into the head of the lake
at the Fond du Lac, to cross the summit dividing its waters from those
of the Mississippi, the way led through heavy and dense woods and
swamps, and the weather proved dark and rainy, so that, for a couple of
days together, we had scarcely a glimpse of the sun.

The party consisted of sixteen persons, with two Indian guides; but the
latter, with all their adroitness in threading the maze, were completely
at fault for nearly an entire day. At night we lay down on ground
elevated but a few inches above the level of the swamp. The next morning
as we prepared to leave the camp, a small sheet of birch bark containing
devices was observed elevated on the top of a sapling, some 8 or 10 feet
high. One end of this pole was thrust firmly into the ground leaning in
the direction we were to go. On going up to this object, it was found,
with the aid of the interpreter, to be a symbolic record of the
circumstances of our crossing this summit, and of the night's encampment
at this spot. Each person was appropriately depicted, distinguishing the
soldiers from the officer in command, and the latter from the scavans of
the party. The Indians themselves were depicted without hats, this
being, as we noticed, the general symbol for a white man or European.
The entire record, of which a figure is annexed, accurately symbolized
the circumstances, and they were so clearly drawn, according to their
conventional rules, that the intelligence would be communicated thereby
to any of their people who might chance to travel or wander this way.
This was the object of the inscription.

[Illustration: PICTURE WRITING]

Fig. No. 1. represents the subaltern officer in command of the party of
the U.S. troops. He is drawn with a sword to denote his official rank.
No. 2 denotes the person who officiated in quality of Secretary. He is
represented holding a book. No. 3 denotes the geologist and mineralogist
of the party. He is drawn with a hammer. Nos. 4 and 5 are attachés; No.
6, the interpreter.

The group of figures marked 9 represents eight infantry soldiers, each
of whom, as shown in group No. 10, was armed with a musket. No. 15
denotes that they had a separate fire, and constituted a separate mess.
Figures 7 and 8 are the two Chippewa guides, the principal of whom,
called Chamees, or the Pouncing-hawk, led the way over this dreary
summit. These are the only human figures on this unique bark letter, who
are drawn without a hat. This was the characteristic seized on, by them,
and generally employed by the tribes, to distinguish the Red from the
white race. Figures 11 and 12 represent a prairie hen, and a green
tortoise, which constituted the sum of the preceding day's chase, and
were eaten at the encampment. The inclination of the pole, was designed
to show the course pursued from that particular spot: there were three
hacks in it, below the scroll of bark, to indicate the estimated length
of this part of the journey, computing from water to water, that is to
say, from the head of the portage Aux Couteaux on the St. Louis river,
to the open shores of Sandy lake, the Ka-ma-ton-go-gom-ag of the

The story was thus briefly and simply told; and this memorial was set up
by the guides, to advertise any of their countrymen, who might chance to
wander in that direction, of the adventure--for it was evident, both
from this token, and from the dubiousness which had marked the prior
day's wanderings, that they regarded the passage in this light, and were
willing to take some credit for the successful execution of it.

Before we had penetrated quite to this summit, we came to another
evidence of their skill in this species of knowledge, consisting of one
of those contrivances which they denominate Man-i-to-wa-teg, or Manito
Poles. On reaching this our guides shouted, whether from a superstitious
impulse, or the joy of having found a spot they certainly could
recognize, we could not tell. We judged the latter. It consisted of
eight poles, of equal length, shaved smooth and round, painted with
yellow ochre, and set so as to enclose a square area. It appeared to
have been one of those rude temples, or places of incantation or
worship, known to the metas, or priests, where certain rites and
ceremonies are performed. But it was not an ordinary medicine lodge.
There had been far more care in its construction.

On reaching the village of Sandy lake, on the upper Mississippi, the
figures of animals, birds, and other devices were found, on the rude
coffins, or wrappings of their dead, which were scaffolded around the
precincts of the fort, and upon the open shores of the lake. Similar
devices were also observed, here, as at other points in this region,
upon their arms, war-clubs, canoes, and other pieces of moveable
property, as well as upon their grave posts.

In the descent of the Mississippi, we observed such devices painted on a
rock, below and near the mouth of Elk river, and at a rocky island in
the river, at the Little Falls. In the course of our descent to the
Falls at St. Anthony, we observed another bark letter, as the party now
began to call these inscriptions, suspended on a high pole, on an
elevated bank of the river, on its west shore. At this spot, where we
encamped for the night, and which is just opposite a point of highly
crystalized hornblende rock, called the Peace Rock, rising up through
the prairie, there were left standing the poles or skeletons of a great
number of Sioux lodges. It is near and a little west of the territorial
boundary of the Sioux nation; and on inspecting this scroll of bark, we
found it had reference to a negotiation for bringing about a permanent
peace between the Sioux and Chippewas. A large party of the former, from
St. Peter's, headed by their chief, had proceeded thus far, in the hope
of meeting the Chippewa hunters, on their summer hunt. They had been
countenanced, or directed in this step, by Col. Leavenworth, the
commanding officer of the new post, just then about to be erected. The
inscription, which was read off at once, by the Chippewa Chief
Babesacundabee, who was with us, told all this; it gave the name of the
Chief who had led the party, and the number of his followers, and gave
that chief the first assurance he had, that his mission for the same
purpose, would be favourably received.

After our arrival at St. Anthony's Falls, it was found that this system
of picture writing was as familiar to the Dacotah, as we had found it
among the Algonquin race. At Prairie du Chien, and at Green Bay, the
same evidences were observed among the Monomonees, and the Winnebagoes,
at Chicago among the Pottowottomies, and at Michilimakinac, among the
Chippewas and Ottawas who resort, in such numbers, to that Island. While
at the latter place, on my return, I went to visit the grave of a noted
chief of the Monomonee tribe, who had been known by his French name of
Toma, i.e. Thomas. He had been buried on the hill west of the village;
and on looking at his Ad-je-da-tig or grave post, it bore a pictorial
inscription, commemorating some of the prominent achievements of his

These hints served to direct my attention to the subject when I returned
to the country in 1822. The figures of a deer, a bear, a turtle, and a
crane, according to this system, stand respectively for the names of
men, and preserve the language very well, by yielding to the person
conversant with it, the corresponding words, of Addick, Muckwa,
Mickenock, and Adjeejauk. Marks, circles, or dots, of various kinds, may
symbolize the number of warlike deeds. Adjunct devices may typify or
explain adjunct acts. If the system went no farther, the record would
yield a kind of information both gratifying and useful to one of his
countrymen who had no letters and was expert in the use of symbols; and
the interpretation of it, would be easy and precise in proportion as the
signs were general, conventional, and well understood. There was
abundant evidence in my first year's observation, to denote that this
mode of communication was in vogue, and well understood by the northern
tribes; but it hardly seemed susceptible of a farther or extended use.
It was not till I had made a personal acquaintance with one of their
Metas--a man of much intelligence, and well versed in their customs,
religion, and history, that a more enlarged application of it appeared
to be practicable. I observed in the hands of this man a tabular piece
of wood, covered over on both sides, with a series of devices cut
between parallel lines, which he referred to, as if they were the notes
of his medicine and mystical songs. I heard him sing these songs, and
observed that their succession was fixed and uniform. By cultivating his
acquaintance, and by suitable attention and presents, such as the
occasion rendered proper, he consented to explain the meaning of each
figure, the object symbolized, and the words attached to each symbol. By
this revelation, which was made with closed doors, I became a member or
initiate of the Medicine Society, and also of the Wabeno Society. Care
was taken to write each sentence of the songs and chants in the Indian
language, with its appropriate devices, and to subjoin a literal
translation in English. When this had been done, and the system
considered, it was very clear that the devices were mnemonic--that any
person could sing from these devices, very accurately, what he had
previously committed to memory, and that the system revealed a curious
scheme of symbolic notation.

All the figures thus employed, as the initiatory points of study,
related exclusively to either the medicine dance, or the wabeno dance;
and each section of figures, related exclusively to one or the other.
There was no intermixture or commingling of characters, although the
class of subjects were sometimes common to each. It was perceived,
subsequently, that this classification of symbols extended to the songs
devoted to war, to hunting, and to other specific topics. The entire
inscriptive system, reaching from its first rudimental characters, in
the ad-je-da-tig, or grave board, to the extended roll of bark covered
with the inscriptions of their magicians and prophets, derived a new
interest from this feature. It was easy to perceive that much
comparative precision was imparted to interpretations in the hands of
the initiated, which before, or to others, had very little. An interest
was thus cast over it distinct from its novelty. And in truth, the
entire pictorial system was thus invested with the character of a
subject of accurate investigation, which promised both interest and

It has been thought that a simple statement of these circumstances,
would best answer the end in view, and might well occupy the place of a
more formal or profound introduction. In bringing forward the elements
of the system, after much reflection, it is thought, however, that a few
remarks on the general character of this art may not be out of place.
For, simple as it is, we perceive in it the native succedaneum for
letters. It is not only the sole graphic mode they have for
communicating ideas, but it is the mode of communicating all classes of
ideas commonly entertained by them--such as their ideas of war, of
hunting, of religion, and of magic and necromancy. So considered, it
reveals a new and unsuspected mode of obtaining light on their opinions
of a deity, of the structure or cosmogony of the globe, of astronomy,
the various classes of natural objects, their ideas of immortality and a
future state, and the prevalent notions of the union of spiritual and
material matter. So wide and varied, indeed, is the range opened by the
subject, that we may consider the Indian system of picture writing as
the thread which ties up the scroll of the Red man's views of life and
death, reveals the true theory of his hopes and fears, and denotes the
relation he bears, in the secret chambers of his own thoughts, to his
Maker. What a stoic and suspicious temper would often hold him back from
uttering to another, and what a limited language would sometimes prevent
his fully revealing, if he wished, symbols and figures can be made to
represent and express. The Indian is not a man prone to describe his
god, but he is ready to depict him, by a symbol. He may conceal under
the figures of a serpent, a turtle, or a wolf, wisdom, strength, or
malignity, or convey under the picture of the sun, the idea of a
supreme, all-seeing intelligence. But he is not prepared to discourse
upon these things. What he believes on this head, he will not declare to
a white man or a stranger. His happiness and success in life, are
thought to depend upon the secrecy of that knowledge of the Creator and
his system in the Indian view of benign and malignant agents. To reveal
this to others, even to his own people, is, he believes, to expose
himself to the counteracting influence of other agents known to his
subtle scheme of necromancy and superstition, and to hazard success and
life itself. This conduces to make the Red man eminently a man of fear,
suspicion, and secrecy. But he cannot avoid some of these disclosures in
his pictures and figures. These figures represent ideas--whole ideas,
and their juxtaposition or relation on a roll of bark, a tree, or a
rock, discloses a continuity of ideas. This is the basis of the system.

Picture writing is indeed the literature of the Indians. It cannot be
interpreted, however rudely, without letting one know what the Red man
thinks and believes. It shadows forth the Indian intellect, it stands in
the place of letters for the Unishinaba.[24] It shows the Red man in all
periods of our history, both as he _was_, and as he _is_; for there is
nothing more true than that, save and except the comparatively few
instances where they have truly embraced experimental Christianity,
there has not

[Transcriber's Note: Text ends abruptly here in the original

     [24] A generic term denoting the common people of the Indian race.


This gigantic tumulus, the largest in the Ohio valley, was opened some
four or five years ago, and found to contain some articles of high
antiquarian value, in addition to the ordinary discoveries of human
bones, &c. A rotunda was built under its centre, walled with brick, and
roofed over, and having a long gallery leading into it, at the base of
the mound. Around this circular wall, in the centre of this heavy and
damp mass of earth, with its atmosphere of peculiar and pungent
character, the skeletons and other disinterred articles, are hung up for
the gratification of visiters, the whole lighted up with candles, which
have the effect to give a strikingly sepulchral air to the whole scene.
But what adds most to this effect, is a kind of exuded flaky matter,
very white and soft, and rendered brilliant by dependent drops of water,
which hangs in rude festoons from the ceiling.

To this rotunda, it is said, a delegation of Indians paid a visit a year
or two since. In the "Wheeling Times and Advertiser" of the 30th August
1843, the following communication, respecting this visit, introducing a
short dramatic poem, was published.

"An aged Cherokee chief who, on his way to the west, visited the rotunda
excavated in this gigantic tumulus, with its skeletons and other relics
arranged around the walls, became so indignant at the desecration and
display of sepulchral secrets to the white race, that his companions and
interpreter found it difficult to restrain him from assassinating the
guide. His language assumed the tone of fury, and he brandished his
knife, as they forced him out of the passage. Soon after, he was found
prostrated, with his senses steeped in the influence of alcohol.

    "'Tis not enough! that hated race
    Should hunt us out, from grove and place
    And consecrated shore--where long
    Our fathers raised the lance and song--
    'Tis not enough!--that we must go
    Where streams and rushing fountains flow
    Whose murmurs, heard amid our fears,
    Fall only on a stranger's ears--
    'Tis not enough!--that with a wand,
    They sweep away our pleasant land,
    And bid us, as some giant-foe,
    Or willing, or unwilling _go_!
    But they must ope our very graves
    To tell the _dead_--they too, are slaves."


Ontario, is a word from the Wyandot, or, as called by the Iroquois,
Quatoghie language. This tribe, prior to the outbreak of the war against
them, by their kindred the Iroquois, lived on a bay, near Kingston,
which was the ancient point of embarkation and debarkation, or, in other
words, at once the commencement and the terminus of the portage,
according to the point of destination for all, who passed into or out of
the lake. From such a point it was natural that a term so euphonous,
should prevail among Europeans, over the other Indian names in use. The
Mohawks and their confederates, generally, called it Cadaracqui--which
was also their name for the St. Lawrence. The Onondagas, it is believed,
knew it, in early times, by the name of Oswego.[25] Of the meaning of
Ontario, we are left in the dark by commentators on the Indian.
Philology casts some light on the subject. The first syllable, _on_, it
may be observed, appears to be the notarial increment or syllable of
Onondio, a hill. Tarak, is clearly, the same phrase, written darac, by
the French, in the Mohawk compound of Cadaracqui; and denotes rocks, i.
e. rocks standing in the water. In the final vowels _io_, we have the
same term, with the same meaning which they carry in the Seneca, or old
Mingo word Ohio.[26] It is descriptive of an extended and beautiful
water prospect, or landscape. It possesses all the properties of an
exclamation, in other languages, but according to the unique principles
of the Indian grammar, it is an exclamation-substantive. How beautiful!
[the prospect, scene present.]

     [25] Vide a Reminiscence of Oswego.

     [26] The sound of i in this word, as in Ontario, is long e in the

Erie is the name of a tribe conquered or extinguished by the Iroquois.
We cannot stop to inquire into this fact historically, farther than to
say, that it was the policy of this people to adopt into their different
tribes of the confederacy, the remnants of nations whom they conquered,
and that it was not probable, therefore, that the Eries were
annihilated. Nor is it probable that they were a people very remote in
kindred and language from the ancient Sinondowans, or Senecas, who, it
may be supposed, by crushing them, destroyed and exterminated their name
only, while they strengthened their numbers by this inter-adoption. In
many old maps, this lake bears the name of Erie or "Oskwago."

Huron, is the _nom de guerre_ of the French, for the "Yendats," as they
are called in some old authors, or the Wyandots. Charlevoix tells us
that it is a term derived from the French word _hure_, [a wild boar,]
and was applied to this nation from the mode of wearing their hair.
"Quelles Hures!" said the first visiters, when they saw them, and hence,
according to this respectable author, the word Huron.

When this nation, with their confederates, the Algonquins, or
Adirondaks, as the Iroquois called them, were overthrown in several
decisive battles on the St. Lawrence, between Montreal and Quebec, and
compelled to fly west; they at first took shelter in this lake, and thus
transferred their name to it. With them, or at least, at the same
general era, came some others of the tribes who made a part of the
people called by the French, Algonquins, or Nipercineans, and who thus
constituted the several tribes, speaking a closely cognate language,
whose descendants are regarded by philologists, as the modern

The French sometimes called this lake _Mer douce_, or the Placid sea.
The Odjibwas and some other northern tribes of that stock, call it
Ottowa lake. No term has been found for it in the Iroquois language,
unless it be that by which they distinguished its principal seat of
trade, negociation and early rendezvous, the island of Michilimackinac,
which they called Tiedonderaghie.

Michigan is a derivative from two Odjibwa-Algonquin words, signifying
large, i.e. large in relation to masses in the inorganic kingdom, and a
lake. The French called it, generally, during the earlier periods of
their transactions, the lake of the Illinese, or Illinois.

Superior, the most northwesterly, and the largest of the series, is a
term which appears to have come into general use, at a comparatively
early era, after the planting of the English colonies. The French
bestowed upon it, unsuccessfully, one or two names, the last of which
was Traci, after the French minister of this name. By the
Odjibwa-Algonquins, who at the period of the French discovery, and who
still occupy its borders, it is called Gitch-Igomee, or The Big
Sea-water; from Gitchee, great, and guma, a generic term for bodies of
water. The term IGOMA, is an abbreviated form of this, suggested for

       *       *       *       *       *

The poetry of the Indians, is the poetry of naked thought. They have
neither rhyme, nor metre to adorn it.

Tales and traditions occupy the place of books, with the Red Race.--They
make up a kind of oral literature, which is resorted to, on long winter
evenings, for the amusement of the lodge.

The love of independence is so great with these tribes, that they have
never been willing to load their political system with the forms of a
regular government, for fear it might prove oppressive.

To be governed and to be enslaved, are ideas which have been confounded
by the Indians.



_These Extracts are made from "Cyclopædia Indiaensis" a MS. work in

NO. I.

HUDSON RIVER.--By the tribes who inhabited the area of the present
County of Dutchess, and other portions of its eastern banks, as low down
as Tappan, this river was called Shatemuc--which is believed to be a
derivative from Shata, a pelican. The Minisi, who inhabited the west
banks, below the point denoted, extending indeed over all the east half
of New Jersey, to the falls of the Raritan, where they joined their
kindred the Lenni Lenape, or Delawares proper, called it
Mohicanittuck--that is to say, River of the Mohicans. The Mohawks, and
probably the other branches of the Iroquois, called it Cahohatatea--a
term of which the interpreters who have furnished the word, do not give
an explanation. The prefixed term Caho, it may be observed, is their
name for the lower and principal falls of the Mohawk. Sometimes this
prefix was doubled, with the particle _ha_, thrown in between. Hatatea
is clearly one of those descriptive and affirmative phrases representing
objects in the vegetable and mineral kingdoms, which admitted as we see,
in other instances of their compounds, a very wide range. By some of the
more westerly Iroquois, the river was called Sanataty.

ALBANY.--The name by which this place was known to the Iroquois, at an
early day, was Schenectady, a term which, as recently pronounced by a
daughter of Brant, yet living in Canada, has the still harsher sound of
Skoh-nek-ta-ti, with a stress on the first, and the accent strongly on
the second syllable, the third and fourth being pronounced rapidly and
short. The transference of this name, to its present location, by the
English, on the bestowal on the place by Col. Nichols, of a new name,
derived from the Duke of York's Scottish title, is well known, and is
stated, with some connected traditions, by Judge Benson, in his
eccentric memoir before the New York Historical Society. The meaning of
this name, as derived from the authority above quoted, is _Beyond the
Pines_, having been applied exclusively in ancient times, to the
southern end of the ancient portage path, from the Mohawk to the Hudson.
By the Minci, who did not live here, but extended, however, on the west
shore above Coxackie, and even Coeymans, it appears to have been called
Gaishtinic. The Mohegans, who long continued to occupy the present area
of Rensselaer and Columbia counties, called it Pempotawuthut, that is to
say, the City or Place of the Council Fire. None of these terms appear
to have found favour with the European settlers, and, together with
their prior names of Beaverwyck and Fort Orange, they at once gave way,
in 1664, to the present name. A once noted eminence, three miles west,
on the plains, i.e. Trader's Hill, was called Isutchera, or by
prefixing the name for a hill, Yonondio Isutchera. It means the hill of
oil. Norman's Kill, which enters the Hudson a little below, the Mohawks
called Towasentha, a term which is translated by Dr. Yates, to mean, a
place of many dead.

NIAGARA.--It is not in unison, perhaps, with general expectation, to
find that the exact translation of this name does not entirely fulfil
poetic preconception. By the term O-ne-aw-ga-ra, the Mohawks and their
co-tribes described on the return of their war excursions, the neck of
water which connects lake Erie with Ontario. The term is derived from
their name for the human neck. Whether this term was designed to have,
as many of their names do, a symbolic import, and to denote the
importance of this communication in geography, as connecting the head
and heart of the country, can only be conjectured. Nor is it, in this
instance, probable. When Europeans came to see the gigantic falls which
marked the strait, it was natural that they should have supposed the
name descriptive of that particular feature, rather than the entire
river and portage. We have been assured, however, that it is not their
original name for the water-fall, although with them, as with us, it may
have absorbed this meaning.

BUFFALO.--The name of this place in the Seneca, is Te-ho-sa-ro-ro. Its
import is not stated.

DETROIT.--By the Wyandots, this place is called Teuchsagrondie; by the
Lake tribes of the Algic type, Wa-we-á-tun-ong: both terms signify the
Place of the turning or Turned Channel. It has been remarked by visiters
who reach this place at night, or in dark weather, or are otherwise
inattentive to the courses, that owing to the extraordinary involutions
of the current the sun appears to rise in the wrong place.

CHICAGO.--This name, in the Lake Algonquin dialects, to preserve the
same mode of orthography, is derived from Chicagowunzh, the wild onion
or leek. The orthography is French, as they were the discoverers and
early settlers of this part of the west. Kaug, in these dialects is a
porcupine, and She kaug a polecat. The analogies in these words are
apparent, but whether the onion was named before or after the animal,
must be judged if the _age_ of the derivation be sought for.

TUSCALOOSA, a river of Alabama. From the Chacta words _tushka_, a
warrior, and _lusa_ black.--[Gallatin.]

ARAGISKE, the Iroquois name for Virginia.

