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Pictures and Illustrations.

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Landing in Virginia. 1584.

Interview of Hendrick Hudson with the Indians. 1609.

Interview of Massoit with the Pilgrims. 1620.

Ethnographical Map of the Indian Tribes of the United States A.D. 1600.

Spearing Muskrats in Winter.

Spearing Fish in Winter.

Shooting Fish.

Spearing Fish from a Canoe.

Indian Sugar Camp.

The Death Whoop.

Scalps Dressed for the Dance.


Feathers of Honor

Indian Woman Dressing a Buffalo Skin.

Indian Cradles.

Indian Burial.

Game of the Bowl.

Indian Woman Playing the Game of Bowl.

Ball-play on the Ice.

Ball-play on the Prairie.

Indian Travelling.

Dog-dance of the Dacota Indians.

Winnebago Wigwams.

Valley of the St. Peters.

Transporting the Wounded.

Indian Woman procuring Fuel.

Indian Council.

Dacota Encampment.

Dacota Village.

Map Showing the Present Boundaries of the Ojibwa, Menomonee, Winnebago, and Dacotah Tribes of Indians 1857.

Combat between the Ojibwas and the Sacs and Foxes.

Emigrants attacked by the Comanches.

Map of Cunningham's Island.

Earth Works on south side of Cunningham's Island.

Earth Works on south side of Cunningham's Island.

Antiquities from Cunningham's Island, Lake Erie.

Antiquities from Cunningham's Island, Lake Erie.

Antiquities from Cunningham's Island, Lake Erie.

Inscription on Rock north side of Cunningham's Island, Lake Erie.

Inscription on Rock south side of Cunningham's Island, Lake Erie.

View of Inscription Rock south side of Cunningham's Island, Lake Erie.

Antique Clay Pots.

Antiquities from South Carolina.

Antiquities from New York and South Carolina.

Antiquities from South Carolina.

Antiquities from New York.

Antiquities from New York.

Antiquities from New York.

Antiquities from New York.

French Antiquities from Western New York.

Map of Earth Works on Vieux Desert Island, Head Waters of the Wisconsin River.

Ruins of Old Fort Mackinac of 1763.

Census of a Mille-Lac Band of Ojibwas.

Magic Music, Medicine Animal of the Winnebagoes, and Haokah.

Indian Signatures.

Dacota Written Music.

Indian Burial-ground.

Musical Notation.

Skull of a Chinook (side view).

Skull of a Chinook (front view).

Skull of a Chinook.

Skull of a Winnebago.

Skull from Columbia River.

Skull from Columbia River.

Skull from Columbia River.

Skull of a Flathead (side view).

Skull of a Flathead (back view).

Skull of a Californian.

Dacota Pipes.



Chippewa and Dakota Canoes.



Musical Instruments.

Fish Spears, Hair Adze, Skin Dressers, Ice Cutter, and Burden Strap.



Cherokee Alphabet.

Specimen of the Cherokee Alphabet's Application.


Dedication Page.


NOVEMBER 12, 1851.


Introductory Document.

WASHINGTON, August 14th, 1851.

Commissioner of Indian Affairs.
Department of the Interior.

I have the honor to submit for your consideration, the Second Part of my investigations respecting the statistics and condition of the Indian tribes of the United States, made in conformity with the provisions of an Act of Congress of the 3d of March, 1847.

The statistical tables, to which I invite your attention, taken in connexion with those heretofore published, indicate some facts of leading importance to the welfare of the Indian tribes. The principles of the census, wherever they have been applied, denote, that a hunter-population does not reproduce itself at a ratio, which can be, even in the most favorable circumstances, accurately appreciated and relied on; while it is subject to sudden fluctuations, such as do not pertain to a fixed community.

The rate of reproduction is so small, and the causes of depopulation so great, that, until the period of their colonization, neither to increase, nor decrease, but barely to keep up their numbers, is the most favorable view that can be presented. In a survey of two hundred years, so far as facts can be gleaned, many of the bands and sub-tribes have most rapidly declined, and yet a greater number of them have become entirely extinct. The policy of pursuing the chase is so destructive to human life — so subversive of every principle of increase and prosperity, that it is amazing that the Indians themselves have not perceived it. But when this fatal delusion is coupled with the policy of petty, predatory, tribal warfare, as it has been for all


the period that we have been in proximity to them, it is only wonderful, that of the tribes who were in North America in 1600, there is a descendant left to recount their history.

The republic of the United States has had charge of these people three quarters of a century, (dating from 1776.) During this period, it is demonstrated, that the estimates of numbers for the old area of the Confederation have been either greatly exaggerated, or the decline of the tribes in immediate contact with civilization, has been extraordinary. In most cases, which have been examined, both causes have manifestly operated. But as these seventy-five years constitute the era of their greatest disturbance from frontier wars, and as the details from which we must judge, are still very imperfect, the statistical facts cannot be thrown into regular periods with the exactitude of inference which is demanded.

In 1764, when the efficient Colonel Bouquet crossed the Alleghanies with an army, which brought the hostile tribes of the Ohio Valley to terms, he estimated the strength of the Indian tribes of the British Colonies of North America at fifty-six thousand five hundred fighting men. Estimating five souls to each warrior, which is found to be a reliable ratio, the entire Indian population within British jurisdiction, at that day, was two hundred and eighty-three thousand souls. No part of the tribes of Texas, New Mexico, California, Oregon, or Utah, was included in his estimates; but it embraced Hither Louisiana and the remote tribes north and west of the Mississippi, known to the French and English traders, as is perceived by the details of the schedule. The preliminary estimates, including partial returns of the aboriginal census, begun in 1847, submitted in my first report, (Part I., p. 528,) denote the entire population of the tribes, at this day, in the present enlarged area of the Union, to be about four hundred thousand. From this aggregate, it is essential, for the purpose of comparison, to deduct twenty-four thousand one hundred for the acquisition of Texas — ninety-two thousand one hundred and thirty for New Mexico — thirty-two thousand one hundred for California — twenty-two thousand seven hundred and thirty-three for Oregon, and eleven thousand five hundred for Utah; making an aggregate, for the newly acquired territories, of one hundred and eighty-two thousand five hundred and ninety-four. These numbers deducted from the gross estimates of 1850, before referred to, give a population of two hundred and five thousand six hundred and thirty-five, for the same area embraced by Bouquet, — denoting the number of deaths in the tribes to exceed the births by seventy-seven thousand three hundred and sixty-five, in a period of eighty-seven years: — a ratio of decline, which, if it could be taken as absolutely reliable, and continued to be equally depopulating, would extinguish the entire Indian population of the United States in about two hundred years. These figures are but approximations to the actual state of decline in the hunter-life, and may be adduced to show the importance of statistical data.

The permanent causes of Indian decline cannot, however, be mistaken. Their


progress of deterioration is seen to have been linked, as by an indissoluble chain, with their scanty means of subsistence and non-industrial habits and character, wherever they have been located, and however they have wandered.

The cultivated field, the plough, and the bow, are not more unmistakeably marked, as types of habit and condition, in the Indian than the European races. And these causes are seen to be fundamental. They exist so strongly in the minds of the Indian tribes generally, as to have led them to flee before the approaches of civilization, as if it were a pestilence. On the contrary, the influences of agriculture and fixity have been, in a marked manner, suited to promote the growth of those bands which have betaken themselves to them — to foster the best capacities of the man, and to protect him against the arts of cupidity and the allurements of indulgence. Above all, it has been a policy from the foundation of the government, through the eras of thirteen Presidents, beginning with Washington, to demonstrate to the tribes the lolly of their internal and external wars, as well as the waste of their energies in the chase; and to preserve peace on the frontiers. The first twelve sections of "the Intercourse Act," may be singled out, in an especial manner, as designed to protect their rights and interests against the whites on the frontier; and the colonial history of the most humane nations does not furnish a body of treaties, laws, and public acts, to protect an aboriginal people, which have been pursued, through every adverse mutation, so perseveringly and successfully. Fixity of habits and industry have at length crowned these efforts with the elements of success, so far as respects the more immediate tribes operated on, who have been removed to positions favoring the practice of agriculture, letters, and morals. This is, it may be affirmed, the position of the colonized tribes, the first steps to the policy of which were taken in 1824. It was a result not to be compassed in a short period, and it is a point deserving the attention of the nation; and he must shut his eyes to the evidences of the benign effects of civilization upon aboriginal barbarism, who does not see in this policy, that it has been, to the extent stated, successful. The Cherokees, the Choctaws, the Chickasaws, and the Muscogees or Creeks, are the living monuments of rescued nations, who are destined to take their places in the family of man. The statistics which belong to this subject, have been sought with diligence, and notwithstanding obstacles yet existing, are in the process of successful collection, and will be in due time laid before you. Thus far of the colonized tribes.

With respect to the wild hunter-tribes of the forests and prairies, additional information is presented in section V.B. The first part of this relates to the predatory and mounted tribe of the COMANCHEES or Nה�nכ — a tribe which, by the vocabulary printed in section IX. A., is perceived to belong to the wide-spreading Shoshonee stock — a group of tribes whose home appears, at least from the sources of the Missouri, to have


been, from an early time, the Rocky Mountains. It is perceived, that it embraces the degraded Bonacks or Root-diggers of Utah and the Snakes and Shoshonees of Oregon, spreading also through parts of Texas, New Mexico, and California. It is probable that the cognate dialects of this language cover a larger area, though much of it is barren, and mountainous, than any other stock of tribes in the United States.

The second part of the information now submitted relates to the large and widely-spread tribe of the Ojibwas or Chippewas, of the Algonquin group of our history, and secondly, to the great Prairie group of the Dacotas west of the Mississippi. These two important groups of tribes have, from an early epoch, occupied much of the central and upper parts of the Mississippi Valley; and the former have furnished, by cession, a large part of the territorial area of the Western States, as will fully appear from statement A. in part III. of section XII. of Statistics and Population, B., herewith submitted. The Sioux, or Dacotas proper, have but just (1851) entered into general treaties with the United States, ceding an important area in Minnesota, which must become the theatre of several new States.

That the hunter and non-industrial tribes still cling with great tenacity to their native forests and native habits — that they view with distrust, and even contempt, the promises of labor and letters — that they glory in a wild independence and freedom from restraint, and are fascinated with all the fallacious allurements of the chase, your recent journey to Minnesota must have given you abundant means to observe; and the fact of their attachment to forest-life is not surprising to the mind that contemplates human history with enlarged views, nor does it offer ground for discouragement. We are but required to persevere in our efforts, and to make them broader and fuller. Years will be demanded to reach, with practical influences, the roving bands, who are still strongly fascinated with the wilderness, and who now hover fitfully around the broad bases of both sides of the Rocky Mountains, the high tablelands of New Mexico, and the Sierra Nevada. Many of these tribes will probably perish; but the question of time, which must develop results, cannot alter our duties as a nation entrusted with the highest type of civilization, to collect the data of their vital statistics and condition, and to spread them, before the people of the country and the world.

The subject is one that requires to be viewed from exalted points, and with expansive feelings. Facts before us denote that the Indian can be reclaimed. No new principles are necessary to be eliminated — no old ones to be obliterated. He is alike amenable to that law, which governs the races of white and of red men, and of whom we have the divine sanction for saying, "In the sweat of thy face, thou shalt eat bread." The sound and practical experiment of one noble man, in 1746, were there no other on record, would demonstrate this.

Fiscal and vital statistics denote that it is not the curtailment of their territory that


has led to Indian depopulation. It is the ruinous policy of the tribes of keeping large areas, untouched by the plough and in a desert state, that these territories may produce wild animals. They have, therefore, perished rather from the repletion than the diminution of territory; and from the excess of indulgence, resulting from mal-application of their large fiscal means. If any fact is beyond dispute, it is this. It is the standard by which, like the fluctuations of the thermometer, the momentum of Indian prosperity or depopulation may be measured. By the statistics published, it is shown that the payment of heavy annuities in coin to the non-industrial tribes has been detrimental. The small tribes, with large annuities, have constantly declined, as is witnessed in the Miamies; while large tribes, whose funds are invested, or tribes of equal numbers, with small, or no annuities at all, who have not felt the depressing effects of the periodical affluence of these payments, have kept up or increased in their numbers: for, of all things hurtful to our hunter-tribes, ready money is seen to be by far the greatest — as if invested by it, with the poisoned shirt of Nessus, they seem tormented until relieved from it.

Next to the want of industrial habits, in the inter-forest and prairie tribes, nothing has had so great an influence, in keeping them at the zero of human society, as the neglect or non-appreciation of education. The statistics of schools, including the facts embraced in the Annual Reports of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, are too incomplete and fragmentary to permit the details to be as yet submitted; but the importance of the subject may be deemed a sufficient reason for referring to some of the results indicated. Indian education is, perhaps necessarily, expensive. If my data are correct, the average expense, owing to the want of avidity for knowledge, which causes a thin attendance on the schools, exceeds very greatly that of the same kind of instruction in civil life. From the number of pupils taught, in the boarding-schools, compared with the sums expended, it is perceived that the average amount per scholar has nearly equalled, in some cases, that required annually to carry our students through an academic course.

The statistics of occupation embraced in my first report denote few natives as having embraced any of the learned professions, or as teachers of primary schools, or mechanics: but we cannot decide that this ratio will not increase, nor that the eloquence which has commanded admiration for centuries, in their primitive convocations, is not destined to make itself felt in the forum and the pulpit. The highest talents, united to decision and practical energy of character, are doubtless required, on every ground, in the superintendents of academies and beneficiary institutions located in the Indian country; but it would promise more favorable results from these nurseries of labour and letters, if we could see the red man himself entering more fully than he does, into all the departments of mental action essential to the reformation and reconstruction of Indian society. What the tribes most require is, steady personal exertions and a deep personal interest in the great problem of their


reclamation. No tribes can be substitutionally taught the arts of life. Individuals from amongst themselves must not only take the ferule, and occupy the desk, but they are required to take hold of the plough and hammer. It is perceived, in those tribes which have taken the lead in civilization, and who hold a high pre-eminence over, and offer a noble example to the rest, that these results, so far as we have been able to procure the facts, are unmistakeable, and worthy of all commendation; while at the same time, it is lamentable to contrast them with the state of the erratic and hunter-tribes, who raise no grain, and keep no cattle, but continue to waste their time and energies in the precarious toils of the chase and in plans of ferocious warfare — struggling without substantial recompense, and passing throngh life without a rational object.

Other facts relative to the present condition, prospects, and history of the tribes, are herewith presented. They are suggestive, in some cases, of the remedy for admitted defects. Often the questions require wisdom to adjust; and there are points respecting which, indeed, it would perhaps be premature, to form plans, until the body of information to be acted on, has assumed greater maturity and been rendered more full, comprehensive, and complete. The character and idiosyncracies of the Indian tribes are required to be better understood and appreciated. Modes of thought and action on their part, which have been the growth of centuries, with the habits under which they were superinduced, require to be overthrown; — and we err, doubtless, in our estimate of the period in which a nation of high progress can practically accomplish reforms in the minds of a barbarous people, so peculiar in all their moral and intellectual organization and forest-training as the Indian race.

My former report indicates the utter fallacy of Indian tradition on almost every concrete point of their history, which aspires to antiquity, except that embodied in the picture-writing of Mexico. Among the United States tribes, the period is almost entirely hypothetical beyond a few hundred years. As a proof of which, it may be mentioned, that the expedition of De Soto, which was, by its striking incidents, so well suited to impress the Indian mind, has wholly perished from the traditions of the large Appalachian group of tribes — a stock of people, who are shown to have ever possessed active, energetic minds, and determined courage. Their cranial developments, as denoted by a memoir on the physical type of the Indians, herewith published, (vide section VIII. A.,) are demonstrated, by the most careful admeasurements made by the late Dr. Samuel George Morton, to be superior to those of the Toltecs, Aztecs, or Peruvians. The same conclusion of intellectual vigor is sustained by their powers of numeration, which are introduced in the section on Intellectual Capacity, (vide section VI. B.)

In order to construct the ancient history of our tribes, and thereby to arrive at some determinate theory of their origin, it is deemed essential to arrange them into generic groups of families, between whom analogies of words and syntax may be pointed out.


This species of research has commanded my deepest attention for a long period, and a commencement of the publication of the materials collected on the subject is made in section IX. A.

In submitting the tables of Statistics and Population (vide section XII. B.) one remark on the expanding influence and fiscal importance of our Indian system may be offered. It is, the striking progress of it, shown by the number of tribes with whom the intercourse is held; the quantity of lands which have been acquired by treaties; the amounts paid to them, and the gross amount of departmental expenditures. For the purpose of comparing the expenditures of the office, the year 1820 has been selected. In this year, the amount of annuities paid to the tribes, according to a statement of the Secretary of the Treasury, (Period II., Statistics B., p. 545,) was one hundred and fifty-two thousand five hundred and seventy-five dollars per annum; and the whole sum paid for public lands, from the Declaration of Independence, is shown to have been twenty-four millions two hundred and twenty-seven thousand dollars. Taking a period of thirty years, subsequent to this time, as the era of comparison, which brings us to 1850, it is shown, that the natural growth of the country and its demand for new cessions from the tribes, had so increased, (vide Period I., Statistics, p. 503) that the regular Indian annuities for the fiscal year ending 30th June, 1851, reached the large amount of eight hundred and sixty-nine thousand four hundred and forty-five dollars, besides special estimates, asked of Congress to complete the payment of treaty obligations of prior periods, amounting to two millions four hundred and twenty thousand seven hundred and twenty-two dollars and sixty-six cents. The sum vested for Indian account is shown to be two millions two hundred fifty-one thousand one hundred and fifty-nine dollars and eighty-eight cents.

In the tables of Period III. (Statistics, p. 601) attention is called to the quantity of land which has been purchased from the aborigines since the establishment of the government; the several tribes from whom purchases have been made, and the compensation awarded. It is shown, that from 1789, when the present constitution was formed, and when, indeed, the demand for Indian lands, other than such as had been possessed by the British colonies, commenced, there has been purchased, up to the year 1840, where the tables stop, four hundred and forty-two millions eight hundred and sixty-six thousand three hundred and seventy acres; for which the aggregate sum of eighty-five millions eighty-eight thousand eight hundred and three dollars was paid.

The twelve years that have passed since these returns were submitted, have added largely to the amount of the cessions and the payments for the fee of wild lands purchased, stretching, as they do, widely into the area of the West; and they have, probably, somewhat increased the proportion of funds vested to those paid to the tribes. But taking the years 1840 and 1850 as the respective epochs of comparison, the proportion of money vested to the amount received, is (omitting fractions of


millions) as two are to eighty-five — denoting but little forecast in the Indian race, or disposition to hoard their means. Even this is far more favorable than at any other period, and the majority of the funds belong to colonized tribes.

In directing my investigations to the subject of population, attention is given to its varying phases, under the plan of colonization west of the States and Territories, commenced in 1824, and to the interesting problem of the ancient state of Indian population in America at the earliest periods.

The whole body of facts and researches brought together, in the papers now submitted, are commended to your attention and examination. In preparing them, the introduction of full Roman figures and letters, at the heads of the several primary sections, into which the work is divided, will denote the serial and general plan which connects the whole, and ensures the preservation of the order of discussion.

It is designed to submit an authentic body of materials, illustrative of the history, manners and customs, languages, and intellectual capacity and character of the whole number of tribes now within the territorial boundaries of the United States; with their numbers, means, condition, and prospects. It is intended to form them into great family and ethnological groups, on the basis of their languages and grammars. Order is thus sought to be restored, in an enlarged sense, where there has heretofore been little but confusion; and the grouping of these generic stocks will impart a degree of unity to the subject which is, on all hands, very desirable. The idea of covering the United States, and indeed, the whole continent, with an endless multiplicity of diverse, languages, which has been advanced, is one which has served to obscure, rather than to elucidate their history; and is not sanctioned by the philosophy of history. Already, it is perceived, that a few stocks have originally overspread the entire range of the Atlantic coast, — the elevations of the Appalachian and Alleghany mountains, — the great Lake basins, — the Mississippi Valley, — and the vast prairies extending to the foot of the Rocky Mountains, the plains of Texas, and the banks of the Rio del Norte.

I am, sir,
Very respectfully,
Your ob't serv't,
Agent Statistics, &c. of the Indian Tribes of the United States


I. General History.


A. Track of Migration.

1. WHEN Sebastian Cabot reached the North American coasts in 1497, the Indian Race was spread through the present area of the United States wherever he touched.

That intrepid navigator made the land in latitude 56°, and ran down the coast to about the latitude of Albemarle sound, 36°, where the crew mutinied. He thus connected the field of oceanic discovery, generally, with the primary track of Columbus five years earlier. Cabot did not land frequently, but his discoveries had the effect to make known to Europe the development of the continent in the North Atlantic, as that of his contemporary, Americus, did in the south.

Those who followed him, in the career of discovery, found the race of Red men to be divided into an infinity of tribes; living in disunion, speaking ostensibly different languages and dialects, and, so far as there was anything like government, acting on the maxim, "Let him take who has the power, and him keep who can."

2. The sea-captains of a bold maritime age, finding that the newly-discovered race seated along the North Atlantic were wild men, without laws, polity, or arts, and degraded to the level of the lowest hunter state, treated them as mere animals on two legs, and irritated them exceedingly, and offended their native sense of justice at almost every point of their first landing, by capturing and carrying off persons. A flagrant instance of this kind happened on the New England coasts six years before their settlement. John Smith (of Virginia notoriety) had been sent out in 1614 to those coasts


by the English company for establishing a settlement and trade. On returning to Europe, he left one of his vessels in command of one Kent, an Englishman, a man of a half buccaneer character, who, after procuring a cargo of fish, set sail to dispose of it in the Mediterranean, whither he took twenty Indians, who had been decoyed on board his vessel, and sold them as slaves. "This avaricious and pernicious felony," says Cotton Mather, "laid the foundation of grievous annoyances to all English endeavors of settlements, especially in the northern parts of the land, for several years ensuing. The Indians would never forget or forgive this injury, but when the English afterwards came upon this coast in their fishing voyages they were still assaulted in an hostile manner, to the killing and wounding of many poor men by the angry natives in revenge for the wrong that had been done them; and some intended plantations were thereby entirely nipped in the bud." This mistaken policy was productive of hatred on the part of the Indians, and served to increase their natural distrust and suspicion when the country came to be colonized. A still more horrible act of kidnapping was perpetrated by Vasquez on the coast of Chicorea, now South Carolina, who, having traded amicably with the natives at the mouth of the river Cambahee, at last invited them to view his two vessels, and when the holds were filled, ordered the hatches closed and sailed for San Domingo. One of the vessels foundered on the way; the natives in the other were taken to work the mines, but were sullen and gloomy, refused food, and most of them died of despair or voluntary starvation.

3. England, it appears, had no thought of availing herself of Cabot's discoveries for nearly a century afterwards. Meantime, Spain founded her vice-royal empire throughout South America, with Portugal, France, and Holland only as rivals for part of the continent, and for the Caribbean group of islands. The rage for the precious metals, and for the discovering of an open passage to the East Indies — the original thought of Columbus — had set Europe in a blaze, and animated every adventure fitted out for the New World.

Not only the equinoctial and torrid zones were left by England to the influence of this type of civilization, but North America seemed destined to be thus exclusively colonized. Mexico was invaded in 1519, and finally conquered in 1521; and the Floridian coasts, which were known in 1512, became the object of two notable expeditions of discovery, both of which eventuated in discomfiture. The first of these, led by Pamphilo de Narvaez in 1527, resulted most disastrously to him and his followers.


The escape of De Vaca with three or four companions, and their wanderings west for eight years across the whole continent, till they reached the Gulf of California, furnishes one of the most adventurous of narratives. His account denotes a remarkable agreement in the character and customs of the North American Indians, till he came among the tribes of the present area of New Mexico, to whom he applies the name of "Jumanos." Among these he observed the "cotton blanket," and found "houses."

In 1539, De Soto repeated the attempt to explore Florida, with more ample means. His exploring army had not only every appointment to ensure success, but was animated by the highest spirit of chivalry, heightened by the thirst of conquest, wealth, and glory, which had made Cortez and Pizarro the prominent heroes of Mexico and Peru. Ho had, himself, been one of the most celebrated captains of the latter. But the expedition melted away, month after month, amidst the dense and tangled forests of Florida, and along the magnificent rivers and mountain peaks of Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Mississippi, and Tennessee. It wended its way, with giant strides, from river to river, leaving relics which are symbolized by vague tradition. The Indians did not rally in bodies to oppose De Soto by pitched battles, but glided aside with policy, to let the "monster power" pass. It weakened itself, as there is sufficient evidence to show, by detaching sub-exploring parties, who penetrated to surprising lengths, and performed herculean labors; and this vaunted expedition, which struck the tribes with fear and amazement, after suffering all the evils of a defeat at Mauvila, finally reached the Mississippi river, about the present site of the town of Memphis. Such an expedition, in its amount of sufferings, feats of daring, and wanderings, America, and perhaps the world, had never seen, and it has probably furnished food for some of the most striking imaginative tales of our tribes, who have veiled the appearance of mail-clad men under the name of the "Stone Giants."

4. There are archaeological evidences that the death of De Soto did not quench the daring spirit of discovery which had animated his extraordinary descent into Florida under its ancient limits; and that the country northwardly was extensively ransacked at subsequent dates, in the delusive hope of finding gold and silver mines, both by the channels of the Mississippi and its tributaries, and along the open Atlantic coasts, as far, at least, as north latitude 42°. It is these archזological evidences, mingled in some antiquarian fields of the true aboriginal antique, and, in a few instances, with an apparently elder epoch of it, that have served to puzzle antiquarians, and to generate theories of civilization in these latitudes, which there are no sound reasons for supposing to have existed. They are, if attentively scrutinized, found to be the vestiges of an


extraneous era of arts, not homogeneous or sui-generis with those of the true antique aboriginal period.

5. The first peaceable interview of the French with the North American tribes took place in 1535, on the waters of the St. Lawrence, under the same triple thirst for conquest, the discovery of the precious metals, and a false belief in a western passage to China and India. This was four years prior to the descent of De Soto on the coasts of Florida; but although twenty degrees farther to the north, it did not exhibit tribes at all inferior, but rather superior, to the native Floridians in energy, expertness, courage, and forest arts. And the two expeditions of Jacques Cartier to these northern waters, though crowned with no golden discoveries, had the effect to make Francis I. a rival of Charles V. for the division of the new continent, and laid the foundation of the future viceroyalty of New France.

6. It was not till 1584, when ninety-one years had elapsed from Cabot's discovery, and forty-five years after the expedition of De Soto, that England, under the grant to Raleigh, visited and named Virginia, and thus asserted her title, by right of discovery, to the present area of the United States. Sir Francis Drake was, a year or two later, engaged in his half-freebooting operations on the Pacific: the banks of Newfoundland were also, at this era, well known to the maritime states of Europe, and freely visited by adventurous fishermen. Laudonniere had, in 1564, debarked in Florida, on his celebrated plan of colonization, and, by these and other means, North American discovery had reached a point at which several other nations began earnestly to put forth plans of colonization.

The landing in Virginia (Plate 1) took place at the Island of Wococon, in July, 1584. The emigrants afterwards took possession of, and founded their infant colony on Roanoke Island. The Indians, who, from fear of kidnapping, had fled away, kept aloof for three days, at the end of which, three persons in a canoe ventured furtively near, and suffered themselves to be taken. They were treated kindly, loaded with presents, and permitted to depart. The next day brought many boats, with forty or fifty men, among whom was Granganimo, "the king's brother." Leaving his canoe at a distance, he came with his train to the first interview with captains Amidas and Barlow. His attendants spread a mat on the ground, upon which he fearlessly seated himself, and evinced perfect self-possession, though the Englishmen were completely armed. He made gesticulations of friendship by stroking his head and breast with his hand, and repeating this ceremony on his visitors. He then arose and addressed them


in a "long speech," all his attendants standing in silence. Presents were now laid before him, and before four other persons who appeared to be officials, which, at the close of the interview, he directed to be taken away, as all belonging to himself.

An English artist, named John Wyth, accompanied the expedition, by direction of Queen Elizabeth, to draw the topography, dress, and customs of the natives; from whose pencil we have the earliest designs on the subject. De Bry, of Frankfort-on-the-Main, who was, about this time, preparing the celebrated work which he began to publish in 1590, went to London, in 1587, and procured copies of Wyth's drawings. How truthful these are to the forms of the Indians it would be difficult now to inquire. There is a fulness of muscle and development of limb in the figures which are not characteristic of the present race north and west, but really existed in the southern tribes; and, with one exception, namely, the woman eating, the postures conform to present usage, while the articles of dress, arts, and employments, leave no reason to suppose that they are not entirely faithful transcripts from scenes presented on the first interview with the Virginia Indians.

In the latitude of Roanoke Island, and during the month of July, the Indians were nearly nude. The men of most note wore moccasins and leggins, the azean, shell necklaces, copper ear-rings, and a head-dress of some sort. A robe of skins, the muttatos of the Algonquins, was thrown about the chiefs. The women are drawn without moccasins or leggins, and depicted with a not ungraceful leather-fringed kirtle or matchicota which reaches half-thigh. The hair is left to flow untied down the neck, (a doubtful point) with a head-band around the forehead, and a necklace of shells.

7. Twenty-five years later, namely, in 1609, the United States of Holland determined to share in the sovereignty of the new continent, by despatching a single ship of discovery, under Hendrick Hudson, to the new field of enterprise. This vessel entered the noble river now bearing his name, sailed through the Highlands, and is thought to have reached, and made her final anchorage, above the present city of Hudson, and in plain view of the magnificent Catskill range. (Plate 2.)

The natives had manifested very marked hostility on the lower parts of the river, particularly the Manhattanese, who killed one of the seamen with an arrow; consequently, Hudson could not land on that island. But the people encountered above the Highlands, were of a different temper, and an amicable intercourse ensued. Hudson had no sooner cast anchor in this part of the river, and landed from his boat, than he held a friendly conference with the natives on shore. (Plate 2.) According to the notions of the hospitality of his times, he offered them a potation of ardent spirits; which produced a stare of astonishment. To show them that he did not intend to give them what he would not taste himself, he drank off a cup of the liquor, and it was then filled and passed round 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 the potion, even 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. Thus the physical powers of the mighty chiefs of the wilderness were at first prostrated by an element truly fascinating, as it led them into hallucinations so consonant to their own mythology, — the Indian Elysium — the land of dreams.

8. Eleven years after this exploratory trip, the English Pilgrims set sail from Holland, and reached the coast in one of the involutions of Massachusetts Bay, to which they gave the name of Plymouth, at a spot which, if there be truth in Icelandic Sagas, that nation of bold mariners had visited some centuries before.

The landing took place on the 22d of December, 1620, in a severe season, when snow covered the shore, when the forests were leafless and drear, and sickness, which had swept with great mortality among the natives, soon carried off many of the colonists.

9. No colonists had heretofore reached the shores from Europe with the views that actuated this people. Cortez, Narvaez, and De Vaca, De Soto, Laudonniere, and Cartier, had exhibited to the Indian race what may be called the Romaic element of European civilization. They were now to behold the English type of civilization as seen in the cognate colonists at Roanoke, Plymouth, and Manhattan — to encounter, indeed, the old Gothic, under the sterner stamina of which Rome itself had fallen. The minds of the pilgrims had been formed in the school of adversity. Poverty had sharpened wit, and suffering made the tyranny of royalty hateful. They were, in truth, the unsubdued residuum of the commonwealth under Cromwell. They had fled from the religious intolerance of the Stuarts, to take shelter in the forests of the New World. It was a crusade on nobler principles than that preached up by Peter the Hermit. They were cemented together by the closest principles of Bible obligation.

With the notions of English liberty which were the result of the workings of the British government through centuries, with such examples in patriotic energy as Hampden, with the current literature of England, in which the names of Bacon and Boyle, Newton, Shakspeare, and Milton were household words, they set up the framework of a political scheme, founded on strict personal morals and ascetic manners, which offers a striking and instructive phenomenon in the history of colonies.


Unlike the colonies of Libya, Carthage, and Rome, it was not based on a love of the fine arts, or the refinements of philosophy and manners. Instead of this, the columns which these persecuted colonists desired to erect were those of faith, hope, and charity. Their principles of government were not those recognized by Herodotus, Livy, and Tacitus, but those of Moses and the prophets — Paul and the apostles. They were careful to cultivate a just and friendly policy with the Red race, who received them kindly.

The first meeting took place a few days after their arrival, near the spot of landing. (Plate 3.) Massasoit, the celebrated chief of the Pokanokets, came to visit them. He was received by Governor Carver and his retinue with every attention. There was military music and a salute of musketry; mutual embraces followed. They then sat down side by side; "a pot of strong water" was brought forward, from which both drank. The chief, not knowing how to graduate his draught from ignorance of its strength, was thrown into a violent perspiration, which lasted during the interview.

These initial points of landing among a peculiar variety of the race of men who were destined to be our neighbours, and one of the chief objects of our humanitarian exertions for centuries, have been described for the purpose of calling attention to the character, affinities, and subdivisions of that race, as they then existed. The two hundred and fifty years which have elapsed at the date of writing these sketches, have multiplied in an almost infinitismal degree the number of the interviews and occasions of conference with the new race found by Cabot, by which our knowledge of them has been determined. Grecian and Roman history has told us nothing respecting their breaking off from the old races of men. We have examined the few and inconclusive points of their own traditionary evidence on this head in the prior pages (Part I. p. 19.) They are dim and shadowy; abounding in the necromantic and grotesque, and often bearing the unmistakeable impress of the symbolic. Their mythology, unlike that of what we may call the Japhetic type, too often contents itself with the droll, and never holds its gods responsible for higher principles of truth, honor, and humanity, than mere men.

11. Regarded as a Race spread through the United States, the ethnological tie which binds the Vesperic tribes together possesses a singular unity. An Indian on the Gulf


shores of Florida, as depicted by De Vaca, in 1527, and on the Gulf of the St. Lawrence, as he appears in the narratives of Cartier, in 1534, agree so completely in their leading traits, that there can be no hesitation as to their general affinities as a Race, though they are separated by two thousand miles of forests, lakes, and mountains. Examine the man, as seen on the coasts of Virginia in 1584, on the banks of the Hudson river in 1609, or on the shores of New England, as found by the pilgrims in 1620, and in what generic trait do they differ, save variations of languages, which are, however, generally dialectic, or in points of minor customs, often purely geographical? The zea maize, a tropical plant, was raised incidentally throughout all this distance — cotton, in no part of it. A wigwam of poles, with sheathing of mats or barks, characterized the whole area. The bow and arrow, and the spear and club, were the arms; and canoes of wood or bark furnished the means of navigation. It was not till reaching the broad table-lands and mountain valleys of New Mexico, that De Vaca found houses of stone, and the cotton blanket. This forms a strong line of demarkation between the hunter and semi-agricultural stocks — between the cotton-growing Toltec and the skin-clad Vesperic genera.

12. The tribes seated along the Atlantic, and spreading across the Alleghanies, at the respective dates of the settlement of Virginia, Nova Belgica, and New England, were found to be identical in their general character, and their low state of arts, in their notions of government, and in their means of subsistence. They were small independent chieftaincies, raising a little Indian corn, hunting the deer and other animals, at war continually with each other, and having, as a general fact, in their vital statistics, just births enough to replace those annually lost in battle and by natural death : occasionally rising and falling a little in numbers, but their stationary population forms one of the peculiarities of their history. Proud, cunning, (rather than brave,) idle, generous to their friends, and cruel and perfidious to their enemies: a celebrated divine of the early settlement of New England, calls them — "the veriest ruins of mankind."

Here, then, is a great truth, a starting point which links them to the stocks of the Old World, and which imparts to the problem of their condition, history, and improvement, all its vitality. Low as they were in the scale of mankind, they were still men; they had hopes and fears; they were subject, in most things, to like passions with ourselves, and they present an object for the noblest humanitarian exertions.

13. The centres of general migration from which the North American tribes proceeded to the places occupied by them about the close of the fifteenth century appear


plain. Those tribes who penetrated the northern cordillera of the Rocky Mountains by the Unjiga and other passes, reaching quite to the termination of this chain in the Arctic Ocean, in latitude 70°, to whom the generic appellation of Athapascas has been applied by Mr. Gallatin, migrated continually from their starting points on the Pacific towards the east and south-east (Plate 4.) On the settlement of New France, and particularly on the new vigor which geographical discovery assumed after the fall of Quebec, when the fur trade began to be pushed north, they had reached the dividing grounds or water-shed (Wasser-chied) separating the remotest tributaries of the Arctic Sea from those of Hudson's Bay. The Missinipi, Great-water, or Churchill river, (not to be confounded with the Mississippi,) is stated, by Sir Alexander Mackenzie, to be their ultimate eastern limit, where they were met by an opposing wave of migration, namely, the Crees or Kenistenos, the van of the Algonquins, who had a widely different starting point.

14. The different tribes who compose this northern genus or family of tribes (Athapascas), speak cognate dialects (all except the band of Loo-choos, or Quarrelers). The most numerous tribe occupying the denuded and sterile plains between lat. 60° to 65° and long. 100° to 110°, are known by the Algonquin name of Cheppewyans (not to be mistaken for the radically different tribe of Chippewas), but who call themselves, with a more correct allusion to their geography, Sa-essau-dinneh, or Eastmen. Next in numerical importance rank the Dogribs, the Coppermine Indians, the Beaver and Rocky Mountain Indians, of Peace River, and the Tacullies and their congeners, of New Caledonia. Numbers of the minor tribes are very small, not exceeding forty or fifty men, or about 200 to 250 souls. They raise nothing, and depend solely for subsistence and protection on the bow and arrow, the snare and net, the gun and trap. They are stimulated to glean these vast solitudes for the small fur-bearing animals, which are exchanged for European fabrics by the traders. They do not, from the best data we have, number, north of the Churchill River, more than 2500 hunters, or about 13,000 souls, exclusive of the Esquimaux, and cannot be said to average, probably, one soul to fifty square miles.

  Men. Souls
Cheppewyans 800 4,000
Coppermine Indians 139 695
Dogribs 200 1,000
Edchautawoot, Strong-bows 70 350
Mountain Indians 40 200
Ambatawwoot 40 1300
Kancho, or Hare 50
Dcagothee Loochoo, or Quarrelers 70
Nohannies 40
Tsillawadoot, or Brushwood 60
Beaver and Rocky Mountain Indiana 150 750
Tacullies 1,000 5,000
Nateotetains, and all the tribes of New Caledonia west of the Rocky Mountains)
  ———— ———
  2,659 13,295


15. The Esquimaux, who constitute the extreme northeastern and northwestern group of British America, offer the singular problem of the migration across the arctic fringe of the continent from east to west. They are traced from Baffin's Bay, Labrador, and even Greenland, to Behring's Straits and the continent of Asia, where the sedentary Tchuktchi are found to speak a dialect of their language. But this language is not traced farther among the Asiatic tribes of that coast. This group, whose mode of subsistence, stature, and customs, constitute the minimum point of depression of the Indian race, and who offer the most extreme example of the effects of latitude and longitude on manners and the physical type, is confined to a belt of some hundred miles wide, on the arctic coasts; and they have their extreme southern point of location within the Straits of Belle Isle, on the Gulf of St. Lawrence, lat. about 50°. They are doubtless the Skroellings, or dwarfs, observed on the contiguous Island of Newfoundland, the ancient Hellueland, by the Scandinavians.