ASSARIGOA, the name of the Six Nations for the Governor of Virginia.

OWENAGUNGAS, a general name of the Iroquois for the New England Indians.

OTESEONTEO, a spring which is the head of the river Delaware.

ONTONAGON, a considerable river of lake Superior, noted from early
times, for the large mass of native copper found on its banks. This name
is said to have been derived from the following incident. It is known
that there is a small bay and dead water for some distance within its
mouth. In and out of this embayed water, the lake alternately flows,
according to the influence of the winds, and other causes, upon its
level. An Indian woman had left her wooden dish, or Onagon, on the
sands, at the shore of this little bay, where she had been engaged. On
coming back from her lodge, the outflowing current had carried off her
valued utensil. Nia Nin-do-nau-gon! she exclaimed, for it was a curious
piece of workmanship. That is to say--Alas! my dish!

CHUAH-NAH-WHAH-HAH, or Valley of the Mountains. A new pass in the Rocky
Mountains, discovered within a few years. It is supposed to be in N.
latitude about 40°. The western end of the valley gap is 30 miles wide,
which narrows to 20 at its eastern termination, it then turns oblique to
the north, and the opposing sides appear to close the pass, yet there is
a narrow way quite to the foot of the mountain. On the summit there is a
large beaver pond, which has outlets both ways, but the eastern stream
dries early in the season, while there is a continuous flow of water
west. In its course, it has several beautiful, but low cascades, and
terminates in a placid and delightful stream. This pass is now used by

AQUIDNECK.--The Narragansett name for Rhode Island. Roger Williams
observes, that he could never obtain the meaning of it from the natives.
The Dutch, as appears by a map of Novi Belgii published at Amsterdam in
1659, called it Roode Eylant, or Red Island, from the autumnal colour of
its foliage. The present term, as is noticed, in Vol. III. of the
Collections of the R.I. Hist. Soc. is derived from this.

INCAPATCHOW, a beautiful lake in the mountains at the sources of the
river Hudson.--[Charles F. Hoffman, Esq.]

HOUSATONIC, a river originating in the south-western part of
Massachusetts, and flowing through the State of Connecticut into Long
Island Sound, at Stratford. It is a term of Mohegan origin. This tribe
on retiring eastward from the banks of the Hudson, passed over the
High-lands, into this inviting valley. We have no transmitted etymology
of the term, and must rely on the general principles of their
vocabulary. It appears to have been called the valley of the stream
beyond the Mountains, from _ou_, the notarial sign of wudjo, a mountain,
atun, a generic phrase for stream or channel, and ic, the inflection for

WEA-NUD-NEC.--The Indian name, as furnished by Mr. O'Sullivan, [D. Rev.]
for Saddle Mountain, Massachusetts. It appears to be a derivative from
Wa-we-a, round, i.e. any thing round or crooked, in the inanimate

MA-HAI-WE.--The Mohegan term, as given by Mr. Bryant [N.Y.E.P.] for
Great Barrington, Berkshire County, Massachusetts.

MASSACHUSETTS.--This was not the name of a particular tribe, but a
geographical term applied, it should seem, to that part of the shores of
the North Atlantic, which is swept by the tide setting into, and around
the peninsula of Cape Cod, and the wide range of coast trending
southerly. It became a generic word, at an early day, for the tribes who
inhabited this coast. It is said to be a word of Narragansett origin,
and to signify the Blue Hills. This is the account given of it by Roger
Williams, who was told, by the Indians, that it had its origin from the
appearance of an island off the coast. It would be more in conformity to
the general requisitions of ethnography, to denominate the language the
New England-Algonquin, for there are such great resemblances in the
vocabulary and such an identity in grammatical construction, in these
tribes, that we are constantly in danger, by partial conclusions as to
original supremacy, of doing injustice. The source of origin was
doubtless west and south west, but we cannot stop at the Narragansetts,
who were themselves derivative from tribes still farther south. The
general meaning given by Williams seems, however, to be sustained, so
far as can now be judged. The terminations in _ett_, and _set_, as well
as those in _at_ and _ak_, denoted locality in these various tribes. We
see also, in the antipenultimate Chu, the root of Wudjo, a mountain.

TA-HA-WUS, a very commanding elevation, several thousand feet above the
sea, which has of late years, been discovered at the sources of the
Hudson, and named Mount Marcy. It signifies, he splits the
sky.--[Charles F. Hoffman, Esq.]

MONG, the name of a distinguished chief of New England, as it appears to
be recorded in the ancient pictorial inscription on the Dighton Rock, in
Massachusetts, who flourished before the country was colonized by the
English. He was both a war captain, and a prophet, and employed the arts
of the latter office, to increase his power and influence, in the
former. By patient application of his ceremonial arts, he secured the
confidence of a large body of men, who were led on, in the attack on his
enemies, by a man named Piz-hu. In this onset, it is claimed that he
killed forty men, and lost three. To the warrior who should be
successful, in this enterprize, he had promised his younger sister.
[Such are the leading events symbolized by this inscription, of which
extracts giving full details, as interpreted by an Indian chief, now
living, and read before the Am. Ethnological Society, in 1843, will be
furnished, in a subsequent number.]

TIOGA.--A stream, and a county of the State of New-York. From Teoga, a
swift current, exciting admiration.

DIONDEROGA, an ancient name of the Mohawk tribe, for the site at the
mouth of the Schoharie creek, where Fort Hunter was afterwards built
[Col. W.L. Stone.]

ALMOUCHICO, a generic name of the Indians for New England, as printed
on the Amsterdam map of 1659, in which it is stated that it was thus "by
d inwoonders genaemt." (So named by the natives.)

IROCOISIA, a name bestowed in the map, above quoted, on that portion of
the present state of Vermont, which lies west of the Green Mountains,
stretching along the eastern bank of Lake Champlain. By the application
of the word, it is perceived that the French were not alone in the use
they made of the apparently derivative term "Iroquois," which they gave
to the (then) Five Nations.

       *       *       *       *       *


The following are the names of the four seasons, in the Odjibwa tongue:

  Pe-bon,         Winter,      From Kone,      Snow.
  Se-gwun,        Spring,        "  Seeg,      Running water.
  Ne-bin,         Summer,        "  Anib,      A leaf.
  Ta-gwá-gi,      Autumn,        "  Gwag,      The radix of behind &c.

By adding the letter g to these terms, they are placed in the relation
of verbs in the future tense, but a limited future, and the terms then
denote _next winter_, &c. Years, in their account of time, are counted
by winters. There is no other term, but pe-boan, for a year. The year
consists of twelve lunar months, or moons. A moon is called Geézis, or
when spoken of in contradistinction to the sun, Dibik Geézis, or

The cardinal points are as follows.

  (_a_)      North,      Ke wá din-ung.
  (_b_)      South,      O shá wan-ung.
  (_c_)      East,       Wá bun-ung.
  (_d_)      West,       Ká be un-ung.

_a._ Kewadin is a compound derived from Ke-wa, to return, or come home,
and nodin, the wind. _b._ Oshauw is, from a root not apparent, but which
produces also ozau, yellow, &c. _c._ Waban is from ab, or wab, light.
_d._ Kabeun, is the name of a mythological person, who is spoken of, in
their fictions, as the father of the winds. The inflection ung, or oong,
in each term, denotes course, place, or locality.




WHEELING (Va.), August 19th, 1843.

I have just accomplished the passage of the Alleghany mountains, in the
direction from Baltimore to this place, and must say, that aside from
the necessary fatigue of night riding, the pass from the Cumberland
mountains and Laurel Hill is one of the easiest and most free from
danger of any known to me in this vast range. An excellent railroad now
extends from Baltimore, by Frederick and Harper's Ferry, up the Potomac
valley and its north branch quite to Cumberland, which is seated just
under the mountains, whose peaks would seem to bar all farther approach.
The national road finds its way, however, through a gorge, and winds
about where "Alps on Alps arise," till the whole vast and broad-backed
elevation is passed, and we descend west, over a smooth, well
constructed macadamized road, with a velocity which is some compensation
for the toil of winding our way up. Uniontown is the first principal
place west. The Monongahela is crossed at Brownsville, some forty miles
above Pittsburgh, whence the road, which is every where well made and
secured with fine stone bridges, culverts and viaducts, winds around a
succession of most enchanting hills, till it enters a valley, winds up a
few more hills, and brings the travellers out, on the banks of the Ohio,
at this town.

The entire distance from the head of the Chesapeake to the waters of the
Ohio is not essentially different from three hundred miles. We were less
than two days in passing it, twenty-six hours of which, part night and
part day, were spent in post-coaches between Cumberland and this place.
Harper's Ferry is an impressive scene, but less so than it would be to a
tourist who had not his fancy excited by injudicious descriptions. To
me, the romance was quite taken away by driving into it with a
tremendous clattering power of steam. The geological structure of this
section of country, from water to water, is not without an impressive
lesson. In rising from the Chesapeake waters the stratified rocks are
lifted up, pointing west, or towards the Alleghanies, and after crossing
the summit they point east, or directly contrary, like the two sides of
the roof of a house, and leave the inevitable conclusion that the
Alleghanies have been lifted up by a lateral rent, as it were, at the
relative point of the ridge pole. It is in this way that the granites
and their congeners have been raised up into their present elevations.

I did not see any evidence of that wave-like or undulatory structure,
which was brought forward as a theory last year, in an able paper
forwarded by Professor Rogers, and read at the meeting of the British
Association for the Advancement of Science at Manchester. No organic
remains are, of course, visible, in this particular section, at least
until we strike the coal and iron-stone formation of Pittsburgh. But I
have been renewedly impressed with the opinion, so very opposite to the
present geological theory, that less than seven thousand years is
sufficient, on scientific principles, to account for all the phenomena
of fossil plants, shells, bones and organic remains, as well as the
displacements, disruptions, subsidences and rising of strata, and other
evidences of extensive physical changes and disturbances on the earth's
surface. And I hope to live to see some American geologist build up a
theory on just philosophical and scientific principles, which shall bear
the test of truth.

But you will, perhaps, be ready to think that I have felt more interest
in the impressions of plants in stone, than is to be found in the field
of waving corn before the eye. I have, however, by no means neglected
the latter; and can assure you that the crops of corn, wheat and other
grains, throughout Maryland, Pennsylvania and Western Virginia, are
excellent. Even the highest valleys in the Alleghanies are covered with
crops of corn, or fields of stacked wheat and other grains. Generally,
the soil west of the mountains is more fertile. The influence of the
great western limestones, as one of its original materials, and of the
oxide of iron, is clearly denoted in heavier and more thrifty cornfields
along the Monongahela and Ohio valleys.

Of the Ohio River itself, one who had seen it in its full flow, in April
and May, would hardly recognize it now. Shrunk in a volume far below its
noble banks, with long spits of sand and gravel running almost across
it, and level sandy margins, once covered by water, where armies might
now manoeuvre, it is but the skeleton of itself. Steamboats of a
hundred tons burden now scarcely creep along its channel, which would
form cockboats for the floating palaces to be seen here in the days of
its vernal and autumnal glory.

Truly yours,


GRAVE CREEK FLATS (Va.), August 23, 1843.

I have devoted several days to the examination of the antiquities of
this place and its vicinity, and find them to be of even more interest
than was anticipated. The most prominent object of curiosity is the
great tumulus, of which notices have appeared in western papers; but
this heavy structure of earth is not isolated. It is but one of a series
of mounds and other evidences of ancient occupation at this point, of
more than ordinary interest. I have visited and examined seven mounds,
situated within a short distance of each other. They occupy the summit
level of a rich alluvial plain, stretching on the left or Virginia bank
of the Ohio, between the junctions of Big and Little Grave Creeks with
that stream. They appear to have been connected by low earthen
entrenchments, of which plain traces are still visible on some parts of
the commons. They included a well, stoned up in the usual manner, which
is now filled with rubbish.

The summit of this plain is probably seventy-five feet above the present
summer level of the Ohio. It constitutes the second bench, or rise of
land, above the water. It is on this summit, and on one of the most
elevated parts of it, that the great tumulus stands. It is in the shape
of a broad cone, cut off at the apex, where it is some fifty feet
across. This area is quite level, and commands a view of the entire
plain, and of the river above and below, and the west shores of the Ohio
in front. Any public transaction on this area would be visible to
multitudes around it, and it has, in this respect, all the advantages of
the Mexican and Yucatanese teocalli. The circumference of the base has
been stated at a little under nine hundred feet; the height is
sixty-nine feet.

The most interesting object of antiquarian inquiry is a small flat
stone, inscribed with antique alphabetic characters, which was disclosed
on the opening of the large mound. These characters are in the ancient
rock alphabet of sixteen right and acute angled single stokes, used by
the Pelasgi and other early Mediterranean nations, and which is the
parent of the modern Runic as well as the Bardic. It is now some four
or five years since the completion of the excavations, so far as they
have been made, and the discovery of this relic. Several copies of it
soon got abroad, which differed from each other, and, it was supposed,
from the original. This conjecture is true; neither the print published
in the Cincinnati Gazette, in 1839, nor that in the American Pioneer, in
1843, is correct. I have terminated this uncertainty by taking copies by
a scientific process, which does not leave the lines and figures to the
uncertainty of man's pencil.

The existence of this ancient art here could hardly be admitted,
otherwise than as an insulated fact, without some corroborative
evidence, in habits and customs, which it would be reasonable to look
for in the existing ruins of ancient occupancy. It is thought some such
testimony has been found. I rode out yesterday three miles back to the
range of high hills which encompass this sub-valley, to see a rude tower
of stone standing on an elevated point, called Parr's point, which
commands a view of the whole plain, and which appears to have been
constructed as a watch-tower, or look-out, from which to descry an
approaching enemy. It is much dilapidated. About six or seven feet of
the work is still entire. It is circular, and composed of rough stones,
laid without mortar, or the mark of a hammer. A heavy mass of fallen
wall lies around, covering an area of some forty feet in diameter. Two
similar points of observation, occupied by dilapidated towers, are
represented to exist, one at the prominent summit of the Ohio and Grave
Creek hills, and another on the promontory on the opposite side of the
Ohio, in Belmont county, Ohio.

It is known to all acquainted with the warlike habits of our Indians,
that they never have evinced the foresight to post a regular sentry, and
these rude towers may be regarded as of cotemporaneous age with the
interment of the inscription.

Several polished tubes of stone have been found, in one of the lesser
mounds, the use of which is not very apparent. One of these, now on my
table, is 12 inches long, 1-1/4 wide at one end, and 1-1/2 at the other.
It is made of a fine, compact, lead blue steatite, mottled, and has been
constructed by boring, in the manner of a gun barrel. This boring is
continued to within about three-eighths of an inch of the larger end,
through which but a small aperture is left. If this small aperture be
looked through, objects at a distance are more clearly seen. Whether it
had this telescopic use, or others, the degree of art evinced in its
construction is far from rude. By inserting a wooden rod and valve, this
tube would be converted into a powerful syphon, or syringe.

I have not space to notice one or two additional traits, which serve to
awaken new interest at this ancient point of aboriginal and apparently
mixed settlement, and must omit them till my next.


GRAVE CREEK FLATS, August 24, 1843.

The great mound at these flats was opened as a place of public resort
about four years ago. For this purpose a horizontal gallery to its
centre was dug and bricked up, and provided with a door. The centre was
walled round as a rotunda, of about twenty-five feet diameter, and a
shaft sunk from the top to intersect it; it was in these two excavations
that the skeletons and accompanying relics and ornaments were found. All
these articles are arranged for exhibition in this rotunda, which is
lighted up with candles. The lowermost skeleton is almost entire, and in
a good state of preservation, and is put up by means of wires, on the
walls. It has been overstretched in the process so as to measure six
feet; it should be about five feet eight inches. It exhibits a noble
frame of the human species, bearing a skull with craniological
developments of a highly favorable character. The face bones are
elongated, with a long chin and symmetrical jaw, in which a full and
fine set of teeth, above and below, are present. The skeletons in the
upper vault, where the inscription stone was found, are nearly all

It is a damp and gloomy repository, and exhibits in the roof and walls
of the rotunda one of the most extraordinary sepulchral displays which
the world affords. On casting the eye up to the ceiling, and the heads
of the pillars supporting it, it is found to be encrusted, or rather
festooned, with a white, soft, flaky mass of matter, which had exuded
from the mound above. This apparently animal exudation is as white as
snow. It hangs in pendent masses and globular drops; the surface is
covered with large globules of clear water, which in the reflected light
have all the brilliancy of diamonds. These drops of water trickle to the
floor, and occasionally the exuded white matter falls. The wooden
pillars are furnished with the appearance of capitals, by this
substance. That it is the result of a soil highly charged with particles
of matter, arising from the decay or incineration of human bodies, is
the only theory by which we may account for the phenomenon. Curious and
unique it certainly is, and with the faint light of a few candles it
would not require much imagination to invest the entire rotunda with
sylph-like forms of the sheeted dead.

An old Cherokee chief, who visited this scene, recently, with his
companions, on his way to the West, was so excited and indignant at the
desecration of the tumulus, by this display of bones and relics to the
gaze of the white race, that he became furious and unmanageable; his
friends and interpreters had to force him out, to prevent his
assassinating the guide; and soon after he drowned his senses in

That this spot was a very ancient point of settlement by the hunter
race in the Ohio valley, and that it was inhabited by the present red
race of North American Indians, on the arrival of whites west of the
Alleghanies, are both admitted facts; nor would the historian and
antiquary ever have busied themselves farther in the matter had not the
inscribed stone come to light, in the year 1839. I was informed,
yesterday, that another inscription stone had been found in one of the
smaller mounds on these flats, about five years ago, and have obtained
data sufficient as to its present location to put the Ethnological
Society on its trace. If, indeed, these inscriptions shall lead us to
admit that the continent was visited by Europeans prior to the era of
Columbus, it is a question of very high antiquarian interest to
determine who the visitors were, and what they have actually left on
record in these antique tablets.

I have only time to add a single additional fact. Among the articles
found in this cluster of mounds, the greater part are commonplace, in
our western mounds and town ruins. I have noticed but one which bears
the character of that unique type of architecture found by Mr. Stephens
and Mr. Catherwood in Central America and Yucatan. With the valuable
monumental standards of comparison furnished by these gentlemen before
me, it is impossible not to recognize, in an ornamental stone, found in
one of the lesser mounds here, a specimen of similar workmanship. It is
in the style of the heavy feather-sculptured ornaments of Yucatan--the
material being a wax yellow sand-stone, darkened by time. I have taken
such notes and drawings of the objects above referred to, as will enable
me, I trust, in due time, to give a connected account of them to our
incipient society.


MASSILLON, Ohio, August 27th, 1843.

Since my last letter I have traversed the State of Ohio, by stage, to
this place. In coming up the Virginia banks of the Ohio from
Moundsville, I passed a monument, of simple construction, erected to the
memory of a Captain Furman and twenty-one men, who were killed by the
Indians, in 1777, at that spot. They had been out, from the fort at
Wheeling, on a scouting party, and were waylaid at a pass called the
narrows. The Indians had dropped a pipe and some trinkets in the path,
knowing that the white men would pick them up, and look at them, and
while the latter were grouped together in this act, they fired and
killed every man. The Indians certainly fought hard for the possession
of this valley, aiming, at all times, to make up by stratagem what they
lacked in numbers. I doubt whether there is in the history of the
spread of civilisation over the world a theatre so rife with partisan
adventure, massacre and murder, as the valley of the Ohio and the
country west of the Alleghany generally presented between the breaking
out of the American revolution, in '76, and the close of the Black Hawk
war in 1832. The true era, in fact, begins with the French war, in 1744,
and terminates with the Florida war, the present year. A work on this
subject, drawn from authentic sources, and written with spirit and
talent, would be read with avidity and possess a permanent interest.

The face of the country, from the Ohio opposite Wheeling to the waters
of the Tuscarawas, the north fork of the Muskingum, is a series of high
rolling ridges and knolls, up and down which the stage travels slowly.
Yet this section is fertile and well cultivated in wheat and corn,
particularly the latter, which looks well. This land cannot be purchased
under forty or fifty dollars an acre. Much of it was originally bought
for seventy-five cents per acre. It was over this high, wavy land, that
the old Moravian missionary road to Gnadenhutten ran, and I pursued it
to within six miles of the latter place. You will recollect this
locality as the scene of the infamous murder, by Williamson and his
party, of the non-resisting Christian Delawares under the ministry of
Heckewelder and Ziesberger.

On the Stillwater, a branch of the Tuscarawas, we first come to level
lands. This stream was noted, in early days, for its beaver and other
furs. The last beaver seen here was shot on its banks twelve years ago.
It had three legs, one having probably been caught in a trap or been
bitten off. It is known that not only the beaver, but the otter, wolf
and fox, will bite off a foot, to escape the iron jaws of a trap. It has
been said, but I know not on what good authority, that the hare will do
the same.

We first struck the Ohio canal at Dover. It is in every respect a well
constructed work, with substantial locks, culverts and viaducts. It is
fifty feet wide at the top, and is more than adequate for all present
purposes. It pursues the valley of the Tuscarawas up to the summit, by
which it is connected with the Cuyahuga, whose outlet is at Cleveland.
Towns and villages have sprung up along its banks, where before there
was a wilderness. Nothing among them impressed me more than the town of
Zoar, which is exclusively settled by Germans. There seems something of
the principles of association--one of the fallacies of the age--in its
large and single town store, hotel, &c., but I do not know how far they
may extend. Individual property is held. The evidences of thrift and
skill, in cultivation and mechanical and mill work, are most striking.
Every dwelling here is surrounded with fruit and fruit trees. The
botanical garden and hot-house are on a large scale, and exhibit a
favorable specimen of the present state of horticulture. One of the
assistants very kindly plucked for me some fine fruit, and voluntarily
offered it. Zoar is quite a place of resort as a ride for the
neighboring towns. I may remark, _en passant_, that there is a large
proportion of German population throughout Ohio. They are orderly,
thrifty and industrious, and fall readily into our political system and
habits. Numbers of them are well educated in the German. They embrace
Lutherans as well as Roman Catholics, the latter predominating.