16. A very different starting-point must be assigned to the migrations of the multitude of comparatively populous tribes to whom we have applied the generic term of Vesperic or United States Indians. This large genus of the race who exist in separate groups of languages, but who are assimilated by a peculiar syntax and a coincidence of mental and physical type which very unequivocally marks them as a homogeneous race, occupy the entire area of the United States east of the Rocky Mountains, and east of the tribes of New Mexico, to whom De Vaca applies the term "Jumanos." (Humanos.) These latter inhabit the outer northern edge of the circle of the semi-civilized tribes of New Mexico. They retained at that era, (about 1530,) and continue to retain at the present day, the two striking elements of that type {the Toltec type) of civilization: namely, the zea maize and the cotton plant. We have no knowledge how the latter was fabricated. There was no indication then, nor is there now, that the distaff (one of the most ancient implements of mankind) was employed to form the thread. It is only said that they possessed blankets of cotton, and that they cultivated fields


of "corn." Some amelioration of manners and customs was the consequence of this fixity of pursuits; and we find that De Vaca was escorted on his way to the Pacific without the rude, savage manners that he had encountered in Florida and Arkansas, and was uniformly attended by a retinue. Both the condition and position of the modern Navahoes and Moquies concur in favoring the supposition that they are descended from the ancient Jumanoes.

17. A limit, rather than a starting-point, is thus furnished for the wild hunter tribes whom both De Vaca and De Soto found in the Mississippi Valley, and in the present area of Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Arkansas. The evidence of these tribes coming from the southwest is found in their possessing the zea maize, which they carried with them, and cultivated to some extent wherever they went; and it constitutes one of the best evidences of the track of migration. Like confluent rivers pouring from the west, the stream of migration which passed into and across the Mississippi may have received, at successive eras, new and fresh accessions by way of the several passes of the Rocky Mountains south of latitude 42°, and extending to 30°, or even 25°; but it is by no means probable that in any such migrations the zea maize was brought over the bleak pass of 42°, where the plant was not raised; nor from the banks of the Columbia, where neither Capt. Grey, Lewis and Clarke, Ross Coxe, or the agents of John Jacob Astor, found a kernel of it as the product of aboriginal industry.

In 1527, De Vaca found the zea maize in very limited quantities in Florida, after he had got away from the mere Gulf bands, who lived mainly on fish, mollusca, wild fruits, and nuts. De Soto, who struck deeper into the country in his march twelve years later, found it abundantly among the ancestors of the present Muscogees, Chactaws, Chickasaws, and Cherokces. In 1702, when Bienville was put to straits in sustaining the infant colony of Louisiana, this grain was so abundant among the Chactaws, who were the original occupants of the country, that the governor quartered the soldiers for months on that tribe.

18. The Virginia tribes literally sustained the colony planted at Jamestown with supplies of Indian-corn from their own fields, and one of the prominent services which Capt. John Smith mentioned in his letter to Queen Anne, in recounting the friendliness of Pocahontas, was her leading these "conductas" of grain herself to the suffering colonists, without which they must have perished. The track of its spreading among the tribes along the Atlantic coast is clearly traced along the shores of the Atlantic into Massachusetts and all New England, where they raised the small and nutritious variety of white and yellow flint com, and where their no-ka-hik constituted the sustaining food of their warriors.


19. The Gulf of the St. Lawrence may be named as the most northerly latitude to which the Indians had earned this plant; but there is no evidence, that I have seen, of its having been cultivated, at an early date, on or near its shores. Cartier, in his voyages in 1534 and 1535, found none.

20. On ascending the St. Lawrence, by its rapids, into Lake Ontario, and penetrating into the country of the Iroquois, about 1610, the cultivation of the zea maize was found, by the French, to be practised in all the cantons; and the reliance placed on it is one of the unmistakeable causes of the progress to political power, made by this celebrated group of tribes. By means of it, they could sustain a more heavy population, and live in larger villages.

21. On proceeding to the ultra-montane regions west of the Alleghanies, this native cereal was found, by the earliest French and English explorers, in possession of all the tribes. It was cultivated, in small quantities, by the hunter communities of the Ohio, the Wabash, the Miami, and the Illinois; and by the nations along both banks of the Mississippi; for this river, in its descent from the Wisconsin and Illinois, where Marguette had reached it, was the reflex course of discovery to the respective points where De Vaca and De Soto had first found it. La Salle and Tonti followed it quite to the point in its delta where the level of the arable alluvial land sinks beneath the dominion of the waters on the Gulf of Mexico.

22. It is quite evident that the cultivation of the zea maize gave the ancient mound-builders the capacity of concentrating their numbers, and living together in large towns, which at once created a necessity for, and enabled them to construct and defend those antique works, the remains of which are still found in many places in the West. Nothing is clearer (if we admit some intrusive antiquities due to civilized sources before the fifteenth century) than that this ancient development of increased numbers and power had produced no very fixed general confederacies, or led to consolidated dynasties, like those of the Olmecs, the Toltecs, the Aztecs, and the Auricanians; that the tribes lived in continual political discord; that no high advanced state of civilization, manners, and policy had been reached; and that the failure of their partial and verbal compacts threw them back into the type of barbarism, leaving the remains spoken of, not only as monuments of the conflicts of opposing tribes, but of the state of wild discord that prevailed among them. If European or Asiatic science and art had furnished elements in this, they gave way to barbaric power. He must, we think, be an observer of a very imaginative temperament who perceives in these archזological remains a more exalted origin than has been denoted. We cannot say that the Syrian, the Carthaginian, the Scandinavian, or even the Cimbrian or Jew, were not here. There are rather vestiges than proofs of such a population; but it appears alike to have lost its arts and


its religion. Look where we will between the banks of Lake Superior and the Gulf of Mexico, there are few traces of the origin of the arts which denote a high civilization. There are no indications of the use of the iron hammer, the art of soldering, the use of the lathe, the potter's wheel, the art of glazing, or the distaff. The carving of pipes, from generally soft minerals and stones, was carried to considerable perfection, but will not, for an instant, bear comparison with the supposed contemporaneous arts of the Roman and Grecian, or even the Egyptian chisel. The greatest evidence of combined labor was not in the number of cubic feet of earth piled up in the western tumuli, and in evidences of corn-culture, but in the attempts at mining in the basin of Lake Superior, which have been developed since 1844. But even here, the hammers used were mauls of stone, and the power of artificial disintegration was the alternate application of fire and water to the surface of the rock. The mechanical powers of the wedge and the lever were, it is true, to some extent employed, and the operation of cutting masses of native copper was effected by means of chisels of the same material, hardened by an admixture of tin, or in some way not exactly apparent. Pieces of native copper, in a state of rude manufacture, were scattered, at very early periods, in tumuli and graves, not only throughout the basins of the upper lakes and the valley of the Mississippi, from this prolific source, but over more than half of North America. These ancient labors were manifestly due to the predecessors of the Vesperic tribes, whose vestiges are scattered in the Valley of the Mississippi. But even here, the element of the zea maize, and perhaps a species of bean, must have been relied on to a considerable extent, as an article transported from contiguous southern latitudes. It was less than an hundred and fifty geographical miles, in a line south from the Michigan antique copper-beds referred to, to the Fox river valley of Green Bay, where the zea maize is known to have been cultivated by the natives from the earliest arrival of the French.

This cereal was raised on the ancient Wionebago fields, on the inner shores of Green Bay, and perhaps extended to the banks of the Menomonie river. The plant was not carried in that longitude, in its northern distribution, beyond the latitude of Wakanukkizzie, or the point called L'arbre croche by the French, on the eastern shores of Lake Michigan. In the valley of the upper Mississippi, its geographical dissemination was higher; and in proportion as that river was ascended westward in its discovery, at considerable distances above the Falls of St. Anthony, the climate favored its growth. I found this grain at Cass Lake, on the sources of the river, in 1832, and it was the current tradition of red and white men, that it had been raised, and came to perfection, so as to preserve seed, from a very early period, at Red Lake, near latitude 49°, and in


the valley of Red River of the North. To these remote points it had been carried in the migrations northwestwardly of the Ojibways, the Kenistenos, and the Assinaboines; and in these latitudes it ceases. The great Athapasea family, starting from an opposite centre of migration, did not possess it.

23. If the family of the widely diffused United States or Vesperie tribes, whose track of migration has now been sketched by the important element of the zea maize, he compared by general manners and customs, modes of living, and principles of syntax, there will be found a striking and close resemblance. Food and climate have created developments in the southern and western tribes which were rare, or comparatively unknown, in the extreme northeastern and northwestern stocks. The tribes who chased the buffalo, and lived almost exclusively on animal diet, were of a more vigorous physical and mental character than those bands which were confined along the northern sea-coasts to fish. Hence it was that the interior tribes everywhere defended themselves more valiantly than those on the coasts. Even in Florida, where the natives stood courageously by their arms, on the first invasion by the Spaniards, under De Soto, in 1539, they had not proceeded thirty leagues before they encountered expert bowmen, who could drive an arrow nearly to its head through the breast of a horse.

The brave inhabitants of Anhazea and Copafi, who were clearly of the extended family of the Museogee group of tribes, were possessed of a muscular power which made them to be feared by the most brave and chivalric cavaliers. These tribes, as the narrator observes, only killed deer enough to answer their purposes as food; but they, at the same time, raised the zea maize in such quantities, that De Soto's army, on one occasion, marched through fields of maize for the distance of two leagues.


B. Distribution of Tribes.

At the close of the fifteenth century, the Indian tribes of the present area of the United States were spread out, chiefly, in seven principal groups or generic families of tribes; each of which consisted of numerous sub-tribes, bands, or large totemic circles. Each of these subordinate tribes spoke a language or dialect differing, in some respects, from the others, and sometimes having a vocabulary entirely at variance. Each circle had also some tribal peculiarities in customs or manners, which might be noticed by other tribes, or by Europeans living among them, who had paid particular attention to these minutiז, but which would pass unnoticed by the general observer.

These groups, in the order of discovery, from south to north, and from east to west, were the Appalachian, Achalaque, Chicorean, Algonquin, Iroquois, Dacota, and Shoshonee. There appear to have been some fragmentary tribes, as the Natchez and Uchees in the south, and the Chyennes, &c. in the west and northwest, who cannot, perhaps, be arranged under these genera; but the present state of our aboriginal researches will not permit us to include them in either of the seven groups. There is, possibly, a Toltecan element in the Appalachian group: nor are we entirely prepared, at the distance of nearly three centuries from the time stated, and with the imperfect information and vocabularies now possessed, to determine, at that epoch, the exact ethnological relations and boundaries of the tribes of Texas, Oregon, New Mexico, California, and Utah — countries respecting which, it is hoped, the progress of this work will hereafter enable us to present a chart to bear the date of 1800,

1. APPALACHIANS. — The several groups are placed, on the subjoined map, in the order of their discovery. The Spanish, who discovered the peninsula of Florida, were not backward in their attempts to explore it. It would not appear that the Gulf of Florida is of a breadth and character to have prevented the natives from passing to Cuba, either by a bold traverse in the halcyon months, or by the way of the Bahama Islands; and such an origin has been conjectured, by some early voyagers, for the Carribean tribes, but without physiological proofs. On the contrary, the Spaniards of Cuba, when they landed in Florida, found their island interpreters entirely at fault: they could not understand a word of the language; and Pamphilio de Narvaez, who landed in 1527, old style, at what is now called Tampa Bay, was obliged to employ the vague language of signs. This want of an interpreter was, it is believed, at the bottom of all his misfortunes. He perpetually misunderstood the Indians, and they him. The next error, was the then prevalent notion, that no terms were to be kept with


heathens, — who worshipped the sun and moon; who were under the guardianship of demons; and who recognized a God in almost every natural phenomenon. A fit commentary on this notion, which freed him from moral accountability, and even the laws of humanity, was his tearing to pieces, by blood-hounds, the mother of the chief Hirrihigua, whose implacable resentment to the whole Spanish race no future efforts of either this vain and vaunting cavalier, or of De Soto, who followed his track ten or eleven years after, could ever appease.

These several landings were in the wide-spreading circle of what we denominate the Appalachian group, of which the Creek or Muscogee, the Choctaw, and Chickasaw, form the three leading tribes. The names of places recorded, though often imprecise, and always after the old scholastic system of Spanish orthography, render them demonstrable. There appears evidence also, while the main tribes were homogeneous, in the name of the friendly and placid chief "Mocoso," (Little Bear) of the existence of the Shawnee dialect of the Algonquin element of language, at this time, in the Floridian peninsula; and their present tribal name (Southerners) and recorded traditions receive support from this coincidence.

De Soto was enabled, with the aid of the interpretership of Juan Ortiz, a soldier left by Narvaez who had learned the Appalache language, to carry on his communications with the several tribes until he reached and crossed the banks of the Mississippi. This appears evident, for it is said although the languages differed, this difference was not radical, so that he could communicate with them. The Appalaches evidently spoke the Muscogee, but it is evident that, in the wild search after gold-mines, De Soto crossed his own track. After his return from Cofatchique, a Creek name, he crossed a part of the Cherokee country, again entered the territory of the Creeks, and afterwards of the Choctaws, (called Mavilians, or Mobilians,) and, at his highest point on the Mississippi, the Chickasaws.

The names of Alibamo, Cosa, Talise, Chicaza, and Tascaluza, are scarcely distinguishable, in their popular pronunciation, from the modern words, Alabama, Coosa, Tallisee, Chickasaw, and Tuscaloosa; the latter of which is pure Choctaw, meaning Black Warrior.

After crossing the Mississippi, one of the greatest perplexities which De Soto felt arose from the want of interpreters. He here encountered a totally different stock of languages, of which Ortez was wholly ignorant. The words had to go through eight or ten voices after passing from them before an answer was returned, and this could not be relied on. Judging that the same class of tribes have continued to occupy the right bank of the Mississippi, he was now among what is denominated the Dacota, or wild prairie tribes. It is difficult, in this part of the narrative of Garcillisco de la Vega, to recognize existing names, or our vocabularies of the most ancient native


terms have not been sufficiently scrutinized. The bold adventurer had no idea that the Rocky Mountains divided him, by a breadth of at least 2000 miles, from the "South Sea" — a word continually used for the Pacific. He was evidently at his most westerly point, in the range of the Quappas, the Kansas, and the Osages, or Washbashas. He pursued his way westward to the hill country running north and south from the Merrimack and Gasconade to the Washita, which is significantly called the Ozark Mountains. He reached the saline formations, and after his death Muscoso, his successor, in proceeding to the province of Le Vasqueros and coming in sight of the mountains, had evidently reached the buffalo plains of the far West. There is some evidence of the intrusion of the Illinois into the northern limits of De Soto's marches, and, consequently, of the Algonquin group west of the Mississippi; between whom and neighboring Indians a violent feud existed.

2. ACHALAQUES. — In the march of De Soto westward (1540) from Cutifachiqui, which is thought by Mr. Pickett to have been on the Savannah river, he passed through the southern portion of the territory of the Achalaques — the Cherokees of our day; a region which is branded as "barren." He was now among the foot-hills of the Appalachian range. The name of Achalaque represents, indeed, the sounds of the term for this group more fully than the English term of Cherokee. It is known that the sound of r is wanting in this language. David Brown, the brother of Catherine, a native Cherokee, calls it "the sweet language of Tsallake." The boundary of the territory possessed by this tribe appears to have been less subject to variation than that of any other tribe with whom we have been in intercourse; not excepting the Iroquois, whose domains grew, however, by accessions from conquest.

3. CHICOREAN GROUP. — The genera of tribes to which we apply this name claim the States of South and North Carolina as the peculiar theatre of their occupancy, at the earliest era. We first hear of them about 1510. The credulous governor of Porto Rico, Ponce de Leon, rendered himself memorable by his early discovery of, and adventures in Florida, which he named: but he was mortally wounded in a conflict with the natives. An adventurer by the name of Diego Meruelo, being afterwards driven on the coast, received a small quantity of the precious metals. This inflamed the golden hopes of a company engaged in mining at San Domingo, who fitted out three ships for a voyage thither. The leader was Lucas Vasques de Ayllon, whose object was kidnapping of Indians to work in the mines. In this nefarious object he was driven eastwardly along the coasts of what is now called South Carolina. At Combahee river, he traded with the Indians, (Yamasees) and after completing his traffic, invited


them on board of his vessels, and when a sufficient number had gone into the holds of his ships, he closed the hatches, and sailed back to San Domingo.

The Yamasees spread along the sea-coasts of South Carolina. The midland and interior portions were covered by the Catabas and Cheraws, artful and valiant races, who extended into North Carolina, and who have signalized their history by their friendship for the whites. The Catabas were not an indigenous people in South Carolina, having been driven from the north by the Iroquois, who continued to be their deadly enemies. The mountain region and uplands were debateable ground, which was made notorious by the contending Cherokees and Iroquois. The latter, in the Tuscarora branch, spread across North Carolina, and preserved a point of approach for their kindred in western New York, and the lakes. They maintained a war of extraordinary violence against the Cherokees and Catabas, which was conducted, generally, by small parties. There is reason to suppose, that the Cherokees were the "Tallagewy" of the Lenapes, who were defeated in the north, and driven clown the Ohio by that ancient tribe in alliance with the Iroquois. This group absorbs the small sea-coast tribes of North Carolina. It extends into southern Virginia, south of Albemarle Sound.

4. ALGONQUINS. — We meet with some traces of this language in ancient Florida. It first assumes importance in the sub-genus of the Powhattanese circle in Virginia. It is afterwards found in the Nanticokes; assumes a very decided type in the Lenni Lenapees, or Delawares; and is afterwards traced, in various dialects, in the valleys of the Hudson and Connecticut, and throughout the whole geographical area of New England, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia.

The term appears to have been first employed, as a generic word, by the French for the old Nipercinians, Attawas, Montagnies, and their congeners in the Valley of the St. Lawrence. It is applied to the Salteurs of St. Mary, the Maskigoes of Canada, and, as shown by a recent vocabulary, the Blackfeet of the upper Missouri, the Saskatchewine, the Pillagers of the upper Mississippi, and the Crees or Kenistenoes of Hudson's Bay. Returning from these remote points, where this broad migratory column was met by the Athapasca group, the term includes the Miamis, Weeas, Piankashaws, the Shawnees, Pottawatomies, Sacs and Foxes, Kickapoos, and Illinois, and their varieties, the Kaskaskias, &c, to the junction of the Ohio and Mississippi.

5. IROQUOIS.— Within this widely spread group the Five and afterwards Six Nations (called Iroquois) planted themselves in western New York, and on the shores of lakes Ontario and Erie, at a point where they would appear to have been in danger of being crushed by the surrounding nations; but they had the wisdom to see that the small


Indian tribes destroyed themselves by discord, and they organized themselves into a confederacy, in which the principles of military glory and union were carried to the acme of the hunter man. They conquered, and then made allies of the Mohican and Hudson river tribes, reaching to Long Island. They subdued, in a similar way, the Monsees, and the Lenapi themselves, who had long occupied a central prominence in Pennsylvania, and also extended their conquests east and west, and north and south. They drove away the Allegewy, in alliance with the Delawares, before the end of the fifteenth century, and kept open a road of conquest, in the direction of the Alleghany, to South Carolina. The Wyandots are of this stock. It is clear, from Le Jeune, that this tribe was located on the island of Montreal when the French first settled in Canada; but, owing to their alliance with the French and the Algonquins, they were expelled from that valley about the middle of the sixteenth century.

6. DACOTAS. — The Mississippi river formed a line of demarcation, at the earliest dates, between the Appalachian and the Algonquin, and the Dacota tribes. De Soto, when he crossed it in 1541, in latitude about 32°, landed among a class of tribes, one of whom, namely, the Quappas, (Guipana,) is clearly named. De Vaca, ten years earlier, mentions the Aouas (Iowas). I use the term Dacota in a generic sense, for a stock of languages, and not as designating the Sioux only, as it embraces a very large number of tribes west of the Mississippi. Such are the Quappas, Kasas, Iowas, Osages, Pawnees, Otoes, Missourias, Omahaws, Aurickarees, Minnitares, Mandans, Winnebagoes, and many others, who fill the wide space between the foot of the Rocky Mountains and the Mississippi: they are lords of the prairies. It is not contended that these ten tribes can converse understandingly together; but that they are connected by one ethnological chain, which is distinctly traced, so far as it has been compared by vocabularies. From this large family of tribes there are to be abstracted the elements of one, if not two, additional groups, which we are in hopes satisfactorily to designate in the progress of the investigations which we are now making.

The course of the tide of migration of the Dacotas appears to have been north, until the advanced tribes reached the sources of the Mississippi, and the western shores of Lake Superior. The Winnebagoes had, at the time the French first entered the country, reached Green Bay, and the Sioux of the Minnesota territory were then already on their retrograde march back on their track. Traces of their ancient villages and hieroglyphics have been noticed at Leech Lake, at Mille Lac, and other interior positions intermediate between Lake Superior and the east bank of the Mississippi. They had begun to retreat before the northwestern rush of the Algonquins, who appear, from remote dates, to have been most expert woodsmen.

7. SHOSHONEES. — This genus of tribes possess the Rocky Mountains. They appear, as far as history extends, to have held its heights and passes from the sources


of the Missouri, in latitude about 44°, to the southern rim of the Great Salt Basin. Their own traditions represent them to have lived in the valley of the Sastatchewine, from which they were driven by the Blackfeet. They occupy the Lewis fork of the Columbia river, as far down as latitude about 44° 30'. It is clearly apparent, that they were situated on the summit of the Rocky Mountains, — in the territory of Utah, — and in the plains and hill-country of Texas; but it can, by no means, be affirmed that these tribes had their present positions at the date we assign to our chart, three centuries ago; while the consideration of this subject is connected, and would inevitably require the classification of the newly-annexed tribes of the United States on its southern and western boundary. It appears, from vocabularies, that they are the same people as the Comanches of Texas. West of the Sierra Nevada, a tribe of them, called Bonacks, or Root-diggers, extends into California. Their track of migration appears to have been south, branching into California, and southeast into Texas.

The geographical position of these American tribes at large, and their diffusion over the present area of the United States and of the British possessions north of it, extending to the Arctic Ocean, as they were found at the commencement of the sixteenth century, when North America began to be settled along its Atlantic borders, is denoted by the subjoined Ethnological Map. (Plate 4.)

C. Physical Traits.

The physical type of the United States Indian tribes is fully described in a subsequent paper, (No. VIII.,) by the late Dr. Samuel George Morton. This is the last literary labour of his pen, and presents the subject in its most profound and philosophical aspects.

The observations which have now been offered on the general history of the tribes, will prepare the way for our taking up the topic, understandingly, in its details respecting the several stocks of the race who have occupied the colonies and states from their earliest planting; a task which will be urged forward in the subsequent volumes of these investigations, with every possible degree of speed consistent with its proper consideration.


II. Manners and Customs.




1. Barbarism a lapsed state of Man.
2. Definition of the term Race.
3. Antique Ideas of the Barbaric state.
4. Hebrew Idea of it.
5. Noachian epoch.
6. Ideas of Historians and Travellers on this Subject.
7. Purport of this Review of Opinions.
8. Era of Decline.
9. Influence of the Continent on the Aborigines.
10. Unity of Manners, Customs, and Opinions.


1. Marriage — the Family Group.
2. Ties of Consanguinity.
3. Totem — its Uses.
4. Genealogy — Affection for Children.
5. Self-sacrifice of Bianswah.
6. Transitive Character of Names.


7. Children Early Instructed in the Arts of Hunting and Fishing.
8. Instance of the Early Use of the Snare.
9. Hunting at large.


10. Spearing the Musk-rat. (Plate.)
11. Fishing through the Ice. (Plate.)
12. Setting Nets through the Ice.
13. Fish-dams of Poles.
14. Nami-kow-a-guns, or Stone Dams.
15. Fishing with Scoop-nets.
16. Shooting of Fish. (Plate.) Hook-fishing.


17. Knowledge of the Habits of Quadrupeds.
18. Deer-hunting.
19. Fire-hunting.
20. Ingenuity of Tracking.
21. Success of Noka in One Day.
22. Fight with a Moose.
23. Strength of Iawba in the Chase.
24. Encounter with a Grizzly Bear.


25. Sugar-making a Carnival.
26. Average Product of each Wigwam.
27. A Time of Hilarity and Enjoyment.


28. Its Fundamental Importance to the Barbaric State.
29. Popular Opinion directed to this End.
30. Scalping. (Plate.)
31. Preparation and Dancing of the Scalp. (Plate.)
32. Feather of Honor. (Plate.)
33. Scale of Merit in its Awards.
34. Trait of Wisdom in Excusing Acts of Want of Courage.
35. Bands on the Frontiers brought to a High State of Courage by Appeals and Addresses.
36. War Parties are Volunteers.
37. How Enlisted. Strong Appeals to Military Glory.
38. Character of the Addresses.
39. War-songs actually Employed.



40. How Order is Preserved in its Circle.
41. The Bride and her Husband.
42. Division of Labour.
43. Domestic Character of the Man.


44. Lightness of Parturition.
45. The Bestowal of Names.
46. Infancy in the Wigwam. (Plate.)


47. Pictographic Memorials of Adults.
48. Eulogy of the Dead.
49. Dressing the Corpse.
50. Belief in Immortality.
51. Address to the Dead.
52. Indian Burial-places.
53. Barrows and Heaps of Stones.
54. Former Custom of Burial among the Mississippi Valley Tribes.
55. Burial among the Prairie Tribes.
56. Veneration for the Dead.
57. Forests and Valleys Favorable to Civilization.
58. Horrid Instance of Sepulture among the Chinooks.


59. Kun-ta-soo, or the Game of Plumb-stones.
60. Pugasaing, or the Game of the Bowl.


61. The Social State of the Hunter.
62. Patriarchal State of the Chiefs and Heads of Families.
63. Feasting.
64. Topics of Remark at Meals.


65. Modest and Moral Conduct of Females.
66. Feasts for the Young.
67. Severity and Suffering in Winter in High Northern Latitudes, and Hard Condition of Women.
68. Mother's Care for her Children.
69. Extreme Wretchedness produced by Hunger.
70. Attachment to the Habit of Smoking.
71. Trust in Providence.


72. Ball-playing.
73. Moving Camp.
74. Dog-dance.

A. Generic View.

1. History, as viewed in the earliest and most authentic record, namely, the Pentateuch, represents man as having been created, not in the savage, but in the industrial or civilized state. It lays down the fact of this creation and of the unity of the species as a grand moral truth, upon which all its subsequent history is based, and without which, it would fail of its great aim, namely, to teach the world what it did not before know, or had forgotten, that the Creation was of divine origin.

Commencing his career as a horticulturist, the highest form of the agricultural type, he is next presented to our view as a shepherd and grain-grower, or a "tiller of the ground." If these views are correct — and we present them with the full consciousness of their being so, and, at the same time, of their running counter to the philosophical theories of the origin of the human race, of Greece and Rome, so long the enchantresses of ancient history — then it may be declared, that the hunter state is a declension from the industrial, and that barbarism assumes its character, not only as the antagonistical point to civilization, but as a falling from it, and a direct consequence as the neglect of its higher and sublime principles. God did not surely send a man, in the person of (interpreted Moses,) to tell mankind a falsehood.

2. By Race, when employed in its generic sense, is meant the entire human species; but the first family of man had not passed its primary ordeal, when it is seen that separate types, such as are regarded by physiologists and theologians as essential moral and physical races, arose. At any rate, for sixteen centuries and a half, there is the most careful and exact genealogical distinction kept up in the narration between the two


primary Alcanic and Alsethic types; and it is from the latter, so far, at least, as the male line is concerned, that the new or Noachian types are derived.

3. It is also perceived, from the same record, that agriculture and fixed industry was the state of the Noachian or diluvian epoch; and it is not till a century later, agreeably to sound chronologists, that we hear of the hunter state, and of the general dispersion of mankind. How soon any of the sub-races or re-developed types declined (after departing from the unity of language) into barbarism, we know not. Grecian history calls all tribes and nations "barbarians" below their type of civilization.

4. Hebrew history regards as such, under the cognomen of "Gentiles," all who did not possess the Hebraic moral type of knowledge. Not to be, genealogically, a direct descendant of the Abrahamic head is deemed, by the sacred penmen, to have been born out of the physical and moral pale of the type; and it is not till Anno Domini 1, when the foretold Shiloh came, that we perceive, that, from the beginning, all the types, races and families of men were comprehended, for the purposes of this advent, as a perfect unity in diversity, — without respect to the differences of nations, civil condition, languages, lineage, or physical character, but with a sole view, which is repeated line upon line, to the moral character and elevation of man. This was Shiloh's office.

5. It is unquestionably to the Noachian epoch that the ethnologist is to look for those primordial types of race which are regarded as having furnished the original progenitors of the present species. The different stocks are to be viewed as having received physiological and intellectual laws of development, which gave them, at once, the capacity to reproduce their ethnological likes during ages.

6. The endurance of physical type, as observed in the features, manners, and customs of different nations, is, indeed, one of the most striking characteristics of the human race. Observers have manifestly, from the very earliest ages, thought so; for if there be not supposed to be some generic traits to look for in different races, what reason can the philosophic traveller or historian assign for at all noticing them. Physiology has ceased to regard these generic differences as the mere effect of climate, and is disposed to speak of certain developments as generally fixed in this or that type; we do not examine a North American Indian to discover a Grecian, a Celtic, or a Gothic physiognomy, nor refer to a German, who, at this day, has exactly the traits described by Tacitus, for the coarse straight black hair of an Iroquois or an Algonquin. These are not the types of Race in which to seek for resemblances; the admitted theory of type drives us elsewhere.


7. These observations will not be misapprehended in proceeding to make some remarks on the manners and customs of the North American Indians, who have been, more or less, the object of historical investigation and knowledge for three centuries and a half: for it seemed like covering up, or leaving out of view, a great fact, to speak of a race of very marked savages as if the erratic and hunter life was not the natural result of neglecting a fixed agricultural state; and as if mankind had not been originally created in the highest and noblest type — the type of labor. In other words, that it did not, originally, include all races and kindreds and tongues, who may unite, on the Shilonic principle, however diverse at this era, and who are yet, at all ages, and in all places, spoken of and described, in the Hebrew oracles, as being derived from one creation and one original race.

It was thought best to meet this question directly, in an age of much moral shuffling; and there seemed to be the less excuse for not making the appeal, when the testimony is not only the most ancient known to the learned world, but is of a character and dignity the most noble and irrefragable. Viewed in this light, the Indian tribes are entitled to the most exalted moral sympathies.

Archbishop Usher represents the Babylonic dispersion of mankind to have taken place in the fifty-seventh year of the eighteenth century, anno mundi, and exactly one hundred years after the debarkation of Noah.

8. We advert to this era of the general dispersion, as exhibiting the true historical and philosophical epoch, not only of the rise of diverse powers and languages, (in which mankind were still left, as at the beginning, to the exercise of a free choice and will,) but also as the true and most antique point, in the rise and history of barbarism, with its concomitants, previously developed, namely, idolatry and the worship of principles, elements, and men. From this era, which is presented to us as a bold, striking, and genuine one, in the Hebrew chronicles, we drop down the lapse of actual history, casting out Asia, Africa, and Europe from our horoscope, to the year anno Domini 1492, a period of 3725 years. During this long vista of time, authentic admitted history is silent as to all actual knowledge of the American tribes. We do not purposely advert to the possibility, nay, probability, of the continent being visited, at an earlier date, by one or more European nations; that is a question of our archזology which is not here under discussion; nor to ask, with what elements of the Old World's knowledge, if any, they landed on the coasts? nor, at what epoch of our history? These are also questions of our archזology, which are just beginning to be discussed on broad principles.

9. Whatever these eras of landing on the coasts were, or the type of knowledge or barbarism they possessed, the continent itself presented features which were calculated to lead the mind from the intellectual, the mechanical, and the industrial, to the


erratic, physical, and gross. Wandering in the attractive scenes of the temperate and tropic zones, the very vastness of its rivers, lakes, and mountains, must have proved a powerful stimulus to erratic and barbaric notions. If we assign but three thousand years for its occupancy, and this is not too long a period, it would appear to have produced a greater diversity of every kind than we actually observe. A tribe that is separated by territory soon insists on dialectic differences. Where there are no books to fix the standards of pronunciation, there cannot be, for along time, absolute identity. The vowel sounds melt into each other, and it is chiefly the harsher and guttural consonants, (and some of these are known to be interchangeables,) that stand out, like headlands, to resist the ocean of change in articulate sound. The plan of thought is not, however, so easily encroached on, and we accordingly find that, even where the vocabulary is entirely different, the synthesis and syntax are still essentially preserved for immense periods.

10. Their manners and customs, their opinions and mental habits, had, wherever they were inquired into, at the earliest dates, much in common. Their modes of war and worship, hunting and amusements, were very similar. In the sacrifice of prisoners taken in war; in the laws of retaliation; in the sacred character attached to public transactions solemnized by smoking the pipe; in the adoption of persons taken in war, in families; in the exhibition of dances on almost every occasion that can enlist human sympathy; in the meagre and inartificial style of music; in the totemic tie that binds relationships together, and in the system of symbols and figures cut and marked on their grave-posts, on trees, and sometimes on rocks, there is a perfect identity of principles, arts, and opinions. The mere act of wandering and petty warfare kept them in a savage state, though they had the element of civilization with them in the zea maize.

It is remarkable, that the open sea-coasts of America were adverse to civilization. On the contrary, remote interior positions, surrounded by mountains, as the Valley of Anahuac, or the basin of Titacaca, favored the germs of Indian civilization. This was not successfully developed, it is true, without bloody wars, and the effects of extravagant and dreadful superstitions, leading to dynasties in which the liberty of the individual was lost. It was, however, less these acts of power than the stationary habits of the people —those habits that permitted labor to be applied in local districts — that mainly fostered, it is conceived, the true germs of civilization.

The tendency to a central power was also developed among the Iroquois, at a remote point from the sea-board, and they were surrounded by hostile tribes, against whom they maintained the most bloody wars. But it was also on elevated and advantageous table-lands, which poured their surplus waters, down large and prominent rivers, to the distant sea. They had, also, the element of the zea maize, all which, however,


might have proved ineffectual to their rise, had they not fallen on the policy of tribal confederation.

If the United States tribes be compared with one another, there is found a coincidence of a striking character. Take a Muscogee from the plains of Red River or Arkansas, an Algonquin from the banks of Lake Superior, and a Dacota or Iowa from the plains of the Missouri or the Mississippi, and it will require an interpreter to make them understand each other: but regard their leading features and expressions; ascertain their thoughts and modes of action in war and peace; their customs of hunting, war dances, and ceremonials; strive to get at the texture and philosophy of their minds, and the coincidences are so striking that they must impress every beholder, — there is a character, sui-generis, which nobody can mistake.

"Not Hindoo, Afgan, Cuthite, or Persee;
The Indian his own prototype must be."

B. Constitution of the Indian Family.

1. One of the most striking, universal, and permanent customs which distinguishes the American tribes, and, more than all, commends them to our humanities, is that which exists in connexion with the family tie. It is this trait, indeed, that disarms barbarism of half its repulsiveness, and gives to this erratic and benighted branch of the species, their best claims to our sympathies and benevolence. Without this tie, society would degenerate into utter confusion, and leave but a step between man and the brute creation. Species would be dismissed with the maturity of the season; and with its close, all parentage be forgotten, and all affinities of blood be obliterated.

Sunk as some of the more northerly and high Pacific coast tribes may be, (and they are depicted as "excessively low,") we have in this institution, supported, as it is, by a tenacious memory of the tie of lineage, a basis for commencing our investigations and comparisons; and a proof, indeed, that the obligations of the tie itself, or the family relation, are inherent in the nature of human society, and were implanted in the Breast of man to uphold the laws of purity and virtue.

2. Ages of wandering, and deep degeneracy of manners, and habits of the darkest dye, have done little, in fact, to shake the laws of consanguinity. The marital rite is nothing more, among our tribes, than the personal consent of the parties, without requiring any concurrent act of a priesthood, a magistracy, or witnesses, the act is assumed by the parties, without the necessity of any other extraneous sanction, except parental consent; presents are, however, often made, if the parties be able. It is also disannulled, and the wife dismissed from the wigwam, whenever the husband


pleases, or the marital state is continued under the evils of discord or a state of polygamy: the latter is, however, the usual method among the hunter and prairie tribes. But the ties of consanguinity are still strictly acknowledged; children become possessed of all their natural rights, and family tradition traces these ties to their remotest links.

3. At this point, the institution of the totem comes in to strengthen and confirm domestic tradition; for this is acknowledged as proof, even where family tradition fails. The totem is a symbol of the name of the progenitor, — generally some quadruped, or bird, or other object in the animal kingdom, which stands, if we may so express it, as the surname of the family. It is always some animated object, and seldom or never derived from the inanimate class of nature. Its significant importance is derived from the fact, that individuals unhesitatingly trace their lineage from it. By whatever names they may be called during their life-time, it is the totem, and not their personal name, that is recorded on the tomb or adjedatig that marks the place of burial. Families are thus traced when expanded into bands or tribes, the multiplication of which, in North America, has been very great, and has increased, in like ratio, the labors of the ethnologist. The Turtle, the Bear, and the Wolf, appear to have been primary and honored totems in most of the tribes, and bear a significant rank in the traditions of the Iroquois, and Lenapis, or Delawares; and they are believed to have more or less prominency in the genealogies of all the tribes who are organized on the totemic principle.

4. This point, therefore, namely, the sacred tie of families, is the great fulcrum upon which the lever of hope, in doing anything to raise this people from barbarism, rests. No savage tribes on the face of the earth, so far as geographical discovery extends, are more tenacious of their relationships. No earthly calamity causes such deep grief to them as the loss of a promising son, at his entrance into life. Instances have been known where the father has redeemed his son from the stake, and actually been burnt in his stead.

5. A notable instance of this kind occurred in the history of the war in the 17th century, between the Chippewas and the Foxes, after the latter had allied themselves, in the west, to the Sioux. In this war, the Foxes captured the son of a celebrated and aged chief of the Chippewas, named Bi-ans-wah, while the father was absent from his wigwam. On reaching his home, the old man heard the heart-rending news, and knowing what the fate of his son would be, he followed on the trail of the enemy alone, and reached the Fox village while they were in the act of kindling the fire to roast him alive. He stepped boldly into the arena, and offered to take his son's place: "My son," said he, "has seen but a few winters; his feet have never trod the warpath : but the hairs of my head are white; I have hung many scalps over the graves of my relatives, which I have taken from the heads of your warriors: kindle the fire about me, and send my son home to my lodge." The offer was accepted, and the old


man, without deigning to utter a groan, was burnt at the stake. Such are the severities of savage warfare, amidst which the family tie is maintained with a heroism which has no parallel in civilized life.

6. But whatever were the plans of separation which the original families and clans adopted to preserve the lineage, they are all found to have distinct and appropriate names for the different degrees of relationship. In one respect, these names have a peculiarity, — they denote, by their orthography, whether the person be an elder or younger brother or sister, an aunt by the father's or mother's side, or some other like distinctions, which appear to have their origin in the very transitive nature of the language.

C. Forest Teachings.

7. Hunting and war divide the cares of the man. The arts of both are carefully taught to the young, and enforced, and daily applied, by constantly repeated influence of precept and example. The male children are early instructed in the arts of the chase. It begins as soon as they are capable of walking and running about. A tiny bow and arrow is given to the little a-bin-o-jee as a plaything: as soon as he acquires strength, he is encouraged to fire at small birds or squirrels. The first evidence of success is extravagantly praised, and the object killed, however small, is prepared by the females for a feast, to which the chiefs and warriors are ceremoniously invited.