Among the towns which have recently sprung up on the line of the canal,
not the least is the one from which I date this letter. The name of the
noted French divine (Massillon) was affixed to an uncultivated spot, by
some Boston gentlemen, some twelve or fourteen years ago. It is now one
of the most thriving, city-looking, business places in the interior of
Ohio. In the style of its stores, mills and architecture, it reminds the
visitor of that extraordinary growth and spirit which marked the early
years of the building of Rochester. It numbers churches for
Episcopalians, Baptists, Methodists and Presbyterians, and also
Lutherans and Romanists. About three hundred barrels of flour can be
turned out per diem, by its mills. It is in the greatest wheat-growing
county in Ohio (Stark), but is not the county-seat, which is at Canton.


DETROIT, Sept. 15th, 1843.

In passing from the interior of Ohio toward Lake Erie, the face of the
country exhibits, in the increased size and number of its boulder
stones, evidences of the approach of the traveller toward those
localities of sienites and other crystalline rocks, from which these
erratic blocks and water-worn masses appear to have been, in a remote
age of our planet, removed. The soil in this section has a freer mixture
of the broken down slates, of which portions are still in place on the
shores of Lake Erie. The result is a clayey soil, less favorable to
wheat and Indian corn. We came down the cultivated valley of the
Cuyahoga, and reached the banks of the lake at the fine town of
Cleveland, which is elevated a hundred feet, or more, above it, and
commands a very extensive view of the lake, the harbor and its ever-busy
shipping. A day was employed, by stage, in this section of my tour, and
the next carried me, by steamboat, to this ancient French capital.
Detroit has many interesting historical associations, and appears
destined, when its railroad is finished, to be the chief thoroughfare
for travellers to Chicago and the Mississippi valley. As my attention
has, however, been more taken up, on my way, with the past than the
present and future condition of the West, the chief interest which the
route has excited must necessarily arise from the same source.

Michigan connects itself in its antiquarian features with that character
of pseudo-civilisation, or modified barbarianism, of which the works and
mounds and circumvallations at Grave Creek Flats, at Marietta, at
Circleville and other well known points, are evidences. That this
improved condition of the hunter state had an ancient but partial
connection with the early civilisation of Europe, appears now to be a
fair inference, from the inscribed stone of Grave Creek, and other
traces of European arts, discovered of late. It is also evident that the
central American type of the civilisation, or rather advance to
civilisation, of the red race, reached this length, and finally went
down, with its gross idolatry and horrid rites, and was merged in the
better known and still existing form of the hunter state which was
found, respectively, by Cabot, Cartier, Verrezani, Hudson, and others,
who first dropped anchor on our coasts.

There is strong evidence furnished by a survey of the western country
that the teocalli type of the Indian civilisation, so to call it,
developed itself from the banks of the Ohio, in Tennessee and Virginia,
west and north-westwardly across the sources of the Wabash, the
Muskingum and other streams, toward Lake Michigan and the borders of
Wisconsin territory. The chief evidences of it, in Michigan and Indiana,
consist of a remarkable series of curious garden beds, or accurately
furrowed fields, the perfect outlines of which have been preserved by
the grass of the oak openings and prairies, and even among the heaviest
forests. These remains of an ancient cultivation have attracted much
attention from observing settlers on the Elkhart, the St. Joseph's, the
Kalamazoo and Grand river of Michigan. I possess some drawings of these
anomalous remains of by-gone industry in the hunter race, taken in
former years, which are quite remarkable. It is worthy of remark, too,
that no large tumuli, or teocalli, exist in this particular portion of
the West, the ancient population of which may therefore be supposed to
have been borderers, or frontier bands, who resorted to the Ohio valley
as their capital, or place of annual visitation. All the mounds
scattered through Northern Ohio, Indiana and Michigan, are mere barrows,
or repositories of the dead, and would seem to have been erected
posterior to the fall or decay of the gross idol worship and the offer
of human sacrifice. I have, within a day or two, received a singular
implement or ornament of stone, of a crescent shape, from Oakland, in
this State, which connects the scattered and out-lying remains of the
smaller mounds, and traces of ancient agricultural labor, with the
antiquities of Grave Creek Flats.


DETROIT, Sept. 16th, 1843.

The antiquities of Western America are to be judged of by isolated and
disjointed discoveries, which are often made at widely distant points
and spread over a very extensive area. The labor of comparison and
discrimination of the several eras which the objects of these
discoveries establish, is increased by this diffusion and disconnection
of the times and places of their occurrence, and is, more than all,
perhaps, hindered and put back by the eventual carelessness of the
discoverers, and the final loss or mutilation of the articles disclosed.
To remedy this evil, every discovery made, however apparently
unimportant, should in this era of the diurnal and periodical press be
put on record, and the objects themselves be either carefully kept, or
given to some public scientific institution.

An Indian chief called the Black Eagle, of river Au Sables (Michigan),
discovered a curious antique pipe of Etruscan ware, a few years ago, at
Thunder Bay. This pipe, which is now in my possession, is as remarkable
for its form as for the character of the earthenware from which it is
made, differing as it does so entirely from the coarse earthen pots and
vessels, the remains of which are scattered so generally throughout
North America. The form is semi-circular or horn-shaped, with a
quadrangular bowl, and having impressed in the ware ornaments at each
angle. I have never before, indeed, seen any pipes of Indian manufacture
of baked clay, or earthenware, such articles being generally carved out
of steatite, indurated clays, or other soft mineral substances. It is a
peculiarity of this pipe that it was smoked from the small end, which is
rounded for the purpose of putting it between the lips, without the
intervention of a stem.

The discoverer told me that he had taken it from a very antique grave. A
large hemlock tree, he said, had been blown down on the banks of the
river, tearing up, by its roots, a large mass of earth. At the bottom of
the excavation thus made he discovered a grave, which contained a vase,
out of which he took the pipe with some other articles. The vase, he
said, was broken, so that he did not deem it worth bringing away. The
other articles he described as bones.

Some time since I accompanied the chief Kewakonce, to get an ancient
clay pot, such as the Indians used when the Europeans arrived on the
continent. He said that he had discovered two such pots, in an entire
state, in a cave, or crevice, on one of the rocky islets extending north
of Point Tessalon, which is the northern cape of the entrance of the
Straits of St. Mary's into Lake Huron. From this locality he had removed
one of them, and concealed it at a distant point. We travelled in
canoes. We landed on the northern shore of the large island of St.
Joseph, which occupies the jaws of those expanded straits. He led me up
an elevated ridge, covered with forest, and along a winding narrow path,
conducting to some old Indian cornfields. All at once he stopped in this
path. "We are now very near it," he said, and stood still, looking
toward the spot where he had concealed it, beneath a decayed trunk. He
did not, at last, appear to be willing to risk his luck in life--such is
Indian superstition--by being the actual discoverer of this object of
veneration to a white man, but allowed me to make, or rather complete,
the re-discovery.

With the exception of being cracked, this vessel is entire. It
corresponds, in material and character, with the fragments of pottery
usually found. It is a coarse ware, tempered with quartz or feld-spar,
and such as would admit a sudden fire to be built around it. It is some
ten inches in diameter, tulip-shaped, with a bending lip, and without
supports beneath. It was evidently used as retorts in a sand bath, there
being no contrivance for suspending it. I have forwarded this curious
relic entire to the city for examination. I asked the chief who
presented it to me, and who is a man of good sense, well acquainted with
Indian traditions, how long it was since such vessels had been used by
his ancestors. He replied, that he was the seventh generation, in a
direct line, since the French had first arrived in the lakes.


DETROIT, Sept. 16th, 1843.

There was found, in an island at the west extremity of Lake Huron, an
ancient repository of human bones, which appeared to have been gathered
from their first or ordinary place of sepulture, and placed in this rude
mausoleum. The island is called Isle Ronde by the French, and is of
small dimensions, although it has a rocky basis and affords sugar maple
and other trees of the hard wood species. This repository was first
disclosed by the action of the lake against a diluvial shore, in which
the bones were buried. At the time of my visit, vertebræ, tibiæ,
portions of crania and other bones were scattered down the fallen bank,
and served to denote the place of their interment, which was on the
margin of the plain. Some persons supposed that the leg and thigh bones
denoted an unusual length; but by placing them hip by hip with the
living specimen, this opinion was not sustained.

All these bones had been placed longitudinally. They were arranged in
order, in a wide grave, or trench. Contrary to the usual practice of the
present tribes of red men, the skeletons were laid north and south. I
asked several of the most aged Indian chiefs in that vicinity for
information respecting these bones--by what tribe they had been
deposited, and why they had been laid north and south, and not east and
west, as they uniformly bury. But, with the usual result as to early
Indian traditions, they had no information to offer. Chusco, an old
Ottawa prophet, since dead, remarked that they were probably of the time
of the Indian bones found in the caves on the island of Michilimackinac.

In a small plain on the same island, near the above repository, is a
long abandoned Indian burial-ground, in which the interments are made in
the ordinary way. This, I understood from the Indians, is of the era of
the occupation of Old Mackinac, or Peekwutinong, as they continue to
call it--a place which has been abandoned by both whites and Indians,
soldiers and missionaries, about seventy years. I caused excavations to
be made in these graves, and found their statements to be generally
verified by the character of the articles deposited with the skeletons;
at least they were all of a date posterior to the discovery of this part
of the country by the French. There were found the oxydated remains of
the brass mountings of a chief's fusil, corroded fire steels and other
steel implements, vermillion, wampum, and other cherished or valued
articles. I sent a perfect skull, taken from one of these graves, to Dr.
Morton, the author of "Crania," while he was preparing that work. No
Indians have resided on this island within the memory of any white man
or Indian with whom I have conversed. An aged chief whom I interrogated,
called Saganosh, who has now been dead some five or six years, told me
that he was a small boy when the present settlement on the island of
Michilimackinac was commenced, and the English first took post there,
and began to remove their cattle, &c., from the old fort on the
peninsula, and it was about that time that the Indian village of
Minnisains, or Isle Ronde, was abandoned. It had before formed a link,
as it were, in the traverse of this part of the lake (Huron) in canoes
to old Mackinac.

The Indians opposed the transfer of the post to the island of
Michilimackinac, and threatened the troops who were yet in the field.
They had no cannon, but the commanding officer sent a vessel to Detroit
for one. This vessel had a quick trip, down and up, and brought up a
gun, which was fired the evening she came into the harbor. This produced
an impression. I have made some inquiries to fix the date of this
transfer of posts, and think it was at or about the opening of the era
of the American revolution, at which period the British garrison did not
feel itself safe in a mere stockade of timber on the main shore. This
stockade, dignified with the name of a fort, had not been burned on the
taking of it, by surprise, and the massacre of the English troops by the
Indians, during Pontiac's war. This massacre, it will be recollected,
was in 1763--twelve years before the opening of the American war.


DETROIT, Oct. 13th, 1843.

The so-called copper rock of Lake Superior was brought to this place, a
day or two since, in a vessel from Sault Ste-Marie, having been
transported from its original locality, on the Ontonagon river, at no
small labor and expense. It is upwards of twenty-three years since I
first visited this remarkable specimen of native copper, in the forests
of Lake Superior. It has been somewhat diminished in size and weight, in
the meantime, by visitors and travellers in that remote quarter; but
retains, very well, its original character and general features.

I have just returned from a re-examination of it in a store, in one of
the main streets of this city, where it has been deposited by the
present proprietor, who designs to exhibit it to the curious. Its
greatest length is four feet six inches; its greatest width about four
feet; its maximum thickness eighteen inches. These are rough
measurements with the rule. It is almost entirely composed of malleable
copper, and bears striking marks of the visits formerly paid to it, in
the evidences of portions which have from time to time been cut off.
There are no scales in the city large enough, or other means of
ascertaining its precise weight, and of thus terminating the uncertainty
arising from the several estimates heretofore made. It has been
generally estimated here, since its arrival, to weigh between six and
seven thousand pounds, or about three and a half tons, and is by far the
largest known and described specimen of native copper on the globe.
Rumors of a larger piece in South America are apocryphal.

The acquisition, to the curious and scientific world, of this
extraordinary mass of native metal is at least one of the practical
results of the copper-mining mania which carried so many adventurers
northward, into the region of Lake Superior, the past summer (1843). The
person who has secured this treasure (Mr. J. Eldred) has been absent, on
the business, since early in June. He succeeded in removing it from its
diluvial bed on the banks of the river, by a car and sectional railroad
of two links, formed of timber. The motive power was a tackle attached
to trees, which was worked by men, from fourteen to twenty of whom were
employed upon it. These rails were alternately moved forward, as the car
passed from the hindmost.

In this manner the rock was dragged four miles and a half, across a
rough country, to a curve of the river below its falls, and below the
junction of its forks, where it was received by a boat, and conveyed to
the mouth of the river, on the lake shore. At this point it was put on
board a schooner, and taken to the falls, or Sault Ste-Marie, and
thence, having been transported across the portage, embarked for
Detroit. The entire distance to this place is a little within one
thousand miles; three hundred and twenty of which lie beyond St. Mary's.

What is to be its future history and disposition remains to be seen. It
will probably find its way to the museum of the National Institute in
the new patent office at Washington. This would be appropriate, and it
is stated that the authorities have asserted their ultimate claim to it,
probably under the 3d article of the treaty of Fond du Lac, of the 5th
of August, 1826.

I have no books at hand to refer to the precise time, so far as known,
when this noted mass of copper first became known to Europeans. Probably
a hundred and eighty years have elapsed. Marquette, and his devoted
companion, passed up the shores of Lake Superior about 1668, which was
several years before the discovery of the Mississippi, by that eminent
missionary, by the way of the Wisconsin. From the letters of D'Ablon at
Sault Ste-Marie, it appears to have been known prior to the arrival of
La Salle. These allusions will be sufficient to show that the rock has a
historical notoriety. Apart from this, it is a specimen which is, both
mineralogically and geologically, well worthy of national preservation.

It is clearly a boulder, and bears marks of attrition from the action of
water, on some parts of its rocky surface as well as the metallic
portions. A minute mineralogical examination and description of it are
required. The adhering rock, of which there is less now than in 1820, is
apparently serpentine, in some parts steatitic, whereas the copper ores
of Keweena Point on that lake, are found exclusively in the amygdaloids
and greenstones of the trap formation. A circular depression of opaque
crystalline quartz, in the form of a semi-geode, exists in one face of
it; other parts of the mass disclose the same mineral. Probably 300 lbs.
of the metal have been hacked off, or detached by steel chisels, since
it has been known to the whites, most of this within late years.


DETROIT, Oct. 16th, 1843.

In the rapid development of the resources and wealth of the West, there
is no object connected with the navigation of the upper lakes of more
prospective importance than the improvement of the delta, or flats of
the St. Clair. It is here that the only practical impediment occurs to
the passage of heavy shipping, between Buffalo and Chicago. This delta
is formed by deposits at the point of discharge of the river St. Clair,
into Lake St. Clair, and occurs at the estimated distance of about
thirty-six miles above the city. The flats are fan-shaped, and spread,
I am inclined to think, upward of fifteen miles, on the line of their
greatest expansion.

There are three principal channels, besides sub-channels, which carry a
depth of from four to six fathoms to the very point of their exit into
the lake, where there is a bar in each. This bar, as is shown by the
chart of a survey made by officers Macomb and Warner, of the
topographical engineers, in 1842, is very similar to the bars at the
mouths of the upper lake rivers, and appears to be susceptible of
removal, or improvement, by similar means. The north channel carries
nine feet of water over this bar, the present season, and did the same
in 1842, and is the one exclusively used by vessels and steamboats. To
the latter this tortuous channel, which is above ten miles farther round
than the middle channel, presents no impediment, besides the intricacies
of the bar, but increased distance.

It is otherwise, and ever must remain so, to vessels propelled by sails.
Such vessels, coming up with a fair wind, find the bend so acute and
involved at _Point aux Chenes_, at the head of this channel, as to bring
the wind directly ahead. They are, consequently, compelled to cast
anchor, and await a change of wind to turn this point. A delay of eight
or ten days in the upward passage, is not uncommon at this place. Could
the bar of the middle channel, which is direct, be improved, the saving
in both time and distance above indicated would be made. This is an
object of public importance, interesting to all the lake States and
Territories, and would constitute a subject of useful consideration for
Congress. Every year is adding to the number and size of our lake
vessels. The rate of increase which doubles our population in a given
number of years must also increase the lake tonnage, and add new motives
for the improvement of its navigation.

Besides the St. Clair delta, I know of no other impediment in the
channel itself, throughout the great line of straits between Buffalo and
Chicago, which prudence and good seamanship, and well found vessels, may
not ordinarily surmount. The rapids at Black Rock, once so formidable,
have long been obviated by the canal dam. The straits of Detroit have
been well surveyed, and afford a deep, navigable channel at all times.
The rapids at the head of the river St. Clair, at Port Huron, have a
sufficiency of water for vessels of the largest class, and only require
a fair wind for their ascent.

The straits of Michilimackinac are believed to be on the same water
level as Lakes Huron and Michigan, and only present the phenomenon of a
current setting east or west, in compliance with certain laws of the
reaction of water driven by winds. Such are the slight impediments on
this extraordinary line of inland lake navigation, which is carried on
at an average altitude of something less than 600 feet above the tide
level of the Atlantic. When this line of commerce requires to be
diverted north, through the straits of St. Mary's into Lake Superior, a
period rapidly approaching, a short canal of three-fourths of a mile
will be required at the Sault Ste-Marie, and some excavation made, so as
to permit vessels of heavy tonnage to cross the bar in Lake George of
those straits.


DUNDAS, Canada West, Oct. 26th, 1843.

Fortunately for the study of American antiquities the aborigines have,
from the earliest period, practised the interment of their arms,
utensils and ornaments, with the dead, thus furnishing evidence of the
particular state of their skill in the arts, at the respective eras of
their history. To a people without letters there could scarcely have
been a better index than such domestic monuments furnish, to determine
these eras; and it is hence that the examination of their mounds and
burial-places assumes so important a character in the investigation of
history. Heretofore these inquiries have been confined to portions of
the continent south and west of the great chain of lakes and the St.
Lawrence; but the advancing settlements in Canada, at this time, are
beginning to disclose objects of this kind, and thus enlarge the field
of inquiry.

I had, yesterday, quite an interesting excursion to one of these ancient
places of sepulture north of the head of Lake Ontario. The locality is
in the township of Beverly, about twelve miles distant from Dundas. The
rector of the parish, the Rev. Mr. McMurray, had kindly made
arrangements for my visit. We set out at a very early hour, on
horseback, the air being keen, and the mud and water in the road so
completely frozen as to bear our horses. We ascended the mountain and
passed on to the table land, about four miles, to the house of a worthy
parishioner of Mr. McM., by whom we were kindly welcomed, and after
giving us a warm breakfast, he took us on, with a stout team, about six
miles on the Guelph road. Diverging from this, about two miles to the
left, through a heavy primitive forest, with occasional clearings, we
came to the spot. It is in the 6th concession of Beverly.

We were now about seventeen miles, by the road, from the extreme head of
Lake Ontario, at the town of Hamilton, Burlington Bay; and on one of the
main branches of the bright and busy mill-stream of the valley of
Dundas. As this part of the country is yet encumbered with dense and
almost unbroken masses of trees, with roads unformed, we had frequently
to inquire our way, and at length stopped on the skirts of an elevated
beech ridge, upon which the trees stood as large and thickly as in
other parts of the forest. There was nothing at first sight to betoken
that the hand of man had ever been exercised there. Yet this wooded
ridge embraced the locality we were in quest of, and the antiquity of
interments and accumulations of human bones on this height is to be
inferred, from their occurrence amidst this forest, and beneath the
roots of the largest trees.

It is some five or six years since the discovery was made. It happened
from the blowing down of a large tree, whose roots laid bare a quantity
of human bones. Search was then made, and has been renewed at subsequent
times, the result of which has been the disclosure of human skeletons in
such abundance and massive quantities as to produce astonishment. This
is the characteristic feature. Who the people were, and how such an
accumulation should have occurred, are questions which have been often
asked. And the interest of the scene is by no means lessened on
observing that the greater part of these bones are deposited, not in
isolated and single graves as the Indians now bury, but in wide and long
trenches and rude vaults, in which the skeletons are piled
longitudinally upon each other. In this respect they resemble a single
deposit, mentioned in a prior letter, as occurring on _Isle Ronde_, in
Lake Huron. And they would appear, as is the case with the latter, to be
re-interments of bodies, after the flesh had decayed, collected from
their first places of sepulture.

No one--not the oldest inhabitant--remembers the residence of Indians in
this location, nor does there appear to be any tradition on the subject.
It is a common opinion among the settlers that there must have been a
great battle fought here, which would account for the accumulation, but
this idea does not appear to be sustained by an examination of the
skulls, which, so far as I saw, exhibit no marks of violence. Besides,
there are present the bones and crania of women and children, with
implements and articles of domestic use, such as are ordinarily
deposited with the dead. The supposition of pestilence, to account for
the number, is subject to less objection; yet, if admitted, there is no
imaginable state of Indian population in this quarter, which could have
produced such heaps. The trenches, so far as examined, extend over the
entire ridge. One of the transverse deposits, I judged, could not
include less than fifteen hundred square feet. The whole of this had
been once dug over, in search of curiosities, such as pipes, shells,
beads, &c., of which a large number were found. Among the evidences of
interments here since the discovery of Canada, were several brass
kettles, in one of which were five infant skulls.

Could we determine accurately the time required for the growth of a
beech, or a black oak, as they are found on these deposits, of sixteen,
eighteen and twenty inches and two feet in diameter, the date of the
abandonment or completion of the interments might be very nearly fixed.
The time of the growth of these species is, probably, much less, in the
temperate latitudes, and in fertile soils, than is commonly supposed. I
am inclined to think, from a hasty survey, that the whole deposit is the
result of the slow accumulation of both ordinary interment, and the
periodical deposit or re-interment of exhumed bones brought from
contiguous hunting camps and villages. To this, pestilence has probably
added. The ridge is said to be the apex or highest point of the table
lands, and would therefore recommend itself, as a place of general
interment, to the natives. Bands, who rove from place to place, and
often capriciously abandon their hunting villages, are averse to leaving
their dead in such isolated spots. The surrounding country is one which
must have afforded all the spontaneous means of Indian subsistence, in
great abundance. The deer and bear, once very numerous, still abound.