8. Sometimes the triumph that attends the initial success, in learning the hunter's art, is gained by the snare that children set to catch little animals. An instance of this kind came to my notice in the basin of Lake Superior. A hunter having observed the snare of one of the younger members of his family, secretly put a rabbit into the noose. The next morning, as usual, the youngster went out to the spot, and his joy was perfectly unbounded at his success in catching a rabbit. A feast of soup was prepared with very great ceremony, in honor of the youthful Nimrod, to which old and young were invited; and their applauses resounded throughout the lodge. The facetious Indian who had played the trick kept his secret, and only revealed it after many years had passed away.

9. Skill in killing large quadrupeds is the result of years of effort, but the art so acquired is as carefully taught, and its principles as anxiously impressed on the rising generation, as are the elements of reading, writing, and arithmetic, in civilized society.


The Indian youth, as he advances in the principles of the hunter's art, is instructed by the native priesthood to believe that this art can be facilitated by unseen spiritual agency; and a subtle system of medical magic, which is exhibited in connexion with devices and figures of the principal animals hunted, is drawn on bark. To these great attention is paid; and the secrets respecting them are treasured up, and its knowledge cultivated by an association called the Meda, whose rites and ceremonies are scrupulously guarded and respected.

10. Winter, in all the northern latitudes, brings with it the necessity of a peculiar kind of hunting, which is performed through the ice. When the ponds and rivers, where the musk-rat harbours are found, their houses are perforated with a strong and peculiarly shaped spear, (Plate 76, Figs. 1 and 2,) by which the victim is transpierced, and the animal brought out upon its point. This act is performed while the scenery is covered with the garb peculiar to the winter solstice, and is represented in the accompanying sketch, (Plate 5.)

11. In a region abounding in lakes and streams, fishing also becomes an art, taught to the young. There are some modes of fishing through the ice which are very ingenious; one of the most common is, to play a decoy through holes perforated in the ice, by an instrument which is called aishkun, by the Algonquin tribes. It consists of a species of stout chisel of iron, attached firmly to a pole. (Fig. 11, Plate 76.) The decoy is generally the image of a small fish. The Indian, placing himself flat on his stomach, covers his head with his blanket, supported by branches, in order to exclude the light. By excluding the extraneous glare, the vision is extended into the waters below, and the watcher stands ready with his spear to dart the point into his victim, as soon as it approaches to seize the bait. In this manner, which is depicted in Plate 6, the Indian is able to supply his family with food, at the most inclement and pinching seasons.

12. Another mode of taking fish in the winter, is by making a series of orifices, through the ice, in a direct line. A gill-net is then pushed, by its head-lines, from one orifice to another, until its entire length is displayed. Buoys and sinkers are attached to it, and it is then let down into deep water, where white fish, and other larger species, resort at this season. The next morning the net is drawn up, the fisherman secures his prey, and again sets his net as before. By this mode, which is very common throughout the lakes where deep water abounds, these species are captured at the greatest depths, while sheltering themselves in their deepest winter recesses.

Fish are sometimes brought up in the immediate vicinity of Michillimackinac, from a depth of eighty fathoms.

The Indians' ingenuity in capturing the finny tribes during the prevalence of the severities of winter, may be quoted as an evidence of their resources, in sustaining


themselves. But this ingenuity and resource has its fullest development in the open season of summer, when the streams are freed from the ice, and the forest is clothed with verdure, to shelter and conceal its various species.

13. The streams which traverse the Indian country are often barred near their outlets with stakes securely bound together, with transverse poles extending from bank to bank. These poles are so close as to prevent sturgeon and all the larger species from ascending except by a single aperture which is purposely left. Through this the fish ascend in their frequent attempts to force their way up stream for the purpose of depositing their spawn; but in descending they are arrested by the poles of the dam, and forced against them. The Indian walking on the transverse poles, with a hook at the end of a pole, which is placed on the upper side of the dam, sees and feels the pressure of the descending fish, and, by a quick jerk, brings up his victim.

14. During the low waters of the summer solstice, lines of stones are placed from each bank, where the river has a marked descent pointing downwards at an acute angle, until they meet, within three or four feet. This space is filled with stones of a less height, over which the pent-up and dammed water rushes and falls on a platform of poles. This platform, which performs the purpose of a gross longitudinal sieve, lets through the water, leaving the fish to flounder and be picked up — ad libitum. This contrivance is sometimes called namekowagan, or sturgeon's yoke.

15. At the foot of rapids and falls, the fish are followed up in their continued struggle to ascend, by fishermen in a canoe, who provide themselves with a scoop-net attached to the end of a long pole, and they then capture their victims by a dexterous swoop of the implement. This act requires great care, activity, and exertion, as the canoe, being made of bark, and almost as light as an egg-shell, is liable, the moment he stands on the gunwales, to be tipped over into the boiling, foaming waters. In order to prevent it from shooting from under him, a man sits at the stern with his paddle to keep the boat headed, and the fisherman stands watching his opportunity as the school of fish pass by; then balancing himself with the manœuvering and consummate skill of a wire-dancer, he lifts his prey into the canoe.

This species of fishing may be seen to be practised, in the most striking manner, during the fishing seasons, at the falls of St. Mary's, on the straits between lakes Huron and Superior, which have long been noted for the abundance and fine flavor of the white fish.

16. Sometimes fish are shot with an arrow, by a watcher sitting on the banks of the river, when the fish approach the land in their vernal track of migration. (Plate 7.)

The fish-hook is employed chiefly in deep waters, and is intended for the larger species.


The white fish, so common to the whole line of lakes, never bites at a hook, and is captured solely by nets or spears. The ordinary trout and cod hook has been supplied by commerce since the discovery of America; but the ancient Indian hook of bone was shaped much like it, and its use was every way similar, as is seen by an antique bone-hook, found in the mounds on Cunningham's Island, Lake Erie. (Plate 38, Fig. 4.)

Fish are also speared from a canoe, usually in the morning, when they are close in-shore, lying under the leaves and rushes that grow on the banks of streams. An Indian woman or boy paddles the canoe gently along the shore, while the man stands up in the bow or on the gunwales of the canoe, holding his spear ready to strike the fish when seen. The spear or gig is represented in Plate 76, Figs. 3 and 4. The mode of operating is represented in Plate 8.

D. Art of Hunting.

17. This ingenuity in the taking of fish evinces a degree of skill which challenges admiration. But it is far inferior to that art which is demanded for the hunter in his nobler pursuit of game on the land. To him are known the habits, ranges, and food of all the quadrupeds which constitute objects of the chase. Not only is it essential that he should know the species of food which each quadruped covets, but also the time most favorable to his sallying out of his coverts to obtain it, together with the various precautions necessary, in order to elude the quick ear and instincts of his victims.

18. The simplest of all species of hunting is perhaps the art of hunting the deer. This animal, it is known, is endowed with the fatal curiosity of stopping in its flight, to turn round, and look at the object that disturbed it; and as this is generally done within rifle-range, the habit is indulged at the cost of its life; whereas, if it trusted unwaveringly to its heels, it would escape.

19. One of the most ingenious modes of hunting the deer is that of fire-hunting, which is done by descending a stream in a canoe at night with a flambeau. The habit of this animal of resorting to streams at night has been mentioned. In the latter part of spring and summer, the Indian hunters on the small interior rivers take the bark of the elm or cedar, peeling it off whole, for five or six feet in length, and turning it inside out, paint the outer surface black with charcoal. It is then pierced with an orifice to fit it, on the bow of the canoe, so as to hide the sitter; then a light or torch is made by small rolls two or three feet long, of twisted birch-bark, (which is very inflammable,) and this is placed on the extreme bow of the boat, a little in front of the bark screen, in which position it throws its rays strongly forward, leaving all behind in


darkness. The deer, whose eyes are fixed on the light as it floats down, is thus brought within range of the gun. Swans are hunted in the same way.

20. The mazes of the forest are, however, the Indian hunter's peculiar field of action. No foot-print can be impressed there, with which he is not familiar. In his temporary journeys in the search after game, he generally encamps early, and sallies out at the first peep of day, on his hunting tour. If he is in a forest country, he chooses his ambush in valleys, for the plain reason that all animals, as night approaches, come into the valleys. In ascending these, he is very careful to take that side of a stream which throws the shadow from it, so that he may have a clear view of all that passes on the opposite side, while he is himself screened by the shadow. But he is particularly on the alert to take this precaution, if he is apprehensive of lurking foes. The tracks of an animal are the subject of the minutest observation; they tell him at a glance, the species of animal that has passed; the time that has elapsed; and the course it has pursued. If the surface of the earth be moist, the indications are plain; if it be hard or rocky, they are drawn from less palpable but scarcely less unmistakeable signs.

21. One of the largest and most varied day's hunt, of which we are apprised, was by a noted Chippewa hunter, named Nokay, on the upper Mississippi; who, tradition asserts, in one day, near the mouth of the Crow-Wing river, killed sixteen elk, four buffaloes, five deer, three bears, one lynx, and a porcupine. This feat has doubtless been exceeded in the buffalo ranges of the south-west, where the bow and arrow is known to have been so dexterously and rapidly applied in respect to that animal; but it is seldom that the chase in forest districts is as successful as in this instance.

22. On one occasion the celebrated chief Wabojeeg went out early in the morning, near the banks of Lake Superior, to set martin traps. He had set about forty, and was returning to his wigwam, armed with his hatchet and knife only, when he encountered a buck moose. He sheltered himself behind trees, retreating; but, as the animal pursued, he picked up a pole, and, unfastening his moccasin-strings, tied the knife firmly to the pole. He then took a favourable position behind a tree and stabbed the animal several times in the throat and breast. At length it fell, and he cut out and carried home the tongue as a trophy of his prowess.

23. In 1808, Gitshe Iawba, of Kewywenon, Lake Superior, killed a three years old moose of three hundred pounds weight. It was in the month of February, and the snow was so soft, from a partial thaw, that the agim, or snow-shoes, sank deep at every step. After cutting up the animal and drawing out the blood, he wrapped the flesh in the skin, and, putting himself under it, rose up erect. Finding he could bear the weight, he then took a litter of nine pups, in a blanket, upon his right arm, threw his


wallet on the top of his head, and, putting his gun over his left shoulder, walked six miles to his wigwam. This was the strongest man that has appeared in the Chippewa nation in modern times.

24. In 1827, Annimikens, of Red River of the North, was one day quite engrossed in looking out a path for his camp to pass, when he was startled by the sharp snorting of a grizzly bear. He immediately presented his gun and attempted to fire; but, the priming not igniting, he was knocked by the animal, the next instant, several steps backward, and his gun driven full fifteen feet through the air. The bear then struck him on one cheek, and tore away a part of it. The little consciousness he had left told him to be passive, and manifest no signs of life. Fortunately, the beast had satiated his appetite on the carcase of a buffalo near by. Having clawed his victim at pleasure, he then took him by the neck, dragged him into the bushes, and there left him. Yet from such a wound the Indian recovered, though a disfigured man, and lived to tell me the story with his own lips.

Relations of such hunting exploits and adventures are vividly repeated in the Indian country, and constitute a species of renown which is eagerly sought by the young.

E. Sugar-Making.

As the spring season approaches, and the sap begins to ascend the still leafless trunks of the acer saccharinum, or sugar maple, the Indian families, throughout all the northern and middle latitudes, repair to their sugar-camps, and engage in preparing that, to them, favorite luxury. The sap is carried in bark buckets, and boiled down in kettles of iron or tin. This labor, which devolves chiefly on the females, is shown in the accompanying sketch. (Plate 9.)

25. It forms a sort of Indian carnival. The article is profusely eaten by all of every age, and a quantity is put up for sale in a species of boxes made from the white birch bark, which are called mococks, or mokuks. These sugar-boxes are in the shape of the lower section of a quadrangular pyramid. They are of a light brown color, or, if new, a nankeen-yellow.

26. While the careful and industrious wife prepares and fills these boxes for sale, the children and youth carry sap from the trees, and have a grand frolic among themselves; boiling candy and pouring it out on the snow to cool, and gambolling about on the frozen surface with the wildest delight. Their mothers supply them, too, with miniature mokuks, filled with sugar from the first runnings of the sap, which makes the choicest sugar. These little mokuks are ornamented with dyed porcupine


quills, skilfully wrought in the shape of flowers and figures. The boxes designed for sale are of all sizes; from twenty to seventy pounds weight. They are sold to the merchants at six cents per pound, payable in merchandize. The number made in a single season, by an industrious and strong-handed family, is known to be from thirty to forty, in addition to all the sugar that has been consumed. It is seldom less than a dozen or twenty boxes to the family; and the average yield, comprising the extremes of careless and extravagant, and of the most thrifty wigwams, may be put between twenty-five and one hundred and fifty dollars in trade.

27. The heyday scenes of the Seensibaukwut, or sugar-making, crowns the labors of the spring. The pelt of animals is now out of season, winter has ended with all its rigors, and the introduction of warm weather prepares the Indian mind for a season of hilarity and feasting, for which the sale of his "golden mokuks" gives him some means.

It is now that religious observances are in order. The Medawin, the Jesukawin, and the "Wabeno societies assemble. Feasts are given as long as their means last. The drum and the rattle are heard to echo through their villages. The streams, now loosened from their icy fetters, pour a deeper murmur; the forests are decked with their leafy clothing, which fit them for concealment, and the Indian mind prepares itself for renewing its darling schemes of war: for, whatever other cares and employments may demand his attention, it is to success in the war-path that the Indian looks for his prime and crowning glories.

F. War and Its Incidents.

28. Success in war is to the Indian the acme of glory, and to learn its arts the object of his highest attainment. The boys and youth acquire the accomplishment at an early period of dancing the war-dance; and although they are not permitted to join its fascinating circle till they assume the envied rank of actual warriors, still their early sports and mimic pastimes are imitations of its various movements and postures. The envied eagle's feather is the prize. For this, the Indian's talent, subtlety, endurance, bravery, persevering fasts, and what may be called religious penances and observances, are made.

The war-path is taken by youths at an early age. That age may be stated, for general comparison, to be sixteen: but without respect to exact time, it is always after the primary fast, during which the youth chooses his personal guardian or monedo, — an age when he first assumes the duties of manhood. It is the period of the assumption of the three-pointed blanket, the true toga of the North American Indian.


29. The whole force of public opinion, in our Indian communities, is concentrated on this point, its early lodge teachings, (such as the recital of adventures of bravery,) its dances, its religious rites, the harangues of prominent actors, made at public assemblages, (such as is called "striking the post,") all, in fact, that serves to awaken and fire ambition in the mind of the savage, is clustered about the idea of future distinction in war.

30. Civilization has many points of ambitious attainment, — the rewards of letters, triumphs in the forum and the legislative hall, the diplomatic bureau, the honors of the academician, the sculptor's chisel, the painter's brush, the architect's design. The Indian has but one prime honor to grasp; it is triumph in the war-path; it is rushing upon his enemy, tearing the scalp reeking from his head, and then uttering his terrific sa-sa-kuon, (death-whoop). For this crowning act (Plate 11) he is permitted to mount the honored feather of the war-eagle, — the king of carnivorous birds. By this mark he is publicly known, and his honors recognized by all his tribe, and by the surrounding tribes whose customs assimilate.

31. When the scalp of an enemy has been won, very great pains are taken to exhibit it. For this purpose, it is stretched on a hoop and mounted on a pole. (Plate 11.) The inner part is painted red, and the hair adjusted to hang in its natural manner. If it be the scalp of a male, eagles' feathers are attached to denote that fact. If a female, a comb or scissors is hung on the frame. In this condition, it is placed in the hands of an old woman, who bears it about in the scalp dance, (Plate 12,) while opprobrious epithets are uttered against the tribe from whom it was taken. Amidst these wild rejoicings the war-cry is vociferated, and the general sentiment with old and young is, "Thus shall it be done to our enemies."

32. The feather of the eagle is the highest honor that a warrior can wear, and a very extravagant sum is sometimes given to procure one. The value of a horse has been known to be paid. The mode in which a feather is to be cut and worn is important to be noticed.

33. The scale of honor, with the several tribes, may vary, but the essential features are the same. Among the Dacota tribes, an eagle's feather with a red spot (Plate 13, Fig. 1) denotes that the wearer has killed an enemy, a notch cut in it and edges of the feather (Fig. 2) painted red, indicates that the throat of an enemy has been cut. Small consecutive notches on the front side of the feather, (Fig. 3,) without paint, denote that the wearer is the third person that has touched the dead body. Both edges notched, (Fig. 4,) that he is the fourth person that has touched it; and the feather partly denuded, (Fig. 5,) that he is the fifth person that has touched the slain.


Fig. 6 denotes that the wearer has received scars from the hand of an enemy. The feather clipped off, and the edges painted red, are also indicative of the cutting of an enemy's throat.

On the blanket or buffalo robe worn by the Dacota Indian a red or black hand is often seen painted. The red hand (Fig. 15) indicates that the wearer has been wounded by his enemy; the black hand, (Fig. 16,) that he has slain his enemy. Fig. 8 indicates a male prisoner, and Fig. 10 a female prisoner, both captured by Fig. 9. Fig. 11, a female killed. Fig. 12, a male killed. Fig. 13, a girl killed; and Fig. 14, a boy killed.

Fig. 17 is a representation of the thunder-bird, and is frequently seen worked with porcupine quills, as an ornament, on pipe stems, knife sheaths, belts, and other articles.

Such are the customs of the Dacotas who dwell on the St. Peter's, and about the Falls of St. Anthony. The warlike tribe of Chippewas on the sources of the Mississippi, who, from a national act in their history, bear the distinctive name of Pillagers, award a successful warrior, who shoots down and scalps his enemy, three feathers; and for the still more dangerous act of taking a wounded prisoner on the field, five, — for they conceive that a wounded enemy is desperate, and will generally reserve his fire for a last act of vengeance, if he died the moment after. Those of the war-party who come up immediately and strike the enemy, so as to get marks of blood on their weapons, receive two feathers; for it is customary for as many as can to perform this act. It is considered a proof of bravery, and it enables them, in their future assemblies for the purpose of "striking the post" to allude to it. All who can rise in such assemblies, and declare the performance of such a deed, in the presence of the warriors, are ranked as brave men.

They go one step farther in the formation of military character. Those who have been of the war-party, and merely see the fight, although they may have no blood marks of which to boast as honors, and may even have lacked promptness in following the leader closely, are yet allowed to mount one feather. These honors are publicly awarded; no one dares to assume them without authority, and there are instances where the feathers falsely assumed have been pulled violently from their heads in a public assemblage of the Indians.

34. They never, however, blame each other for personal acts denoting cowardice or any species of timidity while on the war-path, hoping, by this elevated course, to encourage the young men to do better on another occasion.

35. Their war and civil chiefs use the most careful and studied expressions on the topic at all times, — the principle of warlike deeds being appealed to; and the tone and temper of a band on an exposed frontier position, subject to be constantly attacked, and, in turn, to attack their enemies, is thus brought to a high state of personal daring


and heroic courage. Such is the present position of the Mukundua or Pillagers just referred to, — a band who form the military advance westward of the great Algonquin family. Before their high state of warlike skill the Sioux tribes have been forced to abandon the western shores of Lake Superior and the sources of the Mississippi, and this tribe ventures with fear even twenty miles north of the Minnesota River.

36. All war-parties consist of volunteers. The leader, or war-captain, who attempts to raise one, must have some reputation to start on. His appeals, at the assemblages for dancing the preliminary war-dance, are to the principles of bravery and nationality. They are brief and to the point. He is careful to be thought to act under the guidance of the Great Spirit, of whose secret will he affects to be apprized in dreams, or by some rites.

37. The principle of enlistment is sufficiently well preserved. For this purpose, the leader who proposes to raise a war-party takes the war-club in his hands, smeared with vermilion, to symbolize blood, and begins his war-song. I have witnessed several such scenes. The songs are brief, wild repetitions of sentiments of heroic deeds, or incitements to patriotic or military ardor. They are accompanied by the drum and rattle, and by the voice of one or more choristers. They are repeated slowly, sententiously, and with a measured cadence, to which the most exact time is kept. The warrior stamps the ground as if he could shake the universe. His language is often highly figurative, and he deals with the machinery of clouds, the flight of carnivorous birds, and the influence of spiritual agencies, as if the region of space were at his command. He imagines his voice to be heard in the clouds; and while he stamps the ground with well-feigned fury, he fancies himself to take hold of the "circle of the sky" with his hands. Every few moments he stops abruptly in his circular path, and utters the piercing war-cry.

38. He must be a cold listener who can sit unmoved by these appeals. The ideas thrown out succeed each other with the impetuosity of a torrent. They are suggestive of heroic frames of mind, of strong will, of high courage, of burning sentiment.

Hear my voice, ye warlike birds!
I prepare a feast for you to batten on;
I see you cross the enemy's lines;
Like you I shall go.
I wish the swiftness of your wings;
I wish the vengeance of your claws;
I muster my friends;
I follow your flight.
Ho, ye young men, that are warriors,
Look with wrath on the battle-field.


Each warrior that rises and joins the war-dance, thereby becomes a volunteer for the trip. He arms and equips himself; he provides his own sustenance; and when he steps out into the ring and dances, he chants his own song, and is greeted with redoubling yells. These ceremonies are tantamount to "enlistment," and no young man who thus comes forward can honorably withdraw.

39. Whoever has heard an Indian war-song, and witnessed an Indian war-dance, must be satisfied that the occasion wakes up all the fire and energy of the Indian's soul. His flashing eye, his muscular energy, as he begins the dance, his violent gesticulation as he raises his war-cry; the whole frame and expression of the man, demonstrate this. And long before it comes to his turn to utter his stave or part of the chant, his mind has been worked up to the most intense point of excitement. His imagination has pictured the enemy, the ambush and the onset, the victory and the bleeding victim, writhing under his prowess. In thought, he has already stamped him underfoot, and torn off his reeking scalp. He has seen the eagles hovering in the air, ready to pounce on the dead carcass as soon as the combatants quit the field.

It would require strong and graphic language to give descriptive utterance, in the shape of a song, to all he has fancied, and sees and feels on the subject. Physical excitement has absorbed his energies. He is in no mood for calm and collected descriptions of battle-scenes. He has no stores of measured rhymes to fall back on. All he can do is to utter brief and often highly symbolic expressions of courage, of defiance, of indomitable rage. His feet stamp the ground as if he would shake it to its centre. The inspiring drum and mystic rattle communicate new energy to every step, while they serve, by the observance of the most exact time, to concentrate his energy. His very looks depict the spirit of rage; and his yells, uttered quick, sharp, and cut off by the application of the hand to the mouth, are startling and horrific.

Under such circumstances, a few short and broken sentences are enough to keep alive the theme in his mind; and he is not, probably, conscious of the fact, that there is not enough said, in the theme of his song, to give much coherence to it. Such a song is, indeed, under the best auspices, a mere wild rhapsody of martial thought, poured out, from time to time, in detached sentences, which are, so to say, cemented into lines by a flexible chorus and known tunes.

The sentiments of the following song were uttered by the celebrated WAUBOJEEG, as the leader of the Chippewas, after a victory over the combined Sioux and Sauks and Foxes, at the falls of St. Croix, during the latter part of the seventeenth century.


Hear my voice, ye heroes!
On that day when our warriors sprang
With shouts on the dastardly foe,


Just vengeance my heart burned to take
On the cruel and treacherous breed,
The Bwoin — the Fox — the Sauk.


And here, on my breast, have I bled!
See — see! my battle-scars!
Ye mountains, tremble at my yell!
I strike for life.


But who are my foes? They shall die,
They shall fly o'er the plains like a fox;
They shall shake like a leaf in the storm.
Perfidious dogs! they roast our sons with fire!


Five winters in hunting we'll spend,
While mourning our warriors slain,
Till our youth grown to men
For the battle-path trained,
Our days like our fathers we'll end.


Ye are dead, noble men! ye are gone,
My brother — my fellow — my friend!
On the death-path where brave men must go,
But we live to revenge you! We haste
To die as our forefathers died.

In 1824, Bwoinais, a Chippewa warrior of lake Superior, repeated to me, with the appropriate tunes, the following war-songs, which had been uttered during the existing war between that nation and the Dacotas.


Oshawanung undossewug
Penasewug ka baimwaidungig.
From the south — they come, the warlike birds —
Hark! to their passing screams.



Todotobi penaise
Ka dow wiawwiaun.
I wish to have the body of the fiercest bird,
As swift — as cruel — as strong.


Ne wawaibena, neowai
Kagait ne minwaindum
Nebunaikumig tshebaibewishenaun.
I cast away my body to the chance of battle.
Full happy am I, to lie on the field —
On the field over the enemy's line.

The following stanzas embrace detached sentiments of other chaunts from several sources.


The eagles scream on high,
They whet their forked beaks;
Raise — raise the battle-cry,
'T is fame our leader seeks.


The battle-birds swoop from the sky,
They thirst for the warrior's heart;
They look from their circles on high,
And scorn every flesh but the brave.


I fall — but my body shall lie
A name for the gallant to tell;
The Gods shall repeat it on high,
And young men grow brave at the sound.


G. The Wigwam and Its Mates.

40. It has often been made a question how order is obtained in so confined a space as an Indian wigwam, where so many persons seem to the looker-on to be huddled together in confusion. We have had occasion to make particular inquiries into this subject. Domestic order and domestic rights are of such a character, that they would seem, in savage as in civilized life, to demand rules that all should know and respect.

The wife of the hunter has the entire control of the wigwam and all its temporalities. To each person who is a member of the lodge-family is assigned a fixed seat, or habitual abiding-place, which is called Abbinos. To the master and mistress of the lodge belongs the chief location. To each of the adult and grown children is also assigned their particular abbinos. The very infant, or abbinojee, soon learns to know its place, and hastens to the mother's abbinos. Indeed, the term for a child — abbinoje — appears to "be derived from this radix: the termination ojee, which is affixed to it, is a diminutive word of endearment; as we observe it in their terms for a fly, ojee; wa-wa'begun-ojee, &c.

41. If the son is married and brings his bride home, (one of the commonest modes of assembling the lodge-circle,) the mother assigns the bride her abbinos. This is prepared by spreading one of the finest skins for her seat, and no one besides her husband ever sits there. A visitor who is a neighbor is welcomed to the highest seat temporarily. Inmates of the lodge have their bed, mokuk, wallet, &c., placed behind their own abbinos, and generally war-clubs and arms, if he be a warrior, are placed within reach. In this manner the personal rights of each individual are guarded. The female is punctilious as to her own, so that perfect order is maintained; and it would be as much a violation of their etiquette for an inmate to take possession of another's abbinos at night, as, in civilized life, to intrude into a private bed-chamber. By these known rules of the wigwam an Indian's notions of propriety are quite satisfied ; while, to the European stranger, who casually lifts up the lodge door (a bit of cloth or skin) and peeps in, its interior appears to be appropriated with as indiscriminate a "communism" as if it were occupied by so many pigs, sheep, or bears.

42. The division of labour between the man and wife in Indian life is not so unequal while they live in the pure hunter state as many suppose. The large part of a hunter's time which is spent in seeking game leaves the wife in the wigwam, with a great deal of time on her hands. For it must be remembered that there is no spinning, weaving, or preparing children for school; no butter or cheese making, or a thousand other cares which are inseparable from the agricultural state, to occupy her skill and industry. Even the art of the seamstress is only practised by the Indian woman on


a few things. She devotes much of her time to making moccasins and quill-work. Her husband's leggins are carefully ornamented with beads. His shot-pouch and knife-sheath are worked with quills. The hunting-cap is garnished with ribbons. His garters of cloth are adorned with a profusion of small, white beads, and colored worsted tassels are prepared for his leggins.

In the spring the corn-field is planted by her and the youngsters in a vein of gaiety and frolic. It is done in a few hours, and taken care of in the same spirit. It is perfectly voluntary labor, and she would not be scolded for omitting it; for all labor with Indians is voluntary.

The dressing and preparation of skins for certain parts of clothing is carried on at seasons of convenience. It is done by removing the hair and fleshy integuments with implements of stone or iron. (Plate 76, Figs. 6, 7, and 8.) The skin is fastened for this purpose to two stakes, as shown in the drawing, (Plate 14,) where it undergoes a species of currying. The present state of the Indian trade renders it more thrifty for the hunter to purchase his coat, shirt, aziaun, and leggins of cloth, and employ his time in hunting the small furred animals to pay for them; making a change in the condition of the Indian female which relieves her, in a great measure, from the dressing of skins; which was formerly quite a labor.

43. The character of the man in domestic life has some redeeming traits. His experience of hardship and suffering appears to have made him forbearing. He is not easily vexed, but almost habitually passive. He does not scold old or young. The spirit of endurance, self-respect, and a species of forest stoicism, have given him a philosophy far above it. When he returns from the chase with a load of meats and throws it down at the door of the wigwam, not a word is said to the wife; or if but a tongue of the animal killed be brought to testify to his success, he is nearly as taciturn. She comprehends at once her part of the duty in both cases; and whatever that duty is, he never states or alludes to it. He is not a fault-finder at his meals, but eats whatever is placed before him.

Roasting and boiling are simple operations with the Indian. There is no condiment to be used; no salt, no pepper. Soups are their great resource; particularly in seasons of want, or where the food would not admit of division by any other method. A squirrel, or a small bird, will answer to season or qualify a gallon of soup. And when there are many stomachs to satisfy, there would not appear to be any other method so well suited to answer the purpose of division. In times of great straits a few old bones will serve to flavor the liquor, and the ingenuity of the wife is constantly on the stretch to provide a meal. When there is absolutely nothing, and the severities of the season have, for a time, cut off every resource, there is a dignified endurance in the Indian's mind that rises above complaint. There is no one to blame, in his belief,


unless it be the Great Spirit; and he is far from imputing blame to Him. He has exerted his art, but without success. The next day may bring him relief, and he consoles himself in this hope. The children are sometimes put to sleep by telling them tales to stop their crying for hunger. If there be but a morsel in the wigwam, it is given to them; and the father of the lodge shows the strength of his affection and the quality of his endurance by rigid abstinence from food, and by uncomplaining silence. He indulges himself in the use of the pipe and native weed, or kinnikinic, which is attended with some sort of stimulus to the nerves that keeps them in a state of equilibrium. Such is the North American Indian, whom I have observed in the forest countries of the great lakes and great valleys of the Upper Mississippi.

H. Birth and Its Incidents.

44. Parturition, with the Indian female, is seldom attended with severe or long-continued suffering; it is generally very much the contrary, and leads to but a slight interruption to her ordinary pursuits. To linger back a few hours on a journey in the forest, is often the whole time required by the confinement; and there appears in most cases to be but little, if any premonition. A wife has been known to sally into the adjoining forest in quest of dry limbs for fire-wood, and to return to the wigwam with her new-born child, placed carefully on the back-load. (See Plate 26.) The wife of Saganosh was passing with her husband and family in a canoe, along the precipitous sand-cliffs of Lake Superior, which are called Grandes Sables. There is, in general, but a strip of beach between the precipices and the water, and the scene is nearly as denuded of trees or bushes as the deserts of Arabia. But she landed in haste, and descried a few bushes in a depressed spot, which sufficed for her accouchement chamber, and in a few hours was in her canoe again with the new-born babe.

Their exemption from the usual sufferings of child-birth may be said to be the general condition of the hunter state, and one of the few advantages of it which the female enjoys above her civilized sister. But it will be seen to be the simple result in obstetrics of the continued exercise in the open air of the Indian woman, and her consequent hardihood.

45. Names are generally bestowed by the mindemoia, or nocomiss, of the family; that is, by the matron, or the aged grandmother, who generally connects the event with some dream. If the child be a male, the name is generally taken from some object or phenomenon in the visible heavens. The returning cloud, (kewanoquot the sun in contact with a cloud, (ka-tche-tosh,) the bright cloud, (na-geezhig,) the little thunderer, (an-ne-ma-kens,) a bird in continued flight in the higher air, (ka-ga-osh,) are common names. If it be a female, the imagery is generally drawn from, the surface


of the earth, the vegetable kingdom, or the waters. The woman of the passing stream, the woman of the green valley, the woman of the rock, are not uncommon names. The flexible character of the language renders these compound terms practicable. In this respect, the syntax of the language bears a strong resemblance to that of the Hebrew — that is, in making fragments of words stand for whole words in these amalgamated derivations. But the Indian languages are without that frequent fragment in the Hebrew of el, which conveys the whole meaning of Alohim, Emanuel, or some other descriptive term for the deity. The Indian deity does not at all appear to enter into such compound names. Instead of this, the distinctive fragmentary elements are taken from the radices for sun, sky, air, wind, sound, &c. There is no rite of any kind analogous to baptism, nor a thought of it; but the name thus given is considered secret — it is indeed deemed sacred, for it is not generally revealed, and it is one of the hardest things to induce an Indian to tell his real name. Instead of this, and in order, it would seem, the better to conceal it, men are called by some common nickname, as little fox, wolf, red-head, bad boy, bird, and such like soubriquets, which are generally given by the mothers to infants, as terms of endearment. It is these secondary names, which continue to be borne in adult life, that we constantly hear, and the real name is studiously concealed, and frequently not even revealed by the Ajedatic, or grave-post; for upon this, the totem of the family is deemed to be sufficient. The true cause of the concealment of names must be ascribed to their religious and superstitious dogmas, which will be hereafter described.

46. Children are, immediately after their birth, tied with feminine care on a flat piece of carved wood, or structure, called Tikkinagon, which has a small hoop to protect the head, and a little foot-piece to rest on. (Fig. 1, Plate 15.) Moss is placed between the heels of female infants, which makes them in-toed; in males, the adjustment of the moss is designed to produce a perfectly straight position of the foot. The "one-point" blanket of trade wraps it, and a bandage of cloth, if the mother be able to get it, is bound around the whole person, giving it some resemblance to a small mummy.

It is the pride of the mother to garnish this cradle band with ribbons and beads. From the hoop some little jingling ornament is generally suspended to attract the child's notice. (Fig. 2, Plate 15.) An apekun or carrying-strap is securely fastened near the head of the infant, by which the mother can swing it to her back and carry it without injury throughout the forest (Plate 15.) Indeed, she can hang it up by the


strap on the limb of a tree, or in the lodge, and the fixtures are so ingeniously contrived that, even if it falls down, the child cannot be hurt. Meantime, the little abinojee itself seems perfectly contented, and rarely if ever cries; and in this confinement it learns its first lesson in endurance.

I. Death and Its Incidents.

47. THE character of the devices which are placed on the grave-post of the Indian has been described under the head of PICTOGRAPHY, Part I., p. 354. Such devices are appropriate for adults who have trod the war-path, and made themselves conspicuous for bravery or heroism.

Children and youth generally pass away from the scenes of Indian life without any such memorials; but their loss is often bewailed by mothers with inconsolable grief and bitterness. It is the intensity of this grief which lies at the foundation of the practice of adopting white children stolen from the settlements on the frontiers. Such cases are generally, if not in every instance, traceable to a request of the Indian mother to replace the child of which she has been bereaved by death. A grief that is indulged under the hopeless darkness of the aboriginal mind may be supposed to have no more natural or reasonable mode of assuagement. But this grief, when the object is a son, is often deeply partaken of by the father, especially if the lad be grown, and has developed forensic talents to succeed him in the chieftainship of the band. We have mentioned the noble sacrifice of Bianswah under these circumstances.

48. The son of Gel Plat, a noted chief of the Pillagers at Leech Lake, on the sources of the Mississippi, was killed on the enemy's border, west of that point, while he was bathing in a lake with a companion. The father, who was about sixty, and contemplated leaving this son as his successor in that large and warlike band, laid the loss deeply to heart, and dwelt upon the hardness of his fate many years. He then turned his hopes on a younger son whom he desired to instal in his place with this band; and in order to let them know his wishes on the subject, he sent out formally an invitation to all the band to attend a feast. He prepared for this, by employing hunters who brought him the carcasses of many animals; and he staked his utmost means with the traders to purchase such articles of food as the forests in that quarter did not furnish. There were eighteen kettles of eatables prepared. He then brought out his young son, dressed in the best manner, with fine clothes, and bearing five silver medals hung with ribbons around his neck, being all his regalia. He then arose and uttered his lost son's eulogy, speaking, in glowing terms, of his capacities for the hunter life and the war-path, and ended by presenting to their notice the tiny candidate for their future chief.


49. Black is the universal sign for mourning; it is the symbol for death, and is taken from night. In their pictography, the image of the sun is represented to stand for, or symbolize night, for which purpose it is crossed and blackened.

The face of the mourner is smeared with some simple black mixture that will not readily rub off. On occasions of deep affliction, the arms and legs are cut or scarified, an oriental custom with many nations. The corpse is dressed in its best clothes. It is wrapped in a new blanket, and new moccasins and legging put on. The crown-band, head-dress or frontlet, and feathers, are also put on. His war-club, gun, and pipe, are placed beside him, together with a small quantity of vermilion. The corpse is laid in public, where all can gather around it, when an address is made, partly to the spectators, describing the character of the deceased, and partly to the deceased himself, speaking to him as if the Ochichag or soul was still present, and giving directions as to the path he is supposed to be about to tread in a future state.

If it is a female that is about to be interred, she is provided with a paddle, a kettle, an apekun or carrying strap for the head, and other feminine implements. The Pawnees, and other prairie tribes, kill the warrior's horse upon his grave, that he may be ready to mount in a future state, and proceed to the appointed scene of rest. The mode of burial is represented in Plate 16.

50. The idea of immortality is strongly dwelt upon. It is not spoken of as a supposition or a mere belief, not fixed. It is regarded as an actuality, — as something known and approved by the judgment of the nation. During the whole period of my residence and travels in the Indian country, I never knew and never heard of an Indian who did not believe in it, and in the reappearance of the body in a future state. However mistaken they are on the subject of accountabilities for acts done in the present life, no small part of their entire mythology, and the belief that sustains the man in his vicissitudes and wanderings here, arises from the anticipation of ease and enjoyment in a future condition, after the soul has left the body. The resignation, nay, the alacrity, with which an Indian frequently lies down and surrenders life, is to be ascribed to this prevalent belief. He does not fear to go to a land which, all his life long, he has heard abounds in rewards without punishments.

51. I was present with an interpreter in upper Michigan in 1822, when the interment of a warrior and hunter took place, at which the corpse was carefully dressed, as above described, and after it was brought to the grave, and before the lid was nailed to the coffin, an address was made by an Indian to the corpse. The substance of it relating to this belief was this: — "You are about to go to that land where our forefathers have gone — you have finished your journey here, before us. We shall follow you, and rejoin the happy groups which you will meet."

52. When the speaking and ceremonies were concluded, the coffin was lowered into the trench prepared to receive it, and thus "buried out of sight." This mode of interment


is common to the forest tribes of the north, and appears to have been practised by them from the earliest periods. They choose dry and elevated places for burial, which are completely out of the reach of floods or standing water. Often these spots selected for the burial of the dead are sightly and picturesque points, which command extensive views. They bury east and west. They are without proper tools, and do not dig deep, but generally make the place of interment secure from the depredations of wild beasts, by arranging the trunks of small trees in the form of a parallelogram notched at the angles, around it, or by stakes driven in the ground. In other instances a bark roof is constructed, which will shed the rains. Such is the mode of the various Algonquin and Appalachian tribes.

53. The raising of "heaps" of earth over the grave, in the form of small mounds or barrows, appears to have been a practice in ancient periods as a mark of distinction for eminent persons. But whatever was its prevalence at other epochs, while they were in the west and south-west, and before they crossed the Alleghanies, it fell into almost entire disuse in the Atlantic and Lake tribes. There are some traces of it in Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Western New York. Rarely the resting-places of Indian heroes were marked by heaps of stones. In Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi, this species of tumuli, formed of earth, is found to be common; and the tradition of the Muscogees respecting the custom is well preserved. But by far the most striking theatre of this rude mode of sepulture is the Mississippi Valley, whose plains and alluvions have been literally sown with the dead. Vide TUMULI PROPER, or SEPULCHRAL MOUNDS. Part I., p. 49.