We passed some ancient beaver dams, and were informed that the country
east and north bears similar evidences of its former occupation by the
small furred animals. The occurrence of the sugar maple adds another
element of Indian subsistence. There are certain enigmatical walls of
earth, in this vicinity, which extend several miles across the country,
following the leading ridges of land. Accounts vary in representing them
to extend from five to eight miles. These I did not see, but learn that
they are about six feet high, and present intervals as if for gates.
There is little likelihood that these walls were constructed for
purposes of military defence, remote as they are from the great waters,
and aside from the great leading war-paths. It is far more probable that
they were intended to intercept the passage of game, and compel the deer
to pass through these artificial defiles, where the hunters lay in wait
for them.

Ancient Iroquois tradition, as preserved by Colden, represents this
section of Canada, extending quite to Three Rivers, as occupied by the
Adirondacks; a numerous, fierce, and warlike race, who carried on a
determined war against the Iroquois. The same race, who were marked as
speaking a different type of languages, were, at an early day, called by
the French by the general term of Algonquins. They had three chief
residences on the Utawas and its sources, and retired northwestwardly,
by that route, on the increase of the Iroquois power. Whoever the people
were who hunted and buried their dead at Beverly, it is manifest that
they occupied the district at and prior to the era of the discovery of
Canada, and also continued to occupy it, after the French had introduced
the fur trade into the interior. For we find, in the manufactured
articles buried, the distinctive evidences of both periods.

The antique bone beads, of which we raised many, _in situ_, with crania
and other bones, from beneath the roots of trees, are in every respect
similar to those found in the Grave Creek mound, which have been
improperly called "Ivory." Amulets of bone and shell, and pipes of fine
steatite and indurated red clay, are also of this early period, and are
such as were generally made and used by the ancient inhabitants prior to
the introduction of European wrought wampum or seawan, and of beads of
porcelain and glass, and ornamented pipes of coarse pottery. I also
examined several large marine shells, much corroded and decayed, which
had been brought, most probably, from the shores of the Atlantic.

Having made such excavations as limited time and a single spade would
permit, we retraced our way to Dundas, which we reached after nightfall,
a little fatigued, but well rewarded in the examination of an object
which connects, in several particulars, the antiquities of Canada with
those of the United States.


The following papers, relative to the early occupancy of these straits,
were copied from the originals in the public archives in Paris, by Gen.
Cass, while he exercised the functions of minister at the court of
France. The first relates to an act of occupancy made on the banks of a
tributary of the Detroit river, called St. Deny's, probably the river
_Aux Canards_. The second coincides with the period usually assigned as
the origin of the post of Detroit. They are further valuable, for the
notice which is incidentally taken of the leading tribes, who were then
found upon these straits.

It will be recollected, in perusing these documents, that La Salle had
passed these straits on his way to "the Illinois," in 1679, that is,
_eight_ years before the act of possession at St. Deny's, and
_twenty-two_ years before the establishment of the post of Detroit. The
upper lakes had then, however, been extensively laid open to the
enterprise of the missionaries, and of the adventurers in the fur trade.
Marquette, accompanied by Alloez, had visited the south shore of Lake
Superior in 1668, and made a map of the region, which was published in
the _Lettres Edifiantes_. This zealous and energetic man established the
mission of St. Ignace at Michilimackinac, about 1669 or 1670, and three
years afterwards, entered the upper Mississippi, from the Wisconsin.
Vincennes, on the Wabash, was established in 1710;[27] St. Louis, not
till 1763.[28]

     [27] Nicollet's Report.

     [28] Law's Historical Dis.

CANADA, 7th June, 1687.

     _A renewal of the taking possession of the territory upon the
     Straits [Detroit] between Lakes Erie and Huron, by Sieur de la

     _Oliver Morel, Equerry, Sieur de la Duranthaye, commandant in the
     name of the King of the Territory of the Ottawas, Miamis,
     Pottawatamies, Sioux, and other tribes under the orders of
     Monsieur, the Marquis de Denonsville, Governor General of New

This day, the 7th of June, 1687, in presence of the Rev'd Father
Angeleran, Head of the Missions with the Ottawas[29] of Michilimackinac,
the Miamis of Sault Ste-Marie, the Illinois, and Green Bay, and of the
Sioux of Mons. de la Forest, formerly commandant of Fort St. Louis on
the Illinois, of Mons. de Lisle, our Lieutenant, and of Mons. de
Beauvais, Lieutenant of Fort St. Joseph, on the Straits [Detroit]
between Lakes Huron and Erie. We declare to all whom it may hereafter
concern, that we have come upon the banks of the river St. Deny's,
situated three leagues from Lake Erie, in the Straits of the said Lakes
Erie and Huron, on the south of said straits, and also at the entrance
on the north side, for and in the name of the King, that we re-take
possession of the said posts, established by Mons. La Salle for
facilitating the voyages he made or caused to be made in vessels from
Niagara to Michilimackinac, in the years * * * * * * at each of which we
have caused to be set up anew a staff, with the arms of the King, in
order to make the said renewed taking possession, and ordered several
cabins to be erected for the accommodation of the French and the Indians
of the Shawnees and Miamis, who had long been the proprietors of the
said territory, but who had some time before withdrawn from the same for
their greater advantage.

     [29] This is, manifestly, an error. The writer of this act of
     possession appears to have mistaken the bank of the St. Mary's,
     one of the tributaries of the Miami of the Lakes, in the Miami
     country, for the Sault de Ste-Marie, at the outlet of Lake
     Superior. The latter position was occupied, at the earliest dates,
     to which tradition reaches, by a branch of the Algonquins, to whom
     the French gave the name, from the falls of the river at that
     locality, of _Saulteux_. They are better known, at this day under
     the name of Chippewas and Odjibwas.

The present act passed in our presence, signed by our hands, and by Rev.
Father Angeleran, of the society of Jesuits, by MM. De la Forest, De
Lisle and De Beauvais, thus in the original:

     Angeleran, Jesuite.
     De la Duranthaye [la Garduer].
     De Beauvais, and
     De la Forest.

Compared by me with the original in my hands, Councillor Secretary of
the King, and Register in Chief of the Royal Council at Quebec,
subscribed, and each page _paraphe_.

Collated at Quebec, this 11th September, 1712.


_Memoir of Monsieur de la Mothe Cadillac, relative to the establishment
of Detroit, addressed to the Minister of Marine, 14th September, 1704:

La Mothe Cadillac renders an account of his conduct relative to the
establishment of Detroit, by questions and answers. It is the Minister
who questions, and La Mothe who answers:_

Q. Was it not in 1699 that you proposed to me an establishment in the
Straits which separate Lake Erie from Lake Huron?

A. Yes, my Lord.

Q. What were the motives which induced you to wish to fortify a place
there, and make an establishment?

A. I had several. The first was to make a strong post, which should not
be subject to the revolutions of other posts, by fixing there a number
of French and Savages, in order to curb the Iroquois, who had constantly
annoyed our colonies and hindered their prosperity.

Q. At what time did you leave Quebec to go to Detroit?

A. On the 8th of March, 1701. I reached Montreal the 12th, when we were
obliged to make a change. * * * * I left La Chine the 5th of June with
fifty soldiers and fifty Canadians--Messrs. De Fonty, Captain, Duque and
Chacornach, Lieutenants. I was ordered to pass by the Grand River of the
Ottawas, notwithstanding my remonstrances. I arrived at Detroit _the
24th July_ and fortified myself there immediately; had the necessary
huts made, and cleared up the grounds, preparatory to its being sowed in
the autumn.

Compare these data, from the highest sources, with the Indian tradition
of the first arrival of the French, in the upper lakes, recorded at page
107, ONEOTA, No. 2.


The _Vicksburg Sentinel_ of the 18th ult., referring to this tribe of
Indians, has the following:--"The last remnant of this once powerful
tribe are now crossing our ferry on their way to their new homes in the
far West. To one who, like the writer, has been familiar to their bronze
inexpressive faces from infancy, it brings associations of peculiar
sadness to see them bidding here a last farewell perhaps to the old
hills which gave birth, and are doubtless equally dear to him and them
alike. The first playmates of our infancy were the young Choctaw boys of
the then woods of Warren county. Their language was once scarcely less
familiar to us than our mother-English. We know, we think, the character
of the Choctaw well. We knew many of their present stalwart braves in
those days of early life when the Indian and white alike forget
disguise, but in the unchecked exuberance of youthful feeling show the
real character that policy and habit may afterwards so much conceal; and
we know that, under the stolid stoic look he assumes, there is burning
in the Indian's nature a heart of fire and feeling, and an all-observing
keenness of apprehension, that marks and remembers everything that
occurs, and every insult he receives. Cunni-at a hah! They are going
away! With a visible reluctance which nothing has overcome but the stern
necessity they feel impelling them, they have looked their last on the
graves of their sires--the scenes of their youth--and have taken up
their slow toilsome march, with their household gods among them, to
their new home in a strange land. They leave names to many of our
rivers, towns and counties; and so long as our State remains, the
Choctaws, who once owned most of her soil, will be remembered."



Forty-two years had elapsed from the discovery of America by Columbus,
when Jacques Cartier prepared to share in the maritime enterprise of the
age, by visiting the coast. Cartier was a native of Normandy, and sailed
from the port of St. Malo, in France, on the 20th April, 1534. It will
be recollected that the conquest of Mexico had been completed 13 years
previous. Cartier had two small vessels of 60 tons burden and 61 men
each. The crews took an oath, before sailing, "to behave themselves
truly and faithfully in the service of the most christian king," Francis
I. After an unusually prosperous voyage of 20 days, he made cape "Buona
Vista" in Newfoundland, which he states to be in north latitude, 48°
30'. Here meeting with ice, he made the haven of St. Catherine's, where
he was detained ten days. This coast had now been known since the voyage
of Cabot, in 1497, and had been frequently resorted to, by fishing
vessels. Jean Denis, a native of Rouen, one of these fishermen, is said
to have published the first chart of it, in 1506. Two years afterwards,
Thomas Aubert, brought the first natives from Newfoundland to Paris, and
this is the era, 1508, commonly assigned as the discovery of Canada. The
St. Lawrence remained, however, undiscovered, nor does it appear that
any thing was known, beyond a general and vague knowledge of the coast,
and its islands. The idea was yet entertained, indeed, it will be seen
by subsequent facts, that America was an island, and that a passage to
the Asiatic continent, existed in these latitudes.

On the 21st May, Cartier continued his voyage, sailing "north and by
east" from cape Buona Vista, and reached the Isle of Birds, so called
from the unusual abundance of sea fowl found there, of the young of
which the men filled two boats, "so that" in the quaint language of the
journal, "besides them which we did eat fresh, every ship did powder and
salt five or six barrels." He also observed the godwit, and a larger and
vicious bird, which they named margaulx. While at this island, they
descried a polar bear, which, in their presence leapt into the sea, and
thus escaped. On their subsequent passage to the main land, they again
encountered, as they supposed, the same animal swimming towards land.
They manned their boats, and "by main strength overtook her, whose flesh
was as good to be eaten, as the flesh of a calf two years old." This
bear is described to be, "as large as a cow, and as white as a swan."

On the 27th he reached the harbour of "Carpunt" in the bay "Les
Chastaux," latitude 51°, where he was constrained to lay by, on account
of the accumulation of ice, till the 9th of June. The narrator of the
voyage takes this occasion to describe certain parts of the coast and
waters of Newfoundland, the island of St. Catherine, Blanc Sablon,
Brest, the Isle of Birds, and a numerous group of Islands called the
Islets. But these memoranda are not connected with any observations or
discoveries of importance. Speaking of Bird and Brest Islands, he says,
they afford "great store of godwits, and crows, with red beaks and red
feet," who "make their nests in holes underground, even as conies." Near
this locality "there is great fishing."

On the 10th June, he entered a port in the newly named island of Brest,
to procure wood and water. Meantime, boats were dispatched to explore
among the islands, which were found so numerous "that it was not
possible they might be told, for they continued about 10 leagues beyond
the said port." The explorers slept on an island. The next day they
continued their discoveries along the coast, and having passed the
islands, found a haven, which they named St. Anthony: one or two leagues
beyond, they found a small river named St. Servansport, and here set up
a cross. About three leagues further, they discovered another river, of
larger size, in which they found salmon, and bestowed upon it the name
of St. Jacques.

While in the latter position, they descried a ship from Rochelle, on a
fishing voyage, and rowing out in their boats, directed it to a port
near at hand, in what is called "Jaques Cartier's Sound," "which," adds
the narrator, "I take to be one of the best, in all the world." The face
of the country they examined, is, however, of the most sterile and
forbidding character, being little besides "stones and wild crags, and a
place fit for wild beasts, for in all the North Island," he continues,
"I did not see a cart load of good earth, yet went I on shore, in many
places, and in the Island of White Sand, (Blanc Sablon,) there is
nothing else but moss and small thorns, scattered here and there,
withered and dry. To be short, I believe that this was the land that God
allotted to Cain."

Immediately following this, we have the first description of the
natives. The men are described as being "of an indifferent good stature
and bigness, but wild and unruly. They wear their hair tied on the top,
like a wreath of hay, and put a wooden pin within it, or any other such
thing, instead of a nail, and with them, they bind certain birds
feathers. They are clothed with beast skins, as well the men as women,
but that the women go somewhat straiter and closer in their garments,
than the men do, with their waists girded. They paint themselves with
certain roan colours; their boats are made of the bark of birch trees,
with the which they fish, and take great store of seals. And as far as
we could understand, since our coming thither, that is not their
habitation, but they come from the main land, out of _hotter_[30]
countries to catch the said seals, and other necessaries for their

     [30] I underscore the word "hotter," to denote the prevalent
     theory. They were searching for China or the East India.

From this exploratory trip, the boats returned to their newly named
harbour of Brest, on the 13th. On the 14th, being the Sabbath, service
was read, and the next day Cartier continued his voyage, steering
southerly, along the coast, which still wore a most barren and cheerless
aspect. Much of this part of the narrative is taken up with distances
and soundings, and the naming of capes and islands of very little
interest at the present day. They saw a few huts upon the cliffs on the
18th, and named this part of the coast "Les Granges," but did not stop
to form any acquaintance with their tenants. Cape Royal was reached and
named the day prior, and is said to be the "greatest fishery of cods
there possibly may be, for in less than an hour we took a hundred of
them." On the 24th they discovered the island of St. John. They saw
myriads of birds upon the group of islands named "Margaulx," five
leagues westward of which they discovered a large, fertile, and
well-timbered island, to which the name of "Brion" was given. The
contrast presented by the soil and productions of this island, compared
with the bleak and waste shores they had before encountered, excited
their warm admiration; and with the aid of this excitement, they here
saw "wild corn," peas, gooseberries, strawberries, damask roses, and
parsley, "with other sweet and pleasant herbs." They here also saw the
walrus, bear, and wolf.

Very little is to be gleaned from the subsequent parts of the voyage,
until they reached the gulf of St. Lawrence. Mists, head winds, barren
rocks, sandy shores, storms and sunshine, alternately make up the
landscape presented to view. Much caution was evinced in standing off
and on an iron bound coast, and the boats were often employed in
exploring along the main land. While thus employed near a shallow
stream, called the "River of Boats," they saw natives crossing the
stream in their canoes, but the wind coming to blow on shore, they were
compelled to retire to their vessels, without opening any communication
with them. On the following day, while the boats were traversing the
coast, they saw a native running along shore after them, who made signs
as they supposed, directing them to return towards the cape they had
left. But as soon as the boat turned he fled. They landed, however, and
putting a knife and a woollen girdle on a staff, as a good-will
offering, returned to their vessels.

The character of this part of the Newfoundland coast, impressed them as
being greatly superior to the portions which they had previously seen,
both in soil and temperature. In addition to the productions found at
Brion's Island, they noticed cedars, pines, white elm, ash, willow, and
what are denominated "ewe-trees." Among the feathered tribes they
mention the "thrush and stock-dove." By the latter term the passenger
pigeon is doubtless meant. The "wild corn" here again mentioned, is said
to be "like unto rye," from which it may be inferred that it was the
zizania, although the circumstance of its being an aquatic plant is not

In running along the coast Cartier appears to have been engrossed with
the idea, so prevalent among the mariners of that era, of finding a
passage to India, and it was probably on this account that he made such
a scrupulous examination of every inlet and bay, and the productions of
the shores. Wherever the latter offered anything favourable, there was a
strong disposition to admiration, and to make appearances correspond
with the theory. It must be recollected that Hudson, seventy-five years
later, in sailing up the North River, had similar notions. Hence the
application of several improper terms to the vegetable and animal
productions of the latitudes, and the constant expectation of beholding
trees bending with fruits and spices, "goodly trees" and "very sweet and
pleasant herbs." That the barren and frigid shores of Labrador, and the
northern parts of Newfoundland, should have been characterised as a
region subject to the divine curse, is not calculated to excite so much
surprise, as the disposition with every considerable change of soil and
verdure, to convert it into a land of oriental fruitfulness. It does not
appear to have been sufficiently borne in mind, that the increased
verdure and temperature, were, in a great measure, owing to the
advancing state of the season. He came on this coast on the 10th of May,
and it was now July. It is now very well known that the summers in high
northern latitudes, although short, are attended with a high degree of

On the 3d of July Cartier entered the gulf to which the name of St.
Lawrence has since been applied, the centre of which he states to be in
latitude 47° 30'. On the 4th he proceeded up the bay to a creek called
St. Martin, near bay De Chaleur, where he was detained by stress of
weather eight days. While thus detained, one of the ship's boats was
sent a-head to explore. They went 7 or 8 leagues to a cape of the bay,
where they descried two parties of Indians, "in about 40 or 50 canoes,"
crossing the channel. One of the parties landed and beckoned them to
follow their example, "making a great noise" and showing "certain skins
upon pieces of wood"--i.e. fresh stretched skins. Fearing their
numbers, the seamen kept aloof. The Indians prepared to follow them, in
two canoes, in which movement they were joined by five canoes of the
other party, "who were coming from the sea side." They approached in a
friendly manner, "dancing and making many signs of joy, saying in their
tongue Nape tondamen assuath."[31] The seamen, however, suspected their
intentions, and finding it impossible to elude them by flight, two shots
were discharged among them, by which they were so terrified, that they
fled precipitately ashore, "making a great noise." After pausing awhile,
the "wild men" however, re-embarked, and renewed the pursuit, but after
coming alongside, they were frightened back by the strokes of two
lances, which so disconcerted them that they fled in haste, and made no
further attempt to follow.

     [31] In Mr. Gallatin's comparative vocabulary, "Napew" means man,
     in the Sheshatapoosh or Labrador. It is therefore fair to conclude
     that these were a party of Sheshatapoosh Indians, whose language
     proves them to be of the kindred of the great Algonquin family.

This appears to have been the first rencontre of the ship's crew with
the natives. On the following day, an interview was brought on, by the
approach of said "wild men" in nine canoes, which is thus described. "We
being advertised of their coming, went to the point where they were with
our boats; but so soon as they saw us they began to flee, making signs
that they came to traffic with us, showing us such skins as they clothed
themselves withal, which are of small value. We likewise made signs unto
them, that we wished them no evil, and in sign thereof, two of our men
ventured to go on land to them, and carry them knives, with other iron
wares, and a red hat to give unto their captain. Which, when they saw,
they also came on land, and brought some of their skins, and so began to
deal with us, seeming to be very glad to have our iron wares and other
things, dancing, with many other ceremonies, as with their hands to cast
sea water on their heads. They gave us whatever they had, not keeping
any thing, so that they were constrained to go back again naked, and
made us signs, that the next day, they would come again and bring more
skins with them."

Observing a spacious bay extending beyond the cape, where this
intercourse had been opened, and the wind proving adverse to the vessels
quitting their harbour, Cartier despatched his boats to examine it,
under an expectation that it might afford the desired passage--for it is
at all times to be observed that he was diligently seeking the long
sought passage to the Indies. While engaged in this examination, his men
discovered "the smokes and fires" of "wild men" (the term constantly
used in the narrative to designate the natives.) These smokes were upon
a small lake, communicating with the bay. An amiable interview took
place, the natives presenting cooked seal, and the French making a
suitable return "in hatchets, knives and beads." After these
preliminaries, which were conducted with a good deal of caution, by
deputies from both sides, the body of the men approached in their
canoes, for the purpose of trafficking, leaving most of their families
behind. About 300 men women and children were estimated to have been
seen at this place. They evinced their friendship by singing and
dancing, and by rubbing their hands upon the arms of their European
visitors, then lifting them up towards the heavens. An opinion is
expressed that these people, (who were in the position assigned to the
Micmacs in 1600 in Mr. Gallatin's ethnological map,) might very easily
be converted to Christianity. "They go," says the narrator, "from place
to place. They live only by fishing. They have an ordinary time to fish
for their provisions. The country is _hotter_ than the country of Spain,
and the fairest that can possibly be found, altogether smooth and
level." To the productions before noticed, as existing on Brion's island
&c., and which were likewise found here, he adds, "white and red roses,
with many other flowers of very sweet and pleasant smell." "There be
also," says the journalist, "many goodly meadows, full of grass, and
lakes, wherein plenty of salmon be." The natives called a hatchet
_cochi_, and a knife _bacon_[32]. It was now near the middle of July,
and the degree of heat experienced on the excursion induced Cartier to
name the inlet, Baie du Chaleur--a name it still retains.

     [32] Koshee and Bahkon. These are not the terms for a hatchet and
     a knife in the Micmac, nor in the old Algonquin, nor in the

On the 12th of July Cartier left his moorings at St. Martin's creek, and
proceeded up the gulf, but encountering bad weather he was forced into a
bay, which appears to have been Gaspe, where one of the vessels lost her
anchor. They were forced to take shelter in a river of that bay, and
there detained thirteen days. In the mean while they opened an
intercourse with the natives, who were found in great numbers engaged in
fishing for makerel. Forty canoes, and 200 men women and children were
estimated to have been seen, during their detention. Presents of
"knives, combs, beads of glass, and other trifles of small value," were
made to them, for which they expressed great thankfulness, lifting up
their hands, and dancing and singing.

These Gaspe Indians are represented as differing, both in nature and
language, from those before mentioned. They presented a picture of
abject poverty, were partially clothed in "old skins," and lived without
the use of tents. They may, says the journalist, "very well and truly be
called _wild_, because there is no poorer people in the world, for I
think, all they had together, besides their boats and nets, was not
worth five sous." They shaved their heads, except a tuft at the crown;
sheltered themselves at night under their canoes on the bare ground, and
ate their provisions very partially cooked. They were wholly without the
use of salt, and "ate nothing that had any taste of salt." On Cartier's
first landing among them, the men expressed their joy, as those at bay
Chaleur had done, by singing and dancing. But they had caused all their
women, except 2 or 3, to flee into the woods. By giving a comb and a
tin bell to each of the women who had ventured to remain, the avarice of
the men was excited, and they quickly caused their women, to the number
of about 20, to sally from the woods, to each of whom the same present
was made. They caressed Cartier by touching and rubbing him with their
hands; they also sung and danced. Their nets were made of a species of
indigenous hemp; they possessed also, a kind of "millet" called
"kapaige," beans called "Sahu," and nuts called "Cahehya." If any thing
was exhibited, which they did not know, or understand, they shook their
heads saying "Nohda." It is added that they never come to the sea,
except in fishing time, which, we may remark, was probably the cause of
their having no lodges, or much other property about them. They would
naturally wish to disencumber their canoes as much as possible, in these
summer excursions, that they might freight them back with dried fish.
The language spoken by these Gaspe Indians is manifestly of the Iroquois
type. "Cahehya," is, with a slight difference, the term for fruit, in
the Oneida.

On the 24th July, Cartier set up a cross thirty feet high, inscribed,
"_Vive le Roy de France_." The natives who were present at this
ceremony, seem, on a little reflection, to have conceived the true
intent of it, and their chief complained of it, in a "long oration,"
giving them to understand "that the country was his, and that we should
not set up any cross, without his leave." Having quieted the old chief's
fears, and made use of a little duplicity, to get him to come alongside,
they seized two of the natives for the purpose of taking them to France,
and on the next day set sail, up the gulf. After making some further
examinations of the gulf, and being foiled in an attempt to enter the
mouth of a river, Cartier turned his thoughts on a return. He was
alarmed by the furious tides setting out of the St. Lawrence; the
weather was becoming tempestuous, and under these circumstances he
assembled his captains and principal men, "to put the question as to the
expediency of continuing the voyage." They advised him to this effect.
That, considering that easterly winds began to prevail--"that there was
nothing to be gotten"--that, the impetuosity of the tides was such "That
they did but fall," and that storms and tempests began to reign--and
moreover, that they must either promptly return home, or else remain
where they were till spring, it was expedient to return. With this
counsel he complied. No time was lost in retracing their outward track,
along the Newfoundland coast. They reached the port of "White Sands," on
the 9th of August. On the 15th, being "the feast of the Assumption of
Our Lady," after service, Cartier took his departure from the coast. He
encountered a heavy storm, of three days continuance, "about the middle
of the sea," and reached the port of St. Malo, on the 5th of September,
after an absence of four months and sixteen days.

This comprises the substance of the first voyage of discovery, of which
we have knowledge, ever made within the waters of the St. Lawrence. The
Newfoundland and Nova Scotia coasts, together with the shores of the
North Atlantic generally, had been discovered by Cabot, 37 years before.
The banks of Newfoundland had been resorted to, as is known pretty
freely for the purpose of fishing, for 26 years of this period, and the
natives had been at least, in one instance, taken to Europe. But the
existence of the St. Lawrence appears not to have been known. Cartier,
is, therefore, the true discoverer of Canada, although he was not its
founder. The latter honour was reserved for another. In the two
succeeding voyages made by Cartier, of which it is proposed to make a
synopsis, his title as a discoverer, is still more fully established.


A.D. 1535, May, 19th, Cartier left St. Malo, on his second voyage of
discovery, "to the islands of Canada, Hochelaga, and Saguenay," with
three ships--the "Hermina" of 100 to 120 tons--the "little Hermina" of
60 tons, and the "Hermerillon" of 40 tons, commanded by separate
masters, acting under his orders as "General." He was accompanied by
several gentlemen and adventurers, among whom the narrator of the voyage
mentions, "Master Claudius de Pont Briand, son to the Lord of
Montceuell, and cup-bearer to the Dauphin of France; Charles of
Pomerais, and John Powlet." He suffered a severe gale on the outward
passage, in which the ships parted company. Cartier reached the coast of
Newfoundland on the 7th July, and was not rejoined by the other vessels
till the 26th, on which day the missing vessels entered "the port of
White Sands" in the _bay des Chasteaux_, the place previously designated
for their general rendezvous.

On the 27th he continued his voyage along the coast, keeping in sight of
land, and consequently running great risks, from the numerous shoals he
encountered in seeking out anchorages. Many of the islands and headlands
named in the previous voyage, were observed, and names were bestowed
upon others, which had before escaped notice. Soundings and courses and
distances, are detailed with the tedious prolixity, and probably, with
the uncertainty of the era. Nothing of importance occurred until the 8th
of August, when Cartier entered the gulf, where he had previously
encountered such storms, and which he now named ST. LAWRENCE. From
thence on the 12th, he pursued his voyage westward "about 25 leagues" to
a cape named "Assumption," which appears to have been part of the Nova
Scotia coast. It is quite evident that the idea of a continuous
continent was not entertained by Cartier at this period, although the
Cabots had discovered and run down the coast nearly 40 years before
(1497.) He constantly speaks of his discoveries as "islands" and the
great object of anxiety seems to have been, to find the long sought
"passage" so often mentioned in his journals.

The two natives whom he had seized on the previous voyage, now told him,
that cape Assumption was a part of the "southern coast," or main,--that
there was an island north of the passage to "Honguedo" where they had
been taken the year before, and that "two days journey from the said
cape, and island, began the kingdom of Saguenay."

In consequence of this information, and a wish to revisit "the land he
had before espied," Cartier turned his course towards the north, and
re-entering the Gulf of St. Lawrence, came to the entrance of the river,
which is stated to be "about thirty leagues" across. Here, the two
natives told him, was the commencement of "Saguenay,"--that it was an
inhabited country, and produced "red copper." They further informed him,
that this was the mouth of the "great river of Hochelaga, and ready way
to Canada,"--that it narrowed in the ascent towards Canada, the waters
becoming fresh; that its sources were so remote that they had never
heard of any man who had visited them, and that boats would be required
to complete the ascent.

This information appears to have operated as a disappointment on
Cartier, and he determined to explore northward from the gulf, "because
he would know" to use the quaint language of the narrator, "if between
the lands towards the north any passage might be discovered." No such
passage could however be found, and after devoting ten or twelve days to
re-examinations of points and islands before but imperfectly discovered,
or to the discovery of others, he returned to the river St. Lawrence,
which he began to ascend: and on the 1st Sept. he came to the entrance
of the Saguenay river, which is described as a bold and deep stream,
entering the St. Lawrence, between bare, precipitous rocks, crowned with
trees. Here they encountered four canoes of Indians, who evinced their
characteristic caution and shyness. On being hailed, however, by the two
captive natives, who disclosed to them, their names, they came along
side. But the journal records no further particulars of this interview.
They proceeded up the river next day. The tides are noticed as being
"very swift and dangerous," and the "current" is described as equalling
that at Bordeaux. Many tortoises were seen at the "Isle of Condres," and
a species of fish, which are described of equalling a porpoise in size,
with a head resembling a greyhound's, and of unspotted whiteness. It may
be vague to offer a conjecture from such a description as to the species
of fish intended, but as the natives reported them to be "very savoury
and good to be eaten," it may be inferred, that the sturgeon was meant.
Many of the descriptions of the animal productions of America, given by
Cartier, appear to be drawn up, rather with a view to excite wonder, in
an age when wonders were both industriously sought, and readily
credited, than to convey any accurate idea of their true characters and

On the 7th of Sept. they reached the island now called Orleans, where,
it is said "the country of Canada beginneth." This island is stated to
be ten leagues long, and five broad, being inhabited by natives who
lived exclusively by fishing. Having anchored his vessels in the
channel, he made a formal landing in his boats, taking the two captives,
Domaigaia, and Taignoagny, as interpreters. The natives at first fled,
but hearing themselves addressed in their own tongue, and finding the
captives to be their own countrymen, friendly intercourse at once
ensued. The natives evinced their joy by dancing, and "showing many
sorts of ceremonies." They presented Cartier, "eels and other sorts of
fishes, with two or three burdens of great millet, wherewith they make
their bread, and many great mush mellons." This "great millet" appears
to have been _zea mais_, which is here for the first time noticed,
amongst the northern Indians. The report of the arrival of their lost
countrymen D. and T. seemed to have put all the surrounding villages in
commotion, and Cartier found himself thronged with visitors, to whom he
gave presents, trifling in themselves, but of much value in the eyes of
the Indians. The utmost harmony and good feeling appear to have

On the following day Donnacona, who is courteously styled the Lord of
Agouhanna, visited the ships, with 12 boats, or canoes--ten of which
however, he directed to stay at a distance, and with the other two and
16 men approached the vessels. A friendly conference ensued. The chief,
when he drew near the headmost vessel began "to frame a long oration,
moving all his body and members after a strange fashion." When he
reached Cartier's ship, the captives entered into free discourse with
him, imparting the observations they had made in France, and the kind
treatment they had experienced. At this recital Donnacona was so much
pleased, that he desired Cartier to reach him his arm, that he might
kiss it. He not only kissed it, but "laid it about his neck, for so they
use to do, when they will make much of one." Cartier then entered into
the chief's boat, "causing bread and wine to be brought," and after
eating and drinking with him and his followers, the interview terminated
in mutual satisfaction.

The advanced state of the season, and the determination to visit
Hochelaga (now Montreal) before the ice formed, admonished Cartier to
look for a harbour, which would afford a safe anchorage for his largest
vessels during the winter. He selected "a little river and haven,"
opposite the head of the island, to which he gave the name of "Santa
Croix," being in the vicinity of Donnacona's village. No time was lost
in bringing up and mooring the vessels, and driving piles into the
harbour for their better security. While engaged in this work, further
acquaintance was made with the natives, and their opinion of Cartier's
visit, began to manifest itself, by which it appeared, that the
friendship established with him was rather apparent, than real. About
this time Taignoagny and Domaigaia were suffered to return to their
villages, and it soon became apparent, that the knowledge they had
acquired of the French, would be wielded to put their countrymen on
their guard against encroachments upon their soil. Taignoagny, in
particular, rendered himself obnoxious to the French, by his sullen and
altered conduct, and the activity he afterwards manifested in thwarting
Cartier's design of visiting the island of Hochelaga, although it
appears, he had, previous to leaving the vessels, promised to serve as a
guide on the expedition.

Donnacona himself opposed the projected visit, by argument, by artifice,
and finally, by the extraordinary resource of human gifts. His aversion
to it first evinced itself by keeping aloof, and adopting a shy and
suspicious demeanour. Cartier finding this chief, with T. and D. and a
numerous retinue in his vicinity, "under a point or nook of land,"
ordered a part of his men to follow him, and suddenly presented himself
in the midst of them. After mutual salutations, Taignoagny got up and
addressed him, in behalf of Donnacona, complaining that they came armed,
to which Cartier replied that, it was the custom of his country, and a
custom he could not dispense with. The bustle and heat of the
introduction being over, Cartier played the part of a politic
diplomatist, and was met by Donnacona and his counsellors on his own
grounds, and the whole interview, though it resulted in what is called
"a marvellous steadfast league of friendship" can only be looked upon,
as a strife, in which it is the object of both parties to observe the
most profound dissimulation. This "league" was ratified by the natives,
with three loud cries, "a most horrible thing to hear" says the

On the very next day Donnacona, attended with T. and D. and 10 or 12 "of
the chiefest of the country, with more than 500 persons, men, women and
children," came on board of the vessels, at their moorings, to protest
against the intended voyage of exploration. Taignoagny opened the
conference, by saying to Cartier, that Donnacona regretted his design of
visiting Hochelaga, and had forbid any of his people from accompanying
him, because the river itself "was of no importance." Cartier replied
that his decision was made, and urged the speaker to go with him, as he
had promised, offering to make the voyage every way advantageous to him.
A prompt refusal, on the part of T. and the sudden withdrawal of the
whole collected multitude, terminated this interview.

On the next day Donnacona re-appeared with all his followers, bringing
presents of fish, singing and dancing. He then caused all his people to
pass to one side, and drawing a circle in the sand, requested Cartier
and his followers, to enter into it. This arrangement concluded, he
began an address, "holding in one of his hands a maiden child ten or
twelve years old," whom he presented to Cartier, the multitude at the
same time giving three shouts. He then brought forward two male
children, separately, presenting them in the same manner, and his
people at each presentation, expressing their assent by shouts.
Taignoagny, who by this time had drawn upon himself the epithet of
"crafty knave" told the "captain" (as Cartier is all along termed,) that
one of the children was his own brother, and that the girl was a
daughter of Donnacona's "own sister," and that this presentation, was
made to him, solely with a view of dissuading him from his expedition.
Cartier persisted in saying, that his mind was made up, and could not be
altered. Here, Domaigaia interposed, and said, that the children were
offered as "a sign and token of good will and security," and not with
any specific purpose of dissuading him from the expedition. High words
passed between the two liberated captives, from which it was evident
that one, or the other, had either misconceived or misrepresented the
object of the gift. Cartier however, took the children, and gave
Donnacona "two swords and two copper basins," for which he returned
thanks, and "commanded all his people to sing and dance," and requested
the captain to cause a piece of artillery to be discharged for his
gratification. Cartier readily improved this hint, to show them the
destructive effects of European artillery, and at a signal, ordered
twelve pieces, charged with ball, to be fired into the contiguous
forest, by which they were so astounded that they "put themselves to
flight, howling, crying, and shrieking, so that it seemed hell was broke

These attempts to frustrate the purposed voyage, having failed, the
natives endeavoured to put the captain's credulity to the test, and
operate upon his fears. For this purpose three natives were disguised to
play the part of "devils," wrapped in skins, besmeared, and provided
with horns. Thus equipped they took advantage of the tide, to drop down
along side Cartier's vessels, uttering words of unintelligible import as
they passed, but keeping their faces steadfastly directed toward the
wood. At the same time Donnacona, and his people rushed out of the wood
to the shore,--attracting the attention of the ships' crews in various
ways, and finally seized the mock "devils" at the moment of their
landing, and carried them into the woods, where their revelations were

The result of this clumsy trick, was announced by Taignoagny and
Domaigaia, who said, that their god "Cudruaigny had spoken in
Hochelaga"--importing ill tidings to the French, and that he had sent
these three men to inform them that, there was so much ice and snow in
the country, that whoever entered it, must die. After some
interrogatives pro and con, in the course of which the power of "his
Priests" was oddly contrasted by the French commander with that of the
"devils," both Taignoagny and Domaigaia coincided in finally declaring
that Donnacona, "would by no means permit that any of them should go
with him to Hochelaga," unless he would leave hostages in his hands.

All these artifices appear to have had but little effect on Cartier's
plan. He told his freed interpreters, that if they would not go
willingly, they might stay, and he would prosecute the voyage without
them. Accordingly, having finished mooring his vessels, on the 19th
September he set out to explore the upper portions of the river, taking
his smallest vessel and two boats with fifty mariners, and the
supernumerary gentlemen of his party. A voyage of ten days brought him
to an expansion of the river, which he named the lake of Angolesme, but
which is now known under the name of St. Peter. Here the shallowness of
the water, and rapidity of the current above, induced him to leave the
"Hermerillon," and he proceeded with the two boats and twenty-eight
armed men. The fertility of the shore, the beauty and luxuriance of the
forest trees, mantled as they often were, with the vine loaded with
clusters of grapes, the variety of water fowl, and above all the
friendly treatment they every where received from the Indians, excited
unmingled admiration. One of the chiefs whom they encountered presented
Cartier with two children, his son and daughter, the latter of whom,
being 7 or 8 years old, he accepted. On another occasion he was carried
ashore by one of a party of hunters, as "lightly and easily as if he had
been a child of five years old." Presents of fish were made, at every
point, where he came in contact with the natives, who seemed to vie with
each other in acts of hospitality.

These marks of welcome and respect continued to be manifested during the
remainder of the journey to Hochelaga, where he arrived on the 2d of
October. A multitude of both sexes and all ages had collected on the
shore to witness his approach, and welcome his arrival. They expressed
their joy by dancing, "clustering about us, making much of us, bringing
their young children in their arms only to have our captain and his
company touch them." Cartier landed, and spent half an hour in receiving
their caresses, and distributed tin beads to the women, and knives to
some of the men, and then "returned to the boats to supper." The natives
built large fires on the beach, and continued dancing, and merry making
all night, frequently exclaiming _Aguiaze_, which is said to signify
"mirth and safety."

Early the next morning Cartier having "very gorgeously attired himself,"
and taking 20 mariners, with his officers and supernumeraries, landed
for the purpose of visiting the town, taking some of the natives for
guides. After following a well beaten path, leading through an oak
forest, for four or five miles, he was met by a chief, accompanied by a
retinue, sent out to meet him, who by signs gave him to understand, that
he was desired to rest at that spot, where a fire had been kindled, a
piece of civility, which it may be supposed, was something more than an
empty compliment on an October morning. The chief here made "a long
discourse," which, of course, was not understood, but they inferred it
was expressive of "mirth and friendship." In return Cartier gave him 2
hatchets, 2 knives and a cross, which he made him kiss, and then put it
around his neck.

This done the procession advanced, without further interruption, to the
"city of Hochelaga," which is described as seated in the midst of
cultivated fields, at the distance of a league from the mountain. It was
secured by three ramparts "one within another," about 2 rods in height,
"cunningly joined together after their fashion," with a single gate
"shut with piles and stakes and bars." This entrance, and other parts of
the walls, had platforms above, provided with stones for defensive
operations. The ascent to these platforms was by ladders.

As the French approached, great numbers came out to meet them. They were
conducted by the guides, to a large square enclosure in the centre of
the town, "being from side to side a good stone's cast." They were first
greeted by the female part of the population, who brought their children
in their arms, and rushed eagerly to touch or rub the faces and arms of
the strangers, or whatever parts of their bodies they could approach.
The men now caused the females to retire, and seated themselves formally
in circles upon the ground; as if, says the narrator, "some comedy or
show" was about to be rehearsed. Mats were then brought in by the women,
and spread upon the ground, for the visitors to sit upon. Last came the
"Lord and King" Agouhanna, a palsied old man, borne upon the shoulders
of 9 or 10 attendants, sitting on a "great stag skin." They placed him
near the mats occupied by Cartier and his party. This simple potentate
"was no whit better apparelled than any of the rest, only excepted, that
he had a certain thing made of the skins of hedgehogs, like a red
wreath, and that was instead of his crown."

After a salutation, in which gesticulation awkwardly supplied the place
of language, the old chief exhibited his palsied limbs, for the purpose
of being touched, by the supposed celestial visitants. Cartier, although
he appeared to be a man of sense and decision, on other occasions, was
not proof against the homage to his imputed divinity; but quite
seriously fell to rubbing the credulous chief's legs and arms. For this
act, the chief presented him his fretful "crown." The blind, lame, and
impotent, of the town were now brought in, and laid before him, "some so
old that the hair of their eyelids came down and covered their cheeks,"
all of whom he touched, manifesting his own seriousness by reading the
Gospel of St. John, and "praying to God that it would please him to open
the hearts of this poor people, and to make them know his holy word, and
that they might receive baptism and christendom." He then read a portion
of the catholic service, with a loud voice, during which the natives
were "marvellously attentive, looking up to heaven and imitating us in
gestures." Some presents of cutlery and trinkets were then distributed,
trumpets sounded, and the party prepared to return to their boats. When
about to leave their place, the women interposed, inviting them to
partake of the victuals they had prepared--a compliment which was
declined, "because the meats had no savour at all of salt." They were
followed out of the town by "divers men and women," who conducted the
whole party to the top of the mountain, commanding a wide prospect of
the plain, the river and its islands, and the distant mountains.
Transported with a scene, which has continued to afford delight to the
visitors of all after times, Cartier bestowed the name of "Mount Royal"
upon this eminence--a name which has descended, with some modifications,
to the modern city. Having satisfied their curiosity, and obtained such
information respecting the adjoining regions, as their imperfect
knowledge of the Indian language would permit, they returned to their
boats, accompanied by a promiscuous throng of the natives.

Thus ended, on the 3rd Oct. 1535, the first formal meeting between the
French and the Indians of the interior of Canada, or what now began to
be denominated _New France_. As respects those incidents in it, in which
the Indians are represented as looking upon Cartier in the light of a
divinity, clothed with power to heal the sick and restore sight to the
blind, every one will yield the degree of faith, which his credulity
permits. The whole proceeding bears so striking a resemblance to "Christ
healing the sick," that it is probable the narrator drew more largely
upon his New Testament, than any certain knowledge of the faith and
belief of a savage people whose traditions do not reach far, and whose
language, granting the most, he but imperfectly understood. As respects
the description of a city with triple walls, those who know the manner
in which our Indian villages are built, will be best enabled to judge
how far the narrator supplied by fancy, what was wanting in fact. A
"walled city" was somewhere expected to be found, and the writer found
no better place to locate it. Cartier no sooner reached his boats, than
he hoisted sail and began his descent, much to the disappointment of the
Indians. Favoured by the wind and tide, he rejoined his "Pinnace" on the
following day. Finding all well, he continued the descent, without
meeting much entitled to notice, and reached the "port of the Holy
Cross," on the 11th of the month. During his absence the ships' crews
had erected a breastwork before the vessels, and mounted several pieces
of ships' cannon for their defence. Donnacona renewed his acquaintance
on the following day, attended by Taignoagny, Domaigaia, and others, who
were treated with an appearance of friendship, which it could hardly be
expected Cartier could sincerely feel. He, in return visited their
village of Stadacona, and friendly relations being thus restored, the
French prepared for the approach of winter.