54. The tribes of the Mississippi Valley, where the population was more dense, and the means of subsistence more abundant, were not satisfied that their great warriors and orators should be so quickly "buried out of sight." And the small sepulchral mound, as well as the more lofty village or public tumulus, were, at the epoch of the maximum of their power, frequently erected. They also, by dwelling in large communities, had occasion for the altar mound, and the redoubt mound, the latter of which was used exclusively to defend the entrance or gates, through walls and picketings, which enclosed an entire village. We have called attention to this point in Part I., p. 49, and endeavored to show that there is no mystery in the origin and present appearance of these ruins or remains; that the various species of mounds and defences were perfectly adapted to the former condition and populousness of the tribes; that their pipe sculpture, and other evidences of art, are not typical of a higher degree of civilization, or social condition, and that their manifestations of incipient skill, power, and civilization, resulted from the flush of barbaric success and ample compensative means, which marked the ancient Indian confederacies of this valley, before later and fiercer hunter hordes drove them from their seats, and scattered them. We have also


withdrawn from this consideration those apparently intrusive evidences of "old world art," which are anomalous, and can by no means be deemed as elements of ancient Indian civilization. We should not consider it extraordinary that the ancient tribes who dwelt on the fertile bottom-lands of the Mississippi and the Ohio, should have erected the rude defences, mounds and tumuli, which are now found to be overgrown by the forest in various places. Thousands of persons of these tribes, who raised the zea maize, and hunted the deer, elk, and buffalo, to fill the wigwams with signs of gladness, could live and flourish at a single village or location; and when their chief died, two or three hundred hands could be employed to carry sacks of earth for a sepulchral "heap" or mound. It was not so among the northern bands, who shivered in cold and storms half the year, and could rarely sustain themselves if numbering more than twenty heads of families at a place.

55. Burial among the wild hordes of the prairies assumes a feature that marks it as a peculiar habit of the tribes. They scaffold their dead on eminences where they may be descried afar off. The corpse, after it has received its wrappings, is placed in a rude coffin, which is generally garnished with red pigments, and rendered picturesque to the eye by offerings to the dead, hung on poles; and, if it can be got, a flag. (Plate 59.) Burials, or deposits of the body in caves, were often resorted to.

56. No trait has commended the forest tribes of the old area of the United States more to the respect and admiration of beholders than the scrupulous regard with which they are found to remember the burial-grounds of their ancestors; the veneration and piety they exhibit in visiting, at all periods, these spots; and the anguish of their minds at any marks of disrespect and disturbance of the bones of their ancestors. Gifts are made at graves so long as it is supposed there is any part of the perishable matter remaining; and oblations are poured out to the spirits of the departed after other rites are discontinued.

57. These sepulchral and the defensive ruins of more populous and advanced tribes are found alone in the forest country. The prairie tribes, west of the Mississippi river, erected no tumuli or works of defence. They never remained in one location long enough to surround themselves with the feelings and circumstances of a home; and when the Spaniards introduced the horse, an element was prepared which operated as fuel to their erratic habits, and confirmed them in their Indo-Arabic traits of roving. The forays by which this animal was first obtained of the Mexican Indians by the prairie tribes, constitute a new feature in their history. A coterminous country extends from the plains of Texas and New Mexico, east of the foot of the Rocky mountains, till the prairie country embraces both banks of the Missouri, and reaches to the plains of Red river, and the Saskatchawine, west of the sources of the Mississippi river. No tumuli occur in this region; no remains of ancient ditches, or attempts at rude castrametation. The latter are, in all the region of North America, north of the Gulf of


Mexico, the disclosures of forests and valleys; and it is hence that it becomes manifest that forests and valleys are most conducive to arts, agriculture, and civilization.

58. The prairie, by its extent and desolateness, appears to exert a deleterious influence on the savage mind. Some of the grosser and more revolting customs of the prairie Indians respecting interments, are no doubt traceable to their wild and lawless habits. Nothing that I have observed respecting burials among them reaches so absolutely a revolting point, as a custom which has been noticed among certain of the Oregon tribes, and which is perhaps not general. An eye-witness, writing from the mouth of the Columbia, describes it as follows: — "I have just returned from a visit to the Chinook Indian country, where I witnessed a most revolting ceremony, that of burying the living with the dead. One of the chiefs lost a daughter, a fine-looking woman, about twenty years of age. She was wrapped up in a rush mat, together with all her trinkets, and placed in a canoe. The father had an Indian slave bound hand and foot, and fastened to the body of the deceased, and enclosed the two in another mat, leaving out the head of the living one. The Indians then took the canoe, (which was employed in lieu of a coffin,) and carried it to a high rock and left it there. Their custom is to let the slave live for three days; then another slave is compelled to strangle the victim by a "cord drawn around the neck. They also kill the horse that may have been a favorite of the deceased, and bury it at the head of the canoe. I was desirous of interfering and saving the life of the poor victim; but Mr. Hirris, the gentleman with me, and the two Indians, our companions, assured me that I should only get myself into serious trouble; and as we were at a great distance from the settlements, and our party so small, self-preservation dictated a different course from the inclinations of our hearts."

K. Games of Chance.

59. ONE of the principal amusements of a sedentary character, which our tribes practise, is that of various games, success in which depends on the luck of numbers. These games, to which both the prairie and forest tribes are addicted, assume the fascination and intensity of interest of gambling; and the most valued articles are often staked on the luck of a throw. For this purpose, the prairie tribes commonly use the stone of the wild plum, or some analogous fruit, upon which various devices indicating their arithmetical value are burned in, or engraved and colored, so as at a glance to reveal the character of the pieces. Among the Dacota tribes, this is known by a term which is translated "the game of the plum-stones." [KUN-TAH-SOO.]

In order to show the scope of this game, five sets of stones are represented, in Plate 17, under the letters A, B, C, D, E, F. Each set consists exactly of eight pieces.


In set A, numbers 1 and 2 represent sparrow-hawks with forked tails, or the forked-tail eagle — falco furcatus. This is the so-called war-eagle. Numbers 3 and 4 are the turtle; which typifies, generally, the earth. If 1 and 2 fall upwards, the game is won. If but one of these figures falls upwards, and, at the game time, 3 and 4 are up, the game is also won. The other numbers, 5, 6, 7, and 8, are all blanks.

B denotes the reversed sides of A, which are all blanks.

Set C shows different characters with a single chief figure, (5,) which represents the falco furcatus. This throw indicates half a game, and entitles the thrower to repeat it. If the same figure (5) turns up, the game is won. If no success attends it by turning up the chief figure, the throw passes to other hands.

D is the reverse of set C, and is a blank throw.

In set E, No. 5 represents a muskrat. The three dots (7) indicate two-thirds of a throw, and the thrower can throw again; but if he gets blanks the second time, the dish passes on to the next thrower.

Set F is invested with different powers. No. 1 represents a buffalo, and 2 and 3 denote chicken-hawks, fluttering horizontally in the air. The chief pieces (1, 2, 3) have the same powers and modifications of value as A.

To play this game, a little orifice is made in the ground and a skin put in it. Often it is also played on a robe.

The women and young men play this game. The bowl is lifted with one hand about three or four inches, and pushed suddenly down to its place. The plum-stones fly over several times. The stake is first put up by all who wish to play. A dozen can play at once, if it be desirable. Plate 18 exhibits a view of this fascinating game.

60. A more complicated mode of reliance on the luck of numbers is found in the Chippewa game of the Bowl, called Puggesaing. It is played with thirteen pieces; nine of which are formed of bone, and four of brass, all of circular shape. (Plate 17, compartment G.) The right side of the eight pieces of bone are stained red, with edges and dots burned black with a hot iron; the reverse is left white. The brass pieces have the right side convex and the reverse concave. The convex surface is bright, the concave dark, or dull.

The first piece, (fig. 1,) called ininees, or ogima, represents a ruler. Number 2 typifies an amphibious monster, and is called gitchy kinבbik, or the great serpent. Number 3 represents the war-club. Number 4 is a fish (kenozfia.} Number 5 are small discs of brass, and number 6 a duck (sheesheeb.)

The game is won by the red pieces; the arithmetical value of each of which is fixed; and the count, as in all games of chance, is advanced or retarded by the luck of the throw. Any number of players may play. Nothing is required but a wooden bowl, which is curiously carved and ornamented, (the owner relying somewhat on magic influence,) and having a plain, smooth surface.


1st lucky throw. When all the pieces turn up red, and number 1 stands upright on one of the brass disc's bright side, the count is 158. This is the highest possible throw.

2d lucky throw. When the bone pieces turn up red, and the gitchy kinבbik, number 2, stands on one of the brass disc's bright side, the count is 138.

3d lucky throw. When all the bone pieces turn up red and lie smooth, the count is 58, whether the brass discs lie bright or dull side up.

4th lucky throw. When number 1, both pieces, and number 2, both pieces, and numbers 3, 4, and 5, turn up white, the count is also 58, without respect to the brass pieces.

5th lucky throw. Where all the bone pieces turn up white, it counts 38, irrespective of the position of the brass pieces.

6th lucky throw. When the ogimas (1) and Gitchy kinabik (2) turn up red, and 3, 4, and 6, white, the count is also 38, irrespective of the metallic pieces.

7th lucky throw. When one of the pieces, No. 1, stands up, the count is 50, without regard to the position of the pieces on the board.

8th lucky throw. When either of No. 2 stands upright, and the other pieces lay flat, no matter which side up, the count is 40.

9th lucky throw. When all the bone pieces turn up white but a single one, and the brass discs turn up on the reverse, the count is 20.

10th lucky throw. When all the bone pieces come up red but one, and the brass pawns are bright side up, the count is 15.

11th lucky throw. When all the men turn up white but one, and the pieces numbered 5 are bright, the count is 10.

At this stage of the game, the throws sink below the decimal point.

12th throw. If the brass pawns turn up reversed, and No. 1 and two pieces of No. 2 red, the count is 8.

13th throw. The same condition of the pieces exactly, but the brass discs bright instead of dark, the count sinks to 6.

14th throw. When all the bone pieces turn up red but one, and the brass come up dark, the count is 5.

15th throw. When one of the pieces No. 2 and one of No. 1 are turned up red, and the brass discs show the convex side, the count is but 4.

16th throw. When all the pieces, Gitchy kinabiks, sheesheebs, &c., but one of the Ogimaus, turn up red, and the brass discs dark, the count sinks to 2. All throws below this are blanks.

In this game, hours are passed by the players with the utmost fixity and intensity of interest. If the game be but fixed at 300, (and this is a point of mutual agreement,) it will be perceived that the strife to reach it may not only be very prolonged, but become most intense and exciting. The stakes are always put up, and the winner


carries away his prizes. It is often so fascinating that a player will stake any thing of value; and the spirit of gambling becomes as demoralizing in savage as it is in civilized life.

L. The Indian on His Hunting-Ground.

61. THE social state of the Indians, when viewed by the eye of unprejudiced candor and benevolence, is far from being as revolting as it has sometimes been represented. In situations where they have good means of hunting, trapping, and fishing, and where the pressure of the expanding settlements and frontier views of antagonistical race do not strongly and immediately press on them, their simple institutions of the forests insure them means of social enjoyment on which, in their condition of hunters, they set a high value.

When the season of hunting returns, and they have reached their wintering grounds and placed a wide margin between the frontier towns and themselves, the tense cautious reserve and suspicion of harm which marked the man while in the settlements, trafficking off his furs, and gliding with easy steps through the, to him, mazes of strange civilized society, is relaxed. He softens into something like assurance to find himself again surrounded exclusively by his own people; and he sinks back to the natural state of the Indian sociability, and it is not often that the most prudent and reflecting elders do so without recounting the scaiths and losses that they have encountered on the frontiers. The conflicts of the savage and civilized state are, indeed, in a moral sense, terrible. He has parted with the avails of his last year's hunts, and received his exchanges on such terms as he had not the means of prescribing, and he generally feels under obligations to those who have transacted his commercial matters, and who are his most sympathizing white friends; but he feels, under the best state of things, as if he had been plundered. If his family and himself have completely escaped the perils of debauchery and other frontier vices, he is happy: it is more than he can generally expect; and his best resolve for the future seems to be, that another season he will stay a shorter time about the towns, and try to come back with less cause of reproach to himself.

62. The circle of wild foresters, to which he has again returned, look up to him with the utmost respect and trust. They hang upon his words as the maxims of wisdom. He counsels and he feasts them, and is regarded as their oracle and guide.

In this periodical reunion of aboriginal society the most perfect sincerity and cheerfulness prevail, and their intercourse is marked with the broadest principles of charity and neighborly feeling. The restrained and ever-watchful suspicion which


they evince at the post on the lines, 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 a security unknown to their breast in any other situation. The strife seems to be, who shall excel in offices of friendship or charity, or in spreading the festive board.

63. If one is more fortunate than the other in taking fish with the net or spear, or killing a deer, or any other animal, the spoil is set aside for a feast, to which all the adults, without distinction, are invited. When the time 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, according to his standing and rank in the village.

While at the meal, which is prolonged by cheerful conversation, anecdotes, and little narratives of personal adventure, the females are generally among the listeners; and no female, except the aged, ever obtrudes 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, 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.

64. The topics discussed at these public meals relate, generally, to the chase, to the news they have heard, to personal occurrences about the camp or village, or to deeds, real or fabulous, of "auld lang syne." But these matters are discussed in a lively, and not in grave style. Business — if we may be allowed that term for what concerns their trade and intercourse with white men — is never introduced, except in formal councils, specially convened and opened by smoking the pipe. It seems to be the drift and object 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 whiskey) to extract from their hunts and adventures whatever will admit of a pleasing turn or 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 one of the company, is parried off by some allusion to the scenes before them. Religion, (we use the term for what concerns the Great Spirit and the meddwin,} like business, is reserved for its proper occasion. It does not, as with us, form a free topic of remark, at least, among those who are connected with their medicine societies, or entertain a proper veneration for what the Indians call "the master of life."

Thus they cheat away the hours in pleasantry, — in free, but not tumultuous mirth: and are as ardently bent on the enjoyment of the present moment, as if the Royal Preacher of old were present, to urge a proper use of God's gifts, and to exclaim, "Eat, drink, and be merry."


65. When the feast is over, the women retire to their lodges and leave the men to smoke. On reaching home, 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.

In the feasts we have described, the company is as general, with regard to the rank, age, or standing of the guests, as the most unlimited equality of rights and the broadest principles of good feeling can make it.

66. There is a feast instituted at certain times during the season, to which young persons only are invited, except the entertainer's wife, and generally two other aged persons, who preside at the feast and administer its rites. The object of this juvenile feast seems to be instruction, to which the young and thoughtless are induced to listen for the anticipated pleasure of the feast. When the meats are ready, the entertainer, if he be fluent in speech, and if not, some person whom he has invited for that 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 adhere to their counsel; to obey their parents; never to scoff at the decrepid or deformed; to be modest in their conduct; to be charitable and hospitable; and to fear and love the Great Spirit, who is the giver of life and of every good gift. The 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 depicting the latter, it is customary, by way of admonition, to say, "You will be like one of these." At the end of every sentence, the listeners make a general response of haa. When the advice is finished, an address 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, turning to the guests, "Thus the Great Spirit supplies us with food; let your course through life be always right, and you will ever be thus bountifully supplied."

The feast then commences, and the elders relax their manners a little and mix with the rest; but are still careful to preserve order and a decent respectful behavior.

67. Let it not be supposed, however, that the Indian's life, while on his wintering ground, is a round of feasting; quite the contrary. Their feasts are often followed by long and painful fasts; and the severity of the seasons, and scarcity of game and fish, often reduce the Indian and his family to starvation and even death.

When the failure of game, or any 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 leather strap, called A-pe-kun, around the forehead. On reaching the intended place of encampment, the snow is cleared away, the lodge set up, cedar boughs brought and spread for a floor, 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.

68. 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 search of game. If one has the luck to kill even a partridge or squirrel, it is immediately carried to the lodge, cooked, and divided into as many parts as there are members of the family. In such emergencies, the elder ones often make a merit of relinquishing their portion to the women and children.

69. 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 or rush mats, but he does not complain either of his fatigue or want of success. On the following morning the same routine is observed, and days and weeks are often thus consumed without bringing food sufficient to keep the body in a vigorous or healthy state. Instances have been perfectly well authenticated where this state of wretchedness has been endured by the head of a family until he has become so weak as to fall in his hunting path, and freeze to death.

When all other means of sustaining life are gone, the skins the hunter has collected to pay his credits, or purchase new supplies of clothing and ammunition, are eaten. They are prepared by removing the pelt and roasting the skin until it acquires a certain degree of crispness.

70. Under all his suffering, the pipe of the hunter is his chief solace, and it is a solace very often repeated. Smoking parties are sometimes formed, when there exists a scarcity of food, — the want of provisions not tending, as might be supposed, to destroy social feeling and render the temper sour. On these occasions, the person soliciting company sends a message to this effect: "My friend, come and smoke with me; I have no food, but I have tobacco, and we can pass the evening very well with this."

71. All acknowledge their lives to be in the hands of the Great Spirit, feel a conviction that all things come from Him, that He loves them, and that, although He allows them to suffer, he will again supply them. This tends to quiet their apprehensions. Fatalists as to good and ill, they submit patiently and silently to what they


believe 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 misery past, or the anticipation of misery to come. No people are more easy or less clamorous under suffering of the deepest dye, and none are more happy, or more prone to evince their happiness, when prosperous in their affairs.

M. Miscellaneous Traits.

72. BALL-PLAYING. — This game is played by the northwestern Indians in the winter season, after the winter hunts are over, and during summer, when, the game being unfit to kill, they amuse themselves with athletic sports, games of chance, dances, and war. The game is played by two parties, not necessarily equally divided by numbers, but usually one village against another, or one large village may challenge two or three smaller ones to the combat. When a challenge is accepted, a day is appointed to play the game; ball-bats are made, and each party assembles its whole force of old men, young men, and boys. The women never play in the same game with the men. Heavy bets are made by individuals of the opposite sides. Horses, guns, blankets, buffalo-robes, kettles, and trinkets, are freely staked on the result of the game. When the parties are assembled on the ground, two stakes are placed about a quarter of a mile apart, and the game commences midway between them; the object of each party being to get the ball beyond the limits of its opponents. The game commences by one of the old men throwing the ball in the air, when all rush forward to catch it in their ball-bats before or after it falls to the ground. The one who catches it throws it in the direction of the goal of the opposing party, when, if it be caught by one of the same side, it is continued in that direction, and so on until it is thrown beyond the limits; but if caught by an opponent, it is thrown back in the opposite direction. In this way, the ball is often kept all day between the two boundaries, neither party being able to get it beyond the limit of the other. When one has caught the ball, he has the right, before throwing it, to run towards the limits until he is overtaken by the other party, when, being compelled to throw it, he endeavors to send it in the direction of some of his own party, to be caught by some one of them, who continues sending it in the same direction.

Plate 19 represents a ball play on the ice. The young man has the ball in his ball-bat, and is running with it toward the limits of the other side, pursued by all the players.

Plate 20 represents a ball play on the prairies in summer. The ball is on the ground and all are rushing forward to catch it with their ball-bats, not being allowed to touch it with their hands.


The ball is carved from a knot, or made of baked clay covered with raw hide of the deer The ball-bat, Fig. 10, Plate 78, is from three to four feet long; one end bent up in a circular form of about four inches in diameter, in which is a net-work made of raw hide or sinews of the deer or buffalo.

73. MOVING CAMP. — The hunter life is one of almost perpetual travel from spot to spot. This results from the plan of periodical change from the summer to winter encampments; sometimes from superstitious notions, an unhealthy location, the migration of animals, or mere whim. To Indian minds, a change of location is pleasant; it infuses new life into the whole family group, for there is always an expectation that a new location will furnish game and other means of subsistence in greater abundance, or some advantage of living which is often indefinite: for the far off and the unknown in space is the perpetual theme of an Indian's hope, and he is ever fond of the changing adventures of travel. The following sketch (Plate 21) exhibits a scene of this sort in the region of the upper Mississippi, where the horse has been, to some extent, introduced. It shows the labor to devolve, as in all changes of camp, essentially on the women and horses.

74. DOG-DANCE OF THE DACOTA INDIANS. — This dance is peculiar to the Dacota tribe, and takes its name from the fact that the raw liver of the dog is eaten by the performers. It is not often performed, and only on some extraordinary occasion. The performers are usually the bravest warriors of the tribe, and those having stomachs strong enough to digest raw food.

When a dog-dance is to be given, the warriors who are to take part in it, and all others who desire to witness it, assemble at some stated time and place. After talking and smoking for awhile, the dance commences. A dog, with his legs pinioned, is thrown into the group of dancers by any one of the spectators. This is despatched by one of the medicine-men, or jugglers, with a war-club or tomahawk. The side of the animal is then cut open and the liver taken out. This is then cut into strips and hung on a pole about four or five feet in length. The performers then commence dancing around it; smacking their lips and making all sorts of grimaces; showing a great desire to get a taste of the delicious morsel. After performing these antics for awhile, some one of them will make a grab at the liver, biting off a piece, and then hopping off, chewing and swallowing it as he goes. His example is followed by each and all the other warriors, until every morsel of the liver is eaten. Should any particles of it fall to the ground, it is collected, by a medicine-man, in the palm of his hand, who carries it round to the dancers to be eaten and his hands well licked.

After disposing of the first dog, they all sit down in a circle, and chat and smoke awhile until another dog is thrown in, when the same ceremonies are repeated, and continued so long as any one is disposed to present them with a dog. They are


required to eat the liver, raw and warm, of every dog that is presented to them; and while they are eating it, none but the medicine-men must touch it with their hands. Women do not join in this dance.

The object of this ceremony is, they say, that those who eat the liver of the dog while it is raw and warm, will become possessed of the sagacity and bravery of the dog.

The Ojibwas, the tribe bordering on the Dacotas, and their hereditary enemies, look with disgust on this ceremony. (Plate 22.)

Plate 23 is a representation of the wigwams of the Ojibwas and Winnebagoes. These tribes make their huts of birch-bark, or mats made of grass. Saplings are first stuck in the ground, somewhat of a circular form — the tops bent over to the centre and tied; the bark or mats are then thrown over these, leaving a small hole for the smoke to escape. The fire is made on the ground, in the centre of the hut.


III. Antiquities.



1. Floridian Teocalli, or Elevated Platform-residences of the Native Rulers and Priests.
2. Antiquities of Lake Erie.
A. Ancient Eries.
B. Antiquities of Cunningham's Island. C. Sculptured Rock, or Erie Inscription.
3. Archזological Articles from South Carolina. (Plate.)
4. Archזological Relics from Western New York. (Plate.)
5. Antique Aboriginal Embankments and Excavations at Lake Vieux Desert, on the Boundary of Wisconsin and Northern Michigan. (Plate.)


THE record from which American archזology is to be judged, is continually being enlarged, and it would be premature to indulge in generalization, while the field of observation is so rapidly expanding, and the facts so steadily accumulating.

Garcillasso de la Vega informs us, that the dwelling-houses of the caciques or chiefs of Florida, in 1540, during De Soto's march through the present area of Florida, Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi, were generally erected on large artificial mounds, or a species of teocalli. These artificial platforms were sometimes eighteen hundred feet in circumference at the base, and from twenty to fifty feet high. They were capable of furnishing space for the houses of the chief and his family and their attendants. The sides were steep, and ascended by steps cut in the earth, and cased with wood. This structure for the micco or chief is stated to have constituted the centre of every newly laid out village or town. Around it was drawn a large square, where the principal


and subordinate persons and commonality had their residences. It was the first object erected on the selection of a town-site — the earth was brought to the spot. The chief and his priest, who were often one in their functions, were thus not only placed in a position of greater security, but one from which they could overlook the whole town.

It is perceived from Mr. Pickett's History of Alabama, that remains of such structures are found in many places in the extensive area of the United States denoted by de la Vega. They are clearly distinguished from the mass of remains called, indiscriminately, tumuli and mounds, by being flat at top, sometimes square, and assuming the character of precipitous raised plains or platforms, while the tumuli proper are conical, often acutely so, and carried up sometimes to the height of ninety feet. When they are not terminated in a cone, the horizontal area is small, and appears by its reduced size to have been rather suited to the temple-wigwam than the micco's residence.

These remarks appear to be deserving of attention. At an age of our Indian population, when every few hundred men constituted a separate nation, who lived in constant hostility, such platforms of elevated earth afforded vantage ground, not only for residence, but for a battle; and it was quite natural that afterwards, when they combined into confederacies, as the large Muscogee stock is known to have done, the use of these select places for the rulers should have been forgotten in the lapse of centuries, or concealed from the curiosity of inquirers.

The observation of these ancient plateaux throws light on this class of our antiquities. It is not only the earliest light we have on the subject north of the Gulf of Mexico, but it reveals one of the purposes of these antique tumuli which are scattered so profusely over portions of the ancient area of the western and southern parts of the United States.

The Muscogees, under several cognate names, trace their origin to the Mexican empire; and these plateaux appear to have had their prototype in the more imposing Mexican teocalli; and thus we may perceive that the United States, and indeed all North America, was overspread in its native population by religious rites and notions, which became, indeed, fainter and fainter, as they spread northward, and escaped from a species of sacerdotal tyranny, but were yet of the same general character.

It is something in all archזological investigation, to reach a period where wonder and speculation end, and reality begins. It is perceived that in the extension of these artificial heaps of honored earth, from the Gulf northward, they became teocalli or platform pyramids of less area and greater acuteness; but they were in all instances of this kind, truncated, or had a level area at their tops. We allude here exclusively to the "tumuli proper," and not to the "redoubt mounds" or "the barrows," or to small


"altars of sacrifice." Yet this summit plateau was fully developed in the chief mounds of the Mississippi Valley and its tributaries, as at Cahokia in Illinois, which has a base of six hundred and sixty-six feet; and at Grave Creek flats; Miamisburg, and other noted points of central antique native power in the "West, at all of which places the priest had room amply sufficient for his residence and official functions on the summit.


THE occupation of the shores and islands of this lake by the ancient and extinct tribe of the Eries, who were once the acknowledged pacificators of the neighboring Indians, and who preceded the Iroquois in warlike and civic power within that basin, gives a melancholy interest to whatever, in the existing archaeological remains of the country, serves to restore the memory of their power.

The recent discovery of ancient earthworks, and two inscriptions in the pictographic character, on Cunningham's Island, in the archipelago of islands in the western part of this lake, gives birth to the idea that these islands were one of the strongholds of that tribe when attacked by the Iroquois. They appear to have been in all the plenitude of their power and barbaric boast of strength and influence, at the period of the first discoveries of the French, in the beginning of the seventeenth century. The Wyandots, who afterwards were known to have exercised a controlling influence on the contiguous waters of Sandusky Bay and the Straits of Detroit, had not yet been disturbed from their ancient seats in the Valley of the St. Lawrence. Le Jeune, who published the first account of the Iroquois, in Paris, in 1658, mentions the angry negotiations carried on at Hochelaga, the site of Montreal, by which the Iroquois attempted to control that tribe; and during which they commanded them, on pain of their highest vengeance, to break their league with the French : and when this threat was put into execution in a few years, and the Wyandots were defeated in the St. Lawrence Valley, they fled west through the country of the friendly Algonquins, into the basin of Lake HURON, where they first located and lived; and not till a later period to the basin of Lake Erie, where the canoes of the vengeful Iroquois were already prowling in their adventurous thirst for military renown.

The Eries present one claim to remembrance which cannot be urged by any other American tribe, namely, as the ancient kindlers of the council-fire of peace for all the tribes prior to the rise and destruction of this institution, and before the origin of the Iroquois confederacy.

I here can be no question, from the early accounts of the French missionaries, that they were at the head of that singular confederation of tribes called the Neutral


Nation, which extended from the extreme west to the extreme eastern shores of this lake, including the Niagara Valley, and of whom the Kaukwas, of Seneca tradition, were manifestly only one of the powers. We must modify Indian tradition by Indian tradition.

The history of this people, — their rise, their spread, and final fall, is involved in a degree of obscurity which is the more stimulating to curiosity from the few gleams of light which tradition gives. There is no doubt that an institution which must always have been subject to a very delicate exercise of, and often a fluctuating power, was finally overthrown for some indiscreet act. The power to light this pacific fire is represented as having been held by female hands, before its final extinction in the area of western New York. It is equally clear that, after it began to flicker, it was finally put out in blood by the increasing Iroquois, who appear to have conquered some of the bands in battle, and driven others, or the remnants of others, away.

The present state of our traditions on this subject is interesting, and adds new motives to research. It is affirmed by traditions recently received from the Catawbas, that this tribe originated in the extreme north, in the area of the lakes, whence they were violently expelled. This supplies a hint for research, which, it must be confessed, is thus far without fruits. The Catawba language has no resemblances to the vocabulary of either dialect of the Iroquois, or to the Algonquin; while it differs as much from those of all the Appalachian tribes, and it must be regarded in the present state of our knowledge, as being peculiar.

While, therefore, the search for the history of this tribe in the lake basins appears to be blocked up, the fact of the expulsion or extirpation of the Eries, by the Iroquois, remains well attested; and the prolonged war kept up against the Catawbas and their confederates the Cherokees, by that confederacy, favors the idea of an ancient, as it is confessed to have been, a very extraordinary and bloody feud. At least the announcement of the fact of the Catawba tradition, throws a renewed interest around the history of that struggle of the Eries with the predominating Iroquois power, and it gives a new impulse to inquiry to find archaeological traces like those disclosed on Cunningham's Island, which appear to attest the former Eriean power.


These remains have been accurately surveyed, and are illustrated in the several maps and sketches from the pencil of Captain Eastman, U.S.A., herewith furnished.

In Plate 34, the island is topographically depicted, with the localities of several antiquarian objects. It consists of a basis of horizontal limestone of the species common


to that lake, rising about fifteen feet above the water-level. The surface where it is exposed discloses the polish created by former diluvial or glacial action — a trait which is so remarkable on the rocks of the adjoining shores at Sandusky. This is covered with a fertile limestone soil, and at the earliest periods all except the old fields bore a heavy growth of hard wood timber. Much of it is still covered by this ancient forest, in which it is probable future discoveries of an archזological character will continue to be made. The island is now readily accessible by a steamboat wharf, which has been erected on its southern shore by Mr. Kelly, the present proprietor.

Plate 35, denotes a crescent-shaped and irregular earth-work, on the south side of the island, which has the general appearance of an embankment, or circumvallation intended to enclose and defend a village. The gates, or sally-ports, which were probably constructed of wood, occupy the east side and the extreme north-western angle. The embankment is twelve hundred and forty-six feet around the crescent-shaped part, and about four hundred feet on the rock-brink of the island.

Plate 36, represents a second enclosure, marked by a circumvallation, situated at a short distance west of the former, fronting like it, on the rocky and precipitous margin of the lake. This front line is 614 feet. The embankment, which is wholly without gate or sally-port, is 1243 feet around.

Within these enclosures have been found stone axes, Figs. 1, 2, and 3, Plate 37, and Figs. 2 and 3, Plate 38; pipes, Figs. 5 and 6, Plate 38; perforators, Fig. 1, Plate 38; bone fish-hooks, Fig. 4, Plate 38; fragments of pottery, Figs. 7 and 8, Plate 38; arrowheads, vide group, Fig. 1, Plate 39; net-sinkers, Fig. 2, Plate 39; and fragments of human bones. The arrow-heads were found in a fissure of the rock in large quantity, and were apparently new, and had been concealed in this kind of rude armory. With them was found the largest species of axe, figured, which has also apparently been unused. These vestiges of art correspond entirely with the general state of knowledge and wants of the surrounding aborigines.

Five small mounds on the southern and western part of the island, (Plate 34,) are of the kind denominated barrows, (vide definition, Part I., p. 49.) On a bay on the north shore of the island there is a brief pictographic inscription, on a limestone boulder, which has been reversed by the action of tempests on that shore. This is depicted in Plate 40.


The interest arising from these evidences of former occupancy in the aboriginal period, is inferior however to that excited by a sculptured rock lying on the south shore of the island, about two hundred feet from the west angle of the enclosure. (Plate 35.) This rock is thirty-two feet in its greatest length, by twenty-one feet in


its greatest breadth. It is a part of the same stratification as the island from which it has been separated by lake action. The top presents a smooth and polished surface, like all the limestone of this quarter when the soil is removed, suggesting the idea that this polish is due to glazial attrition. Upon this the inscription (Plate 41) is cut. This cutting is peculiar. The figures and devices are deeply sunk in the rock, and yet present all its smoothness of surface, as if they had been exposed to the polishing or wearing influence of water. Yet this influence, if from water, could not have been rapid, as the surface of the rock is elevated eleven feet above the water-level. Its base has but a few inches of water around it.

Plate 42, exhibits a perspective view of the relative position of this natural monument; also of the lake itself, and of the quiet picturesque beauty of the adjacent shores; and the entire scene is characteristic of Lake Erie in its summer phase. The sculpture itself has been referred, for interpretation, to the same aboriginal pictographist who interpreted the inscription of the Dighton Rock, Part I., page 112. It would be premature, therefore, to attempt its reading in the present state of the question. Of one thing, however, a definite opinion may be expressed. It is by far the most extensive and well sculptured and well preserved inscription of the antiquarian period ever found in America. Being on an islet separated from the shore, with precipitous sides, it has remained undiscovered till within late years. It is in the pictographic character of the natives. Its leading symbols are readily interpreted. The human figures —the pipes; smoking groups; the presents; and other figures, denote tribes, negotiations, crimes, turmoils, which tell a story of thrilling interest, in which the white man or European, plays a part. There are many subordinate figures which require study. There are some in which the effects of atmospheric and lake action have destroyed the connexion, and others of an anomalous character. The whole inscription is manifestly one connected with the occupation of the basin of this lake by the Eries — of the coming of the Wyandots — of the final triumph of the Iroquois, and the flight of the people who have left their name on the lake.


THE vestiges of aboriginal occupancy in South Carolina have not been examined in the field — or, but cursorily and incidentally.

If the investigations of a recent observer in Alabama be correct in the opinions he expresses of the eccentric line of march of the expedition of De Soto, the site of the ancient "Cofitchiqui" was on the South Carolina banks of the Savannah River. It


was here that a dagger and several coats of mail were found, in 1540, by that adventurous discoverer, which were believed to have been brought from the sea-coasts of Carolina, where the Signor Ayllon had lost his life in a prior period of Spanish adventure.

Nor is it unworthy of our archזological records in this state, to notice, in connexion with its aboriginal remains, the ruins which we apprehend exist of the fort first erected by France, in her attempts to found a Protestant colony in Carolina, near the ancient town of Beaufort. The head-waters of the Broad river and its tributaries appear to have been the residence of a heavy Indian population, who found a reliable means of subsistence at all seasons in its fish and Crustacea. The antique mounds of oyster-shells, which line the banks of the principal streams, tell this story in a manner not to be mistaken. The raising of cotton on these rich alluvial lands for so many years has not been sufficient to obliterate this species of aboriginal monument of occupation.

Upon the waters of the Pocotaligo there are known to be seated a number of mounds of earth of a form and dimensions which appear to commend them to a minute archזological survey. Indeed, the entire seaboard of the State, with the valleys of its principal rivers, demand examination, and appear to promise the development of facts important to a correct understanding of its Indian history. This it is intended to make in season to have the results incorporated in a subsequent part of this work. In the mean time, the following notices of objects of antiquarian value from this State are given, from an examination of the cabinet of the late Samuel George Morton, of Philadelphia:

Plate 43, Figs. I and 2, are drawings, of the full size, of a species of clay pipes found at Kershaw with the remains of Indian sculpture. Figs. 1 and 2, Plate 44, exhibit pipes sculptured from stone, from Camden. Fig. 3, Plate 44, represents the stone crescent-shaped blade of an antique battle-axe, from the same district. It has an eye for fastening a wooden handle. Fig. 4, Plate 45, is, apparently, the partially mutilated part of an idol-pipe, curiously sculptured from green serpentine rock. Fig. 5, Plate 46, is a stone mortar and pestle; not unlike a similar instrument used by the Toltecs and Aztecs for making tortillas.

Vases of pottery were made by the tribes of this State with a degree of skill equal to the best specimens obtained from the countries of the ancient Appalachians. These are exhibited in some entire vessels, marked 1 and 2, Plate 46, from Camden. It is a compact terracotta figure; one having a handle formed of the head of an animal which represents, apparently, a cat. Fig. 3 of the same plate depicts a vase from Alabama, and shows conclusively a parity in this art among the southern tribes extensively. Fig. 4 represents a stone amulet found at Camden, South Carolina.



THE ensuing descriptions relate to articles deposited in the State Collection at Albany:

Fig. 1, Plate 45, from Washington County, is, apparently, a sacrificial, or a flaying knife. It is carved from a compact piece of green serpentine — a material analogous, in every respect, to the idol-pipe from Camclen, So. Ca., Fig. 3, same Plate.

The several articles grouped in Plate 47, Figs. 1, 2, 3, and 4, from Ellisburgh, Jefferson County, exhibit the same ready tact in moulding images of the human face and the distinctive heads of animals on the plastic basis of clay pipes, which is found extensively in that area; and in the fragments of vases, Figs. 5 and 6, the ornaments are of the same description which characterizes the entire vase-pottery of this state of the Indian period.

Plate 48, Figs. 1 and 2, exhibits stone axes, wrought, apparently, from silicious slate, with great exactitude. This has been also employed for all the antique stone crescent-shaped tomahawks which have been examined over a wide surface of territory.

Plate 49, Fig. 1, is labelled, in the State Collection at Albany, "war-club." This is believed to be correct, although it has the general character of the stone net-sinker. Fig. 2 is regarded as a pipe amulet; it impresses the observer strongly, as being analogous in its use to the anomalous instrument Fig. 1, Plate 50. Fig. 4 represents an implement found in Le Roy, Genesee County. The fragment of a tube (Fig. 5) of the material of the ancient lapis ollaris is taken from an antique tumulus in Ohio. The moccasin needle, Fig. 3, Plate 49, was commonly made, as is here depicted, of the tibia of quadrupeds or other species of bone. The chief interest is however excited by the articles figured on Plate 50. It seems difficult to account for the use of the octagonal stone implement with an orifice and cover, Figs. 1 and 2, without supposing it to be some implement or contrivance used in the sacerdotal function. Equally anomalous are Figs. 3 and 4, unless we may conjecture that their uses were sempstresscal, and that they were designed for smoothing down seams of buckskin. In Figs. 5 and 6 we behold very clearly the mutilated blade of a battle-axe of silicious slate, which was perforated through its head to admit a handle. It is, with imprecision, labelled "a pipe."

To these notices we subjoin the articles of antiquarian interest of Plate 51, in the possession of Mr. Keeler of Jamesville, Ononclaga, all being of the period of the French attempt at colonization in that section of the country, about 1666. De Moyen had, in 1653, visited the Onondaga country, and it appears in ten years afterwards the Jesuits were permitted to establish themselves in the country. After the close of the Revolution, which threw open this region as a military grant, Mr. Keeler came into


possession of the subdivision which contained the ruins of the old fort, that had once covered this premature attempt at colonization. Figs. 1, 2, 3, and 4, depict a brass pocket-compass, the broken nonus of a dial-plate, and an iron horse-shoe, which were, together with other articles, ploughed up by him at various times. The period which had elapsed after this event had not completely covered the original site of the fort with a forest, but it had allowed these intrusive relics to be mingled with those of the true Indian period, and they excited wonder while the historical fact of the antique French colony remained unknown.


THE remote position of Lake Vieux Desert, its giving rise to the Wisconsin river, and its having a large island in its centre, which fits it for the cultivation practised by the Indians, appear to have early pointed it out, as a retreat and stronghold of the interior Indians.

No enemy could approach it except by water, and its natural capacities of defence were strengthened by an elliptical embankment in its centre, which appears to have served as the basis of pickets. There were small mounds or barrows within the enclosure, together with some cross embankments, and two large excavations without the embankment, all which are shown in Plate 52. It appears to have been the most northwestwardly point fortified east of the Mississippi River. The boundary which separates Wisconsin from Michigan cuts the island into nearly equal parts.


IV. Physical Geography.



1. Notices of the Natural Caves in the Sioux Country, on the Left Banks of the Upper Mississippi Kiver. By N. J. Nicollet.
2. Physical Data respecting the Southern Part of California included in the Line of Boundary between San Diego and the Mouth of the River Gila; with Incidental Notices of the Diegunos and Yuma Indian Tribes. By Lieutenant Whipple, U. S. A.


COLONEL JOHN J. ABERT, chief of the Topographical Bureau, has kindly put into my hands, with the privilege of selection, the posthumous papers of Mr. Nicollet, resulting from his reconnoissances, in the service of the government, among the Indian tribes of the West, from which it may be found expedient to make further selections in future portions of this work. The following remarks embrace notices of a former custom of burial, in connexion with the cavernous rocks of the Upper Mississippi, near St. Anthony's Falls. The disturbances and disunion which the approach of civilization and the introduction of the fur trade produced; the disuse into which the custom of general burial fell, and the great decline in their population caused by the temptations of commerce and the introduction of ardent spirits, commend them to attention. The reminiscences of the old Dacota sachems, to whom Mr. Nicollet refers, appear also to have affected in some, but a lesser degree, their forest neighbors — the Chippewas of the sources of the Mississippi, among whom these baneful influences are being daily developed.


It is apprehended that this observer's deductions, made in local districts, where two hunter and antagonistical tribes, still exist in very much their aboriginal state of aversion to all fixed industry and arts, and who are wedded by the customs of ages to the fallacies of the erratic hunter state, only require to be extended to other portions of the vast interior of North America, lying beyond the Mississippi River, to render these remarks equally applicable to by far the larger number of the unreclaimed tribes. H. B. S.


THE first cave is four miles below the St. Peters. On descending the river, one sees on the left, at about the termination of the four miles, a beautiful rivulet passing out of a deep ravine: pursuing its wanderings a short distance, you encounter a beautiful vault, hollowed out of the free-stone from which issues the rivulet spoken of. The water is pure, transparent, and cool in summer, in comparison with that of the Mississippi.

On descending the Mississippi to arrive at this cave, it will be observed that the calcareous beds which rest upon the free-stone, and which characterize the geological formation of the country, gradually diminish in thickness, showing themselves only in fragments, and then totally disappearing. Above the vault of the cave there are no longer any traces of the calcareous formation, and there is seen only deposits of sand and of pebbles. If the prairie is examined for about a mile towards the north, one will find depressions in the soil, forming those marshes and morasses so frequent in this region, and which are the receptacles of the surrounding waters, and of aquatic vegetation, here so abundant and vigorous. It is these waters which have made a passage through the friable free-stone of the formation, and which issue in a stream from the vault which they have formed. The stream therefore is not long, nor probably deep, as it runs over a bed upon the general level of the affluents of the river.

The second cave is four miles lower down, and on the same side of the Mississippi, that is to say, about eight miles below the St. Peters. It is half-way up the hill which borders the stream. It is however closed by the crumbling down of the upper beds of friable calcaire, in which it is hollowed. Carver visited and described this cave, and gave it celebrity by attaching to it the description of a custom of the Sioux of his time, who at certain periods of the year, carried their dead thither with great solemnity.

According to information which I gathered from the oldest living men of the nation, who had not merely seen these ceremonies, but had also borne a part in them, the cave itself formed no essential feature of the ceremonies; and its picturesque and


sentimental effect to the eyes of the whites, was with them purely accidental, and did not enter into the idea upon which the custom was founded.

Formerly, and even during the first years of the present century, the Sioux, who constituted the tribe of lake people, the Mendewakantons, were united in three large and populous villages. The first village, the principal one of the tribe, and which gave them their name, was situated east of the Mississippi, and some four miles from the St. Peters, upon the borders and environs of a large and beautiful lake, not as yet found on our maps, and of which the name was, and still is, Mendewacanton. The second village was the village of the Grand Marais, tshokantauha, and was situated upon the river a short way below the cave in question. The third village was upon both sides of the river St. Peters (the Minnisota), six miles from its mouth, and where there is at this day the small village of Penishon. A number of living persons, as well among the Sioux as among the mixed races, and also old traders, remember these three villages, and speak of the third as having been during their time very flourishing and populous; the cabins of the Indians extending in several lines on both sides of the St. Peters, on a height of from one to two miles. The common intersection of the roads of communication between these villages, was precisely on the spot of the cave described by Carver. The low grounds and the marshes are near the site where the sugar maple and the wild rice grow in abundance. It was upon this large flat where the inhabitants of the three villages met in spring to make sugar, and in autumn for the wild rice harvest. It is well known, that among all the Indian nations, these causes of reunion gave rise to the observance of feasts, ceremonies, and practices founded upon their ideas and customs. It is known also that these nations place their graves in places most obtrusive, and exposed to the veneration of their people, and that at the same time these graves or tombs must be so near families, that they can. watch over their preservation, and continue the attentions they owe to the dead; such as to make offerings to them; to give them something to eat, to smoke, and to talk with them from time to time. Under these considerations, no place could better meet the sentiments of the Mendewakantons, than that of the plateau, or level, or flat, above the cave. (Plate 58.) Therefore it was that the three villages carried thither their dead, placing them upon scaffolds constructed at an elevation out of reach of the wolves, and of profanation from animals. But they never placed their dead in the cave, which was merely esteemed a place for the sports of their children, and in which they could display their courage by daring each other, as to who would penetrate the farthest into it, which would never have been permitted if the bones of a single person had ever been placed there.

The cave is long, and without water. The crumbling of the vault has closed the entrance of it many years since. If this accident had had the least influence upon their sentiments of respect and of recollection of the dead, it is not to be believed that


they would have remained as indifferent to it as they have; for they have not attempted to reopen it, nor have they taken any note in their memory of the event.

More recently, when the war between England and the United States, and circumstances of the fur trade, had involved the Sioux in their disastrous consequences, the grand tribe of Mendewakantons lost peace, harmony, and independence. Policy, commerce, spirituous liquors, and the vices and crimes of civilization, not only broke the ties which united the different tribes of the same nation of powerful people animated by the same spirit, but their consequences tended to increase the hatred so apt to be generated between savage nations, associated them with interests not properly their own, and involved them in wars with each other.

Then the wars between the Mendewakantons and the Chippewas, east of the Mississippi, became more frequent. Then the traders, who had for a long time held their factories at the grand village of the lake, were obliged for greater security to establish themselves at the St. Peters; and the Indians, whose condition had become dependent on the traders, were themselves also obliged to change their habitation.

The tribe became disunited. Each family recovered the bones of their ancestors, and went off to establish themselves elsewhere. The three large villages disappeared, and the grand cemetery common to all disappeared also. The tribe of Mendewakantons, once so celebrated for its hospitality, its fine population, and its strength, exists now only in increments, and presents itself only in fragments, collected in small and poor villages, scattered upon the Mississippi, the St. Peters, and the lakes in the environs of the falls of St. Anthony. Governed by inferior chiefs, ambitious that the traders should second their interests — but with whom, except in the regrets and profound grief of the old men, there is no longer any notion of respect for the character of the nation, or any recollection of the traditions which established its union, its strength, its customs, and its glory. Some of these old men have often communicated to me their bitter reflections at the present degraded condition of their people. They said that there were no longer as many old men as formerly, and the few who remained were without consideration or moral influence; that they often conversed with each other on these sad subject; and when they turned their recollections to times not far removed, they were utterly confounded at the diminution of their population, the destruction of their institutions, and the loss of all their ancient national virtues.

The Chippewas of the lakes of the sources of the Mississippi, who have not yet had immediate contact with the whites, and upon whom the effects of the civilization which is approaching them have been felt only at a distance, make the same remarks in reference to their nation. Flat Mouth, in the evenings which I have passed with him, has frequently exhibited his anxiety on this subject.

The old men of other nations are equally afflicted in reference to their condition. It is a singular fact that all the Indians with whom I have had occasion to converse on the vast decline of their people, and on the grand facts of the humanity of the


present age, have inquired if I could explain to them the causes of their degeneracy? My answer was as afflicting to them as it would be useless to modern policy and modern Christianity.

Of the two caves, formerly accessible, these remarks demonstrate that there remains but one practicable to the curious, the one about four miles below the Saint Peter. Since the one described by Carver has been closed, it has been lost sight of; and when travellers arrive, and desire to visit the cave which they have heard so much spoken of, they are carried to the small cave, which does not in the least degree meet the marvellous accounts which they have previously received.

Featherstonhaugh, in his Geological Report of 1836, says, in speaking of his visit to this small cave: "I followed this ravine about two hundred paces, and found that it led to the cave which Carver had so accurately described." There is but a small difficulty to explain here. Carver never saw or had any knowledge of this cave; how then could he so accurately give a description of it? The description which he gave belongs to this closed cave. Featherstonhaugh, in his report, frequently refers to the authority of Carver, and nearly always as happily as in the present instance. There was much negligence in Featherstonhaugh, in not having taken more pains to establish a judgment upon facts which more recent works and persons on the spot could have furnished every desired explanation of. All the old residents of St. Peters could have cleared up the matter of Carver's cave.


THE following diary of Lieutenant Whipple's survey of the line of boundary between San Diego and the point opposite the junction of the Gila with the Colorado River, which was executed under the orders of Major Emory, has been communicated for this work by Colonel J. J. Abert, chief of the Topographical Bureau, U. S. A.

Its notices of the topographical features, latitudes, temperature, heights, and distances, and the general physical geography of that hitherto unexplored section of the country, are of high value. The incidental notices given of the Diegunos and other Indian tribes of that part of California, their manners and customs, and some specimens of their languages, are the most recent and authentic which we possess.

The languages being the true key to their history, the printed formula of words and


numerals has been distributed extensively among gentlemen having military duties to execute on those distant frontiers; and promises have been made, both by the head of the Bureau, and several of the subordinate officers who are favorably situated to pursue these inquiries, which lead me to hope that I shall be placed in a position to acknowledge future favors from this source. H. R. S.


HAVING engaged Tomaso as guide and Indian interpreter, on the 11th day of September, 1849, we started from the mission of San Diego for the junction of the Rio Gila with the Colorado. Tomaso is chief of the tribe of Indians called Lligunos, or Diegunos; whether this was their original appellation, or they were so named by the Franciscans from San Diego, the principal mission among them, I could not learn. According to Tomaso, his tribe numbers about 8,800 persons; all speaking the same language, and occupying the territory from San Luis Rey to Aqua Caliente. They possess 110 arms, and are very peaceable. Crimes, he says, are punished — theft and bigamy by whipping, and murder by death. They profess the greatest reverence for the Church of Rome, and, glorying in a Christian name, look with disdain upon their Indian neighbors of the desert and the Rio Colorado, calling them miserable Gentiles.

The Mission of San Diego, about five miles from the town, and two from the Plaza of San Diego, is a large pile of adobe buildings, now deserted, and partly in ruins. There remains an old Latin library, and the chapel walls are yet covered with oil paintings, some of which possess considerable merit. In front there is a large vineyard, where not only delicious grapes, but olives, figs, and other fruits, are produced abundantly. In the days of their prosperity, for many miles around the valleys and plains were covered with cattle and horses belonging to this mission; and the padres boasted that their yearly increase was greater than the Indians could possibly steal. But in California the sun of their glory is set for ever. Near by stand the thatched huts of the Indians — formerly serfs, or peons; now the sole occupants of the mission grounds. They are indolent and filthy, with more of the vices acquired from the whites, than of the virtues supposed to belong to their race. Some of them live to a great age; and one old woman, said to be far advanced in her second century, looks like a shrivelled piece of parchment, and is visited as a curiosity.

Many of their Indians, men, women, and children, assembled on the bank of the stream, apparently to witness the novelty of a military procession; but a pack of cards was produced, and, seating themselves upon the ground to a game of monte, they were so absorbed in the amusement as to seem unconscious of our departure.

Our route lends over steep hills, uncultivated and barren, excepting a few fields of


wild oats — no trees, no water in sight from the time of leaving the mission, until we again strike the valley of the river of San Diego, half a league from Santa Monica, the rancharia of Don Miguel de Pedoriva, now occupied by his father-in-law the prefect of San Diego, Don Jose Antonio Estedillo. The hill-tops are white with a coarse quartzose granite; but as we approach the rancho of Don Miguel, the foliage of the trees that fringe the banks of Rio San Diego formed an agreeable relief to the landscape. Here the river contains a little running water, but before reaching the mission it disappears from the surface, and at San Diego is two feet below the bed of shining micaceous sand. Maize, wheat, barley, vegetables, melons, grapes, and other fruits are now produced upon this ranch in abundance: with irrigation, the soil and climate are suitable for the cultivation of most of the productions of the globe. But the mansion-houses of such great estates in California are wretched dwellings, with mud walls and thatched roofs. The well-trodden earth forms the floor, and although wealth abounds with many luxuries, few of the conveniences and comforts of life seem known. From fifty to one hundred Indians are employed on this ranch, in cultivating the soil, doing the menial household service, and attending to the flocks and herds. Their pay is a mere trifle, and Sundays are allowed to them for holiday amusements, attending mass, riding, gaming, drinking.

Sept. 12th. — From Santa Monica to Santa Maria, five and a half leagues, the steep hill-sides showed scarcely the vestige of a road, and night overtook us mid-way. For the first league we follow a Canada, through which extends a row of live-oaks, with here and there a pool of water. We cross a range of barren hills, and pass a ravine with magnificent oaks, a little grass, and indications of water. Another ridge brings us into a valley, rendered beautiful by a liberal growth of wide-spreading oaks; and a long, winding, and gradual descent leads to a wooded glen, where the thick foliage of intertwining branches throws a shade over a spring of limpid water, and seems inclined to shield from mortal eyes a treasure sacred to the sylvan deity. But here the road was bad, and as we cut the trees to mend the way, it seemed like sacrilege. Another league, with here and there a tree, brings us to Santa Maria. This is the rancho of the hospitable Don Jose Maria Martin Ortega. It lies in a fertile basin, many miles in extent, and contains an excellent mineral spring. The mountains surrounding are covered with bleached masses of coarse granite, and the principal ranges have a general direction from N. W. to S. W.

RANCHO DE SANTA MARIA, Sept. 15th, 1849.
  9h A. M. 12h M. 3h P. M. 6h P. M.
Green's Syphon Barometer 28.715 in 28.719 in 28.681 in. 28.633 in.
Fahrenheit's Attached Thermometer 80° 86°.005 83°.005 67°.05
Fahrenheit's Detached Thermometer 82° 86° .005 84° 67°.05

Magnetic inclination as determined by observations with Fox's Magnetic Dip-circle. Magnetic intensity, 58° 42'.


Sept. 16th. — The preceding night has been very cool, and the thermometer at sunrise stands at 50°.05, Fahrenheit. Finding the spring water warm, the thermometer was immersed, and immediately rose 70°.5, twenty degrees higher than the temperature of the surrounding atmosphere. The water is highly impregnated with sulphur, but clear and delicious to the taste. Large bubbles of gas are constantly rolling to the surface of the spring from the moving sand below.

Pursuing our journey, we were surprised to find pools of water standing in the road, although there had been no rain probably for months. The road crosses the basin, and for several leagues scoops along pretty little valleys, with patches of grass and trees. This day brought to view the cotton-wood or alamo. It so much resembles the Lombardy poplar, as at first to be mistaken for it. Found much feldspar, containing crystals of garnet and tourmaline. As we approach Santa Isabel, which is seven and a half leagues from Santa Maria, a change comes on the face of the country. Nature appears more smiling, the valleys teem with grass, and the oaks, though small, are creeping from the canadas to the hill-sides.

Santa Isabel is a charming spot, surrounded by gentle hills, and watered by a rapid and never-failing mountain stream. It was a flourishing place during the prosperity of Catholic missions in California. There still remain the ruins of a church, and mud walls of other dilapidated houses. A collection of miserable straw huts serves as a home for about three hundred Indians, who, from having been the slaves of the priests, appear to have succeeded to the inheritance.

They irrigate their fields, and cultivate maize, wheat, and barley. Their vineyard is very flourishing. The most delicious grapes are in great abundance. Peaches, figs, and apples, are beginning to ripen, while we feast upon melons and pears. Many of the Indians are shrewd, and evidently not wanting in natural capacity; but they are in that stage of civilization in which man seems most degraded. They have acquired a knowledge of, and a taste for, the vices of the oppressors of their race, but know nothing of the virtues which might serve as an antidote. Now that they are freed from bondage to the Franciscans, and from the equally exacting Spaniards, it remains for the United States to render that freedom a true blessing, by establishing among them schools where they may be taught their duties as Christians and as men. Their ideas upon religion are few and simple. There is a God in heaven. Their tribe, and all who have been marked with the sign of the cross, are Christians, and when they die they will go to the happy regions. All others are Gentiles and outcasts from heaven.

The geological formation here consists of quartzose granite, mica, schist, and talcose schist, with tourmaline and hornblende. Some indications of metal. Silver is said to exist in this vicinity; but where, the Indians do not pretend to know.

Dr. Parry thinks he felt the shock of an earthquake this evening.


SANTA ISABEL, Sept. 17th, 1849 —
  9h A. M. 12h M. 3h P. M. 6h P. M.
Green's Syphon Barometer, No. 222 27.232 in 27.256 in 27.253 in. 27.189 in.
Attached Thermometer, 4 70°.5 84°.5 86° 71.5°
Detached thermometer, 4 74° 81° 86° 71°

On the morning of September 18th we took an early start, and as the short cut of sixteen miles to San Felipe is not passable for wagons, we proceeded in a northerly direction toward Wamer's ranch. The valleys through which our route leads are really charming for California. The groves of oaks are filled with birds of song, and morning is made joyous with the music of the lark and blackbird.

Having traversed the long valley of Wamer's ranch, eight miles from Santa Isabel, we struck the much-travelled emigrant road leading from the Colorado to El Puebla de los Angelos. In a ravine of superb oaks we stopped to gather grapes; for here is an Indian village, a mountain stream, and a vineyard.

Upon entering San Felipe, twenty miles from Santa Isabel, we found several parties of emigrants, some of them destitute of provisions. They tell us that, upon the desert, we shall find many in a condition bordering upon starvation. They also confirm the reports of the emigrants at San Diego concerning the hostilities committed by the Indians at the mouth of the Rio Gila. One party pretended to have had a pitched battle with them, and showed an arrow with which one man had been wounded. The number of the Yumas at the mouth of the Gila was estimated at five thousand, and it was feared that they would utterly destroy the emigrant parties in their rear.

The village at this place contains probably fifty Indians, part of whom are Diegunos, and acknowledge the authority of Tomaso; the rest belong to the tribe of the desert called Como-yei or Quemeya, speaking a different language, and totally ignorant of Spanish. To my surprise, the women were neatly dressed in calico frocks, and, notwithstanding the streaks of tar with which they paint their faces, some were quite good-looking. Their Zandias were all "verde," and they had nothing else to sell. As at this place we take leave of the Lligunos, it may be well to record such words of their language as have been gathered from Tomaso, their chief, and others of their tribe.

Diegunog. English.
mo-quue, or hut horse
all-hut, or moolt mule
ay-cootcht man
sun woman
nile father
tile mother
hainato body
estar head
wa face
hoo nose
a-yen eyes
a wuc eyes


Diegunos. English.
ah mouth
selh'l hand
a sae'l fingers
cuwis arms
ewith'l leg
toon knee
ha-mul-yay foot
hil-e-tar hair
el-mam boy
en yat'l to-day
mat-in-yat'l to-morrow
hoon night
han, or hanna good
a-wah house
tay huth, or cuchao blanket
a pl-eu hat
hind one
ha-wue two
ha-mook three
cha-pop four
suap five
ooo-quit hue money
iris coquit'l hue  
poot wurris coquit'l hue he wants money
n'yah I
poo he
twa am
pee here
n'ya-pee-tawa I am here
poo-ce-pa-a he was there
ach-a-ma-cha fruit
aha water
me-yut'l bread
as-a-o to cat
ay-sail to drink
ha-mat'l ear
n'ya-aha a say I drink water
n'ya-coquago asaho I eat meat
quarquue brandy
asu-muaye to be drunk
n'ya quar-quac asu I drink rum
omuc'l, or omaho nothing
ho yes
n'ya hub n'yay pilyay I have a home
n'ya-hut pour yayo I had a horse yesterday
n'y'a hut meton yat'l ninia I shall have a horse to-morrow

Sept. 19. — Left San Felipe at 8 A. M. Trees and grass gave place to rocks and sand. About two and a half leagues from San Felipe we entered the dry bed of an anoyo which traversed for nearly a league a winding ravine produced by a fault in the mountains.

The width in some places was barely sufficient to admit the passage of our wagons, while the perpendicular height of the rock on either side was at least fifteen feet. The rock, at first coarse granite, with tumuli of Pedrigal, passed into an indurated shale, talcose or mica slate. Veins of quartz were still numerous.

Encamped at El Puerto. Three and a half leagues from San Felipe, we found springs of water, a little grass, but no wood. Here were many emigrants, who gave the same dreary account of the desert as was told us last night; much sand and no grass. One of the men showed me a piece of lead-ore, apparently containing silver, found at this place.


Left El Puerto at 8 A. M., Sept. 20th, crossed a steep hill, and entered the basin of Vallicito. Here abounded cacti, maguey, fonguiera spinosa, and wild sage, but not a blade of grass. Wading the sand for a league, the hills close in, to form a narrow valley where we find grass and excellent springs of water impregnated with sulphur. Here we encamp; near us are the ruins of adobe huts, indicating the decline of the Indians. There remain a few naked and miserable wretches who have a garden of green melons, but nothing to eat except the roots of wild maguey.

This day we first met with the mizquite bean, upon which the prosperity of our horses and mules, and the success of our expedition, are expected to depend. The accompanying sketch represents a branch of the mizquite screw-bean. These screw-like pods grow in clusters of eight or ten upon the same stem. Both the screw and the pod of the mizquite contain much saccharine matter, and are very nutritious. They ripen at different seasons of the year, and are very abundant, each tree producing many bushels.

VALLICITO, Sept. 20th

  12h M. 3h P. M. 6h P. M.
Green's Syphon Barometer, 28.511 in 28.492 in 28.439 in.
Detached Thermometer, 99°.50 96°.05 96°.05
Detached Thermometer, 99° 99° 98°

VALLICITO, Sept. 21st

  6" A. M. 9" A. M. 12" M. 3" P. M.
Green's Syphon Barometer, 28.400 in 28.461 in 28.484 in 28.443 in.
Detached Thermometer, 61°.05 96° 100°.05 99°.05
Detached Thermometer, 62°. 101°. 99°. 99°.

Sept. 21st. — The day was so warm that we were compelled to lie by at Vallicito until about 5½ P.M., when we pursued our route down the valley which soon stretched out into a plain. The road followed a bed of sand, in which the feet of our horses sunk below the fetlock at every step. Six miles from the springs of Vallicito, a semi-spherical hill in the midst of the valley separated two roads, the right-hand one leading directly to Cariw Creek, the left by a circuit of half a mile, taking you by the way of a mineral spring of drinkable water. The scenery here by moonlight was beautiful. The hills in the back ground, with angles sharp and sides perpendicular, were singular in the extreme. By the dim light it was hard to believe that they were not ruins of ancient works of art. One had been a temple to the gods; another a regularly bastioned fort. The fine large trees which mark the course of the run have furnished the name by which it is known, "Palmetto Spring."

Vegetation in the valley remains unchanged. Cacti, maguey, kreosote lurrea Mexicana, dwarf cedar, and the fonguiera spinosa, are abundant.


Many meteors are seen shooting from the zenith to the S.W. A cloud arose in the East, with frequent flashes of lightning, but the night passed without rain.

Arrived at Cariso Creek, fifteen miles from Vallecito, eight from Palmetto Spring, at midnight. Found the water of the creek quite brackish. Mules and horses would scarcely taste it, thirsty as they were; of food for them, there was none. The emigrants had consumed every blade of grass, and every stick of cane, so that our sorrowful animals are tied in groups to the wagons to ponder their fate upon the desert.

Saturday, Sept. 22d. — The sun was perhaps half an hour high, when our hungry animals were again put in harness. At camp, the creek appears fifty feet wide and nearly a foot in depth; but a mile or two below, it is entirely lost in the thirsty sand.

Our route was through the valley of the Carazul. Its banks are of clay, worn by rain into fantastic shapes, and occasionally mountains appear beyond.

The road is strewn with emigrants winding their way to the "placers." No rocks were visible save masses of pedrigal, stately in structure, and containing large ferruginous nodules. Two leagues from camp we passed a steep ridge, seemingly formed of gypsum clear as glass.

Noon. — We are now fairly upon the desert; sandy hills behind, a dreary, desolate plain before us, far as the eye can reach. An undulating surface of sand, with pebbles of jasper, is sprinkled with small green clumps of Laurea Mexicana.

Thermometer 108°, Fahrenheit, in the shade. 3h P. M. Twelve miles from Cariso Creek; stopped to dig for water, but in vain. Thermometer 106° in the shade.

There appeared in the east a cloud, which soon assumed that peculiar appearance which often precedes a violent storm. A dark mass approached; a hurricane was upon us, and we were enveloped in a cloud of sand. The mules were driven from their path, the canvass covers were torn to shreds, and the wagons themselves in danger of being upset. For fifteen minutes we were blinded, when a torrent of rain quieted the dust; a shower of hail succeeded, and the men, throwing themselves upon the ground, hid their faces in the sand for protection. There was neither flash nor report of lightning for an hour. It came, at length, as night was closing in, to add sublimity to the scene. Pools and streams of water appeared in every direction; and spots upon the parched desert which, two hours before, seemed never to have been kissed even by a gentle dew, now afforded buckets-full of water for the thirsty mules. It was dark when one of the party returned, saying that the road led into a lake which he had been unable to find his way across. Our destination for the night was what the emigrants call New Lake; the nearest point at which we expected to find water. But now we had left the sandy soil of the upper desert, and were traversing a lower plateau whose clayey bed retained the copious shower like a cup. At this time our parties were greatly scattered; some far in advance, others far behind. With us were neither tents nor provisions; to encamp was, hence, impossible. Thinking that the extent of the inundation could not be great, we entered the water and pushed onward. For a mile,


at least, we traversed this lake-like sheet of water; the mules wading to their knees at every step, and still the chains of lightning that seemed to encircle us showed, far as the eye could reach, nothing but water. Yes, there was one spot of land visible —Signal Mountain, about five miles distant — and, after a brief consultation, we turned towards it. Wandering about at night in an unheard-of lake, not knowing into what gulf the next step might plunge us, would have been sufficiently romantic, without the storm, which still raged unabated, the lightning, which blinded, and the thunder, which stunned us. At length the camp-fire of the advanced party was discovered, and served as a beacon to lead us safely into port. The tired mules loudly expressed their gladness at reaching terra firma, and finding, twenty-five miles from Cariso Creek, a resting-place at camp. There is no grass here, but a rank growth of what is called careless weed is very abundant. This affords little nutriment. The hungry animals, however, prefer weeds to nothing. At 11 P. M. the stars were shining brightly, and scarcely a cloud was to be seen. Lieutenant Coutts, commander of the escort, thinks that during the storm he felt an earthquake.

Morning, Sept. 23d, showed our encampment to be upon the banks of a beautiful little sheet of water, called, by the emigrants, "New Lake." Kearney's route, Cooke's and Graham's trails, must all have been north of this lake, or this body of water would have been seen. The water is fresh, but in position it is far from the Salt Lake laid down upon Emory's map.

The prominent mountain lying about four miles south and ten degrees east from camp, and apparently two thousand feet in height, must serve as a beacon to travellers crossing the Colorado, and may probably be found a convenient point from which to flash gunpowder for the determination of the difference of longitude between San Diego and the mouth of Rio Gila. Hence it may be called "Signal Mountain," and this lake so near its fort, "Signal Lake." The accompanying hasty sketches give rough views of both lake and mountain. The former is about a quarter of a mile in length, and a hundred yards wide, depth not ascertained. Mud-hens were the only navigators visible. The southern bank is high, and sprinkled with mizquite trees. Upon the north is marsh, with careless weed. At its eastern extremity, the lake communicates with a little bayou, the course of which is distinctly marked toward the southeast with mizquite. This is a portion of the stream which has been termed by the emigrants "New River."

Left Signal Lake at 8 A. M., hoping to find grass at our next stopping-place. There is a trail upon each bank of the bayou. Proceeding in a general E.S.E. course, we crossed the stream at a distance of five or six miles from the lake. At this point, the banks were steep, the bed of the stream from, ten to twenty feet in width, and ten feet below the surface of the surrounding plateau. The depth of the water was less than a foot; and there was no current, for, in many spots above, the channel was dry. A


few miles beyond the bayou, we struck the border of a large grove of mizquite, where we found great quantities of beans. Here were first found shells of the fresh-water muscle. Hares and many partridges were seen. The deep channel of New River again appeared with more water than before. Twelve miles from Signal Lake, we again struck an angle of the river, where the banks were low and the stream nearly fifty yards wide. The water was sweet, apparently deep, and silvery fish, as large as perch, were seen in it. The scene from this place is roughly represented in the accompanying sketch. As we approached our destination for the night, the sands of the desert gave place to green patches of grass. At sunset, we encamped about eighteen miles from Signal Lake, at a point on this river called, par excellence, New River, the oasis of the desert, where sweet water and excellent grass are abundant.

Monday, Sept. 24th, half an hour after sunrise. Thermometer, 72°, Barometer, 30.119 inches. The grass here is good, and so abundant that we will be enabled to wait here for our remaining trains, and recruit the weary animals. We are now in the midst of the desert, and at the recruiting place of all travellers. The white tents of the numerous emigrants give the place quite the air of a village. The grass upon the plains is short, green, and tender. Upon the banks of the stream it grows tall and thick. Dr. Perry, the botanist, thinks the grass a new species, which he proposes to call "Chrondrosium Desutorum." Although the river bears no marks of being new — as its name implies, the grass which grows in its vicinity has probably but lately made its appearance upon the desert. A change seems passing over this region, rain becomes more abundant, mizquite grows, and careless weed springs up, soon to give place to more tender herbage.

NEW RIVER JORNADA, Sept. 25th, 1849 —

    6h A. M. 9h A. M. 12h M. 3h P. M. 6h P. M.
Green's Syphon Barometer, No. 222. 29.935 in 30.014 in, 30.000 in. 29.908 in 29.880 in.
Attached thermometer   68°.5 94°.5 100°.5 104°.5 95°
Detached Thermometer   69° 98° 104° 108° 98°

(Observed with Fox's Dip Circle for Magnetic Inclination and Intensity.)

Sept. 20th. A sunrise. Thermometer, 75°; barometer, 29.880 inches. This day made a reconnoissance in the vicinity of New River. Three and a half miles S. S. E. from camp, crossed the bed of New River upon dry ground. Careless weed and grass very luxuriant. The bank of the mizquite grove was gay with the songs of small birds. South, the mountain range, patches of green grass, with here and there a kreosote plant, appeared. All else was hard clay, baked and cracked in the sun to appear like a pavement of wood. Every where, near the banks of the stream, the Planorbus and other fresh-water shells have been found in abundance; and here small volutes covered the ground, and in some places were heaped up in such quantities as to appear like snow. The heat was intense. An astonishing mirage often presented


to view the appearance of water; as we approached, there seemed to be a bank of trees reflected distinctly from the smooth surface below. The illusion faded away as we drew near, to reappear in the distance. Eight miles from camp, the river impeded further progress, being fifty yards wide, and apparently deep. Mud-hens were swimming on its surface, and herons with their long bills were dipping for fish.

Dr. Parry went to the mountains to-day, by taking a course nearly S.W. He crossed no streams except the one at camp. The foot of the hills was sprinkled with locust trees, but the mountains seemed destitute of vegetation.

Sept. 27th, at sunrise. — Thermometer 70°, Barometer 29.814 in. At 5h P. M. recommenced our journey. Two miles from New River our route lay over a level plain, green with the characteristic grass, and the Laurea Mexicana. Grass by degrees gave way to drifting sand; and buttes covered with green shrubs alone broke the monotony of the desert. Five miles from camp we crossed the dry bed of an ancient stream, with steep banks, and a sandy level bed ten feet below the surface of the desert, and one hundred and eighty feet wide. Mizquite lined its banks, while kreosote and wild-sage sprinkled the valley.

Eight miles from New River we encamped at the "Lagoon," where we found water, but no grass or beans for the animals.

Sept. 28th. — Left the "Lagoon" at 4h A. M., and by the aid of Venus, whose light was so strong as to cast a decided shadow, we ascended a bank to the upper desert, leaving in the valley upon our right, one and a half miles from camp, the "Second Wells." We moved on east over the desert, covered with pebbles of jasper or deep-drifting sand, and without shells; with no green thing to relieve the eye save the Laurea Mexicana, which covets solitude. Twenty miles brought us again upon the steep sand-banks which long had bounded our horizon. We descended eighty to one hundred feet, into a muzquite-covered canada, or valley, extending from this point about twenty miles in width to the Rio Colorado. Upon this lower plain, where were found the same fresh-water shells as distinguished the region of New River, we pursued a N.E. course, parallel to the bank which bounds the desert proper, for seven miles, to the three "Wells." Here we encamped, twenty-seven miles from the Lagoon. The wells are dug ten feet deep, at the bottom of a small natural basin, which seems scooped from the plain.

At the camp of the "Three Wells," twelve miles west from the crossing of the Rio Colorado, 1849, September 28th, at 8h 15m P. M., there occurred an earthquake. The oscillatory motion was from east to west. It shook the tents, spilled water from a nearly full bucket, awoke those who were asleep, and frightened many of those who were awake. The rocking motion continued about two minutes.

Sept. 29th. — At 5½h. A.M., left "Three Wells," and kept along the foot of the sand-banks, a little N. of east, for eight miles. Met many emigrants with women and children, facing the desert with cheerful looks. Frank says "that the happiest set of


follows he has ever seen upon the desert, was that encamped at ‘The Wells’ last night with their wives and children."

At the fork of the road we were met by our old guide Tomaso, who had been despatched to warn the Indians of our approach. He was accompanied by Santiago, chief, and the principal men of the band of Yumas, which occupies the village at the lower crossing of the Colorado. Santiago wore a blue great-coat, and a fancy cotton handkerchief bound his head. His legs and feet were bare; others were clad in the simple breech-cloth. All were mounted on spirited horses. The road up to the bank to the left, is the emigrant trail over the deep-drifting sands of the desert. Taking the more circuitous route to the right, we were escorted by the Indians a short distance, to their village in the Canada, luxuriant with maize and melons. We were at once surrounded by great numbers of Indian men and women, evincing friendliness, curiosity, and intelligence. The women are generally fat, and their dress consists of a fringe made of strips of bark bound around the hips, and hanging loosely to the middle of the thighs. The men are large, muscular, and well-formed. Their countenances are pleasing, and seem lighted by intelligence. I doubt whether America can boast of a finer race of Indians. Their warriors wear the white breech-cloth, and their hair hanging in plaits to the middle of their backs, is adorned with eagle-feathers and the rattle of a rattlesnake. They are exquisite horsemen, and carry their bow and lance with inimitable grace. A dozen of these warriors conducted us beyond their village three miles, through fields of maize, and groves of alamo and willow to the Rio Colorado, where we encamped; twelve miles below where the Rio Gila unites its "sea-green waters" with the rightly-named Colorado.

Until October 1st we remained at the lower crossing of the Colorado, waiting for a road to be cut upon the right bank, five miles to the emigrant crossing. Our Indian neighbors were very sociable, bringing us grass, beans, melons, and squashes; for which they received in return, tobacco or money. Old Santiago, their chief, could not speak Spanish, and so our guide Tomaso was made interpreter. There were also here a few of the Co-mo-ya Indians from the desert or San Felipe, and they could converse with us. Santiago and his people professed great friendship for Americans in general, and us in particular. They had never stolen from the emigrants, nor maltreated them in any way; but the Indians higher up, near the mouth of the Gila, they represented as being a desperate set of rascals. They plundered the emigrants of what they could not steal. The day before, a German had been decoyed away from his party and murdered. They had even come to open hostility with some parties of the emigrants, and fought pitched battles; and, as they numbered from five to ten thousand people, they were always victorious. These accounts seemed the more probable, as they agreed with those given by the emigrants themselves. Santiago concluded by requesting us to remain with him, as we were, as he said, too few and too weak to cope with those at the mouth of the Gila.


The basis of our road along the bank of the Colorado, was an Indian foot-path, which wound around every tree that time had thrown across its ancient track, doubling the true distance.

Passing through a forest of cotton-wood and willow, we came to the foot of "Pilot Knob," and having crossed a spur which extends to the river, found ourselves upon the bank at the emigrant crossing. Here we encamped. Pilot Knob is an isolated mountain, and rises above us to the height of about fifteen hundred feet. We ascend the highest peak to fire rockets, and watch for signals from the Sierra beyond the desert.

Tuesday, Oct. 2d, 1849. — Left the foot of Pilot Knob, and travelled on through groves of mizquite, upon the banks of the Colorado; not an Indian had we seen since leaving the village of Santiago; but Tomaso, with some alarm, pointed out fresh footprints in the path we followed. We emerged upon the river. The branching paths were soon after lost. A densely-wooded ravine rendered it impossible to follow the immediate bank of the river. In search of the way, I soon found myself separated from the escort, and alone following a well-trodden path. Eager to reach my destination, I pushed on for an Indian guide. At length the winding path led me into a village of the Yumas. As I rode to the principal hut, without an interpreter, I felt it was imprudent thus to throw myself into the power of these savages. They at once surrounded me. One, with an emerald pendant from his nose, held the bridle of my mule, some played with my pistols, others handled my sword. Seeming to put perfect confidence in their honesty, I nevertheless watched them narrowly, while I endeavored to explain, in Spanish, the object of my visit. Him with the jewelled nose I found to be Anton, a petty chief, or captain of his village. He understood but little of Spanish. Soon there rode up upon a spirited horse, an Indian, whom I found to be a Comoya from San Felipe, called "Mal Anton," and with him I could converse. They having consented to guide me to the mouth of the Rio Gila, I shook off the curious men, women, and children that nearly buried my mule, and rode on; I passed through large patches of maize, melons, zandias, and squashes, leaving villages to the left and to the right. Lost in the maze of paths, and being unable to elicit a word from the grim-looking Indians I met, I turned for my guides. Soon they appeared, coming at full run; the chief in advance, armed with a musket, and Mal Anton followed upon his wild pony, gracefully swinging over his head the noose of his lariat. The chief then led the way, while the other followed me through deep ravines and rude plantations. At length, having no fancy for sharing the fate of my namesake in Mexico, I ordered Mai Anton with his lariat in advance. "Tuirc v un bon Corazon?" he inquired as he passed. I assured him of protection as long as Americans were well-treated by them. They led me two miles, to the junction of the Rio Gila with the Colorado, where I found a hill, excellent for an astronomical observatory. Eating a melon Anton had gathered for me, I returned and conducted the whole party


hither; encamped, placed the transit in the meridian upon a temporary stand of stone, and observed the same night the passage of both limbs of the moon, and several moon culminating stars.