Winter came in all its severity. From the middle of Nov. to the middle
of March, the vessels were environed with ice "two fathoms thick," and
snow upwards of four feet deep, reaching above the sides of the vessels.
And the weather is represented as being "extremely raw and bitter." In
the midst of this severity, the crews were infected with "a strange and
cruel disease," the natural consequence of a too licentious intercourse
with the natives. The virulence of this disorder exceeded any thing that
they had before witnessed, though it is manifest, from the journal, that
it was in its virulence only, that the disease itself presented any new
features. A complete prostration of strength marked its commencement,
the legs swelled, the "sinews shrunk as black as any coal." The
infection became general, and excited the greatest alarm. Not more than
10 persons out of 110 were in a condition to afford assistance to the
sick by the middle of February. Eight had already died, and 50 were
supposed to be past recovery.

Cartier, to prevent his weakness being known, as well as to stop further
infection, interdicted all intercourse with the natives. He caused that
"every one should devoutly prepare himself by prayer, and in remembrance
of Christ, caused his image to be set upon a tree, about a flight shot
from the fort, amid the ice and snow, giving all men to understand that
on the Sunday following, service should be said there, and that
whosoever could go, sick or whole, should go thither in procession,
singing the seven psalms of David, and other Litanies, praying, &c."

The disorder, however, continued to spread till there were not "above
three sound men in the ships, and none was able to go under hatches to
draw drink for himself, nor for his fellows." Sometimes they were
constrained to bury the dead under the snow, owing to their weakness and
the severity of the frost, which rendered it an almost incredible labour
to penetrate the ground. Every artifice was resorted to by Cartier, to
keep the true state of his crews from the Indians, and he sought
unremittingly for a remedy against the disorder.

In this his efforts were at last crowned with success, but not till he
had lost 25 of his men. By using a decoction of the bark and leaves of a
certain tree, which is stated to be "the Sassafras tree,"[33] the
remainder of his crews were completely recovered. The decoction was
drank freely, and the dregs applied externally, agreeably to the
directions of Domaigaia, to whom he was indebted for the information,
and who caused women to bring branches of it, and "therewithal shewed
the way how to use it."

     [33] As the tree is afterwards stated to be "as big as any oak in
     France," it was probably the _box elder_, and not the sassafras,
     which never attained to much size.

The other incidents of the winter were not of a character to require
notice. Mutual distrust existed. Cartier was in constant apprehension of
some stratagem, which the character and movements of his savage
neighbours gave some grounds for. He was detained at the bay of the Holy
Cross till the 6th May, 1536. The narrator takes the opportunity of this
long season of inaction to give descriptions of the manners and customs,
ceremonies and occupations of the Indians, and to detail the information
derived from them, and from personal observations respecting the
geographical features and the productions of the country.

Touching the faith of the Indians, it is said, they believed no whit in
God, but in one whom they call "Cudruiagni," to whom, they say, they are
often indebted for a foreknowledge of the weather. And when he is angry,
his displeasure is manifested by casting dust in their eyes. They
believe that, after death, they go into the stars, descending by degrees
towards the horizon, and are finally received into certain green fields,
abounding in fruits and flowers.

They are represented as possessing all property in common, and as being
"indifferently well stored" with the useful "commodities" of the
country--clothing themselves imperfectly in skins, wearing hose and
shoes of skins in winter, and going barefooted in summer. The men labour
little, and are much addicted to smoking. The condition of the women is
one of drudgery and servitude. On them the labour of tilling the
grounds, &c., principally devolves. The young women live a dissolute
life, until marriage, and married women, after the death of their
husbands, are condemned to a state of perpetual widowhood. Polygamy is
tolerated. Both sexes are represented as very hardy, and capable of
enduring the most intense degree of cold. In this there is little to
distinguish the native of 1536 from that of the present day, if we
substitute the blanket for the _muttatos_,[34] and except the remark
respecting the condition of widows, the accuracy of which, as it was
made upon slight acquaintance, may be reasonably doubted. It may also be
remarked, that the condition of young women, as described by Cartier,
was more degraded and vitiated than it is now known to be among any of
the North American tribes.

     [34] Robe of beaver skins. Eight skins of two year old beaver are
     required to make such a robe.

The geographical information recorded respecting the St. Lawrence and
its tributaries is generally vague and confused. But may be referred to
as containing the first notice published by the French of the Great
Lakes. Cartier was told by Donnacona and others that the river
originated so far in the interior, that "there was never man heard of
that found out the end thereof," that it passed through "two or three
great lakes," and that there is "a sea of fresh water," alluding,
probably, to Superior.

At what time the ice broke up, is not distinctly told. It is stated that
"that year the winter was very long," and a scarcity of food was felt
among the Indians, so much so, that they put a high price upon their
venison, &c., and sometimes took it back to their camps, rather than
part with it "any thing cheap." Donnacona and many of his people
withdrew themselves to their hunting grounds, under a pretence of being
absent a fortnight, but were absent two months. Cartier attributed this
long absence to a design of raising the country, and attacking him in
his fortified positions--a design which no cordiality of friendship on
the part of D. would prevent his entertaining, and which the latter gave
some colour to by neglecting to visit Cartier on his return with great
numbers of natives not before seen, and by evading the attempts made to
renew an intercourse, by feigning sickness as the cause of his neglect.
Cartier felt his own weakness, from the death of so many of his crew and
the sickness of others, and has recorded for his government on this
occasion the proverb, that "he that takes heed and shields himself from
all men, may hope to escape from some." He determined to abandon one of
his vessels, that he might completely man and re-fit the others, and
appears to have been diligent in making early preparations to return.
While thus engaged, Donnacona (April 22,) appeared with a great number
of men at Stadacona, and John Powlet, "who being best believed of those
people," he sent to reconnoitre them in their principal villages,
reported that he saw so many people, that "one could not stir for
another, and such men as they were never wont to see." Taignoagny, whom
he saw on this occasion, requested him to beseech Cartier to take off "a
lord of the country," called Agonna, who probably stood in the way of
his own advancement. Cartier availed himself of this request to bring on
an interview with Taignoagny, and by flattering his hopes, finally
succeeded in the execution of a project he appears to have previously
entertained. This was nothing less than the seizure of Donnacona,
Taignoagny, Domaigaia, (his previous captives,) and "two more of the
chiefest men," whom, with the children before received, making ten
persons in all, he conveyed to France.

This seizure was made on the 3d of May, being "Holyrood day," at a time
when Cartier had completed his preparations for sailing. He took formal
possession of the country, under the name of New France, by erecting a
cross "thirty-five feet in height," bearing a shield with the arms of
France, and the following inscription:

"Franciscus primum dei gratia Francorum Rex regnat,"

a sentence upon which this unjustifiable outrage formed a practical
comment. Three days afterwards he sailed from the port of the Holy
Cross, leaving crowds of the natives to bewail the loss of their chiefs.
And whose kindness led them to send on board a supply of provisions,
when they found they could not effect their liberation. Finding the
current of the St. Lawrence much swoln, he came to anchor at the isle of
Filberds, near the entrance of the Sagnenay, where he was detained nine
days. In the meantime many of the natives of Sagnenay visited the ships,
and finding Donnacona a prisoner, they presented him three packs of
beaver. On the 17th May, he made an unsuccessful attempt to proceed, but
was forced back and detained four days longer, waiting "till the
fierceness of the waters" were past. He entered and passed out of the
gulph on the 21st, but encountering adverse winds, did not take his
final departure from the Newfoundland coast till the 19th June. He then
took advantage of a favorable wind, and performed the homeward voyage
in 17 days. He entered the port of St. Malo, July 6, 1536, having been
absent less than 14 months, 8 of which had been passed in the St.


The reports and discoveries of Cartier were so well received by the King
of France (Francis I.), that he determined to colonize the newly
discovered country, and named John Francis de la Roche, Lord of
Roberval, his "Lieutenant and Governor in the countries of Canada and
Hochelaga." Cartier retained his former situation as "Captain General
and leader of the ships," and to him was entrusted the further
prosecution of discoveries. Five vessels were ordered to be prepared at
St. Malo, and measures appear to have been taken to carry out settlers,
cattle, seeds, and agricultural implements. Much delay, however, seems
to have attended the preparations, and before they were completed,
Donnacona and his companions, who had been baptized, paid the debt of
nature. A little girl, ten years old, was the only person surviving out
of the whole number of captives.

It is seldom that a perfect harmony has prevailed between the leaders of
naval and land forces, in the execution of great enterprises. And though
but little is said to guide the reader in forming a satisfactory opinion
on the subject, the result in this instance proved that there was a
settled dissatisfaction in the mind of Cartier respecting the general
arrangements for the contemplated voyage. Whether he thought himself
neglected in not being invested with the government of the country he
had discovered, or felt unwilling that another should share in the
honors of future discoveries, cannot now be determined. It should be
recollected that the conquest of Mexico had then but recently been
accomplished (1520), and it is not improbable that Cartier, who had
taken some pains to exalt Donnacona into another Montezuma, thought
himself entitled to receive from Francis, rewards and emoluments in some
measure corresponding to those which his great rival, Charles, had
finally bestowed upon Cortez.

Whatever were the causes, four years elapsed before the ships were
prepared, and M. La Roche, on visiting the vessels in the road of St.
Malo, ready for sea, then informed Cartier that his artillery,
munitions, and "other necessary things" which he had prepared, were not
yet arrived from Champaigne and Normandy. Cartier, in the meantime, had
received positive orders from the King to set sail. In this exigency, it
was determined that Cartier should proceed, while the King's Lieutenant
should remain "to prepare a ship or two at Honfleur, whither he thought
his things were come."

This arrangement concluded, La Roche invested Cartier with full powers
to act until his arrival, and the latter set sail with five ships, "well
furnished and victualled for two years," on the 23d of May, 1540. Storms
and contrary winds attended the passage. The ships parted company, and
were kept so long at sea, that they were compelled to water the cattle,
&c., they took out for breed, with cider. At length, the vessels
re-assembled in the harbor of Carpunt in Newfoundland, and after taking
in wood and water, proceeded on the voyage, Cartier not deeming it
advisable to wait longer for the coming of La Roche. He reached the
little haven of Saincte Croix (where he wintered in the former voyage),
on the 23d of August. His arrival was welcomed by the natives, who
crowded around his vessels, with Agona at their head, making inquiries
after Donnacona and his companions in captivity. Cartier replied, that
Donnacona was dead, and his bones rested in the ground--that the other
persons had become great lords, and were married, and settled in France.
No displeasure was evinced by the intelligence of Donnacona's death.
Agona, on the contrary, seemed to be well pleased with it, probably, as
the journalist thinks, because it left him to rule in his stead. He took
off his head-dress and bracelets, both being of yellow leather edged
with wampum, and presented them to Cartier. The latter made a suitable
return to him and his attendants in small presents, intimating that he
had brought many new things, which were intended for them. He returned
the chieftain's simple "crown." They then ate, drank, and departed.

Having thus formally renewed intercourse with the natives, Cartier sent
his boats to explore a more suitable harbor and place of landing. They
reported in favor of a small river, about four leagues above, where the
vessels were accordingly moored, and their cargoes discharged. Of the
spot thus selected for a fort and harbor, as it was destined afterwards
to become celebrated in the history of Canada, it may be proper to give
a more detailed notice of Cartier's original description. The river is
stated to be fifty paces broad, having three fathoms water at full tide,
and but a foot at the ebb, having its entrance towards the south, and
its course very serpentine. The beauty and fertility of the lands
bordering it, the vigorous growth of trees, and the rapidity of
vegetation, are highly and (I believe) very justly extolled. Near it,
there is said to be "a high and steep cliff," which it was necessary to
ascend by "a way in manner of a pair of stairs," and below it, and
between it and the river, an interval sufficiently extensive to
accommodate a fort. A work of defence was also built upon the cliff, for
the purpose of keeping the "nether fort and the ships, and all things
that might pass, as well by the great, as by this small river." Upon the
cliff a spring of pure water was discovered near the fort, "adjoining
whereunto," says the narrator, "we found good store of stones, which we
esteemed to the diamonds" (limpid quartz). At the foot of the cliff,
facing the St. Lawrence, they found iron, and at the water's edge
"certain leaves of fine gold (mica) as thick as a man's nail."

The ground was so favorable for tillage, that twenty men labored at an
acre and a half in one day. Cabbage, turnip, and lettuce seed, sprung up
the eighth day. A luxurious meadow was found along the river, and the
woods were clustered with a species of the native grape. Such were the
natural appearance and advantages of a spot which was destined to be the
future site of the city and fortress of Quebec,[35] "but to which he
gave the name of 'Charlesbourg Royal.'"

     [35] Query--Is not the word Quebec a derivative from the Algonquin
     phrase _Kebic_--a term uttered in passing by a dangerous and rocky

Cartier lost no time in despatching two of his vessels to France, under
command of Mace Jollobert and Stephen Noel, his brother-in-law and
nephew, with letters to the king, containing an account of his voyage
and proceedings, accompanied with specimens of the mineral treasures he
supposed himself to have discovered; and taking care to add "how Mons.
Roberval had not yet come, and that he feared that by occasion of
contrary winds and tempests, he was driven back again into France."
These vessels left the newly discovered town and fort of "Charlesbourg
Royal" on the 2d of September. And they were no sooner despatched, than
Cartier determined to explore the "Saults" or rapids of the St.
Lawrence, which had been described to him, and partly pointed out,
during his ascent to the mountain of Montreal. Leaving the fort under
the command of the Viscount Beaupre, he embarked in two boats on the 7th
of September, accompanied by Martine de Painpont and other "gentlemen,"
with a suitable complement of mariners. The only incident recorded of
the passage up, is his visit to "the Lord of Hochelay"--a chief who had
presented him a little girl, on his former visit, and evinced a
friendship during his stay in the river, which he was now anxious to
show that he preserved the recollection of. He presented the chief a
cloak "of Paris red," garnished with buttons and bells, with two basins
of "Laton" (pewter), and some knives and hatchets. He also left with
this chief two boys to acquire the Indian language.

Continuing the ascent, he reached the lower "Sault" on the 11th of the
month, and, on trial, found it impossible to ascend it with the force of
oars. He determined to proceed by land, and found a well-beaten path
leading in the desired course. This path soon conducted him to an Indian
village, where he was well received, and furnished with guides to visit
the second "Sault." Here he was informed that there was another Sault at
some distance, and that the river was not navigable--a piece of
information that meant either that it was not navigable by the craft
Cartier had entered the river with, or was intended to repress his
further advance into the country. The day being far spent, he returned
to his boats, where four hundred natives awaited his arrival. He
appeased their curiosity, by interchanging civilities, and distributing
small presents, and made all speed to return to Charlesbourg Royal,
where he learned that the natives, alarmed by the formidable defences
going on, had intermitted their customary visits, and evinced signs of
hostility. This inference was confirmed by his own observations on the
downward passage, and he determined to use the utmost diligence and
precaution to sustain himself in his new position.

The rest of this voyage is wanting. Hackluyt has, however, preserved two
letters of Jacques Noel, a relative of Cartier, written at St Malo in
1587, with the observations of latitude, courses, and distances, made by
"John Alphonso of Xanctoigne," who carried out La Roche, Lord of
Roberval, to Canada, in 1542, and a fragment of Roberval's narrative,
which indicated the sequel of Cartier's third and last voyage. From the
latter, it appears that Roberval entered the harbor of Belle Isle in
Newfoundland, on the 8th of June, 1542, on his way to Canada; and while
there, Cartier unexpectedly entered the same harbor, on his return to
France. He reported that he was unable "with his small company" to
maintain a footing in the country, owing to the incessant hostility of
the natives, and had resolved to return to France. He presented the
limpid quartz, and gold yellow mica, which he had carefully cherished,
under a belief that he had discovered in these resplendent minerals, the
repositories of gold and diamonds. An experiment was made the next day,
upon what is denominated "gold ore," by which term the journalist does
not probably refer to the "mica," considered, in an age in which
mineralogy had not assumed the rank of a science, as "leaves of gold,"
but to pieces of yellow pyrites of iron, which it is mentioned in the
description of the environs of "Charlesbourg Royal" Cartier had
discovered in the slate rock. And the ore was pronounced "good"--a proof
either of gross deception, or gross ignorance in the experimenter.
Cartier spoke highly of the advantages the country presented for
settlement, in point of fertility. He had, however, determined to leave
it. He disobeyed Roberval's order to return, and "both he and his
company" secretly left the harbor, and made the best of their way to
France, being "moved," as the journalist adds, "with ambition, because
they would have all the glory of the discovery of these parts to

January 21st, 1829.



STE-MARIE, MAY 8th, 1832.

The effects of intemperance on the character of nations and individuals
have been often depicted, within a few years, in faithful colors, and by
gifted minds. "Thoughts that breathe and words that burn" were once
supposed to be confined, exclusively, to give melody to the lyre, and
life to the canvass. But the conceptions of modern benevolence have
dispelled the illusion, and taught us that genius has no higher objects
than the promotion of the greatest amount of good to man--that these
objects come home to the "business and bosoms" of men in their every day
avocations--that they lie level to every capacity, and never assume so
exalted a character, as when they are directed to increase the sum of
domestic happiness and fireside enjoyment--

     "To mend the morals and improve the heart."

It is this consideration that gives to the temperance effort in our day,
a refined and expansive character--

     "Above all Greek, above all Roman fame"--

which has enlisted in its cause sound heads and glowing hearts, in all
parts of our country--which is daily augmenting the sphere of its
influence, and which has already carried its precepts and examples from
the little sea-board village,[36] where it originated, to the foot of
Lake Superior. And I have now the pleasure of seeing before me a
society, assembled on their first public meeting, who have "banded
together," not with such mistaken zeal as dictated the killing of Paul,
or assassinating Cæsar, but for giving their aid in staying the tide of
intemperance which has been rolling westward for more than three
centuries, sweeping away thousands of white and red men in its
course--which has grown with the growth of the nation, and strengthened
with its strength, and which threatens with an overwhelming moral
desolation all who do not adopt the rigid maxim--

     "Touch not, taste not, handle not."

     [36] Andover.

The British critic of the last century little thought, while moralizing
upon some of the weaknesses of individual genius, that he was uttering
maxims which would encourage the exertions of voluntary associations of
men to put a stop to intemperance. It was as true then as now, that "in
the bottle, discontent seeks for comfort, cowardice for courage, and
bashfulness for confidence." It was as true then, as now, that the
"negligence and irregularity" which are the fruits of this habit, "if
long continued, will render knowledge useless, wit ridiculous, and
genius contemptible." "Who," he exclaims, "that ever asked succor from
Bacchus, was able to preserve himself from being enslaved by his
auxiliary?"[37] And is there a species of servitude more pernicious in
its influence, more degrading in its character, more destructive of all
physical and intellectual power, than the slavery of inebriation? The
rage of the conflagration--the devastation of the flood--the fury of the
tempest, are emblematic of the moral fury of the mind under the
influence of alcohol. It is equally ungovernable in its power, and
destructive in its effects. But its devastations are more to be
deplored, because they are the devastations of human faculties--of
intellectual power--of animal energy--of moral dignity--of social
happiness--of temporal health--of eternal felicity.

     [37] Dr. Johnson.

Intemperance is emphatically the parent of disease, mental and physical.
Its direct effects are to blunt the faculty of correct thinking, and to
paralyze the power of vigorous action. Nothing more effectually takes
away from the human mind, its ordinary practical powers of
discrimination and decision, without which man is like a leaf upon the
tempest, or the chaff before the wind. Dr. Darwin has aptly compared the
effects of spirituous liquors upon the lungs to the ancient fable of
Prometheus stealing fire from heaven, who was punished for the theft by
a vulture gnawing on the liver.[38] A striking allegory: but one which
is not inaptly applied to characterize the painful and acute diseases
which are visited upon the inebriate. Dr. Rush was an early advocate of
the cause. He likened the effects of the various degrees of alcohol, in
spirituous drinks, to the artificial mensuration of heat by the
thermometer, and took a decided stand in pointing out its poisonous
effects upon the system, in the generation of a numerous class of
diseases, acute and chronic.

     [38] Zoonomia.

If unhealthy food had been the cause of such disorders, the article
would be rigidly shunned. No man would choose to eat twice of the
cicuta; to use bread having a portion of lime in it; or to drink
frequently of a preparation of sugar of lead. Even the intemperate would
fear to drink of alcohol, in its state of _chemical_ purity, for its
effects would certainly be to arrest the functions of life. Yet he will
drink of this powerful drug, if diluted with acids, saccharine and
coloring matter, water and various impurities, under the disguised names
of wine, brandy, rum, malt liquors, whisky, cordials, and mixed
potations, which all tend to pamper the natural depravity of the human
heart, and poison its powers of healthful action.

Alcohol is one of the preparations which were brought to light in the
age of the Alchemysts--when the human mind had run mad in a philosophic
research after two substances which were not found in nature--the
philosopher's stone, and the universal panacea. One, it was believed,
was to transmute all substances it touched into gold, and the other, to
cure all diseases. The two great desires of the world--_wealth_ and
_long life_, were thus to be secured in a way which Moses and the
Prophets had never declared. A degree of patient ascetic research was
devoted to the investigation of natural phenomena, which the world had
not before witnessed; and modern science is indebted to the mistaken
labors of this race of chemical monks, for many valuable discoveries,
which were, for the most part, stumbled on. So far as relates to the
discovery of the alcoholic principle of grains, a singular reversal of
their high anticipations has ensued. They sought for a substance to
enrich mankind, but found a substance to impoverish them: they sought a
power to cure all diseases, but they found one to cause them. Alcohol is
thus invested with great talismanic power: and this power is not to
create, but to destroy--not to elevate, but to prostrate--not to impart
life, but death.