Wednesday, Oct. 3d. — To-day came Pablo, grand chief of the Yumas, with his scarlet coat trimmed with gold lace, his epaulettes of silver wire, and, to crown all, green goggles. His legs and feet were bare, but he did not allow that to detract from the dignity of his manner. Tomaso ushered him in and acted as interpreter, translating my Spanish into Indian for him, and his Indian into Spanish for me. I explained to him, that their territory now belonged to the United States; that the government took an interest in the welfare of the Indians who were honest and well-disposed; that we were disposed to live in amity with them, but were prepared to chastise those who were inclined to evil. He promised that his people should not steal from, or otherwise injure Americans, and I gave him those presents that I had prepared. Having taken a glass of agua-ardiente, his tongue was loosed, his dignity was overcome, and he no longer needed an interpreter. Pablo spoke Spanish better, by far, than I could.

Oct. 4th, 1849. — Many Indians in camp; all, as I ever expected to find them, most peaceably disposed. Bows, and arrows pointed with jasper, guns and pistols, (mostly broken and discarded by the emigrants,) are constantly brought into camp. There is, however, perfect confidence among all parties.

Friday, Oct. 5th, 1849. To-day the Indians of the Yuma tribe held a grand council in honor of our arrival; and as Pablo Coelum, the great chief in epaulettes and green goggles, had been chosen under the Mexican reign, they determined to show their adherence to the United States by deposing their old chief, and, in a republican manner, electing a new one. The successful candidate was our old friend Santiago, captain of the band of Cuchans at the lower crossing. He seems a good old man, and worthy of his honors. Upon his election, he was escorted to my tent for the customary presents, and promised good faith towards all Americans.

Tomaso soon returned with three minor chiefs, or "Captaines de los Cuchanes," Anastasio, Anton, and Pasqual. The band of Anton lives eight or ten miles above us, and is famed for theft, robbery, and murder. Anton is one of their orators, and replied to me in a speech of half an hour's length: but Tomaso pretended that he did not understand the Cuchan language, and would not translate it.

Oct. 7th, 1849. — Took a walk into the villages to see how the Indians live. They all knew me, and received me kindly enough into their family circles, composed of about a dozen men, women, and children, sitting or lying upon the ground, under the shade of a flat roof of branches of trees supported by posts at the four corners. The women, dressed in girdles of bark stripped into thongs, and, partially braided, hanging in a fringe to the thighs, and ornamented with many strings of shell or glass beads, were making a mush of zandias, (water-melons,) or grinding grass seed into flour.

The men, with breech-cloths, or perhaps a shirt cast off by the emigrants, were


ornamented with rings in their noses and eagles' feathers in their hair. The children wore no covering except what nature gave them, but were decked with loads of beads upon their necks, and small strings of the same were inserted through their ears.

The laborious part of their toilet, that in which all their taste and skill are put in requisition, consists in painting. Warriors dye their faces jet-black, with a strip of red from the forehead, down the nose, and across the chin. Women and young men usually paint with red, and ornament their chins with dots or stripes of blue or black. Around their eyes are circles of black. Their bodies are generally of a dark red, and polished with an oily substance, so as to resemble well-cleaned mahogany. The face and body are sometimes fancifully striped with black. Of their hair they are quite proud, and take great care in dressing and trimming it. It falls naturally from the crown of the head, and is neatly and squarely trimmed in front to reach to the eyebrows. The rest is matted into plaits, and falls upon the back, reaching nearly to the ground.

Strings of broken shells called "pook," are highly valued among them. These consist of circular pieces of sea-shell, with holes very nicely driven in the centre. They are very ancient, and were formerly used as money. A string is now worth a horse. An Indian dandy is never dressed without them, and the number of strings worn indicates the wealth of the possessor. The figure of the young dandy, though large, is so faultless in its proportions, that, when I have seen him dressed in his clean white breech-cloth, with no other covering to his carefully painted person, except the graceful plume upon his head, and the wide bracelet of leather, with buckskin fringe, and bright brass buttons, which serve as mirrors, upon his left arm, I could but applaud the scorn with which he looked upon European dress, and the resolute firmness with which he refused the proffered gift of pants.

The Yumas, or as those near the mouth of the Gila call themselves, Cuchans, appear to be skilled in none of the arts. They have neither sheep, cattle, nor poultry. Horses and a few pet lap-dogs, are the only domestic animals found at their ranches. The men are warriors, and occasionally fish and hunt. The women not only attend to their household duties, but also cultivate fields of maize and melons, and collect grass-seed, which they pound to flour for bread.

Returning to camp, I found the deposed chief Pablo Coelum, and his friend, Captain Anton, loaded with presents of melons, for which in return was expected tobacco, red flannel, &c.

Learned from Pablo many words of the Yuma language. Rio Colorado is in their tongue "Hahwith-e-cha-whut," meaning as in Spanish, red river. Rio Gila they call "Hah-qua-su-ethel," meaning salt river. The water is indeed brackish, and salt-water plants grow upon its banks.

Oct. 12th, 1849. — To-day large numbers of Yumas have started upon an expedition against the Mar-i-co-pas. They are mounted on good horses, which they stride without


a saddle, and manage with a halter. Their coal-black faces, and striped bodies and legs, give them a fierce aspect. Their hair is no longer suffered to hang loosely, but is bound with strips of scarlet woollen cloth, with long ends streaming behind. They are led by their famous war-chief, "Caballo-en-Pilo," and, with bow in hand, and quiver of arrows at their back, they look quite formidable.

Monday, Oct. 15th. — Arrived Colonel Collyer, Collector of the port of San Francisco, escorted by Captain Thorne, with thirty dragoons. Under their protection is also a party of emigrants commanded by Mr. Audubon the younger, naturalist, and Lieutenant Browning of the Navy.

Mr. Langdon Haven, and a son of Commodore Sloat, were with this party, which was suffering for the want of provisions.

Oct. 10th. — This evening has furnished a sad occurrence. Brevet Captain Thorne, son of Mr. Herman Thorne of New York, while superintending the transportation of his party across the Rio Colorado, just below the junction of the Rio Gila, was thrown into the river by the upsetting of his heavily-laden boat, and was drowned. The current of the river was so rapid, that all exertions, even those of the Yuma Indians, the best swimmers in the world, were unavailing. Captain Thorne was succeeded in the command of the escort by Lieutenant Beckwith.

Oct. 10th. — Mr. Ingraham has just informed me that the wooden box in which is kept Chronometer No. 719, cracked into pieces last night while used in keeping time. This is another proof of the exceeding dryness of this climate, and I regret that I have no hygrometer to determine it. All the boxes in which the instruments were packed are being destroyed. The nicely-seasoned and well-finished cases made in England many years since for instruments of Troughton and Simms, have shrunk so as not to admit the original contents.

A few nights since, while I was reading the micrometer of the zenith sector, the horn with which my reading lens was incased snapped, and flew from my fingers in three pieces. The peculiar state of the atmosphere was the only cause assignable for such an occurrence.

Oct. 25th. — Continued the survey at the junction of the two rivers. The Rio Gila, a short distance from its mouth, is so shallow that the Indians wade across it. The Colorado at the ferry, a short distance below the junction, is about twelve feet deep. The waters of the Colorado are almost opaque with clay tinctured with the red oxide of iron. But the water is sweet, and when allowed to rest, becomes limpid. The waters of the Gila are covered with a sediment nearly black, and have a brackish taste; making appropriate the Yuma name for it — Ha-qua-siul — meaning "salt water." Both rivers are rapid, and their junction forms a distinctly marked and nearly straight line, leading from the east bank of the Gila to the channel of the Colorado. They unite, and, singularly enough, contract to one-fifth the width of the


Colorado, above, in order to leap through a narrow gorge, which some convulsion of nature has torn through an isolated hill. Upon this hill, eighty feet perpendicularly almost above the water, stands our observatory.

Oct. 27th. — Pasqual, one of the war-chiefs, and Captain Anton, tell me that they are in daily expectation of an attack from the Maricopas. The Yumas deserve chastisement; for, in their late expedition, they surprised their enemies and brought off captive two Indian boys, whom they afterwards sold as slaves to the Mexicans.

Oct. 28th. — Thronged, as usual, with Indian visiters. They say that the Maricopas came in sight of camp yesterday; but, seeing United States troops, dared not attack the Yumas.

Oct. 30th. — This morning at about four o'clock there was great alarm among the Cuchans (Yumas) who live up on the left bank of the Colorado. Our whole camp was aroused by their shouting and firing. By daylight they were swimming the river in crowds; men with their horses, and women with their children; all crying out lustily "Maricope — Mar-i-cope!" Every hill-top was crowded with armed warriors, and others were riding hither and thither; why or wherefore, none seemed to know. At length, Anton told me that many Maricopes had attacked them, and killed one Yuma. By ten o'clock A. M. our camp was deserted by the Indians, and for the rest of the day not one has been seen.

The soldiers think the whole story of Maricopes a ruse, and apprehended an attack to-night. Dr. Coutts has increased the number of sentinels for the night.

Oct. 31st. — Indians have been to-day sociable as formerly; each chief bringing presents of excellent melons. Among them came, for the first time, the great war-chief, "Cabello-en-Pilo." I made him a small present, which secured his friendship.

Nov. 2d. — Among my early Indian visiters this morning, is one whom the whole tribe calls an hermaphrodite. She is gigantic in size, muscular, and well-proportioned. Her breasts are not developed like those of a woman, but she dresses like one of the gentler sex, and it is said she cohabits with a man. She is in disposition mild, and often hangs her head with a mental blush at the jokes of her companions.

From Pablo Coelam, by birth a Comogei, but formerly chief of the Yumas, or Cuchans; from Jose Antonia, whose father was a Mexican, but born of a Yuma mother, and always living with the tribe; from Tomaso, chief of the Diegunos; from Antonia and Mai-Antonio, intelligent Indians from San Felipe; and from other Indians with whom I could converse, I have collected all information possible regarding the tribes of which they knew.

The term "Yuma" signifies "sons of the river," and is applied only to those born upon the banks of the Rio Colorado. The Yumas are divided into five lesser tribes or bands: namely,

1st., Cuchans; numbering about five thousand persons, and living in villages upon


both banks of the Rio Colorado, within about twenty miles from the mouth of the Rio Gila. They are a noble race; well formed, active, and intelligent.

2d., Mah-ha-os. They are a great nation, and live upon the right bank higher up the Colorado, seven days' journey from the mouth of the Rio Gila. Being very poor, they wear only the breech-cloth. They are warriors, and well armed with bows, arrows, and lances.

3d., Hah-wal-coes. This great nation possesses the left (east) bank of the Colorado, eight days' journey above the junction of the Rio Gila. I have been shown to-day, by an Indian, a very good blanket, black and white checked, said to have been made by the Hah-wal-coes.

4th. Yam-pai-o is the name of the tribe which occupies the left bank of the Colorado, six days' journey above the junction with the Rio Gila.

These four nations speak the same language, differing from the Cuchan, and Pablo says he can understand none of them, except the Mah-ha-os. They are, notwithstanding, firm friends and allies of the Cuchans, always assisting them when at war with their perpetual enemies, the Maricopas. In these wars, captives are made slaves, and are for ever degraded. The mother will not own her son after such a misfortune has once befallen him.

At the mouth of the Colorado, about eighty miles below the junction of the Gila, is the tribe called "Co-co-pah." According to the previous definition, these also must be Yumas; but they are enemies of the Cuchans, and no intercourse exists between them. The Gila Indians call it but three days' journey to the country of the Co-co-pahs, and yet they seem to know them less, and fear them more, than any other Indians.

There are upon the desert west of the Colorado two tribes of Indians, called Cah-wee-os, and Co-mo-yah or Co-mo-yei. The Co-mo-yahs occupy the banks of the New River, near the Salt Lake, and the Cah-wee-os live farther north, upon the head-waters of the same stream. Pablo himself is a Co-mo-yah; he was born upon the banks of New River ("Hah-withl-high") of the desert, emigrated hither twenty-five years ago, and when I arrived he was Captain General of the Cuchan tribe. Several Co-mo-yahs are here, and they can generally be distinguished from the Cuchans by an oval contour of the face.

Pablo says that New River was formerly a running stream; that it rose north of the country of the Cah-wee-os, and flowed into the Colorado one day's journey below the lower crossing of the village of Captain Santiago: but, for some twenty or thirty years, the water in it was merely in pools, until the past season, when abundant rains restored its former dimensions, and again water flowed from the salt lakes to the Colorado.

One month has now elapsed since my arrival at this place, and I have spent all my leisure moments in studying the character of the Indians. I have visited their ranchos, and have daily admitted them freely into my tent. Upon the table are always many little things curious and valuable to them, and men, women, and


children, are permitted to examine and pass them from hand to hand without being watched, and never, to my knowledge, have I lost the value of a penny. With men shrewd as are the Cuchans, this might result from policy; but if thieving were tolerated among them, it seems strange that children should not be tempted by the many curious things they handled to recur to the habit.

Sunday, Nov. 18th. — The day was exceedingly pleasant, like our Indian summer. Thermometer, at three o'clock P. M., 82°. For a long time, I have endeavored to ascertain what were the superstitions of the Cuchans; what was their substitute for religion; what their modes and objects of worship. All the reply I could get from Tomaso, and other Indians who glory in the name of Christians, was "Ellos-saben-nada-nada," (They know nothing at all;) and when I made them interpret for me, with the pure Yumas that knew no Spanish, the reply was still "nada." "The Yumas had no god, they worshipped nothing, and went no where after death." At length, a woman appeared with a brass medal bearing the image of the Virgin Mary, when some one knelt to it with clasped hands; all looked on in silence and apparent awe, and afterwards expressed their approbation by saying "ah-h×£tי-kah" (good).

To-day, chief Anastasio took up a French prayer-book, and listened evidently with reverence at hearing it read. He then made a long dissertation in his own language, of which I understood little, except that after death the body of a Yuma is buried, and his ashes ascend to heaven; that he himself had a good heart, and hence was worth any Christian.

Thursday, Nov. 22d. — The rising sun dispelled the clouds and brought a charming day. At 12 M., the barometer, by a sudden fall of about an half inch, indicated the approach of one of our periodical storms, which soon swept over us. The wind, as is usual at such times, nearly precipitated our tents from the cliff into the river below. However, at sunset the wind moderated, the moon peeped from the clouds, and we obtained good lunar observations.

Friday, Nov. 23d. — Having been employed so steadily in observing at night, and computing all day, my health begins to suffer, and last night I was too nervous to sleep; hence the wail of the poor dog, that nightly howls the requiem of his drowned master, seemed more sad to me than ever. When Captain Thorne was lost in the Colorado some weeks since, a Mexican boy shared the same fate. He left it, faithful dog, who has declined the alluring invitations of emigrants and soldiers, preferring rather to lick the ground his master last trod, than accept the daintiest fare from a stranger's hand.

Saturday, Dec. 1st, 1849. — Having determined, with all the accuracy which two months' time could admit, the latitude (32°.43'.31". 6. N.) and longitude (111°.33'. 04". W. of Greenwich) of the monument near the junction of the Rio Gila with the Colorado, and from thence measured 85°.34'.16". 2 W. of S., the azimuth of the line of boundary leading to the Pacific Ocean; and also having settled with the


Mexican commission, which arrived yesterday, all questions relating to the boundary at this point, from which any difficulty could be apprehended, we left the Mexican gentlemen in charge of our fixtures, and turned towards San Diego.

Of late my time has been so much occupied with professional pursuits, that I have had less intercourse with the Indians than formerly, but my opinions of them are little changed from those previously expressed. I will merely add, that to this day, among the Yumas, I have never seen anger expressed by word or action, or known one of their women to be harshly treated. They are sprightly, full of life, of gaiety and good humour.

I will add a vocabulary of the Yuma (or rather Cuchan) language. Great pains have been taken to render it correct. "We endeavored, and some of us succeeded to a certain extent, to converse with the Indians in their native tongue.

In the words of the vocabulary the sounds of the vowels are as follows, viz:
a, like ah.
e, as in me, and ך, as in met, and ט like a in fate.
i, as in pine, and מ, as in pin.
o, as in note, and פ, as in not.
u, as in flute.

The syllable over which the accent is placed should be very strongly pronounced.

The language of the Yumas seems wanting in none of the sounds we have in English, and they pronounce, with great ease and distinctness, any English or Spanish word which they hear spoken.

Yuma (Cuchan.)
Yuma (Cuchan.)
ט-pateh (or) ט-pבh man. ט-טtche hair.
seen-yבck woman. ט-dףtche face
o-shתrche, or o-so* wife ee-yת* face.
n'a-vטre husband. ee-yu-calףque* forehead.
hטr-mבi* boy. smyth'l (or) ט-sim-ile ear.
mט-sטr-hבi* girl. ho-mבie* son.
hail-pמt infant m'chבie; daughter.
loth-mo-cתl father soche brother.
n'taie* mother am-yשck* sister.
mךt-ט-pבie* Indian a-tuc-sבh-o, or ee-a-tuc-suche chin.
ט-cףut-such-ט-rףw-o head ט-pulche, or ee-pailche tongue.
oom-wheltho* head. are-d×£che teeth.
o-cףu-o* hair yah-bo-םnךh beard.
Yuma (Cuchan.)
Yuma (Cuchan.)
n'yeth'l neck. ha-tמ-ol autumn.
ee'-seth'l (or) י-sיel arm. con-niee* warrior.
ee-wיe shoulder. hon-o-wai* parents.
ee-sבlche hand. n'yet'l* friend.
ee-aalche sיrap fingers matro-habיe-י* compadre.
ee-sבlche-calla-hףtche finger-nails n'ye-valyבy house.
ee-mבtche body. een-ou-wa* house.
to-wa-wבm body een-ou-mשt* hut.
mee-sith'l leg. ar-tim* bow.
י-mךtch-slip-a-slap-yבh foot o-tיes-a bow.
י-mךtch serבp toes. n'ye-pבh arrow.
י-mee-cas-sבs* toes. n'yee-pah-tבh arrow of reed.
a-tan* back sho-kine ice.
a-pee-בrpe* hat. o-mתt land.
ee-יie* heart. a-ha-thlou-o sea.
a-w'hut* blood. ha-sha-cut lake.
he-paith-la'-o* town-village. ha-mut-ma-tבrre valley.
ee-pa'h-han rich man. wee-qua-tבie (or) ha-bיe hill or mountain.
co-hףte chief. ha-mut-ma-tבrre quel marm island.
ט-dotche-יe eye. o-wee stone.
ee-yu-sune-yב-o* eye. e'-sith'l salt.
ט-hףtche (or) ee-hףs nose. n'yer-ma-ro iron.
ee-yu-qua-×£fe* mouth. e'-eesh tree.
n'yee-pah-ט-sבh-he arrow of wood. e-יe or e-eetch wood.
a-ta-cבrte* hatchet. ee-atch-a-berrbeerrch leaf.
n'י-ma-ro* knife ta-soת-o meat.
י-cal-hףr* canoe. huts horse.
ha-with'l, or ha-wיel river hoo-wיe dog.
ha-weel-cha-whoot Rio Colorado n'ya-pin winter.
ha-qua-sמ-eיl Rio Gila. mit-har wind.
n'hum-an-ףche shoes. mit-hבr-co-no thunder.
a-×£rbe tobacco. n'ya-col-see lightning.
am-mai sky-heaven. way-mah-coutche breech-cloth.
n'yatch sun. mu-hםe rain.
ha-rup whiskey. ha-lתp snow.
huth'l-ya (or) hull-yבr moon n'awo-cףpe hail.
klup-wa-taie (or) hut-char star ב-ב-wף fire.
no-ma-sup day. a-hב water.
n'ye-as-cup night. n'yat I.
n'yat-a-so-arpe midnight. manto thou.
met-n'-yתm light. ha-britzk he.
n'yat-col-sיe darkness. co-bar-ro (or) cobarque no.
esta-no-sup morning. בh-אh (or) oh yes
n'yat-an-nבie evening epaלlque much.
hue-n'a-pin noon. lueel-y×£h to-day.
oo-cher spring. ten-igh yesterday.
o-mo-ca-che-pתe summer qual-a-yoque to-morrow


Yuma (Cuchan.)
Yuma (Cuchan.)
sin (or)asiיntie one o-ףok to see.
ha-wick (or) ha-vick two. a-moo-hבn to love.
ha-mףok three. au-ou-oתe to kill.
cha-pףp four. au-nתe to sit.
se-rap five. a-boתck to stand.
hum-hook six. n'yee-moom (or) at-co-bיr-qשie . to go
path-caye seven. manתrke paper.
chip-hook eight. ac-coתrt shortly.
hum-ha-mook nine. ac-court-n'ya-m×£oms I go shortly.
sah-hook ten. a-ho-mah (or) marrico-tah beans, (small) with black spots
a-her-mבh bird. qui-yay-vay-may-deek how do you do?
טs-pבtch eagle. yam-a-bבrque; who comes there?
sor-mךh eagles' feathers. mי-cham-pau-ee-ka I am hungry.
sah-with'l feathers ee-yah (ee-yahts, plural) mezquite long-bean.
a-chee fish. ho-wo-d×£wk you have some.
haur-arlk white. es-mי-dיek who knows.
quin-ele (or) n'yתlk black. י-pailque-n'ya-mףok very great.
a-cha-whut red. chi-mךt-a-qתis musk-melon.
ha-woo-surche blue chי-met-a-hבn good melon.
at-so-woo-surche green (same as blue) chט-mטt-ou-yב water-melon, (zandia.)
a-quיsque yellow. che-met-tףh water melon or zandia.
o-taique great. nee-ca-chain cigar.
o-n×£e-×¢que small as-ee-p×£o to smoke.
a-hףte-kגh (or) a-hotk good ac-corque far off.
ha-loolk bad. a-h×£te'k-a-hau-ac very good.
e-hauc (or) e-hבu-ac handsome ha-lulk-a-hau-ac very bad.
ee-pah ugly chim-טn-yשch scissors.
huts-eele cold. n'yeem-cot-a-bar-bah river's bank.
ep-eelk warm ha-bee-co-hב Emory's hill.
que-diqשe (kerdeek) or n'yuc-a-yuc to come. ha-bee-co-a-chis Pyramid hill.
a-woo-noorch to desire ha-bee-to-cתe capital dome hill.
a-woo-טrche, or n'you-a-mלck very bad. ha-be-co-lא Pilot knob.
a-h×£te'k good que-you-so-win-a and ha-bee-quou-yeera Pilot range.
a-ah-oche a light. At-co-ben-quiט-n'ye-val-yay-yee-moom I am going home.
n'yo-pike I have none. mel-ee-kיet-ב chimney rock.
as-a-o (or) atch-a-mבm to eat. n'ye-mףom I am going.
a-see (or) ha-sתe to drink. י-eesse mezquite screw-bean.
co-n×£ to run. Me-tuc-a-deek I am going above.
a-hese (or) chee-nine to dance seen-yac-n'ye-hבu-בc The woman is handsome.
et-sלms to wash.  
n'yats-her-saלlk I wish.  
atch-ar-see-vבrch to sing.  
a-see-niah to sleep.  
a-ee-p×£re to be sleepy  
quer-quטr, (or) atch-ah-querck to speak  


Yuma (Cuchan.)
Yuma (Cuchan.)
ee-pאah-n'yב-a-nשc the man is ugly. marטque (mareck) white beans
at-co-berquie-n'ya-ral-yay-me-moom-ah-hote'k It is well that I am going home. tטr-ditch maize
n'ya-hבp California no-py-am? have you none?
n'yב-hבp-mי-ye-moom I am going to California. n'yo-pיke I have none.
cobבrrque he is not here. Hיr-cףh Mexicans.
mas-tam-hףre devil. Pain-gote-sבh Americans
coo-coo-mבh-at God. ac-o-tבie grass-seed
ךn-carque give me. pook beads made of small pieces of holes in centre and strung
o-oobe-יncarque give me tobacco. que-diquo (ker-dיek) come here
sa-c×£ol beads.    
mezqueeno stingy.    

— The words marked with an asterisk (*) were learned from Pablo; some of them were found to be of his native tongue, Comoyei, and probably nearly all are. Those not marked have been tested by a reference to the native Cuchans. The phrases given were in daily use among us, and were well understood to convey the meaning given.


V. Tribal Organization, History, and Government.



1. The Na�ni or Comanches of Texas. (One Plate.)
2. Oral Traditions respecting the History of the Ojibwa Nation. (Two Plates.)
3. Contributions to the History, Customs, and Opinions of the Dacota Tribes. (Six Plates.)



I have given the subject-matters contained in your book of inquiries respecting the several tribes of Indians of the United States, as much attention as circumstances would admit, and have the honor to enclose for your consideration, this sketch of the Comanches, which was obtained from the best sources of information we have in regard to them.

Owing to the difficulty in finding time to give this subject the attention it requires, this sketch is very imperfect, but in the general questions answered, I have obtained all the information I could get.

Our intercourse with this tribe is so limited, and they have so little confidence as yet in the whites, together with the great difficulty in finding interpreters who fully understand their language, has rendered it impossible for me to obtain more information on the subjects referred to, than this slight sketch. I have had no leisure


to obtain information from any tribe but the Comanches, but would respectfully refer the Commissioner to a communication of the Hon. David G. Burnet, to the Commissioner of Indian affairs, which is a very perfect sketch of the condition of the small tribes of Texas Indians.

I have the honor to be be,
Very respectfully, your obedient Servant,
Robert S. Neighbors, Special Agent.

The Comanches know nothing positively of their origin, and their traditions on this point are very vague and unsatisfactory. They believe they have always lived near the same country they now occupy, and they know of but one migration of their tribes; this took place many years since, when they travelled from the west, and met with what they term the "Mountain Spaniards" in the mountains of New Mexico. They lived with them many years, and intermarried with each other. The first chief they recollect was named "Ish-shu-ku," (Wolf-house); he was a great and wise chief. At the time he lived, they still resided in Mexico. From thence they visited the prairies for the purpose of hunting, and intermarried with the other tribes inhabiting those regions. These were the Wacos, Tah-wac-car-ros, Toriuash, and branches of the Pawnee tribes.

They call themselves "Na-�ni," which signifies — first alive, or live people. They are called Comanche by the Mexicans, Nar-a-tah, by the Wacos, Tah-wac-car-ros, &c., Par-too-ku by the Osages, and Sow-a-to by the Caddoes. When they came from the west, there were no people living on the lands they now occupy. The first white people they saw were on the west side of the Rio Grande or Del Norte. They lived there at that time, and made a treaty with the white traders that they met. The first guns they ever saw they got from the Spaniards; they were common shot-guns. The first rifle, they saw with American traders. The first cloth or dry goods was bought from the French "many years since." They had never heard of it until that time. They got the first tobacco from the Wacos, who raised it themselves; but they are ignorant at what time this took place. Afterwards, they bought from the French who traded them, the cloth, &c.

They have an imperfect tradition that another race of people inhabited this country before them, and that there was a great flood of waters which covered the whole earth, and that the inhabitants, who they suppose were white and civilized, were metamorphosed into "white birds" and flew away; by which means they saved themselves from being destroyed. After this, they believe the Great Spirit made the Comanches on this continent.

They have never heard of any animals except those which are generally known in this region; neither are they aware of anything connected with crossing the large


waters. The first war they recollect was with the Lipans, a branch of the Apaches. They believe in and venerate several deities. They worship one Supreme Being, who they think inhabits a country above the sun. The Sun, Moon, and Earth are their principal objects of worship — the Sun, as the primary cause of all living things; the Moon as the God of night, and the Earth as our common mother.

They believe that the will of the Great Spirit is supreme; that he dispenses good and evil at his will, also life and death. They think if they lie to the Great Spirit, he will cause them to die; and many other punishments are inflicted if they displease him. All their success in war or hunting is derived from Him whom they worship: it is called "making medicine."

They use many charms, and are very superstitious. All charms are supposed to be derived from the Great Spirit, which they buy from their "medicine men." They offer Him many sacrifices. The first puff of smoke is offered to the Supreme, the second to the Sun, the third to the Earth, and after these, to whatever they venerate. The first morsel of what they intend to eat is presented to the Great Spirit, and then buried in the ground. All their implements of war are made by, or undergo charms from, their priests or magicians, who practise charms for the purpose. Their shields are made in imitation of the sun, and before going to war they are stuck upon their lances, facing the rising sun; and no person is permitted to handle or touch them except their owners. They believe that they were made by a secondary spirit, who was sent down to the earth by the Supreme. When he first made them, they were imperfect. The spirit returned to the Supreme, and told what he had made. He was then directed to return and complete his work by giving the beings he had created sense, and instruct them how to live. He taught them how to make bows and arrows, and gave them horses, &c. &c.

They have no name for the country they inhabit, or for the whole continent. They know of no great changes in their tribe, but they have increased greatly in numbers since they left Mexico, by their connexion with other small prairie bands, and the numerous captives taken in their wars — principally from Mexico.

They are at present divided into eight distinct bands, each ruled by their own chiefs, and appear to have a strong connecting link in the similarity of habits and language, and frequently they unite in war or council; occasionally one band is at war with a nation, and the others at peace. The eight divisions of the tribe are classed and named by themselves as follows:

1st. Ho-is, or Timber people, because they live in a timbered country. They are also called "Pine-takers" or honey-eaters, being fond of honey.

2d. "No-ko-nies," because they always live and travel in a circle; their country that they claim being circular.

3d. "Teu-a-wish," or Liver-eaters, because they eat the liver of all game they kill in its raw state.


4th. "No-na-um," because they live in the high prairie where there is no timber or running water, and never leave that kind of country.

5th. "It-chit-a-bud-ah." Cold people, or the northern band, because they live in a cold country.

6th. "Hai-ne-na-une," or Corn-eaters, being fond of corn.

7th. "Koo-che-ta-kers," or Buffalo-eaters.

8th. "Par-kce-na-um," or Water-people; because they always camp as near the waters of lakes or creeks as they can get.

A large number of them speak Spanish imperfectly, and some few understand a little English. All their business is transacted in their own language, for which an interpreter is sufficient. There are at the present time very few pure-blooded Comanches, having intermarried as previously stated. They have not changed their location since their emigration, and their territory in Texas has diminished by the continued encroachments of the whites. The principal chiefs that are known are "Pa-ha-yu-ca," or one who has connexion with his uncle's wife; "Mo-po-cho-co-pie," or Old owl; "Pochan-a-qua-hiep," or Bull-hump, commonly known as Buffalo-hump; "Santa Anna;" "Sah-vi-artce," or Small Wolf; "Tuna-cio-quasha," or Bear's Tail; "Moora-ke-toph," or Mule-dung — Hois chiefs — "Po-hu-ca-wa-kit," or Medicine-hunter; "O-ha-wa-kit," or Yellow-hunter, Ten-a-wish chiefs; "Chip-es-se-ah," or Growing-chief, Koo-chi-ta-ku; "Oho-is," or Naked-head, No-ko-nie. They assume the pre-eminence of all prairie Indians; but this is only allowed by the small tribes, who live on the borders of their country. They have no proof, by monuments, &c., of any other race having existed where they at present live, previous to themselves; and the few traditions preserved by the old men are very imperfect. They believe that the earth is a plain or flat surface.

The principal rivers in their country are the head-waters of the Brazos, Colorado, and Red Rivers; all emptying into the Gulf of Mexico. There are no lakes known, but there are large springs, affording great water-power on the heads of the principal rivers. The surface of the country is generally hilly, which is sterile; but there are many beautiful valleys, abounding in vegetation, and susceptible of the highest cultivation. Wood is scarce, but a sufficiency for future settlers. The prairies are covered with a species of grass, called, by the whites and Mexicans, "musquite," which is highly nutritious.

The constant firing of the prairies checks the increase of timber, and visibly impoverishes the soil. There are no marshes or swamps of any extent in the country, and the only obstacle to roads is the rocks, through which passes can be found with little difficulty. No volcanic eruptions exist at the present time, and no signs of any at a former period, as far as has yet been discovered.

The climate is usually very dry. The heat of the weather varies greatly; changing with a rapidity unknown in any other latitude, the thermometer frequently descending


from 65° to 45° in the space of a few minutes. This is in consequence of a wind suddenly arising, termed, by the Texians, "Northers." The south and southwest winds generally prevail. The country is subject to severe thunder-storms, accompanied by violent rains, which fill the streams to overflowing. There are several valuable salt springs, from which salt can be easily manufactured. There are evidences of stone-coal and many valuable mineral productions, but hitherto, the country being dangerous of access, no white person is acquainted with the exact localities or the probable richness of the mines. Some silver and lead mines, supposed to be exceedingly valuable, have lately been discovered. There are no Indian traditions or evidences of larger animals having previously lived in the world. Their old men are ignorant, except from their imperfect traditions, of everything that transpired previous to their own generation. They cannot recollect how long since they used utensils of stone, or, if they ever did, what was their shape or use. There are none remaining among them at present. They believe the earth is stationary, and that the stars are inhabited, but have no idea of their movements. When an eclipse occurs, they suppose that some planet has intervened between the earth and the sun. They have no computation of time beyond the seasons. They count them by the rising height of the grass, the falling of the leaves, and the cold and hot season. They very seldom count by new moons. One sun is one day, and they denote the time of day by pointing to the position the sun has attained in the heavens.

They believe the Indian Paradise to be beyond the sun, where the Great Spirit sits and rules.

Numeration. — They count by decimals, from one to one thousand, as I am informed by the principal chiefs, but they now frequently count by the Caddo mode — from one to ten, and by tens to one hundred, &c.

One Sem-mus.
Two Wa-ha.
Three Pa-hu.
Four Ha-yar-ooh-wa.
Five Mo-wa-ka.
Six Nah-wa.
Seven Tah-a-cho-te.
Eight. Nah-wa-wa-cho-te.
Nine Sem-mo-man-ce
Ten Shur-mun.
Eleven Shum-me-ma-to-e-cut.
Twelve Wa-ha-ta-ma-to-e-cut.
Thirteen Ta-hu-ma-to-e-cut.


Fourteen Ha-yar-ook-wa-ma-to-e-cut.
Fifteen Moo-wa-ka-ma-to-e-cut.
Sixteen Nah-wa-ma-to-e-cut.
Seventeen Tah-a-cho-te-ma-to-e-cut.
Eighteen Nah-wa-wa-cho-te-ma-to-e-cut.
Nineteen Sun-mo-wash-ta-ma-to-e-cut.
Twenty Wa-ha-ma-mu-ma-to-e-cut.
Thirty Pa-ha-ma-mu, &c.

They have no accounts; all their business transactions are simple trade and barter. They are ignorant of the elements of figures; even of a perpendicular stroke for 1, 11, &c. They make no grave-posts or monuments indicating the rank of a deceased person. There is little known of their medicines. So far as has been discovered, they are confined to simple roots and herbs. They trust more to incantations made by the medicine-men, who also bleed in fevers by scarification on the part affected, and not in the veins. Their principal treatment in diseases is starvation. They do not understand amputation, but bind up a broken limb with splints. Their litters for conveying the wounded or sick are composed of simply two poles, with skins stretched across them, and long enough to be supported by a horse in front and rear.

The position of a chief is not hereditary, but the result of his own superior cunning, knowledge, or success in war, or some act or acts that rank him according to his merits. The subjects under discussion in council are at all times open to popular opinion, and the chiefs are the main exponents of it. The democratic principle is strongly implanted in them. They consult, principally, the warrior class, and the weaker minds are wholly influenced by popular opinion. Each man endeavors to obtain as high a position as their merits allow. War chiefs commit hostilities without consulting the other tribes. Any proposition or treaties proposed by the whites are discussed privately, and the answer given by the chief as the unanimous voice of the tribe. In deliberations in council, they consult each other, and one addresses the meeting. The council is opened by passing the council pipe from one to the other, and invoking the Deity to preside. It is conducted with great propriety, and closed in the same manner. There is one appointed as crier or messenger, whose duty it is to fill the pipe, &c. Questions, especially of importance, are deliberately considered, and considerable time frequently elapses before they are answered; but they are all decided on the principle of apparent unanimity. Capital punishments are rare; each party acting generally for himself, and avenging his own injuries. Each chief is ranked according to his popularity, and his rank is maintained on the same principle.

He is deprived of his office by any misfortune, such as loss of many men in battle, or even a signal defeat, or being taken prisoner, but never for any private act unconnected with the welfare of the whole tribe. They have no medals except those lately


given them, which are worn more as symbols of peace than as marks of distinction among themselves. Each tribe has no definite number of chiefs, every one being ranked according to his followers. The priesthood appear to exercise no influence in their general government, but, on war being declared, they exert their influence with the Deity. The females have no voice or even influence in their councils. Any principal chief has a right to call a general council of his own tribe, and a council of all the tribes is called by the separate chiefs of each tribe. They acknowledge no legal summons from the whites to council on any subject, except it coincides with their own views; and always inquire into the subject of consultation before attending.

There are no subdivisions of land acknowledged in their territory, and no exclusive right of game. He who kills the game retains the skin, and the meat is divided according to the necessity of the party, always without contention, as each individual shares his food with every member of the tribe, or with strangers who visit them. No dispute ever arises between tribes with regard to their hunting grounds, the whole being held in common.

The intercourse laws of the United States Indians, never having been extended over those in the state of Texas, no conclusions can be drawn from their effect. Negotiations can be carried on with better results in their own country than at the seat of government, as absent chiefs do not place much reliance in what they are told by others, but at the same time, an actual intercourse with the head of the government gives the tribe a decidedly, better view of its character and influence. The principal chiefs have shown every disposition to advance in civilization, and only require the co-operation of the Americans, to influence their followers in the same course.

No individual action is considered as a crime, but every man acts for himself according to his own judgment, unless some superior power, for instance, that of a popular chief, should exercise authority over him. They believe that when they were created, the Great Spirit gave them the privilege of a free and unconstrained use of their individual faculties. They do not worship any Evil Spirit, and are not aware of its existence, attributing every thing to arise from the Great Spirit, whether of good or evil. They use fire in all their religious observances and dances, or Medicine-making, but I am unacquainted with the estimation in which it is held.

They believe in the immortality of the soul, in their happy hunting-grounds, but have no definite idea of its transit from this life to another, or in what manner they will re-appear hereafter. The ties of consanguity are very strong, not only with regard to their blood relations, but extends itself to relations by marriage, &c., who are considered as, and generally called "brothers" — all offences committed against any member, are avenged by all, or any member connected with the family. In this nation a hunter will generally supply a sufficiency of food and clothing for a family. The marriage state only continues during the pleasure of the parties, as a man claims the right to divorce himself whenever he chooses. Polygamy is practised to a great


extent — some chiefs having move than ten wives, but inconstancy is the natural result of it, which is frequently punished by cutting off the nose of the transgressor, and sometimes even by death; but more frequently the woman escapes unpunished, and the seducer is deprived of all his available property, which is yielded to the injured party, by custom, without resistance. The women perform all manual labour, war and hunting being all the occupation of the men. Jealousy is frequently a great cause of discord, but the husband exercises unbounded authority over the person of his wife. Their lodges are generally neat, and on the entrance of a stranger, the owner of a lodge designates the route he shall pass, and the seat he shall occupy. Any infringement of this rule is liable to give offence.

They are formal and suspicious to strangers, but hospitable and social to those they consider their friends. They have no regular meals, but eat when they feel hungry, each party helping himself, and joining in the meal without invitation or ceremony. The parents exercise full control in giving their daughters in marriage, they being generally purchased at a stipulated price by their suitors. There is no marriage ceremony of any description — they enter the marriage state at a very early age, frequently before the age of puberty. The children are named from some circumstance in tender years, which is frequently changed in after life by some act of greater importance. Whatever children are stolen from their enemies, are incorporated in the family to whom they belong, and treated as their own children, without distinction of color or nation. There is considerable respect shown by the younger branches of the community to the patriarchal chiefs of the tribe.

When they make a sacred pledge or promise, they call upon the great spirit as their father, and the earth as their mother, to testify to the truth of their asseverations. Their talk in council is short, and their oratorical powers considered of little value; but good judgment is held in high estimation. The children are practised at a very early age to the use of the bow and arrow, but the chiefs and principal braves are now accustomed to the use of the shot-gun and rifle, without dispensing with the bow and arrow, which are always carried and used in war. When a chieftain wishes to go to war, he declares his intentions, and the preliminaries are discussed at a war-dance. When the affair is agreed upon, a certain place is designated near the point of action, where to congregate at a specified time, to which place the chiefs repair, the warriors proceeding separately in small bands by various routes, in order, if discovered, to deceive the enemy as to the point of attack, and to procure subsistence, each party living on the produce of the chase; no provisions being carried for public use. They fight on horseback with whatever arms they can procure; but their principal reliance is on the bow and arrow.

They are the most expert riders in the world. Men are never taken prisoners by them in battle, but killed and scalped in all cases. The women are sometimes made prisoners, in which case their chastity is uniformly not respected.


They have dances of various descriptions, always characteristic of the subject. Females are frequently admitted to the dance, but these dances are entirely distinct from those of the men. They have contests in racing, and several games of chance. Their principal game is the same as all the northern bands, called "bullet," "button," &c., which consists in changing a bullet rapidly from one hand to the other, accompanied by a song to which they keep time with the motion of their arms, and the opposite party guessing which hand it is in. They sometimes stake all they possess on a single game.

When pressed by hunger from scarcity of game, they subsist on their young horses and mules. The flesh of the young wild-horse is considered a delicacy.

Their common dress is the breech-cloth and moccasins, with a buffalo robe flung loosely over the shoulders; but some have now begun to imitate the more civilized tribes. They have a great variety of ornaments, many of which are of pure silver, principally fashioned into large brooches. Their decorations are derived from birds and shells which are bartered to them by the traders. The hawk and eagle feathers are the most esteemed of the bird. They use several native dyes, produced from roots, but I am ignorant of the names or the process of manufacture. Vermilion, indigo, and verdigris, are sold them by the traders. They also paint with white and red clay on particular occasions. They are of a light character, with a gay cast of mind, and rather fervid temperament. From observation I am induced to believe that their minds are susceptible of a considerable degree of cultivation. Christianity has never been introduced among them. This tribe is subject to many trespassers, not only from the whites, but also from the neighboring tribes of Indians, who hunt through portions of their country, destroying great quantities of game.

The scarcity of fire-arms, and their incomplete knowledge of that weapon, renders them unequal to contend with the frontier tribes, who have obtained experience from contact with the whites. Their burials are strictly private. When a man dies, his horses are generally killed and buried, and all his principal effects burnt. The first to carry him to his paradise, and the latter for his use on his arrival. They formerly also killed their favorite wife, but this custom has been done away with, from intercourse with the more civilized Indians.

The death of a chief causes great tribulation to the tribe — on such occasions they assemble without distinction, and bewail his death with extreme lamentation, until they receive from the relatives of the deceased, sufficient presents to cause them to stop; for instance, if a man wants a favorite horse belonging to the brother of the deceased, he continues crying till he obtains it. When they are killed in battle, it is a cause of much greater lamentation than from a natural death, and a much greater number of mourners bewail the loss. The presents given by relatives are also much more valuable. The deceased is packed upon a horse as soon as he expires, and taken to the highest hill in the neighborhood, and buried privately, without any monument to note the place, as far as has been discovered. The wives of the deceased,


after he is burled, assemble around the dead horses, with a knife in one hand, and whet-stone in the other, and with great lamentations, cut their arms, legs, and body in gashes, until they are exhausted by the loss of blood, and frequently commit suicide from extreme grief on the occasion.

From the liberality with which they dispose of their effects on all occasions of the kind, it would induce the belief that they acquire property merely for the purpose of giving it to others."

Plate 33 is an illustration of the mode of attack by the Comanches on the emigrants, when crossing the western prairies, en route for New Mexico, Utah, Oregon, and California.

When the emigrants are suddenly attacked by these tribes, (all of whom are mounted) they drive their wagons together, forming a circle, with the heads of the animals towards the centre, and the fore-wheel of one wagon locking in with the hind-wheel of the next, thus forming a compact and strong enclosure, from which they are enabled to defend themselves with efficiency and safety to themselves and animals. If a growth of wood be near, the wagons are driven into it, and the wheels locked against the trees, thus preventing the animals from running off with the wagons. The attack is made without much order, but every effort is made to frighten the animals, by whooping, hallooing, and wounding them with their arrows, so as to produce as much confusion as possible among the emigrants. Often the animals become so furious, that they break away from their teams, and are then captured by the Indians.

For their language, which is found to be cognate with the Shoshonee group, reference is made to the article LANGUAGE, No. IX. This vocabulary is derived from Mr. Neighbours.

Their numeral terms, to thirty, have been given in the preceding pages.



By William W. Warren.

[The following traditions are given, as being entitled to the highest respect, but without endorsing the opinions incidentally expressed, or the particular archזological dates. Mr. Warren is himself the descendant, by the maternal side, of one of the most respectable Indian families of the ancient capital of this nation, to which he refers; and his sources of oral information are the best. He is a graduate, I think, of Union Theological Seminary, N. Y., and is well versed in the Ojibwa language, as well as with the traditions and manners and customs of this important and far-stretching tribe of the Algonquin group. — H. R. S.]

THE ancient history of the Ojibwas consists in oral traditions, which partake mostly, if not altogether, of the marvellous and supernatural; and the writer is not prepared, at this early stage of his inquiries and studies, to give a decided opinion, deduced from these fabulous traditions, of their origin and history prior to the landing of the Pale-faces in America.

He is, however, collecting every tradition that pertains to, or can throw any light on this subject; and he hopes, at some future day, to be able to place the fruits of his inquiries in abler hands, who are better qualified to handle the subject.

Through a close acquaintance with their religious rites and beliefs, I have formed an opinion which I will offer at this time, leaving it to those who have studied the Red Race, their rites and traditions, much more closely than myself, either to reject or more fully carry out the idea. The Ojibwa believes that his soul or shadow, after the death of the body, follows a wide beaten path which leads towards the west, and that it goes to a country abounding in every thing that the Indian covets on earth —game in abundance, dancing, and rejoicing. The soul enters a long lodge, in which all his relatives, for generations past, are congregated, and they welcome him with gladness. To reach this land of joy and bliss, he crosses a deep and rapid water, &c. From this universal belief I am led to think, that formerly, ages past, these Indians lived in a land of plenty — "a land flowing with milk and honey" — towards the west; that they have, by coercion or otherwise, emigrated east, till the broad Atlantic arrested their further progress, and the white man has turned the faces of tribes and remnants of


tribes again in the direction whence they originally came. It is natural that this event in their ancient history should, in the course of ages, have merged into the present belief of a western home of spirits,

It is believed by some eminent men and writers, that the Red Race of America are the descendants of the lost tribes of Israel. I mention this belief here to say, that I have noted much, in the course of my inquiries, that would induce me to fall into the same belief, besides the general reasons that are adduced to prove the fact. I have noticed that in all their principal and oldest traditions and lodge tales, twelve brothers are spoken of: they are the sons of Ge-tub-e, a name nearly similar to Jacob. The oldest of these brothers is called Mujekewis, and the youngest Wa-jeeg-e-wa-kon-ay, named after his coat of fisher's skins, with which he resisted the machinations of evil spirits. He was the beloved of his father and the Great Spirit; the wisest and most powerful of his twelve brothers.

The tradition also in which originated the Ke-na-big-wusk, or snake-root, which forms one of the four main branches of the Me-da-win, is similar in character to the brazen serpent of Moses, that saved the lives of the unbelieving Israelites. In the Indian tradition, the serpent is made to show to man a root, which saved the lives of a great town, which was being depopulated by pestilence.

Not only in these instances is the similarity of the Ojibwa oral traditions, and the written history of the Hebrews, evident and most striking. It is out of place here, to particularize further, as I consider this a subject deserving separate attention, and closer investigation than ever it has received. Of late years the Ojibwas have been progressing westward, and from their traditions, it is evident they had commenced it before the white man landed in America. They were probably driven from the east by more powerful tribes, till they made their final stand, above two centuries and a half ago, on Lake Superior, and made their central town on an island in the lake (Lapointe), where they were found by the first whites, who visited them in the attitude of an encroaching and invading tribe, surrounded on all sides by enemies, whom they denominate Nodowaig, or Iroquois, Odugameeg, or Foxes, Aboinug, or Sioux, and Omameeg.

They date with certainty their first acquaintance with the whites, eight generations ago, and for a long time before this, they agree in stating that Moningwunakaun (Lapointe) had formed their central seat and town. Many of the chiefs, and less thinking old men, even affirm and believe, that this is the spot in which their ancestors have lived since "the world was new." It is only by a study of their varied and numerous fable-like traditions, that I can trace them as coming from an easterly direction, prior to their residence on the island of Lapointe. From these traditions we learn that they once were familiar with the great salt ocean — again, that they once lived on a great river, — again, on a great lake, where they exterminated a powerful tribe they call the Mundau; at last we find them on Lake Superior, from which place


they have still pressed westward for the past two centuries, till they occupy all the country about the head-waters of the Mississippi; and stand, one foot on the edge of the vast western prairies, and the other in the dense forests of Eastern America. (Plate 31.)

With the same progressive advance they have been making for two hundred years past, it has taken this tribe eight hundred years, from the time they left the eastern sea-board of the Atlantic, to assume their present local position on this continent. This time and progress, however, are only assumed, as they may have been driven west to Lake Superior, with much more celerity than they have advanced, since our acquaintance with them as a tribe.

In the inquiries set on foot by the Indian Department of our Government, respecting the history of the Indian tribes, facts only are sought; for this reason we do not introduce fabulous traditions that pertain to their history, but will commence from the time they relate events with any truth and certainty, and this is from the time they first became acquainted with the white man. For a long time prior to this event, the Ojibwa branch of the Algonquin stock, of the aboriginal race of America, had been living on Lake Superior; their principal town was on the island of Mo-ning-wun-a-kבn-ing, and covered a space of ground more than three miles in length, and two miles wide, judging from the vestiges still plainly visible — especially to be seen in the small growth of trees now covering the spot, compared to trees growing on other parts of the island; and also in deep-beaten paths, that a few years since were still visible in different parts of the island.

Besides the main body on the island, bands lived on different points of the lake shore, at the bays of Shag-waum-e-leong, Kult-e-wa-on-aun, Ka-puk-wa-e-ka, and other places; but it was in fear and trembling, for in those days the Ojibwas had many enemies that sought to exterminate them.

They practised the arts of agriculture, and raised on the island large quantities of corn and potatoes. They lived also by hunting. The main land opposite their village abounded in moose, bear, elk, deer; and the buffalo, in those days, ranged in herds within half a day's journey from the lake shore. Every stream that flowed into the lake abounded in beaver, otter, and muskrat. The waters of the lake also afforded them fish of many kinds. The trout, sisquoet, white fish, and sturgeon, which, in spawning time, would fill their rivers, where, making racks across the stream, they would spear and hook up great quantities as the fish came down after spawning. They made nets of cedar and basswood bark, and from the sinews of animals.

The ribs of the moose and buffalo made materials for their knives; a stone tied to the end of a stick, with which they broke sticks and branches, answered the purpose of an axe; the thigh-bone of a muskrat made their awls, clay their kettles, and bows of wood, stone-headed arrows, and spear heads made of bone, formed their implements of hunting and war.


Fire was made from the friction of two sticks. Their shirts and legging were made of finely dressed skins. Blankets of beaver-skins, eight of which sewed together formed the robe of a man.

It is a fact worthy of record, that copper, though abounding in their country on the lake shore, they never used or formed into implements for use. They considered it, and still do, at the present day, in the light of a sacred article, and never used it but as ornaments to their medicine-bags.

If ancient tools have been found, and marks are discovered showing that copper was worked on Lake Superior ages ago, it is not at all probable, on this account, that the race now living there were the workers of it.

At this era, there was maintained at Mo-ning-wun-a-kan-ing, the central town and power of the Ojibwas, a continual fire as a symbol of their nationality. They maintained also a civil polity, which, however, was much mixed up with their religious and medicinal beliefs.

The totem of the Ah-בw-wa ruled over them, and Muk-wah, or Bear Totem, led them to war.

The rites of the Me-da-we-win, or their mode of worshipping the one Great Spirit, and the lesser spirits, that fill earth, sky, and water, was practised in those days in its purest and most original forms.

They say that a large wigwam was erected on the Island, which they called Me-da-wig-wam, and in which all the holier rites of their religion were practised. Though probably rude in its structure and build, and not lasting in its materials, yet it was the temple of these primitive sons of the forest. And in their religious phraseology, the island of their ancient temple is known to this day as Me-da-wig-wam, or Me-da-we-lodge.

In those days their native and primitive customs were in full force and rigidly adhered to. Neither man nor woman ever passed the age of puberty without severe and protracted fasts. Besides the one great and overruling spirit, each person sought in dreams and fasts his particular guardian, or dream-spirit.

Many more persons are said to have lived the full term of life allotted to mankind than do at the present day.

"When a person fell sick, a small-pox lodge was immediately made, purposely for him, and a medicine-man called to attend and cure. Only this personage had any intercourse with the sick.

If a person died of a severe or violent disease, his clothing, the barks, and even the poles that formed his lodge, were burned by fire. Thus did they of old guard against pestilence; and sickness appears to have been more rare than at the present day.


The old men all agree in saying that before the white man found and resided among them, there were fewer murders, thefts, and lying; more fear and devotion to the Great Spirit; more obedience to their parents, respect for old age, and chastity in man and woman, than exists among them now. The council of the Me-da-we initiators partook, and partakes still, of the spirit of the ten commandments, that was given to the children by the great Jehovah, amid the lightnings and thunderings of Mount Sinai.

In those days the ties of blood were stronger among them. There was more good-will, hospitality, and charity, practised towards one another; and the widow and orphan were never allowed to live in poverty and want.

In the traditionary emigration of the tribe from the east, a portion of them moved in the direction of the North of Lake Superior, and are now known as the Muskegoes and Sug-waun-dug-ali-win-ine-wug, or "Thick Woodsmen." Other portions of the tribe stopped at Sault Ste-Marie, which has also been one of the oldest towns they now tell of.

In the Straits of "Me-she-ni-mick-in-auk-ong" or "Great Turtle," they parted from their relations, the Ottawa and Po-da-waud-um-eeg. With these two tribes, together with the O-dish-quag-um-ceg or Algonquins, they to this day claim the closest affinity.

The confederation of the six nations, whom they denominate Nod-o-way-se-wug, from Nod-o-way, "The Adder," appears to have been their most inveterate foes, and who, having been first discovered by the whites, and armed with guns, succeeded in driving west the remnant of these Ojibwa tribes, that had remained behind their main body, who were at this era already living on Lake Superior. With them went the Wy-an-dot, Po-da-wand-um-ee, Ottawa, and O-dish-quag-umee.

The old men of the Ojibways claim, that before this event happened, the main body of their tribe had already found their way to Lake Superior, and were living at Lapointe. With the portion of the tribe stopping at St. Marie, Saganaw, and the Muskegoes, I claim no close acquaintance, and will mention them only as they are connected with the general history of the tribes. That portion of the tribe that made their town at Lapointe, as it were, formed the advance guard, or van of the Algic stock. They now number eight thousand souls, spread over a large extent of country. At the time they were hemmed in by their enemies at Lapointe, they say that they numbered more: and it is natural to suppose, that their bloody, exterminating wars, in connexion with pestilence, that has twice visited them within the past hundred


years, would greatly lessen their numbers; it is therefore within bounds to estimate the tribe living at Lapointe and different portions of the lake, eight generations ago, at about twenty thousand. The marks they have left, alone, on the island, in space would accommodate nearly that number.

Their extermination of the Mundua tribe is a traditionary event, related to me by the Sandy Lake chief, and others, and which I have thought proper to introduce here, as an answer in part to the query respecting the lost tribe of Eries, and as an event happening many hundred years ago. There was at one time, living on the shores of a large lake, a grand and powerful tribe of people called Munduas. They were congregated in one single town, which was so large, that one standing on a hill in the centre, could not see the limits of it. This tribe were fierce and warlike; their hand was against every other tribe. Their prisoners they burned with fire, as offerings to their spirits. All the surrounding tribes lived in great fear of them, till their Ojibwa brother called them to council, and sent the wampum of war to collect the warriors of many tribes together. A war-party was raised, whose line of warriors extended as far as the eye could reach. They marched against the great town of the Mundua, and attacked it on all sides that it could be approached by land. Though the numbers of their assailants was overwhelming, the Mundua had such full confidence in their own prowess and numerical strength, that the first day of attack they sent only their boys to repel the invaders. The boys being driven in, they on the second day turned out their young men to fight their foes, while the rest of the town were feasting and dancing. Still, however, the Ojibwas and their allies gradually beat them back, till on the eve of the second day's fight, they found themselves in possession of half of the great town. The third day dawned, and the Mundua beginning to think it a serious business, their old and tried warriors, "mighty men of valor," sang their war-song, put on their paints and ornaments of war, and sallied out to drive back their invaders.

This day, the fight was hand to hand and fierce as fire. There is nothing in their traditionary accounts to equal the violence of the struggle in this battle; the bravest warriors in America had met: one fighting for vengeance, glory, and renown; the other for every thing that is dear to man, even their very existence. The Mundua were obliged at last to give way, and, hotly pressed by their foes, men, women, and children, threw themselves into the lake. At this juncture their aged chief, (who was also a medicine-man,) seeing the dead bodies of his bravest warriors covering the ground, called with a loud voice for the assistance of the Great Spirit, but no answer being made to his prayer, he called on the evil spirits of earth and water, and suddenly there arose from the bosom of the lake a dark and heavy fog, and covered in folds of darkness the scene of the bloody fight.

The old chief gathered together the remnants of his slaughtered tribe, and, under cover of the evil spirits' fog, they left their town for ever. For a day and a night,


they travelled onward, and were congratulating themselves on their escape, when a gale of wind that the medicine-men of the Ojibwas had caused the Great Spirit to raise, dispersed the evil fog, and the surprise of the Mundua was astounding to find themselves standing on a hill back of their devoted town, and in full view of their enemies. "It is the will of the Great Spirit that we should perish," exclaimed the aged chief, and once more they dragged their weary limbs in flight. They fled into a forest, where they buried their women and children in the ground, leaving them but a breathing hole. The men then returned, and beguiled the pursuers by leading them in a different direction. A few escaped, who afterwards returned and dug up their women and children. This small remnant of the once powerful Mundua was the next year attacked by an Ojibwa war-party, taken prisoners, and were incorporated into this tribe. Individuals are pointed out, to this day, as descended from them, and have the marten totem.

We will now relate events happening a few years prior to their acquaintance with the whites. The exact time, however, is uncertain.

One prominent reason why the Ojibwas chose to live on an island, is evident; and that was, for more security from their numerous foes. The Nodowa war-parties did not here reach them, as they came no farther than the Sault at the foot of the lake. But they had as powerful and inveterate enemies in the Odugaumeeg and Aboinug, into whose country they were encroaching.

The Odug-aum-eeg occupied a country towards the southwest, about the waters of Wisconsin, on Ton-a-gun and Chippeway Rivers.

The Sioux lived about the waters of St. Croix, Mississippi, and St. Louis Rivers. Sandy Lake, Mille Lac, and Yellow Lake, being then the sites of their principal towns.

A tribe also, called O-man-ee, is told of as their earliest enemies. They are spoken of as living at Mille Lac in earthern houses, and were in a general battle exterminated or driven off.

The Ojibwas were most harassed by the Odug-aum-eeg and A-boin-ug, or Sioux and Foxes.

The lake shores of Superior were familiar to the war-parties of these two warlike tribes.

At one time, a war-party of Sioux found their way from the nearest point of the main, to the island of La Pointe, and during the night two of their warriors crossed on a log, a distance of two miles, and returned in a canoe, with four scalps they had taken on the island.

On another occasion, a large party of Foxes floated down the Ontonagun in their small inland bark canoes. They landed in the night on the island of their foes, and early in the morning captured four women that had gone to gather wood; the spot is still pointed out.

The revenge of the Ojibwas was quick and complete; as the Foxes, by their


exultant yells, discovered to their enemies the course of their flight, and hundreds of the Ojibwa warriors embarked hastily in their large lake canoes in pursuit. A dense fog covered the lake, and, depending on this for eventual escape, and confident in their numbers, the Foxes, intoxicated with their success, kept up a continual yelling and singing. Thus guided, the Ojibwas silently and swiftly pursued them, keeping purposely in their wake, till they arrived opposite a line of steep rocky coast, a mile above the mouth of Montreal River and eight leagues from La Pointe; here they fell on the Foxes with great fury, — fighting in largo canoes which sat firmly in the water, they nearly destroyed to a man the party of four hundred Foxes, who, being in small canoes, were upset, and most of them drowned and dispatched in the water (Plate 32). This is the only naval engagement the old men of this tribe tell of.

Soon after the above occurrence, a party of Foxes fell on a camp of Ojibwas at Kah-puk-wa-ka, while the men were out hunting. They captured two youths, having driven them into boggy ground. One of these prisoners was the son of a principal Ojibwa chief named Bi-ans-wah, and belonging to the Ah-awh-wauk family.

A tale was told me by a direct descendant of this Ah-awh-wauk family connected with the capture of this youth, which deserves a place in the records of the tribe. At the time the capture was made, the father of the young man was out on a hunt. Returning home, he heard the heart-rending news, and knowing that his son's fate would be the stake, he immediately pursued the returning captors singly and alone. Following in their trail, he arrived at one of their principal villages while the Foxes were in the act of burning his son with fire. He stepped boldly into the midst of his enemies, and offered to take the place of his son. "My son," said he, "has seen but a few winters; his feet have never trod the war-path: but the hairs of my head are white, and over the graves of my relatives I have hung many scalps that I have taken from the heads of your warriors." The old chief's offer was accepted by the Foxes, — his son released, and himself burnt at the stake with all the tortures that savage ingenuity could invent. The son returned to his people, and was afterwards known by his father's name. He became a noted man in his tribe, and, in the course of his history, we will have occasion to notice his deeds in after life.

The act related above was terribly avenged by the Ojibwa tribe. A large war-party was collected and marched against the towns of the Foxes, on the Chippewa river; and they returned not until six villages of their enemies had been laid waste, and their inhabitants destroyed. After this event the Fox tribe retired from the country bordering on Lake Superior, and fell back on the Mississippi.

The war between the two tribes was bloody in the extreme, and carried on with all the cruelty of savage warfare. Captives were taken and burnt by fire. This custom originated in the following manner,

A noted warrior of the Ojibwas was once taken captive by his own nephew, son to his sister, who had been captured and married among the Foxes. The nephew, to


show his people his utter disregard to any tie of relationship with the Ojibwas, planted two stakes in the ground, and taking his captive by the arm, tied his feet and hands to the stakes, remarking "that he wished to warm his uncle by a good fire," he then built up a large fire, and after roasting one side of his victim, he turned the other to the blaze; when the naked body had been burnt to a blister, he untied him, and letting him loose, told him "to go home, and tell the Ojibwas how the Foxes treated their uncles." The uncle recovered from his fire-wounds, and in a future excursion succeeded in capturing his nephew. He took him to the village of the Ojibwas, where he tied him to a stake, and taking a fresh elk-skin, on which a layer of fat had purposely been left, he placed it over a fire, until it became one immense blaze, and then throwing it over the naked shoulders of his nephew, remarked, "Nephew, when I was in your village, you warmed me before a good fire; now I, in return, give you a mantle to warm your back." The elk-skin, covered with fat, burnt furiously, and crisping, lighted around the body of his nephew a dreadful mantle, that soon consumed him. This act was again retaliated by the Foxes, and death by fire soon became customary with both tribes.

Soon after their lake fight with this tribe, a war-party of Sioux, numbering one hundred and fifty men, found their way to the extreme point of Shag-ah-waum-ik, directly opposite the town of Lapointe, one mile distant. Here they laid in wait, and one morning attacked two young men who had gone to the point to look for ducks. The spot being in those days covered with numerous sand-hills, they defended themselves till the village opposite became alarmed, and the Ojibwa warriors, quickly collecting, ran to the southern extremity of their town, and at Gooseberry creek embarked in their canoes, and paddled straight across to the little portage, a place where Shag-ah-waum-ik is but a few rods wide — once in possession of this spot, the Sioux were entirely cut off from retreat. The van of both parties arrived there at the same moment, and a severe fight for egress was maintained by the Sioux; they were however driven back, and being caught as it were in a trap, were to a man killed, except two who swam into the lake, and as their bodies were not found, it was supposed that they had performed the almost superhuman act of swimming three or four miles in fresh water.

The particles of bones still strewn over the whole point are said to be the remains of the slain warriors.

An anecdote is told of a warrior of the Crane family, who, being left by his fellows in the hurry of embarking, lashed his bow and quiver of arrows to his back, and swam to Shag-ah-waumick, over a mile distant; so eager was he for the fight. He arrived after the battle was over, and was so enraged by disappointment, that he struck, indiscriminately, his fellows, for having left him behind.

The encounters which I have briefly mentioned are related by the old men with great minuteness, and interspersed with anecdotes. Happening before their intercourse


with the whites, they fought with their primitive weapons; spears, bows and arrows, and war-clubs.

We now come to the period when the white man first became known to them. The tradition of this important era in their history is briefly as follows:

A principal man of the Me-da-we-win, named Ma-se-wa-pe-ga, dreamed a dream, in which he beheld spirits in the shape of men, but having white skins, and their heads were covered. They approached him with a smile on the face, and the hands extended.

This dream he told to the principal men of his tribe, in a council, and over a feast to his dream-spirit. He informed them that the spirits he had seen in his dream resided in the east, and that he would go and find them.

For one year Ma-se-wa-pe-ga prepared for his journey. He made a strong canoe, and dried meat for his wappo, and, with only his wife as a companion, he left Lapointe to go and find the spirits he had seen in his dream. He went down the Great Lake, and entered into a river that flowed towards the rising of the sun. He passed through tribes of the red man that spoke different languages.

At last, when the river had become wide, and like a lake, he found on the banks one night, as he encamped, a hut built of logs, and the stumps of large trees that had been cut by other and sharper instruments than their rude axes.

The signs thus discovered were apparently two winters old.

Much encouraged, Ma-se-wa-pe-ga continued his course down stream, and the next day again came to another deserted log hut.

The third day he saw another log hut, from the chimney of "which arose a smoke. It was occupied by the white spirits of his dream, who came out and cordially welcomed him with a shake of the hand.

When he returned to his people, he brought the presents he had received of an axe, a knife, beads, and some scarlet cloth, which he had carefully secured in his medicine-bag, and brought safely to Mo-ning-wan-a-kaun-ing.

Collecting his people to council, he showed them the sacred presents of the white spirits.

The next season numbers followed Ma-se-wa-pe-ga on his second visit to the whites. They carried with them many beaver-skins, and returned with the fire-arms that from this time made them the terror of their enemies.

From this time the dispersion of the tribe from La Pointe can be dated. The Indians say, eight generations or "string of lives" ago, which, estimating an Indian generation at thirty-five years, would make two hundred and eighty years ago.

One cause has been given to me, in the course of my inquiries, by persons of the tribe, which is said to have led to their dispersion from the island.


Poisoning, in those days, was a common mode of revenging an injury. These Indians, on a small scale, have had their ages of Medicis, Borgias and poisons, as well as the whites; and it is told that it required but the slightest cause for a person to draw down upon himself the displeasure of a medicine-man, and die of his poison. Instances occurred, where the poisoners are known, to have dug up their victims, and invite the relatives to a feast on the body.

This horrid ceremony was got up in utter darkness, and not till the friends of the deceased had received their share of the feast were torches suddenly lighted, and they became aware of the nature of the banquet. Fear of the poisoner's power and vengeance would constrain them to eat what was placed before them. This was a usual sacrificial feast to the spirit of the poison.

At this period, the tribe lived in great awe of one another, and especially of their medicine-men: the fear of whom has not yet quite died away, and which is the secret of the power of this body among them.

At this period, it is also affirmed that it was customary to offer to their different Me-da-we spirits, human sacrifices of one another, and of their children. This sacrifice is said to have been made at the roots of a huge pine-tree that stood somewhere in the centre of the island, which reared its branches far above other trees.

The virgin feast of human flesh, which we sometimes hear spoken of, and read of, was also in full practice; and there was an old woman alive at La Pointe a few years since, who could tell tales on this head (her own experience) that would make the blood run cold.

To such an extent were these evil practices carried, that at last fear fell on the inhabitants of La Pointe; the weeping and wailing of je-bi-ug or ghosts were heard nightly resounding through their town, till at last they fled, and a general dispersion took place, which left their island entirely deserted.

I have asked old Be-she-ke and Tug-waug-aun-ay, chiefs at La Pointe, and old men of other bands, for corroboration of this tale I have here related; and though not denying it altogether, they are unwilling to acknowledge the fact, which is but natural they should, from respect to the memory of their ancestors.

My information was derived from old half-breeds of the Cadotte family, who were informed of the above facts by very old Indians, who, thirty or forty years since, were still living at La Pointe, some of them over a century old, and who could remember the tales their immediate fathers related to them.

It is a fact also worthy of mention, that before traders came and made their residence on the island, no Indian, it is said, dare sleep over-night on the site of their old town, for fear of the Je-bi-ug.

The first traders that built on the island, during the old French domination, found their gardens overgrown with many years' growth of trees, and it is comparatively


lately, that the band living on the opposite bay of Shag-ah-waum-ik, returned to live on the island.

Being hard pressed by their enemies, or in time of great famine, such a thing as eating human flesh might have been adopted to save life — as even at the present time it often happens among the Indians north of Lake Superior. This, together with the fact of their poisoning one another, might have given rise to the above story, and might have conduced in some measure to their dispersion, which I am inclined to believe took place naturally, as they prevailed against their enemies, and became possessed of a larger extent of country.

After this, being aware of the white man's presence on the continent, the next occurrence of importance was the taking of the Sioux village of Sandy Lake, on the Mississippi.

Bi-ans-wah, the young man whose father had died for him at the stake, became, after this occurrence, a fierce and inveterate enemy of the Sioux and Foxes, taking every opportunity, and indeed making it the business of his life, to revenge the death of his brave father.

With a large band of his tribe, he pushed on up the lake, and made a stand at Fond du Lac, Wi-a-quak-ke-che-gum-e. At this point Bi-ans-wah collected a large war-party, from the different villages of the Ojibwas on the lake shore, at the head of which be proceeded in canoes up the St. Louis, and attacked with great success the then large Sioux town of Sandy Lake. They destroyed numbers of their enemies, and drove them forever from the lake. Here Bi-ans-wah, with his band, eventually made their abiding-place and village. It is at this point that the Ojibwas, in their western conquests, first came on to the Mississippi. They made this their central point and rally ing-place, where parties collected, who marched against and wrested from the Sioux Leech, Cass, Winnipeg, Mille Lac, and Red lakes. It is from this point that the different bands, now living on and over the head-waters of the Mississippi, radiated.

Si-ans-wah, besides his deeds in war, is also noted as having put a stop to the inhuman custom of burning prisoners by fire. This he effected by a treaty of peace with the Sioux, and though the peace was soon after broken, yet both parties mutually refrained from the above practice. From this time prisoners were seldom taken, and if taken never burnt.

Besides the large band that pushed their way to the head-waters of the great river, other bands left the lake shore, and made their towns at Courtoreille, Lac du Flambeau, and on the St. Croix river; conquering, at the expense of much blood, the country as they advanced.

One morning a party of young men going out from the Bay of Shag-ב-wבum-ik, to spear fish through the ice in the fore part of the winter, discovered a smoke arising from the eastern extremity of the then unfrequented island of their old town, La Pointe. They proceeded thither, and found, in a rude cabin made of logs, two white


men in the last stages of starvation. They had evidently been driven on the island by ice, late in the fall, where they had remained for some time, suffering the pangs of hunger. At the time denoted, they had been reduced to the extremity of roasting their cloth and blankets over the coals, and thus eating them as a last means of sustaining life.

The Indians carefully conveyed them to their village, and fed them with judicious kindness. But one, however, survived; who, after remaining with them through the winter, returned to Quebec, where he came from.

The above story is invariably given by the old men of Lapointe on being asked the question, "Who was the first white man that found the Indians at Lapointe after they were known to be on the continent?"

The events narrated happened seven string of lives ago.

Of Fathers Marquette and Alloez, whom Mr. Bancroft states as having, one hundred and eighty-two years ago, found their way to the Bay of Shag-ב-wבum-ik, and there opened a mission among a large band of Indians, I cannot obtain from them corroborative testimony sufficient to invalidate the fact that they were the people thus visited.

Unless they were the white men found as the above story relates, the Indians have no knowledge or account of them.

An old antique silver crucifix was, in 1847, found by an old woman in her garden, near Lapointe, after its having been ploughed up. This circumstance would go to prove that the fearless and enterprising Jesuits had been of old about the spot.

The first white men that made a permanent residence among them were traders. During the old French domination, a post was built on the Island of La Pointe, at the mouth of a creek or slough between the present site of the American Fur Company's post and the Presbyterian mission.

The buildings were surrounded by palisades of cedar, and cannon are said to have been mounted on guard.

A tragedy happened here which is minutely spoken of by the Indians, and which caused the dismantling and evacuation of the post.

The trader in charge, whose name was Joseph ———, was murdered, with his wife and two children, in cold blood, by his hired man. Two causes are given for this outrage: first, the man, being discovered pilfering goods from his master, was afraid to be denounced and punished in the spring, on the arrival of the master, or governor, and for this reason he determined on his death; and second, he had become enamoured with his master's wife, and wished to get possession of her. After killing her husband he tried to force her to his wishes, but she defended herself in such a manner with an Indian spear, that he was obliged, in self-defence, to despatch her, and afterwards her two children. He buried the bodies in a pile of chips and shavings heaped up in one corner of the fort.


This act was perpetrated in the spring, while the Indians were all camped in their sugar bushes on the main shore, and the ice was become weak and rotten.

The murderer told the Indians who inquired for their trader, the plausible story that his master had gone with his family on a dog train, to visit them at their sugar camps. The ice being bad, all supposed that he had broken in, and drowned in the lake. A few days after, when the bay became free of ice, the Indians turned out to hunt for the bodies of their trader and family along the shores of the island and main, but without success.

In the course of the spring, a light canoe arrived from Quebec with a partner of the trading company that owned the post. At first, the story of the murderer was believed, but spots of blood, afterwards discovered on the door and walls of the apartment where he had murdered the trader's wife, led to suspicion, and the man was ordered to be bound and confined. A day or two after this, the partner, walking round the place endeavoring to find further traces of the supposed murder, stuck his sword into the pile of rubbish lying in the comer of the fort. The stench arising from the point of his cane told, that there the bodies were concealed. They were immediately dug up in presence of the murderer, who thereupon confessed his crime.

The fort was razed to the ground, and the cannon and ironworks thrown into the adjacent pond, where, the bottom being deep and miry, they have never been discovered.

The culprit was taken to Quebec for punishment, but, as some have it, escaped on the way, and was afterwards tomahawked by an Indian warrior, while boasting of his deed of blood at the red pole, where warriors were telling of their feats in war.

It had become customary, during the French domination, for the Ojibwas of Lake Superior to visit yearly Mackinac, Montreal, and even Quebec. They were well treated by the French, who had, at this time, already intermarried with them, and thus formed a link that made them, ever after, their fast friends.

In their wars with the British, the Ojibwas took active part with the French, and numbers of their warriors, headed by their chief, Ma-mong-e-se-da, were present at the battle and fall of Quebec, where the two great captains, Wolfe and Montcalm, fell.

The Ojibwas also joined the league of their relative, the great Ottowa chief, Pontiac, and were mainly instrumental at the taking of Fort Mackinac, through the stratagem of playing ball for the amusement of the fated garrison.

After the conquest of Canada by the British, the different French trading-posts were dismantled, and but a few of the old French traders and voyagers remained in Lake Superior. Among these, they mention Ke-che-sub-ud-ese, or John Baptist Cadotte, who was in the vicinity at the taking of Fort Mackinac, and massacre of the garrison by the Ojibwas and Ottowas. It was this man's Indian wife who is said to have saved the life of Alexander Henry, the only Englishman that survived the massacre.


Cadotte, in partnership with Henry, were the first traders after the fall of the French, who came into the country of the Ojibwas. They wintered two years at Na-בsh-ib-ik-ong, a point of sand-rock in the bay of Shag-a-waum-ik, and for two years are said to have worked the mines of copper on the Ontanagun river.

Cadotte was the first permanent white settler on the Sault Ste. Marie, where he died at an advanced age, leaving a family of children and grand-children, half-breeds, spread over the whole Ojibwa country.

It is about the period of the taking of Fort Mackinac, that the last fight between the Ojibwas and Iroquois is told of, as having happened. The St. Marie Indians know probably this circumstance better than old Besheke of Lapointe, from whom I obtained it. As the story goes, a war-party of Ojibwas were collected to march into the Nod-o-wa country, in search of scalps. When arrived a short distance below the rapids of Ste. Marie, on encamping, they heard yelling, singing, and much noise on the river below them, and sending out scouts, they soon learned that it was a party of Nod-o-ways, bound on a war-excursion into their country. The enemy had also encamped, and were making merry in liquor, stolen, probably, from white traders.

The Ojibwas, waiting until they had drunk themselves asleep, fell on them, and nearly destroyed the whole party.

The spot from this circumstance was named Point Iroquois. This is the last war-party that the Nodowas are said to have sent against the Lake Superior Ojibwas.

Some years after this occurred, a man arose among the Ojibwas of La Pointe, who became a renowned war-leader, and took up with great success the quarrels of hie tribe with the Sioux and Foxes. Waub-o-jeeg, or White Fisher of the Reindeer, Totem, was the son of Ma-mong-e-se-da, the chief that led the Ojibwa warriors under Montcalm, at the taking of Quebec. He was by blood partly of Sioux extraction, being related to old Wabashaw, chief of a band of Men-da-wבk-an-ton, Sionx, living at the foot of Lake Pepin.

When arrived at the full age of maturity, he collected a war-party of three hundred warriors, and floated down the St. Croix river at their head, into the country of their enemies.

At the mouth of Snake river they were to meet a party collected from Mille-Lac and Sandy Lake, to join them on their-war excursion. Not finding the party as expected, and confident in his numbers, Waub-o-jeeg pursued his way down stream, leaving marks, however, by which the other party would be guided.