How extensive its uses are, as a re-agent and solvent, in medicine and
the arts--or if its place could be supplied, in any instances, by other
substances--are questions to be answered by physicians and chemists. But
admitting, what is probable to my own mind, that its properties and uses
in pharmacy and the arts are indispensable in several operations, in the
present state of our knowledge--does this furnish a just plea for its
ordinary use, as a beverage, in a state of health? No more than it
would, that because the lancet and the probe are useful in a state of
disease, they should be continued in a state of health. And do not every
class of men who continue the use of ardent spirits, waste their blood
by a diurnal exhaustion of its strength and healthy properties, more
injurious than a daily depletion; and probe their flesh with a fluid too
subtle for the physician to extract?

The transition from temperate to intemperate drinking, is very easy. And
those who advocate, the _moderate_ use of distilled spirits are indeed
the _real_ advocates of intemperance. No man ever existed, perhaps, who
thought himself in danger of being enslaved by a practice, which he, _at
first_, indulged in moderation. A habit of relying upon it is
imperceptibly formed. Nature is soon led to expect the adventitious aid,
as a hale man, accustomed to wear a staff, may imagine he cannot do
without it, until he has thrown it aside. If it communicates a partial
energy, it is the energy of a convulsion. Its joy is a phrenzy. Its hope
is a phantom. And all its exhibitions of changing passion, so many
melancholy proofs of

     "the reasonable soul run mad."

Angelic beings are probably exalted above all human weaknesses.--But if
there be anything in their survey of our actions which causes them to
weep, it is the sight of a drunken father in the domestic circle.

Instructed reason, and sound piety, have united their voices in decrying
the evils of intemperance. Physicians have described its effects in
deranging the absorbent vessels of the stomach, and changing the healthy
organization of the system. Moralists have portrayed its fatal influence
on the intellectual faculties. Divines have pointed out its destructive
powers on the soul. Poetry, philosophy and science, have mourned the
numbers who have been cut down by it. Common sense has raised up its
voice against it. It is indeed--

     "----a monster of so frightful mien,
     That to be _hated_, needs but to be _seen_."

Like the genie of Arabic fable, it has risen up, where it was least
expected, and stalked through the most secret and the most public
apartments. And wherever it has appeared, it has prostrated the human
mind. It has silenced the voice of eloquence in the halls of justice and
legislation. It has absorbed the brain of the scientific lecturer. It
has caused the sword to drop from the hand of the military leader. It
has stupefied the author in his study, and the pastor in his desk. It
has made the wife a widow in her youth, and caused the innocent child to
weep upon a father's grave. We dare not look beyond it. Hope, who has
attended the victim of intemperance through all the changes of his
downward fortune, and not forsaken him in any other exigency, has
forsaken _here_. Earth had its vanities to solace him, but eternity has

    "Wounds of the heart--care, disappointment, loss,
    Love, joy, and friendship's fame, and fortune's cross,
    The wound that mars the flesh--the instant pain
    That racks the palsied limb, or fever'd brain,
    All--all the woes that life can _feel_ or miss,
    All have their hopes, cures, palliatives, but _this_--
    This _only_--mortal canker of the mind,
    Grim Belial's _last_ attempt on human kind."

If such, then, are the effects of ardent spirits upon the condition of
civilized man, who has the precepts of instructed reason to enlighten
him, and the consolations of Christianity to support him, what must be
the influence of intemperate habits upon the aboriginal tribes? I
propose to offer a few considerations upon this subject. And in so doing
I disclaim all intention of imputing to one nation of the European
stock, more than the other, the national crime of having introduced
ardent spirits among the American Indians. Spaniards, Portuguese,
Swedes, Dutch, Italians, Russians, Germans, French and English, all come
in for a share of the obloquy. They each brought ardent spirits to the
New World--a proof, it may be inferred, of their general use, as a drink
in Europe, at the era of the discovery. Whatever other articles the
first adventurers took to operate upon the hopes and fears of the new
found people, distilled or fermented liquor appears to have been, in no
instance, overlooked or forgotten. It would be easy to show the use made
of them in the West Indies, and in the southern part of our hemisphere.
But our object is confined to the colonies planted in the North. And in
this portion of the continent the English and French have been the
predominating powers. It had been well, if they had predominated in
everything else--if they had only been rivals for courage, wisdom and
dominion. If they had only fought to acquire civil power--conquered to
spread Christianity--negotiated to perpetuate peace. But we have too
many facts on record to show, that they were also rivals in spreading
the reign of intemperance among the Indians; in gleaning, with
avaricious hand, the furs from their lodges; in stimulating them to
fight in their battles, and in leaving them to their own fate, when the
battles were ended.

Nor do we, as Americans, affect to have suddenly succeeded to a better
state of feelings respecting the natives than our English ancestry
possessed. They were men of sterling enterprise; of undaunted
resolution; of high sentiments of religious and political liberty. And
we owe to them and to the peculiar circumstances in which Providence
placed us, all that we are, as a free and a prosperous people. But while
they bequeathed to us these sentiments as the preparatives of our own
national destiny, they also bequeathed to us their peculiar opinions
respecting the Indian tribes. And these opinions have been cherished
with obstinacy, even down to our own times. The noble sentiments of
benevolence of the 19th century had not dawned, when we assumed our
station in the family of nations. If they were felt by gifted
individuals, they were not felt by the body of the nation. Other
duties--the imperious duties of self-existence, national poverty, wasted
resources, a doubtful public credit, a feeble population, harassing
frontier wars, pressed heavily upon us. But we have seen all these
causes of national depression passing away, in less than half a century.
With them, it may be hoped, have passed away, every obstacle to the
exercise of the most enlarged charity, and enlightened philanthropy,
respecting the native tribes.

Nationality is sometimes as well characterized by small as by great
things--by names, as by customs. And this may be observed in the
treatment of the Indians, so far as respects the subject of ardent
spirits. Under the French government they were liberally supplied with
brandy. Under the English, with Jamaica rum. Under the Americans, with
whisky. These constitute the fire, the gall, and the poison ages of
Indian history. Under this triple curse they have maintained an
existence in the face of a white population. But it has been an
_existence_ merely. Other nations are said to have had a golden age. But
there has been no golden age for them. If there ever was a state of
prosperity among them, which may be likened to it, it was when their
camps were crowned with temporal abundance--when the races of animals,
furred and unfurred, placed food and clothing within the reach of
all--and when they knew no intoxicating drink. To counterbalance these
advantages, they were, however, subject to many evils. They were then,
as they are now, indolent, improvident, revengeful, warlike. Bravery,
manual strength, and eloquence, were the cardinal virtues. And their own
feuds kept them in a state of perpetual insecurity and alarm. The
increased value given to furs, by the arrival of Europeans, created a
new era in their history, and accelerated their downfall. It gave an
increased energy and new object to the chase. To reward their activity
in this employment, ardent spirits became the _bounty_, rather than the
_price_. A two-fold injury ensued. The animals upon whose flesh they had
subsisted became scarce, and their own constitutions were undermined
with the subtle stimulant.

Historical writers do not always agree: but they coincide in their
testimony respecting the absence of any intoxicating drink among the
northern Indians, at the time of the discovery. It is well attested that
the Azteeks, and other Mexican and Southern tribes, had their _pulque_,
and other intoxicating drinks, which they possessed the art of making
from various native grains and fruits. But the art itself was confined,
with the plants employed, to those latitudes. And there is no historical
evidence to prove that it was ever known or practised by the tribes
situated north and east of the Gulf of Mexico. Dr. Robertson, an able
and faithful describer of Indian manners, fully concurs with the Jesuit
authors, in saying that no such beverage was known in the north, until
Europeans found it for their pecuniary interest to supply it. After
which, intoxication became as common among the northern as the southern

     [39] Robertson's History of America.

Three hundred and forty years ago there was not a white man in America.
Columbus discovered the West India Islands; but Cabot and Verrizani were
the discoverers of North America. Cartier and Hudson followed in the
track. The first interview of Hudson with the Mohegan tribes, took place
at the mouth of the river which now bears his name. It is remarkable as
the scene of the first Indian intoxication among them. He had no sooner
cast anchor, and landed from his boat, and passed a friendly salutation
with the natives, than he ordered a bottle of ardent spirits to be
brought. To show that he did not intend to offer them what he would not
himself taste, an attendant poured him out a cup of the liquor, which he
drank off. The cup was then filled and passed to the Indians. But they
merely smelled of it and passed it on. It had nearly gone round the
circle untasted, when one of the chiefs, bolder than the rest, made a
short harangue, saying it would be disrespectful to return it untasted,
and declaring his intention to drink off the potion, if he should be
killed in the attempt. He drank it off. Dizziness and stupor
immediately ensued. He sank down and fell into a sleep--the sleep of
death, as his companions thought. But in due time he awoke--declared the
happiness he had experienced from its effects--asked again for the cup,
and the whole assembly followed his example.[40]

     [40] Heckewelder's Account of the Indians.

Nor was the first meeting with the New England tribes very dissimilar.
It took place at Plymouth, in 1620. Massasoit, the celebrated chief of
the Pokanokets, came to visit the new settlers, not long after their
landing. He was received by the English governor with military music and
the discharge of some muskets. After which, the Governor kissed his
hand. Massasoit then kissed him, and they both sat down together. "A pot
of strong water," as the early writers expressed it, was then ordered,
from which both drank. The chief, in his simplicity, drank so great a
draught that it threw him into a violent perspiration during the
remainder of the interview.[41]

     [41] Purchas' Pilgrims, Part iv., book x.

The first formal interview of the French with the Indians of the St.
Lawrence is also worthy of being referred to, as it appears to have been
the initial step in vitiating the taste of the Indians, by the
introduction of a foreign drink. It took place in 1535, on board one of
Cartier's ships, lying at anchor near the Island of Orleans, forty-nine
years before the arrival of Amidas and Barlow on the coast of Virginia.
Donnaconna, a chief who is courteously styled the "Lord of Agouhanna,"
visited the ship with twelve canoes. Ten of these he had stationed at a
distance, and with the other two, containing sixteen men, he approached
the vessels. When he drew near the headmost vessel, he began to utter an
earnest address, accompanied with violent gesticulation. Cartier hailed
his approach in a friendly manner. He had, the year before, captured two
Indians on the Gulf of St. Lawrence, and he now addressed the chief
through their interpretation. Donnaconna listened to his native language
with delight, and was so much pleased with the recital they gave, that
he requested Cartier to reach his arm over the side of the vessel, that
he might kiss it. He was not content with this act of salutation, but
fondled it, by drawing the arm gently around his neck. His watchful
caution did not, however, permit him to venture on board. Cartier,
willing to give him a proof of his confidence, then descended into the
chief's canoe, and ordered bread and wine to be brought. They ate and
drank together, all the Indians present participating in the banquet,
which appears to have been terminated in a temperate manner.[42]

     [42] Hackluyt's Voyages.

But like most _temperate_ beginnings in the use of spirits, it soon led
to intemperance in its most repulsive forms. The taste enkindled by
wine, was soon fed with brandy, and spread among the native bands like a
wildfire. It gave birth to disease, discord, and crime, in their most
shocking forms. Too late the government and the clergy saw their error,
and attempted to arrest it; but it was too deeply seated among their own
countrymen, as well as among the Indians. Every effort proved
unsuccessful; and the evil went on until the Canadas were finally
transferred to the British crown, with this "mortal canker" burning upon
the northern tribes. Those who have leisure and curiosity to turn to the
early writers, will see abundant evidence of its deep and wide-spread
influence. It became the ready means of rousing to action a people
averse to long continued exertion of any kind. It was the reward of the
chase. It was the price of blood. It was the great bar to the successful
introduction of Christianity. It is impossible that the Indian should
both drink and pray. It was impossible _then_, and it is impossible
_now_: and the missionary who entered the forest, with the Bible and
crucifix in one hand, and the bottle in the other, might say, with the
Roman soliloquist, who deliberated on self-murder,

    "My bane and antidote are both before me:
    While _this_ informs me I shall never die,
    _This_ in a moment brings me to my end."

National rivalry, between the English and French governments, gave a
character of extreme bitterness to the feelings of the Indians, and
served to promote the passion for strong drink. It added to the horrors
of war, and accumulated the miseries of peace. It was always a struggle
between these nations which should wield the Indian power; and, so far
as religion went, it was a struggle between the Catholic and Protestant
tenets. It was a power which both had, in a measure, the means of
putting into motion: but neither had the _complete_ means of controlling
it, if we concede to them the _perfect_ will. It would have mitigated
the evil, if this struggle for mastering the Indian mind had terminated
with a state of war, but it was kept up during the feverish
intermissions of peace. Political influence was the ever-present weight
in each side of the scale. Religion threw in her aid; but it was trade,
the possession of the fur trade, that gave the preponderating weight.
And there is nothing in the history of this rivalry, from the arrival of
Roberval to the death of Montcalm, that had so permanently pernicious an
influence as the sanction which this trade gave to the use of ardent

We can but glance at this subject; but it is a glance at the track of a
tornado. Destruction lies in its course. The history of the fur trade is
closely interwoven with the history of intemperance among the Indians.
We know not how to effect the separation. Look at it in what era you
will, the barter in ardent spirits constitutes a prominent feature. From
Jamestown to Plymouth--from the island of Manhattan to the Lake of the
Hills, the traffic was introduced at the earliest periods. And we cannot
now put our finger on the map, to indicate a spot where ardent spirits
is not known to the natives. Is it at the mouth of the Columbia, the
sources of the Multnomah, or the Rio del Norde--the passes of the Rocky
Mountains on Peace River, or the shores of the Arctic Sea? It is known
at all these places. The natives can call it by name, and they place a
value on its possession. We do not wish to convey the idea that it is
abundant at these remote places. We have reason to believe it is seldom
seen. But we also believe that in proportion as it is scarce--in
proportion as the quantity is small, and the occasion of its issue rare,
so is the price of it in sale, and the value of it in gift, enhanced.
And just so far as it is used, it is pernicious in effect, unnecessary
in practice, unwise in policy.

The French, who have endeared themselves so much in the affections of
the Indians, were earlier in Canada than the English upon the United
States' coast. Cartier's treat of wine and bread to the Iroquois of the
St. Lawrence, happened eighty-five years before the landing of the
Pilgrims. They were also earlier to perceive the evils of an
unrestrained trade, in which nothing was stipulated, and nothing
prohibited. To prevent its irregularities, licenses were granted by the
French government to individuals, on the payment of a price. It was a
boon to superannuated officers, and the number was limited. In 1685, the
number was twenty-five. But the remedy proved worse than the disease.
These licenses became negotiable paper. They were sold from hand to
hand, and gave birth to a traffic, which assumed the same character in
_temporal_ affairs, that "indulgences" did in _spiritual_. They were, in
effect, licenses to commit every species of wrong, for those who got
them at last, were generally persons under the government of no high
standard of moral responsibility; and as they may be supposed to have
paid well for them, they were sure to make it up by excessive exactions
upon the Indians. _Courier du bois_, was the term first applied to them.
_Merchant voyageur_, was the appellation at a subsequent period. But
whatever they were called, one spirit actuated them--the spirit of
acquiring wealth by driving a gainful traffic with an ignorant people,
and for this purpose ardent spirits was but too well adapted. They
transported it, along with articles of necessity, up long rivers, and
over difficult portages. And when they had reached the borders of the
Upper Lakes, or the banks of the Sasketchawine, they were too far
removed from the influence of courts, both judicial and ecclesiastical,
to be in much dread of them. Feuds, strifes, and murders ensued. Crime
strode unchecked through the land. Every Indian trader became a
legislator and a judge. His word was not only a law, but it was a law
which possessed the property of undergoing as many repeals and mutations
as the interest, the pride, or the passion of the individual rendered
expedient. If wealth was accumulated, it is _not_ intended to infer that
the pressing wants of the Indians were not relieved--that the trade was
not a very acceptable and important one to them, and that great peril
and expense were not encountered, and a high degree of enterprise
displayed in its prosecution. But it is contended, that if _real_ wants
were relieved, _artificial_ ones were created--that if it substituted
the gun for the bow, and shrouds and blankets in the place of the more
expensive clothing of beaver skins, it also substituted ardent spirits
for water--intoxication for sobriety--disease for health.

Those who entertain the opinion that the fall of Quebec, celebrated in
England and America as a high military achievement, and the consequent
surrender of Canada, produced any very important improvement in this
state of things, forget that the leading principles and desires of the
human heart are alike in all nations, acting under like circumstances.
The desire of amassing wealth--the thirst for exercising power--the
pride of information over ignorance--the power of vicious over virtuous
principles, are not confined to particular eras, nations, or latitudes.
They belong to mankind, and they will be pursued with a zeal as
irrespective of equal and exact justice, wherever they are not
restrained by the ennobling maxims of Christianity.

Whoever feels interested in looking back into this period of our
commercial Indian affairs, is recommended to peruse the published
statistical and controversial volumes, growing out of the Earl of
Selkirk's schemes of colonization, and to the proceedings of the North
West Company. This iron monopoly grew up out of private adventure. Such
golden accounts were brought out of the country by the Tods, the
Frobishers, and the M'Tavishes, and M'Gillvrays, who first visited it,
that every bold man, who had either talents or money, rushed to the
theatre of action. The boundary which had been left to the French, as
the limit of trade, was soon passed. The Missinipi, Athabasca, Fort
Chipewyan, Slave lake, Mackenzie's and Copper Mine Rivers, the Unjigah
and the Oregon, were reached in a few years. All Arctic America was
penetrated. The British government is much indebted to Scottish
enterprise for the extension of its power and resources in this quarter.
But while we admire the zeal and boldness with which the limits of the
trade were extended, we regret that a belief in the necessity of using
ardent spirits caused them to be introduced, in any quantity, among the
North West tribes.

Other regions have been explored to spread the light of the gospel. This
was traversed to extend the reign of intemperance, and to prove that the
love of gain was so strongly implanted in the breast of the white man,
as to carry him over regions of ice and snow, woods and waters, where
the natives had only been intruded on by the Musk Ox and the Polar bear.
Nobody will deem it too much to say, that wherever the current of the
fur trade set, the nations were intoxicated, demoralized, depopulated.
The terrible scourge of the small pox, which broke out in the country
north west of Lake Superior in 1782, was scarcely more fatal to the
natives, though more rapid and striking in its effects, than the power
of ardent spirits. Nor did it produce so great a moral affliction. For
those who died of the varioloid, were spared the death of ebriety. Furs
were gleaned with an iron hand, and rum was given out with an iron
heart. There was no remedy for the rigors of the trade; and there was no
appeal. Beaver was sought with a thirst of gain as great as that which
carried Cortez to Mexico, and Pizarro to Peru. It had deadened the ties
of humanity, and cut asunder the cords of private faith.[43] Like the
Spaniard in his treatment of Capolicon, when the latter had given him
the house full of gold for his ransom, he was himself basely executed.
So the northern chief, when he had given his all, gave himself as the
victim at last. He was not, however, consumed at the _stake_, but at the
_bottle_. The sword of his executioner was _spirits_--his gold, _beaver
skins_. And no mines of the precious metals, which the world has ever
produced, have probably been more productive of wealth, than the
fur-yielding regions of North America.

     [43] The murder of Wadin, the cold-blooded assassination of
     Keveny, and the shooting of Semple, are appealed to, as justifying
     the force of this remark.

But while the products of the chase have yielded wealth to the white
man, they have produced misery to the Indian. The latter, suffering for
the means of subsistence, like the child in the parable, had asked for
bread, and he received it; but, with it, he received a scorpion. And it
is the sting of the scorpion, that has been raging among the tribes for
more than two centuries, causing sickness, death, and depopulation in
its track. It is the venom of this sting, that has proved emphatically

    "----the blight of human bliss!
    Curse to all _states_ of man, but most to _this_."

Let me not be mistaken, in ascribing effects disproportionate to their
cause, or in overlooking advantages which have brought along in their
train, a striking evil. I am no admirer of that sickly philosophy, which
looks back upon a state of nature as a state of innocence, and which
cannot appreciate the benefits the Indian race have derived from the
discovery of this portion of the world by civilized and Christian
nations. But while I would not, on the one hand, conceal my sense of the
advantages, temporal and spiritual, which hinge upon this discovery, I
would not, on the other, disguise the evils which intemperance has
caused among them; nor cease to hold it up, to the public, as a great
and destroying evil, which was early introduced--which has spread
extensively--which is in active operation, and which threatens yet more
disastrous consequences to this unfortunate race.

Writers have not been wanting, who are prone to lay but little stress
upon the destructive influence of ardent spirits, in diminishing the
native population, and who have considered its effects as trifling in
comparison to the want of food, and the enhanced price created by this
want.[44] The abundance or scarcity of food is a principle in political
economy, which is assumed as the primary cause of depopulation. And, as
such, we see no reason to question its soundness. If the value of labor,
the price of clothing and other necessary commodities, can be referred
to the varying prices of vegetable and animal food, we do not see that
the fact of a people's being civilized or uncivilized, should invalidate
the principle; and when we turn our eyes upon the forest we see that it
does not. A pound of beaver, which in 1730, when animal food was
abundant, was worth here about a French crown, is now, when food is
scarce and dear, worth from five to six dollars; and consequently, one
pound of beaver _now_ will procure as much food and clothing as five
pounds of the like quality of beaver _then_. It is the failure of the
race of furred animals, and the want of industry in hunting them, that
operate to produce depopulation. And what, we may ask, has so powerful
an effect in destroying the energies of the hunter, as the vice of
intemperance? Stupefying his mind, and enervating his body, it leaves
him neither the vigor to provide for his temporary wants, nor the
disposition to inquire into those which regard eternity. His natural
affections are blunted, and all the sterner and nobler qualities of the
Indian mind prostrated. His family are neglected. They first become
objects of pity to our citizens, and then of disgust. The want of
wholesome food and comfortable clothing produce disease. He falls at
last himself, the victim of disease, superinduced from drinking.

     [44] The North American Review. Sanford's History of the United
     States, before the Revolution.

Such is no exaggerated picture of the Indian, who is in a situation to
contract the habit of intemperance. And it is only within the last year
or eighteen months--it is only since the operation of Temperance
principles has been felt in this remote place, that scenes of this kind
have become unfrequent, and have almost ceased in our village, and in
our settlement. And when we look abroad to other places, and observe the
spread of temperance in the wide area from Louisiana to Maine, we may
almost fancy we behold the accomplishment of Indian fable. It is
related, on the best authority, that among the extravagances of Spanish
enterprise, which characterized the era of the discovery of America, the
natives had reported the existence of a fountain in the interior of one
of the islands, possessed of such magical virtues, that whoever bathed
in its Waters would be restored to the bloom of youth and the vigor of
manhood. In search of this wonderful fountain historians affirm, that
Ponce de Leon and his followers ranged the island. They only, however,
drew upon themselves the charge of credulity. May we not suppose this
tale of the salutary fountain to be an Indian allegory of temperance? It
will, at least, admit of this application. And let us rejoice that, in
the era of temperance, we have found the spring which will restore bloom
to the cheeks of the young man, and the panacea that will remove disease
from the old.

When we consider the effects which our own humble efforts as inhabitants
of a distant post have produced in this labor of humanity, have we not
every encouragement to persevere? Is it not an effort sanctioned by the
noblest affections of our nature--by the soundest principles of
philanthropy--by the highest aspirations of Christian benevolence? Is it
not the work of patriots as well as Christians? Of good citizens as well
as good neighbors? Is it not a high and imperious duty to rid our land
of the foul stain of intemperance? Is it a duty too hard for us to
accomplish? Is there anything unreasonable in the voluntary obligations
by which we are bound? Shall we lose property or reputation by laboring
in the cause of temperance? Will the debtor be less able to pay his
debts, or the creditor less able to collect them? Shall we injure man,
woman or child, by dashing away the cup of intoxication? Shall we incur
the charge of being denominated fools or madmen? Shall we violate any
principles of morality, or any of the maxims of Christianity? Shall we
run the risk of diminishing the happiness of others, or putting our own
in jeopardy? Finally, shall we injure man--shall we offend God?

If neither of these evils will result--if the highest principles of
virtue and happiness sanction the measure--if learning applauds it, and
religion approves it--if good must result from its success, and injury
cannot accrue from its failure, what further motive need we to impel us
onward, to devote our best faculties in the cause, and neither to faint
nor rest till the modern hydra of intemperance be expelled from our


The Cattaraugus (N.Y.) Whig, of a late date, mentions that Gov.
Blacksnake, the Grand Sachem of the Indian nation, was recently in that
place. He resides on the Alleghany Reservation, about twenty miles from
the village; is the successor of Corn Planter, as chief of the Six
Nations--a nephew of Joseph Brant, and uncle of the celebrated Red
Jacket. He was born hear Cayuga Lake in 1749, being now ninety-six years
of age. He was in the battle of Fort Stanwix, Wyoming, &c., and was a
warm friend of Gen. Washington during the Revolution. He was in
Washington's camp forty days at the close of the Revolution--was
appointed chief by him, and now wears suspended from his neck a
beautiful silver medal presented to him by Gen. Washington, bearing date



     [45] Democratic Review, 1844.

The removal of the Indian Tribes within our State boundaries, to the
west of the Mississippi, and their present condition and probable
ultimate fate, have been the topic of such frequent speculation,
misunderstanding, and may we not add, misrepresentation, within a few
years past, both at home and abroad, that we suppose some notice of
them, and particularly of the territory they occupy, and the result,
thus far, of their experiment in self-government, drawn from authentic
sources, may prove not unacceptable to the public.

The nomadic and hunter states of society never embraced within
themselves the elements of perpetuity. They have ever existed, indeed,
like a vacuum in the system of nature, which is at every moment in
peril, and subject to be filled up and destroyed by the in-rushing of
the surrounding element. Civilisation is that element, in relation to
non-agricultural and barbaric tribes, and the only question with respect
to their continuance as distinct communities has been, how long they
could resist its influence, and at what particular era this influence
should change, improve, undermine, or destroy them. It is proved by
history, that two essentially different states of society, with regard
to art and civilisation, cannot both prosperously exist together, at the
same time. The one which is in the ascendant will absorb and destroy the
other. A wolf and a lamb are not more antagonistical in the system of
organic being, than civilisation and barbarism, in the great
ethnological impulse of man's diffusion over the globe. In this impulse,
barbarism may temporarily triumph, as we see it has done by many
striking examples in the history of Asia and Europe. But such triumphs
have been attended with this remarkable result, that they have, in the
end, reproduced the civilisation which they destroyed. Such, to quote no
other example, was the effect of the prostration of the Roman type of
civilisation by the warlike and predatory tribes of Northern Europe.
Letters and Christianity were both borne down, for a while, by this
irresistible on-rush; but they were thereby only the more deeply
implanted in the stratum of preparing civilisation; and in due time,
like the grain that rots before it reproduces, sprang up with a vigor
and freshness, which is calculated to be enduring, and to fill the

Civilisation may be likened to an absorbent body, placed in contact with
an anti-absorbent, for some of the properties of which it has strong
affinities. It will draw these latter so completely out, that, to use a
strong phrase, it may be said to eat them up. Civilisation is found to
derive some of the means of its perfect development from letters and the
arts, but it cannot permanently exist without the cultivation of the
soil. It seems to have been the fundamental principle on which the
species were originally created, that they should derive their
sustenance and means of perpetuation from this industrial labor.
Wherever agricultural tribes have placed themselves in juxtaposition to
hunters and erratic races, they have been found to withdraw from the
latter the means of their support, by narrowing the limits of the forest
and plains, upon the wild animals of which, both carnivorous and
herbivorous, hunters subsist. When these have been destroyed, the grand
resources of these hunters and pursuers have disappeared. Wars, the
introduction of foreign articles or habits of injurious tendency, may
accelerate the period of their decline--a result which is still further
helped forward by internal dissensions, and the want of that political
foresight by which civil nations exist. But without these, and by the
gradual process of the narrowing down of their hunting grounds, and the
conversion of the dominions of the bow and arrow to those of the plough,
this result must inevitably ensue. There is no principle of either
permanency or prosperity in the savage state.

It is a question of curious and philosophic interest, however, to
observe the varying and very unequal effects, which different types of
civilisation have had upon the wild hordes of men with whom it has come
into contact. And still more, perhaps, to trace the original efficiency,
or effeminacy of the civil type, in the blood of predominating races,
who have been characterized by it. In some of the European stocks this
type has remained nearly stationary since it reached the chivalric era.
In others, it had assumed a deeply commercial tone, and confined itself
greatly to the drawing forth, from the resources of new countries, those
objects which invigorate trade. There is no stock, having claims to a
generic nationality, in which the _principle of progress_ has, from the
outset, been so strongly marked, as in those hardy, brave and athletic
tribes in the north of Europe, for whom the name of Teutons conveys,
perhaps, a more comprehensive meaning, than the comparatively later one
of Saxons. The object of this race appears continually to be, and to
have been, to do more than has previously been done; to give diffusion
and comprehension to designs of improvement, and thus, by perpetually
putting forth new efforts, on the globe, to carry on man to his highest
destiny. The same impulsive aspirations of the spirit of progress, the
same energetic onwardness of principle which overthrew Rome, overthrew,
at another period, the simple institutions of the woad-stained Britons;
and, whatever other aspect it bears, we must attribute to the same
national energy the modern introduction of European civilisation into

When these principles come to be applied to America, and to be tested by
its native tribes, we shall clearly perceive their appropriate and
distinctive effects. In South America, where the type of chivalry marked
the discoverers, barbarism has lingered among the natives, without being
destroyed, for three centuries. In Canada, which drew its early
colonists exclusively from the feudal towns and seaports, whose
inhabitants had it for a maxim, that they had done all that was required
of good citizens, when they had done all that had been _previously
done_, the native tribes have remained perfectly stationary. With the
exception of slight changes in dress, and an absolute depreciation in
morals, they are essentially at this day what they were in the
respective eras of Cartier and Champlain. In the native monarchies of
Mexico and Peru, Spain overthrew the gross objects of idolatrous
worship, and intercalated among these tribes the arts and some of the
customs of the 16th century. With a very large proportion of the tribes
but little was attempted beyond military subjugation, and less
accomplished. The seaboard tribes received the ritual of the Romish
church. Many of those in the interior, comprehending the higher ranges
of the Andes and Cordilleras, remain to this day in the undisturbed
practice of their ancient superstitions and modes of subsistence. It is
seen from recent discoveries, that there are vast portions of the
interior of the country, unknown, unexplored and undescribed. We are
just, indeed, beginning to comprehend the true character of the
indigenous Indian civilisation of the era of the discovery. These
remarks are sufficient to show how feebly the obligations of letters and
Christianity have been performed, with respect to the red men, by the
colonists of those types of the early European civilisation, who rested
themselves on feudal tenures, military renown, and an ecclesiastical
system of empty ceremonies.

It was with very different plans and principles that North America was
colonized. We consider the Pilgrims as the embodiment of the true
ancient Teutonic type. Their Alaric and Brennus were found in the pulpit
and in the school-room. They came with high and severe notions of civil
and religious liberty. It was their prime object to sustain themselves,
not by conquest, but by cultivating the soil. To escape an
ecclesiastical tyranny at home, they were willing to venture themselves
in new climes. But they meant to triumph in the arts of peace. They
embarked with the Bible as their shield and sword, and they laid its
principles at the foundation of all their institutions, civil, literary,
industrial, and ecclesiastic. They were pious and industrious
themselves, and they designed to make the Indian tribes so. They bought
their lands and paid for them, and proceeded to establish friendly
neighborhoods among the tribes. Religious truth, as it is declared in
the Gospel, was the fundamental principle of all their acts. In its
exposition and daily use, they followed no interpretations of councils
at variance with its plain import. This every one was at liberty to

Placed side by side with such an enlightened and purposed race, what had
the priests of the system of native rites and superstitions to expect?
There could be no compromise of rites--no partial conformity--no giving
up a part to retain the rest--as had been done in the plains of Central
America, Mexico and Yucatan. No toleration of pseudo-paganism, as had
been done on the waters of the Orinoco, the Parana and the Paraguay.
They must abandon the system at once. The error was gross and total.
They must abjure it. They had mistaken darkness for light; and they were
now offered the light. They had worshipped Lucifer instead of Immanuel.
This the tribes who spread along the shores of the North Atlantic were
told, and nothing was held back. They founded churches and established
schools among them. They translated the entire Bible, and the version of
David's Psalms, and the Hymns of Dr. Watts, into one of their languages.
Two types of the human race, more fully and completely antagonistical,
in all respects, never came in contact on the globe. They were the alpha
and omega of the ethnological chain. If, therefore, the Red Race
declined, and the white increased, it was because civilisation had more
of the principles of endurance and progress than barbarism; because
Christianity was superior to paganism; industry to idleness; agriculture
to hunting; letters to hieroglyphics; truth to error. Here lie the true
secrets of the Red Men's decline.

There are but three principal results which, we think, the civilized
world could have anticipated for the race, at the era of the discovery.
1. They might be supposed to be subject to early extermination on the
coasts, where they were found. A thousand things would lead to this,
which need not be mentioned. Intemperance and idleness alone were
adequate causes. 2. Philanthropists and Christians might hope to reclaim
them, either in their original positions on the coasts, or in
agricultural communities in adjacent parts. 3. Experience and forecast
might indicate a third result, in which full success should attend
neither of the foregoing plans, nor yet complete failure. There was
nothing, exactly, in the known history of mankind, to guide opinion. A
mixed condition of things was the most probable result. And this, it
might be anticipated, would be greatly modified by times and seasons,
circumstances and localities, acting on particular tribes. Nothing less
could have been expected but the decline and extinction of some tribe,
whilst the removal of others, to less exposed positions, would be found
to tell upon their improvement. The effects of letters and Christianity
would necessarily be slow; but they were effects, which the history of
discovery and civilisation, in other parts of the world, proved to be
effective and practical. What was this mixed condition to eventuate
in?--how long was it to continue? Were the tribes to exercise sovereign
political jurisdiction over the tracts they lived on? Were they to
submit to the civilized code, and if so, to the penal code only, or also
to the civil? Or, if not, were they to exist by amalgamation with the
European stocks, and thus contribute the elements of a new race? These,
and many other questions, early arose, and were often not a little
perplexing to magistrates, legislatures, and governors. It was evident
the aboriginal race possessed distinctive general rights, but these
existed contemporaneously, or intermixed with the rights of the
discoverers. How were these separate rights to be defined? How were the
weak to be protected, and the strong to be restrained, at points beyond
the ordinary pale of the civil law? If a red man killed a white, without
the ordinary jurisdiction of the courts, could he be seized as a
criminal? And if so, were civil offences, committed without the
jurisdiction of either territory, cognizable in either, or neither?
Could there be a supremacy within a supremacy? And what was the limit
between State and United States laws? Such were among the topics
entering into the Indian policy. It was altogether a mixed system, and
like most mixed systems, it worked awkwardly, confusedly, and sometimes
badly. Precedents were to be established for new cases, and these were
perpetually subject to variation. Legislators, judges, and executive
officers were often in doubt, and it required the wisest, shrewdest, and
best men in the land to resolve these doubts, and to lay down rules, or
advice, for future proceeding in relation to the Red Race. It will be
sufficient to bear out the latter remark, to say, that among the sages
who deemed this subject important, were a Roger Williams, a Penn, a
Franklin, a Washington, a Jefferson, a Monroe, a Crawford, and a

It must needs have happened, that where the Saxon race went, the
principles of law, justice, and freedom, must prevail. These principles,
as they existed in England at the beginning of the sixteenth century,
were transferred to America, with the Cavaliers, the Pilgrims, and the
Quakers, precisely, as to the two first topics, as they existed at home.
Private rights were as well secured, and public justice as well awarded
here, as there. But they also brought over the aristocratic system,
which was upheld by the royal governors, who were the immediate
representatives of the crown. The doctrine was imprescriptible, that the
fee of all public or unpatented lands was in the crown, and all
inhabitants of the realm owed allegiance and fealty to the crown. This
doctrine, when applied to the native tribes of America, left them
neither fee-simple in the soil, nor political sovereignty over it. It
cut them down to vassals, but, by a legal solecism, they were regarded
as a sort of free vassals. So long as the royal governments remained,
they had the usufruct of the public domain--the right of fishing, and
hunting, and planting upon it, and of doing certain other acts of
occupancy; but this right ceased just as soon, and as fast, as patents
were granted, or the public exigency required the domain. The native
chiefs were quieted with presents from the throne, through the local
officers, and their ideas of independence and control were answered by
the public councils, in which friendships were established, and the
public tranquillity looked after. Private purchases were made from the
outset, but the idea of a public treaty of purchase of the soil under
the proprietary and royal governors, was not entertained before the era
of William Penn.

It remained for the patriots of 1775, who set up the frame of our
present government, by an appeal to arms, to award the aboriginal tribes
the full proprietary right to the soil they respectively occupied, and
to guarantee to them its full and free use, until such right was
relinquished by treaty stipulations. So far, they were acknowledged as
sovereigns. This is the first step in their political exaltation, and
dates, in our records, from the respective treaties of Fort Pitt,
September 17, 1778, and of Fort Stanwix, of October 22, 1784. The latter
was as early after the establishment of our independence, as these
tribes--the Six Nations, who, with the exception of the Oneidas, sided
with the parent country--could be brought to listen to the terms of
peace. They were followed by the Wyandots, Delawares, and Chippewas, and
Ottowas, in January, 1785; by the Cherokees, in November of the same
year; and by the Choctaws and Shawnees, in January, 1786. Other western
nations followed in 1789; the Creeks did not treat till 1790. And from
this era, the system has been continued up to the present moment. It may
be affirmed, that there is not an acre of land of the public domain of
the United States, sold at the land offices, from the days of General
Washington, but what has been acquired in this manner. War, in which we
and they have been frequently involved, since that period, has conveyed
no _territorial right_. We have conquered them, on the field, not to
usurp territory, but to place them in a condition to observe how much
more their interests and permanent prosperity would be, and have ever
been, promoted by the plough than the sword. And there has been a prompt
recurrence, at every mutation from war to peace, punctually, to that
fine sentiment embraced in the _first_ article of the _first_ treaty
ever made between the American government and the Indian tribes, namely,
that all offences and animosities "shall be mutually forgiven, and
buried in deep oblivion, and never more be had in remembrance."[46]

     [46] Treaty of Fort Pitt, 1778.

The first step to advance the aboriginal man to his natural and just
political rights, namely, the acknowledgment of his _right to the soil_,
we have mentioned; but those that were to succeed it were more difficult
and complex in their bearings. Congress, from the earliest traces of
their action, as they appear in their journals and public acts, confined
the operation of the civil code to the territory actually acquired by
negotiation, and treaties duly ratified by the Senate, and proclaimed,
agreeably to the Constitution, by the President. So much of this public
territory as fell within the respective _State lines_, fell, by the
terms of our political compact, under _State laws_, and the jurisdiction
of the State courts; and as soon as new tracts of the Indian territory,
thus within State boundaries, were acquired, the State laws had an exact
corresponding extension until the whole of such Indian lands had been
acquired. This provided a definite and clear mode of action, and if it
were sometimes the subject of doubt or confliction, such perplexity
arose from the great extension of the country, its sparsely settled
condition, and the haste or ignorance of local magistrates. And these
difficulties were invariably removed whenever the cases came into the
Supreme Court of the United States.

Without regard to the area of the States, but including and having
respect only to the territories, and to the vast and unincorporated
wilderness, called the "Indian country," Congress provided a _special
code_ of laws, and from the first, held over this part of the Union, and
holds over it now, full and complete jurisdiction. This code was
designed chiefly to regulate the trade carried on at those remote points
between the white and red men, to preserve the public tranquillity, and
to provide for the adjudication of offences. Citizens of the United
States, carrying the passport, license, or authority of their
government, are protected by their papers thus legally obtained; and the
tribes are held answerable for their good treatment, and if violence
occur, for their lives. No civil process, however, has efficacy in such
positions; and there is no compulsory legal collection of debts, were it
indeed practicable, on the Indian territories. The customs and usages of
the trade and intercourse, as established from early times, prevail
there. These customs are chiefly founded on the patriarchal system,
which was found in vogue on the settlement of the country, and they
admit of compensations and privileges founded on natural principles of
equity and right. The Indian criminal code, whatever that is, also
prevails there. The only exception to it arises from cases of Americans,
maliciously killed within the "Indian country," the laws of Congress
providing, that the aggressors should be surrendered into the hands of
justice, and tried by the nearest United States courts.

These preliminary facts will exhibit some of the leading features of the
mixed system alluded to. Its workings were better calculated for the
early stages of society, while population was sparse and the two races,
as bodies, kept far apart, than for its maturer periods. As the
intervening lands became ceded, and sold, and settled, and the tribes
themselves began to put on aspects of civilisation, the discrepancies of
the system, and its want of homogeneousness and harmony, became more
apparent. Throughout the whole period of the administrations of
Washington, and John Adams, and Jefferson, a period of twenty years, the
low state of our population, and the great extent and unreclaimed
character of the public domain, left the Indians undisturbed, and no
questions of much importance occurred to test the permanency of the
system as regards the welfare of the Indians. Mr. Jefferson foresaw,
however, the effect of encroachments beyond the Ohio, and with an
enlightened regard for the race and their civilisation, prepared a new
and consolidated code of all prior acts, with some salutary new
provisions, which had the effect to systematize the trade and
intercourse, and more fully to protect the rights of the Indians. This
code served, with occasional amendments, through the succeeding
administrations of Madison, Monroe, and John Quincy Adams, into that of
General Jackson, when, in 1834, the greatly advanced line of the
frontiers, the multiplied population, and necessarily increased force of
the Indian department, and the large amount of Indian annuities to be
paid, called for its thorough revision, and a new general enactment was

Previously, however, to this time, during the administration of Mr.
Monroe, it was perceived that the Indian tribes, as separate
communities, living in, and surrounded by, people of European descent,
and governed by a widely different system of laws, arts, and customs,
could not be expected to arrive at a state of permanent prosperity while
thus locally situated. The tendency of the Saxon institutions, laws, and
jurisprudence, was to sweep over them. The greater must needs absorb the
less. And there appeared, on wise and mature reflection, no reasonable
hope to the true friends of the native race, that they could sustain
themselves in independency or success as foreign elements in the midst
of the State communities. It was impossible that two systems of
governments, so diverse as the Indian and American, should co-exist on
the same territory. All history proved this. The most rational hope of
success for this race, the only one which indeed appeared practical on a
scale commensurate with the object, was to remove them, with their own
consent, to a position entirely without the boundaries of the State
jurisdictions, where they might assert their political sovereignty, and
live and develope their true national character, under their own laws.

The impelling cause for the action of the government, during Mr.
Monroe's administration, was the peculiar condition of certain tribes,
living on their own original territories, within the State boundaries,
and who were adverse to further cessions of such territory. The
question assumed its principal interest in the State of Georgia, within
which portions of the Creek and Cherokee tribes were then living. About
ten millions of acres of lands were thus in the occupancy of these two
tribes. As the population of Georgia expanded and approached the Indian
settlements, the evils of the mixed political system alluded to began
strongly to evince themselves. In the progress of the dispersion of the
human race over the globe, there never was, perhaps, a more diverse
legal, political, and moral amalgamation attempted, than there was found
to exist, when, in this area, the descendants from the old Saxons,
north-men and Hugenots from Europe, came in contact with the descendants
(we speak of a theory) of the idle, pastoral, unphilosophic,
non-inductive race of central Asia, living in the genial climate and
sunny valleys of Georgia and Alabama.

The American government had embarrassed itself by stipulating at an
early day, with the State of Georgia, to extinguish the Indian title
within her bound