Arriving early in the morning at the head of the portage that leads around the falls of St. Croix, the men had already lifted their light canoes on their heads, to carry across the portage, when the scouts came in with the news, that a large body of Sioux and Foxes were landing at the foot of the portage. The Ojibwas put on their warpaints and ornaments, and in the middle of the portage they met their enemies, who were bound on the same errand as themselves. The combined Sioux and Fox


warriors were much more numerous than the Ojibwas, so much so, that it is said that the Foxes, confident in their numbers, requested the Sioux to stand by, and see how easily they could rout the Ojibwas. The Sioux therefore stood, or sat on the rocks at a distance, quietly smoking their pipes.

The fight is said to have been fierce and hardly contested. About noon, the Foxes commenced to give ground, having lost some of their leading men. At last they turned and fairly fled, the Ojibwas after them. They would probably have been killed to a man, and driven into the water, had not, at this moment, the Sioux, eager and fresh for a fight, raised their war-whoop, and rushed to the rescue of their defeated allies.

The Ojibwas resisted their new enemies manfully, and it was not till their ammunition had failed, that they, in turn, showed their backs in flight.

But few would have escaped to tell the sad tale of their defeat, had not, at this juncture, the party from Sandy Lake, who were to have met them at Snake River, arrived at the head of the portage, and, seeing their friends driven over the rocks into the water, they jumped out of their canoes, and sixty warriors, fresh for the contest, withstood the onset of the Sioux and Foxes till their friends rallied again to the fight.

The allied Sioux and Foxes, being out of ammunition, are said to have, in turn, fled, and their slaughter to have been great. Many were driven over the steep rocks into the boiling rapids below; and every crevice in the rocks contained a dead or wounded enemy.

From this time, the Foxes retired south, and gave up the contest with their victorious enemies.

Wau-bo-jeeg, who led the Lake Superior bands in this battle, often afterwards led his warriors with great success against the Sioux, and became noted for his bravery and wisdom. He swayed the influence of a master-spirit over his whole tribe. He is one of those that the Ojibwa of the present day speak of with pride.

Bi-ans-wah and Wau-bo-jeeg fought for their people and for conquests; Ma-mong-e-se-da for the French, and An-dag-weos, another chief, cotemporaneous with Waub-o-jeeg, was justly noted for his peaceable disposition, and unwavering friendship for the whites. He was a chief of the Ah-auh-wauk stock, and had great influence with his people, who were, in those days, wild and untameable, and required a strong hand to check a propensity for pillaging from white traders, to whom An-dag-weos was as a guardian spirit. He was the grandfather of the present old chief Be-she-ke of La Pointe.

We will now return to the northern wing of the tribe, who, under their chief Bi-ans-wah, had pushed their way to Sandy Lake. From this place we have said that they harassed the Sioux till they drove them from Leech, Cass, Winnipeg, Red, and Mille Lakes, which last was a large and favorite village of their enemies. These lakes, in every way adapted to their mode of living — abounding in game, wild rice, fish, maple to make sugar, and birch bark for canoes, were occupied by detached bands


of the Ojibwas. They lived in fear and trembling, and, for more safety, at first located on islands in the different lakes.

From the time, now over a century ago, when they first conquered these places, not a year has passed but their blood has been spilled in their defence; and many, very many, have lost their lives: notwithstanding which, they have hung on, unyielding and tenacious, till they have compelled their enemies to retire west of the St. Peters, and Red River of the North; and south, to the mouth of the St. Peters.

Their hunts are made altogether on the hunting grounds of the Sioux, and it was a common boast of their late war-chief Hole-in-the-day, Bug-on-a-ke-shig, that had not the white man interfered, and at the treaty of Prairie-du-Chien drawn the lines between them, his people would now be dwelling at St. Peters.

The bands now living on and over the head-waters of the Mississippi, now live over a country embraced within the area of four hundred miles north and south, and two hundred east and west, from Mille-Lac to Pembina, and from Sandy Lake to the Red River of the North.

They number between three and four thousand souls.

On the tract of country they occupy, many spots are pointed out where the warriors of these two contending tribes have met in battle, and their blood flowed freely. More fights, massacres, and surprises are told of, than would, if detailed, fill a large book. In this condensed account, however, we shall only notice their principal battles.

A few years after the smoke of the Ojibwa lodges had first arisen from Sandy Lake, one of their war-parties met a party of their enemies the Sioux, on a point in Lake Winnipeg, where a considerable fight ensued, the consequence of which was the eventual evacuation of the lake by the Sioux.

The Ojibwas note this fight, as having killed in it a one-footed Sioux, the other having been either cut or froze off.

About ninety years ago, as near as we can compute from Indian time, a party of about three hundred Sioux warriors ascended the Mississippi in their canoes, went up the Crow-wing, made portages across to Leech Lake, and floated down the Mississippi through Lake Winnipeg, capturing and killing straggling Ojibwas as they went. They arrived at Sandy Lake, and attacked the village of the Ojibwas. The men being away on a war-excursion, the Sioux with ease killed and captured their women and children. The Ojibwa warriors had left their fated village, to the number of sixty warriors. On arriving at the confluence of the Mississippi, they discovered the traces of their enemies, who had gone up the Crow-wing. Too late to return to the defence of their village, they laid in wait a short distance below the mouth of the Crow-wing, for the descent of their enemies.

They dug hiding-holes on the high eastern bank of the Mississippi, where the river makes a sudden curve, and the whole force of the current flows under the bank. They had not waited long before the Sioux came floating in triumph, with many scalps and


prisoners. They landed opposite the upper mouth of the Crow-wing, to cook their morning meal here, in plain view of their ambushed enemy. They beat the drum, and danced the scalp-dance.

The Ojibwas, perfectly enraged at the sight, impatiently waited till their more numerous foes had again embarked, and came floating down within a few feet of and under them. In the canoes of their enemies they recognised their wives and children, that had been taken captive, and it was with a perfect phrensy of rage that they let fly their bullets and arrows with unerring aim, picking out the most prominent figures and plumed heads of the Sioux. In the surprise and excitement which ensued, the prisoners purposely tripped over the canoes of their captors, and many escaped to the shore, from which their husbands were, with dreadful yells, dealing out the death-winged bullet and arrow among their enemies. Many Sioux were killed while they were within range of the Ojibwa missiles, and some were drowned in the deep current. The remainder, still more than doubly outnumbering their enemies, landed about half a mile below, and returned bravely to give battle to the Ojibwas, and revenge the warriors they had lost. They first tied their remaining captives to trees.

The fight is said to have lasted three days with great fierceness. The Ojibwas were only saved from annihilation from their more numerous foes by being posted on a hill where they had dug holes, from which, entirely concealed themselves, they let fly their bullets and arrows on their less hidden enemies.

The ammunition of both parties is said to have failed in the earlier part of the fight, and the Sioux digging counter holes, they fought with stones, knives, and war-clubs.

The Sioux were the first to retreat, taking with them their remaining prisoners.

This occurrence nearly depopulated the then flourishing village of Sandy Lake. Their numbers were, however, gradually increased by families from the Great Lake; and forty years after, they had regained their former numbers and consequence. At this time, they were again almost cut off to a man.

Headed by their chief, this band would, in the fall of the year, move their camps about Mille Lac and Crow-wing river to hunt the deer, bear, buffalo, and elk, that abounded in these regions. While thus encamped in force, the Sioux never dared to attack them, though straggling parties and hunters were often set upon and never returned.

One season, however, the Sioux mustered their warriors in force, and with four hundred men, they followed the return trail of the Ojibwa camp, as they returned to their village in March, to camp in their sugar bushes.

The Ojibwas were encamped, when attacked, at Sa-sub-a-gum-a, or Cross Lake, about thirty miles northeast from the mouth of Crow-wing river.

A day before the attack, a part of the camp had separated from the main body and moved off towards Mille Lac; and early in the morning, before the attack was begun, a


number of women had gone on ahead with loads to leave at the next camping ground: the lives of all these were saved.

The camp numbered about twenty lodges, eight of which were long, and averaged twenty persons in a lodge; the whole number probably between two and three hundred, men, women, and children.

The camp was located on a long point of land running out into the lake, and was approachable only by the ice on the lake. The scouts of the Sioux were discovered early in the morning, and the Ojibwas gained a short time to prepare for defence. The attack was bravely made by the Sioux, in open day, and in a long line on the ice. The Ojibwas, on seeing their enemies thus advance, dancing and yelling, straight against their lodges, two of their bravest warriors (Bedud and She-sheeb) sallied forth, and, meeting their foes on the open ice, commenced the engagement. Their fellows following their example, the Ojibwa warriors formed a barrier of their bodies on the ice, for the shelter of their women and children. They sustained the unequal light for a long time; many lives were lost, for they had no shelter to protect them. The snow on the ice is said to have melted with the blood of the slain, and wounded.

The remnant of the Ojibwa warriors at last retreated to their lodges, where they maintained the conflict a long time in defence of their helpless families; not a lodge pole, or shrub, or tree, but what was perforated with bullets, in the area where they made this last-stand.

To make our story short, when the Sioux had silenced the last yell and gun of their enemies, they killed the women and children, taking a few captive.

Some of these captives returned, and are still living — others, among whom was a grandson of the famous Bi-ans-wah, is said to be still living; now, an aged man among the Sioux.

Soon after the second almost entire annihilation of the Sandy Lake band at Cross Lake, the Pillagers received a severe blow in the loss of a number of their bravest warriors, in a hard fight with the north, or Sisseton Sioux.

This band of Ojibwas had fearlessly pushed their way westward from Sandy Lake, in the footsteps of their retreating foe, till they came to Leech Lake, which place, finding that it was adapted to their mode of life, and defence against the war-parties of the Sioux, they made the site of their permanent rallying-point or village.

The name of the Pillagers, or Muk-un-dua-win-in-e-wug, pillage-men, was given to them by their fellow Ojibwas and whites, on account of their having taken away the goods of a trader, about eighty years ago, at the mouth of a creek still known as Pillage creek, emptying into the Crow-wing river.

The band is also noted for their wildness, and as having on several later occasions acted to the letter of their name in their dealings with traders and missionaries.

Out of the numberless occasions of bloodshed, in which this band have been engaged with the Sioux, I will relate a fight wherein they lost many of their bravest warriors;


their conduct on this occasion is but a fair sample of the fearless fool-hardy spirit, with which they are possessed, and which they retain to this day.

A party of forty of their best warriors left Leech Lake on an excursion against the Sioux. Arriving in the vicinity of Leaf Lake, the head-waters of Leaf river, which empties in the Crow-wing, they heard the occasional report of guns in the direction of a distant hill; early in the morning they approached the place where they expected to find the enemy. The Sioux had just decamped, leaving their fires still burning. Their trail led in the direction of Leaf Lake, and though apparently numerous, the Ojibwas recklessly followed them.

In a wide, open prairie, they discovered three of their enemies ahead of them, and though still a quarter of a mile off, one of their number urging on the rest, the Pillagers commenced the chase. The Sioux instantly perceiving them to be enemies, ran for their lives, and kept their distance ahead, occasionally stopping on a hill for a moment, and throwing up their blankets, in order to lure their pursuers on. In this manner the chase was followed up a long distance at full speed, when they at last came on to Leaf Lake. The Pillagers were strung along for over a mile, the fleetest of foot keeping ahead. The Sioux still led the chase around the sandy beach of the lake, till they at last disappeared into a ravine, thickly wooded. Fearless of consequences, the foremost Pillagers rushed after them; on running up a hill, a sight burst on them, that, for the first time, made them think of turning back.

On a smooth prairie, there stood a camp of over three hundred Sioux lodges; the inmates had been alarmed by the pursued, and figures were running to and fro in wild disorder, and warriors were collecting at the beat of the drum. The poor Pillagers, viewing all this from a distance, turned back, out of breath, and in the centre of their enemies, who were supplied with horses; they could do nothing but sell their lives as dearly as possible; this they determined to do, and when half of their number had collected, they laid an ambush for the coining of their foes.

On the shores of the lake, near a ravine which led to the Sioux camp, was a low narrow piece of ground, covered with high grass: on one side was the lake, and on the other, a watery marsh, which extended some distance inland. This pass the Ojibwas occupied, hiding in the tall grass; while their numbers kept increasing from the stragglers behind, till nearly their whole party was thus collected.

The Sioux had, by this time, gathered their warriors and put on their war-ornaments, and appeared from the ravine in a dense body of painted warriors, whooping and yelling. At their head ran backwards and forwards a prominent figure, who held in his hand the war-flag of feathers, and on his breast shone a large white medal. He wore a blue garnished coat, and being a prominent mark, at the first fire of the ambushed Ojibwas he fell dead.

At the fall of their leader the Sioux, regardless of the usual Indian mode of fighting, of dodging up and down, and behind trees, rushed on in a body to overwhelm at one


blow their enemies. The bullets of the Pillagers mowed them down in numbers, yet, utterly regardless, they grappled with them, and silenced, by main force, the firing and yelling. Some of the Pillagers threw themselves into the marsh, where they became a mark for their enemies' bullets; others retired from the pass into the woods, and, from behind trees, kept up the unequal fight. The whole of their party had now arrived, and the last one was he who had urged them on to the mad pursuit of the three Sioux. On arriving at the scene of the fight, he had heard the reproaches of his remaining comrades in silence; and now, telling those that conld to save themselves by flight, he rushed forward to attract the attention of the Sioux, in order to give his friends a chance for escape. The few that thus got off, for a long time heard the repeated volleys fired at their devoted comrade, which were answered by his single gun and solitary Sas-sak-way, as he for a time maintained the unequal fight. At last, the loud and exultant yells of the Sioux told that they had killed their brave foe.

Not one-third of those forty warriors ever returned to Leech Lake. A few years since, the leaders, Kukunshawinin and Wenongay, were still alive, and it was the boast of the latter, when he struck the war-pole to relate his exploits, that in this fight he shot down seven Sioux, and brought home their scalps. At this rate, the slaughter among the Sesseton ranks must have been great.

In relating the above fight, I have gone ahead of my narration, as some important battles happened prior to this time.

From the best Indian information, I have calculated seventy-five years as the time since the Ojibwas first visited the St. Peters River.

This was on an occasion when a large war-party was collected by the Ojibwas to revenge the sacking of Sandy Lake, and the fight at Crow-wing. In imitation of the Sioux, they pierced into the heart of their enemies' country, and attacked a village a short distance above the mouth of the St. Peters. This daring party was led by No-kay, a celebrated warrior in his time, and grandfather of the present noted chief Waub-o-jeeg

From this time, the Ojibwas on and over the head-waters of the Mississippi, made the broad current of this river their chief war-trail. They found it an easy matter to embark in their canoes, and float down to the vicinity of their enemies' villages; where, after securing one or more scalps, they returned home by land.

This practice they have kept up to the present day with great success, and it is only the interference of the whites, and the rapid increase of civilized population about St. Peters, that has saved the Men-da-wak-an-ton (Sioux) from being driven off or annihilated.

The course of the streams, the head-waters of which the Ojibwas have secured by conquest, flowing down to the haunts and villages of their enemies, has given them an advantage, which, in searching for the causes that have conduced to their great success against the warlike and numerous Sioux, should not be forgotten.


The Ojibwas innately respect the bravery of the Da-ko-tas, and call them strong-hearted men. It is only by hard, unremitted fighting, and much loss of life and blood, that the Ojibwa holds the position he now does, as the conquering tribe.

Shortly after their first incursion to St. Peters, under No-kay, the Ojibwas again collected a war-party of one hundred and twenty men, and embarking in their canoes, floated down the Mississippi.

In floating down a river on a war-party, one canoe is always sent in advance, and scouts are sometimes sent ahead by land. This is to guard against ambush on the river banks, which, in their warfare, has been much practised.

On this occasion, when the party had arrived near the mouth of Elk river, the scouts in the foremost canoe, as they were silently floating down, close to the eastern bank of the Mississippi, heard Sioux talking and laughing on the bank immediately above them.

Instantly turning their canoe up stream, they stole along the bank, and escaped behind a point, unseen by their enemies. Here meeting the foremost canoes of their friends, the alarm was quickly but silently spread from canoe to canoe, which were strung along for half a mile. They happened to be opposite an extensive bottom, thickly wooded. The Ojibwas sprang to land, and pulling their canoes after them, rushed through the woods to attack their enemies.

Emerging from the wood on to the open prairie, they saw a long line of their enemies, equal in number to themselves. They were leisurely walking along, bent on a war-excursion; being out of bullet range from the wood, the Ojibwa warriors rushed on as if to a feast, "first come, best served." Their war-yell was answered by the Sioux, and bullet and arrow were returned for bullet and arrow.

For a short time the Sioux stood the eager onset of their enemies, when seeing warrior after warrior emerge from the woods, on a line of half a mile, the idea must have seized them, that their enemies many times outnumbered them. Under this impression they turned and fled, occasionally turning and firing at their pursuers; thus a running fight was kept up for upwards of three miles, when the Sioux, at the mouth of Elk river, met a large party of their fellows, who had come across the country from the St. Peters river, to join the war-party. With this addition, they outnumbered the Ojibwas nearly double, and the chase was turned the other way. The Ojibwas ran up and along the banks of Elk river, and when tired of their long run, they stopped in a fine grove of oak trees, determined to make a stand.

Here the fight was sustained for some time, — the Ojibwas firing from the shelter of


trees, and the Sioux digging holes in the ground, and in this manner gradually approaching the covert of their enemies.

When all hopes of dislodging the Ojibwa force had failed, the Sioux set fire to the dry prairie grass, and the wind blowing against them, the Ojibwas were effectually made to run. Their foes, making their approach in the smoke of the fire, again renewed the chase. They were at last driven on to an island, where the Sioux not daring to molest them, the fight ended.

The Ojibwas lost eight killed, and many wounded. Among the killed was a brave warrior, Ke-che-waub-ish-ash. Three of their number were burnt by the fire.

The Sioux are said to have suffered a greater loss; as they themselves concede that the Ojibwas in battle are better shots than they are.

The following summer, after the above engagement, another fight took place at this point, by the adverse parties again accidentally meeting. The place of these fights is now known as Me-gaud-e-win-ing, or the battle-ground.

The Sioux never advanced far within the lines of country occupied by the Ojibwas, after the noted fight at Crow-wing- river.

Short intervals of peace have occasionally happened in the course of the bloody feud between these two tribes.

One peace is mentioned as having occurred during the lifetime of the great-grandfathers of the present generation.

It was brought about by the chief Bi-ans-wah, who in this place proposed to the Sioux the discarding of their old custom of burning captives by fire. This peace was broken by the Sioux again, about fifty years ago, and another short peace was effected between the two tribes in the following manner:

A large war-party of Sioux was discovered by the scouts of an Ojibwa camp on Platte river. The Ojibwas, on account of their women and children, fearing the result of an attack, determined on a bold manoeuvre, which, should it fail, they were to fight to the last.

A flag was attached to a pole, and a brave warrior sallied out singly to meet the Sioux. He discovered them as they were stealing along to attack their camp. He shouted to them, and, as the whole party were preparing to rush towards him, he threw down his gun, and with his flag he fearlessly ran into their midst, when he was caught in the arms of two stalwart warriors; many blows were aimed at him with war-clubs and knives, and he expected every moment to suffer death; but a tall Sioux took his part, and defended him, warding off the blows that were aimed at his head. After the excitement in the Sioux ranks had in a measure subsided, one of their warriors stepped up, and taking hold of the Ojibwa, offered to wrestle with him. He was easily


thrown; getting up, he again took hold of his opponent, and was again prostrated: on this, the discomfited Sioux lighted his pipe and smoked with him (the sign of peace.) He gave him also, as presents, his pipe, gun, and clothing. On this, the brave Ojibwa led the party to his camp, where the two hostile tribes saluted one another with firing of guns, &c. The pipe of peace was smoked; the pipe-dance danced; and they eat out of the same dish.

The war-club for a little time was buried.

During this peace, a party of thirty Ojibwas, headed by Kבh-dב-waub-e-da, or Broken Tooth, chief of Sandy Lake, and grandson of Bi-ans-wah, made a peace visit to St. Peters. They floated down the Mississippi, and arrived at the mouth of the St. Peters river, as the Sioux were preparing a war-party against the Ojibwas, intending to surprise them during the lull of peace.

The British flag, that hung over the prow of the Ojibwa chief's canoe, was pierced with bullet-holes, as the Sioux saluted their landing. There was great excitement among the Sioux ranks — chiefs ran to and fro to prevent their warriors from murdering the small peace party. Their trader also remonstrated with them, and they were at last prevailed upon to welcome the Ojibwas in peace.

Shortly after the return of this party in safety to their homes, the Sioux broke the peace, as it has ever been their practice to do.

The injuries that the Ojibwas have heaped on them, in conquering the lands of their fathers, are such, that they never have rested in peace for any length of time. The Sioux constantly brooded over their injuries, and frequently the Ojibwas, lulled into security by peace, have been surprised by them when they were unprepared for resistance.

Even within the last few years, the Sioux, caring little for the interference of the whites, in an outrageous manner have broken their faith, and sullied the soil of their Great Father with the blood of helpless women and children, and in a time of profound peace. The fourteen Ojibwas thus killed on Apple river, furnish but a sample of Sioux faith for the past two centuries, with their enemies.

On the occasion of the peace mentioned above that was broken, the Sioux reached Gull Lake on a war-party, and at the entry of Gull river killed an Ojibwa. The body was much mangled, and a war-club was left sticking in the body — a fit token that war was again declared.

The Ojibwas of the Mississippi, under their chief Ba-be-se-gun-dib-a, quickly collecting, and floating down the Mississippi, arrived at the mouth of the St. Peters nearly as soon as their returning enemy. On the low point beneath the cliff, upon which Fort Snelling now stands, the Ojibwas hid their canoes and laid in wait. Towards evening a long canoe load of young women, dressed and painted in their best style, floated down the Minnesota, on their way to join the scalp-dance that was being danced every night (at Little Crow's village below,) over the Ojibwa scalp recently


taken. As they came merrily laughing and paddling down stream, close to the point where their enemy lay concealed, a volley was fired into them, and their long flowing locks were made to dangle in the belt of the Ojibwa.

The war-club which the Sioux had left sticking in the mutilated body of the Ojibwa they had killed at Gull Lake, was now left sticking, with peculiar marks, in the body of one of the Sioux women, to teach them that the vengeance of the Ojibwa was quick and sure.

It is needless to notice every engagement of the kind that happened between these two tribes: we have mentioned enough to give a sample of the deadly feud that has existed between them for the past two centuries.

The actors in the fights I have thus far related have all now passed away.

The few old men of the tribe still living have also passed through the same dangers and the same fire, and their blood has flowed as freely as did that of their fathers.

The men of middle age also now living can boast of having extended the conquests of their ancestors. Their heads are decked with eagle plumes, which have been won in many a hard-contested struggle.

If possession gives a right, nearly all the country north and east of the Minnesota river belongs to them.

About fifty years ago, bands of the Ojibwas from Sandy Lake, Leech, and Mille Lakes, commenced to reside permanently on the Lower Mississippi at Gull Lake, Crowding river, and down as far as Little Rock.

These bands soon formed under one chief, and became known as the "Great River men." Their chief was Ke-che Ba-be-se-gun-dib-a, or Big Curly-head.

About this time, an event of importance in their history happened, viz., the fight at Long Prairie; some of the actors in which, though old men, are still living.

This fight occurred in the fall of the year, between forty and fifty years ago. A party of one hundred and sixty warriors was collected by Ba-be-se-gun-dib-a, chief of the Mississippi men, and Esh-ke-bug-e-cosh, or Flat-mouth, chief of the Pillagers.

At the head of their warriors they marched against the Sioux. In passing through Long Prairie, (which was then Sioux country,) they fell on a large trail of their enemies; following it up, they discovered a camp of about forty of their lodges, a short distance below the Pine Bend. Early in the morning, this large camp, situated on Long Prairie river, was attacked by the Ojibwas. The whole party repeatedly fired into the lodges from a short distance, and before the Sioux warriors had prepared to resist, many must have been killed. They at last sallied out to the number of sixty-six men, and resisted manfully. The battle lasted the whole day, and but seven of the Sioux were seen to continue the fight, and they were apparently determined to die on the spot. Miraculously, they escaped the many missiles aimed at them, till the Ojibwas, being entirely out of ammunition, and fearing their foes would be reinforced from neighboring camps, retreated.


The loss of the Sioux in this attack was great, and probably equalled the loss they inflicted on the Ojibwas on a former occasion, at Cross Lake. From this time, the Sioux fell back from the woods on to their western prairies, and after receiving repeated blows from the late Bug-on-a-ke-shig, Song-uk-um-ig, and others, they eventually altogether evacuated that portion of their former country lying north of Sac river and south and east of Leaf river to the Mississippi.

The attack on Long Prairie was made by the Ojibwas, in revenge of the massacre of two of their bravest warriors and their families, while camped out hunting. These were Waub-o-jeeg, namesake of the noted chief of that name, and She-sheeb. These two men had fought side by side at Cross Lake, and other fights. When attacked, Waub-o-jeeg was killed at the first fire, but She-sheeb fired one shot, killing one enemy and wounding another. Waub-o-jeeg was a head man, and much loved by his tribe; his death was therefore a common grief, and quickly revenged. His relics were scattered on the bloody battle-ground of Long Prairie, and his ammunition served to kill his murderers.

Long Prairie is noted as having been on four different occasions wetted with the blood of the two hostile tribes — Crow-wing three times, Elk river three times, Gull Lake twice, Sandy Lake thrice, Mille-Lac, and indeed every place of any note on the present border of the two tribes between Selkirk's settlement and Wisconsin river, has been freely baptized in blood.

We have now pursued the different events of importance connected with their wars in the history of the upper Mississippi branch or wing of the Ojibwa tribe, to the time of men still living; or would be living, had the Great Spirit allotted them the full term of life.

Before we come to relate events happening in the days of Strong Ground, or Sצng-uk-um-eg, and Hole-in-the-sky, or Bug-on-a-ke-shig, who but lately, still in their prime, departed for the land of spirits. We will mention a few names that have been noted in the history of this important portion of their tribe.

Bi-ans-wah, as I have mentioned, may be called their pioneer to these regions. Here he laid the foundation of a dynasty or chieftaindom, which has descended to his children, and the benefits of which they are reaping after him. His grandson, Ka-da-wב-be-da,) became a noted chief of the Sandy Lake bands — not so much for prowess in war, as for the great influence he exerted over his bands; to whom he was truly a father. He was a warm friend to the whites, and the traders of the country loved him. These were of the old North-West, Astor, and other minor companies, that at different times in his day, sent clerks with goods to Sandy Lake and the Mississippi. Their presents to the hunters were given through the hands of Ka-da-wב-be-da. He


was noted for the spaciousness and neatness of his wigwam. On-his mat table he used the knives, forks, and dishes of the whites. He also kept his liquor-case, which was ever well supplied, and from which he indulged but sparingly; occasionally enjoying with his friends a "good comfortable smoke." On his death-feed, at an advanced age, he requested that his body should not be buried in the ground, but hung up in the air on a scaffolding. His wishes being complied with, it became a custom of his family thus to dispose of their dead. His totem was the royal Ah-auh-wauk. He left four sons and four daughters. One of his sons, Mong-o-zid, or Loon's-foot, is a well-known chief of the Lake Superior Indians, and resides at Fond du Lac. He has one of his father's original medals (English) and two of his own.

Another of his sons was taken prisoner by the Sioux at Cross Lake when a child, and is residing still amongst them. His third son, Kah-win-dum-a-win-so, is present chief of the Sandy Lake band. Of his four daughters, one married Captain Charles Ermitinger, a noted Canadian gentleman: he took his wife to Montreal, where she died. Another daughter married Samuel Ashmun, Esq., one of the most respectable citizens of Ste. Marie. She is the mother of a fine family of men and women grown. The other daughters, one was wife to the celebrated chief and warrior, Hole-in-the-sky, and became the mother of the present first chief of the Mississippi bands. This family are thus interlocked by the strong ties of blood with the Saxon race.

Another noted chief of the Mississippi bands flourished contemporaneously with Kah-do-waub-e-da. His name was Ke-che-ba-be-se-gun-dib-a, (Big Curly-Head,) and was chief of the lower and more hardy bands, who followed close in the retreating footsteps of the Sioux on the Mississippi. This chief is aptly spoken of, as the vanguard or bulwark of his tribe. His is a name that will long be cherished in the memory of the Ojibwas. In the words of one of their principal men, "He was a father to our fathers, who looked on him as a parent: his lightest wish was quickly obeyed; his lodge was ever hung with meat; and the traders vied with each other who should treat him best: his hand was open, and when he had plenty, our fathers wanted not." He was noted not only for his charity and goodness of heart, but also for the strength of it for bravery.

Three times he led his warriors with success against their enemies. Each time he returned with them with bloody knives and reeking scalps. At Long Prairie fight, he led on the warriors of the Mississippi, Mille Lac, and Sandy Lake; while Flat-mouth led on the Pillagers. He was leader of the party that so quickly took back the war-club that the Sioux had left sticking in the body of one of their men at Gull Lake.

Twice the brave chief was attacked in his hunting camp by Sioux war-parties, and both times he, with his warriors, repulsed them.

Strong Ground and Hole-in-the-day were in their youth his pipe-bearers, and waited on him till the day of his death.


He died on the, road, returning from Prairie-du-chien to his own country, after the great council of Indian tribes convened at that place by the United States Government, to the end that lines dividing their several countries might be marked out, and that peace might reign between them.

In this council or treaty, Ba-be-se-gun-dib-a almost singly represented the great body of his tribe, living on and over the head-waters of the Mississippi.

The firm, unyielding front which he presented to the Sioux, and the force of his deeds and reputation, gained for these bands the advantageous lines that, for their tribe, were drawn.

He may well be said to have secured, by a lasting treaty, the conquests of his people. Had he been aided by the presence and voice of his cotemporary chiefs, Flat-mouth and Kah-do-waub-e-da, probably much more might have been done.

Not being used to a southern climate, many of the Ojibwas present at this treaty died from sickness.

A number of their best chiefs were among the victims. Ba-be-se-gun-dib-ay was of the number; who died much lamented by the tribe in general, and all those that had known the many good qualities of this native-bred chieftain.

Strong Ground and Hole-in-the-sky attended him to Prairie-du-chien, and assiduously cared for his wants during his last illness.

Just before he expired, he called these two young men to his bed-side, and counselled them on their future course of life. He left in their charge his Mississippi bands, and this circumstance laid the foundation of the chieftainship of these afterwards noted men.

Ba-be-se-gun-dib-a had been three times given a medal.

He left no children to reap the fruits of his name and actions, and indeed there is none now living on the great river, of close affinity to the deceased chieftain.

His totem was a crane, one of the oldest families in the tribe now residing mostly at Lake Superior.

No-ka was a noted warrior, and flourished in his prime about eighty years ago.

In revenge for the great Sioux excursion to Leech, Winnipeg, and Sandy Lakes, (which resulted in the three days' fight at Crow-wing,) he collected a war-party, which was the first to penetrate to the St. Peters river: a little above the mouth of which river, they attacked a camp of Sioux with great slaughter.

He, at another time also, with a small party of fearless spirits, penetrated into the very heart of the Sioux country.

This party returned from the Pipe-stone river, which runs into the great Pa-go-no or Missouri.

No-ka was noted as being in all the fights of any consequence during his lifetime on the Mississippi border.


He was also noted as a hunter, and the fruits of one day's hunt is worth mentioning, as well to show the abundance of game in those days, as his prowess in the chase.

Starting from his lodge at the mouth of Crow-wing, he in one day killed, on the first snow, sixteen elk, four buffalo, five deer, three bears, one porcupine, and one lynx.

The fruits of this day's hunt he gave to his trader, who was wintering at this place.

A story is also told of this hunter; that he fought a mad buffalo bull (in rutting time,) for half a day, with only his tomahawk-pipe; he used a small pine-tree for shelter.

The Noka river is said to have been named after this man, who used to live much about the lake from which it takes its rise.

Punk river, emptying from the west into the Mississippi, is named, in like manner, after Sug-ut-aug-un, father of the present chief Ka-dos-waub-e-da, who hunted in the vicinity, and on the said river, during his lifetime.

No-ka left a son, named Be-dud, who distinguished himself in the feud of his tribe with the Sioux. He with She-sheeb (another brave character, who was killed at Mille Lac with Waub-o-jeeg were the two who went out at Cross Lake, on the open ice, to meet four hundred Sioux warriors as they were advancing to attack their village. Their brave example instigated their fellows to follow them; and one of the most bloody fights told of in their history was here fought.

This man was in ten different fights, where blood flowed freely. He was ever in the van, — the wadding of the Sioux's guns often burning his clothes.

It was his boast, that he had passed the ordeal of over one bag of bullets aimed at him during his lifetime.

He is buried at Long Lake, near the Mississippi.

His son, the third Waub-o-jeeg, is now a noted chief of the Mississippi bands, fully sustaining the name of his two ancestors and two illustrious namesakes, though he has turned his attention more to peace than war.

Through an intimacy with the Sioux: in his early days, he talks their language freely. He has passed through many hairbreadth escapes during his lifetime, and will bear to the grave nine wounds inflicted by the Sioux. By their hands he has lost two favorite children and five brothers and sisters. His biography, however, more properly comes under a more modern era in the history of the tribe.

Another noted character, in his day, lived cotemporary with Be-dud, and equalled him in bravery and note.

Wush-ush-ko-con (Muskrat's liver) was the chief in his time of the Mille Lac band, under Ba-be-se-gun-dib-a.

The numerous fights and hairbreadth escapes, wherein this man earned a name and rank among his fellows, would fill a book as they are related by the present generation.

Ne-gan-e-ke-shig, (Day-ahead,) had he lived the full term of human existence, was a


man who would have become a noted and remarkable character. Even during his short lifetime, on two remarkable occasions, he earned the name of the "bravest of the brave" among his fellow Indians.

On one occasion he singly followed the trail of a large Sioux war-party, who had been to Gull Lake and killed an Ojibwa. The party encamped at the mouth of Noka river, and early in the morning the first riser in their camp received the bullet of Ne-gan-e-ke-shig. The Sioux, suspecting an ambush of their enemies, did not chase him far. A day or two after he pursued the same party to the St. Peters river, and was one of those that killed the women, at the mouth of that river, within the hearing of the drums of a large Sioux village.

On the occasion of his death, he had left Gull Lake (where he usually resided) to go to the mouth of the Crow-wing to hunt deer by torch-light.

There he found Wush-sh-ko-kon and another Indian. They encamped a short distance above the entry of the river. After dark, Ne-gan-e-ke-shig, with his wife to steer his canoe, started on his hunt. The current brought them silently to the island that lies at the mouth of the Crow-wing, causing it to divide into two mouths or entries.

Here he discovered the prow of a wooden canoe, that had been drawn partly ashore. On searching, he discovered that he had fallen on the camp of a Sioux war-party. He blew out his torch, and stept noiselessly ashore to reconnoitre. In a few moments he returned, and requested his wife to make the best of her way to their friends at Gull Lake, (fifteen miles distant,) telling her that he intended, after giving her sufficient time to make her escape, to stab as many Sioux, as he could, in their sleep, with his knife, and when discovered, to fight them with his gun, calculating in the darkness to be able to make his escape by jumping into the river.

His wife, whom he had but lately married, refused to leave him, and used every endearing epithet to induce him to forego his mad intent. He was at last, through her tears and entreaties, prevailed upon to embark and return to his camp; telling his wife, however, that now he would run into more danger than if she had allowed him to have his own will — for he intended to fight the Sioux in open day, to prevent their further advance into the country.

Sending his wife early in the morning to Gull Lake, Ne-gan-e-ke-shig, Wush-ush-ko-kon, and their comrade, laid in wait on the east bank of the Mississippi, opposite a sudden bend in the river. The Sioux betimes embarked in their canoes, and commenced their course up the river. They numbered about one hundred canoes, averaging three in each canoe.

The three Ojibwa warriors allowed the main body to pass their ambush, and picking out their victims in warriors, whose heads were most bedecked with plumes, they shot down three as they passed within a few steps of their hiding-place. After their first fire they jumped up, and ran on to the hill in their rear. Here We-gan-e-ke-shig stopped,


while his comrade ran on; he loaded his gun, yelled his war-whoop, and returned his single bullet for the hundreds that were now flying past him. Pie stood his ground till all hope of escape was cut off by his being surrounded and wounded in the foot. He fought to the death.

His companions, who narrowly escaped, said, that for a long time his single yell and report of his gun was heard, before silenced by the repeated volleys of the Sioux.

His enemies, out of respect for his bravery, did not scalp or mutilate the body, but left it in a sitting posture, decked with plumes — all the honors of Indian warfare.

From this spot the war-party returned, and the object for which Ne-gan-e-ke-shig died was thus fulfilled.

This man was father to the Little Curly Head, chief of the Gull Lake band, which numbered during his lifetime three hundred souls. He was killed during a time of peace by the Sioux four years ago, and has been succeeded by his half-brother, Que-we-san-sish, or Bad Boy,

We-non-ga (Turkey-Buzzard) distinguished himself at Leaf Lake and Long Prairie fights, and also at the late massacre on Lake St. Croix. When he was an old man, he was at last scalped by his enemies. Besides the above, he was present at three minor engagements. He was the principal or head-warrior of the chief Big Curly Head.

Ke-che-waub-ish-ash (Big Marten) was also a noted brave. At Neeb-o-je-wun-ong, a few miles below the mouth of Rabbit river, on the Mississippi, he singly fought and repelled an attacking party of Sioux, or Sissetons. They often joined the Knis-ten-o and Assineboins in their excursions. They boast among their brave warriors of old Muk-ud-a-chib, or Black Duck. This man, with forty braves, attacked a Sisseton camp, and killed great numbers. Being warned by a friendly Assineboin from the camp, that three hundred Sioux warriors were coming to the rescue from an adjacent village, the Ojibwas retreated; but on a wide open prairie their enemies (all mounted) caught up with and surrounded them. They kept them at a distance as long as their ammunition lasted; and when this failed, the Sioux closed in with them, and the battle was hand to hand. But one of this band of forty heroes ever returned to tell the sad tale of their fate.

The above happened about forty or fifty years ago.

Aissance (Little Clam) is the name of one of their noted chiefs and braves, who was killed at Spirit Lake about forty years ago; and the Red Lake band have still living some warriors who have distinguished themselves by noted acts of great bravery.

Of the Pillagers: when you ask them, who were their most noted warriors and men? the answer is — "They all fought alike; not one of our fathers passed through life without seeing the shedding of blood."

As a war-leader, Mons-o-mo was distinguished; — and the names of Muk-ud-a-waun-o-quod (Black Cloud) and Sha-wa-ke-shig, as warriors, ought to be recorded in the annals of their history.


It ceases to be a matter of surprise, that a phalanx of such men could conquer and hold the country they have bequeathed to their offspring.

We now come, in the course of our history, to the noted characters and events in the days of a generation not yet passed away. These events (so far as their relations with the whites are concerned) are within the reach of all who are curious to know. I will, therefore, but cursorily speak of the different treaties, in which they have sold the best portions of their blood-earned country.

The first treaty was at St. Peters, in 1837; again, at La Pointe, in 1842, and at Fond du Lac and Leech Lake, in 1847.

To give an idea of the condition of the Mississippi bands for the past thirty-five years, it will be necessary to mention briefly the noted characters that figured at their head.

The deeds and life of Song-uk-um-ig of Bug-on-ke-shig, Ba-be-se-gun-dib-ance, Ke-che, Shag-o-ba, Esh-ke-bug-e-coshe, and of Waub-o-jeeg, require in telling much more space and time than is permitted me in this present account.

Song-uk-um-ig and his younger brother, Bug-on-a-ke-shig, were the pipe-bearers and warriors of the chief, Big Curly Head, who, on his death-bed, left to them his chieftainship and bands.

They distinguished themselves in the warfare of their tribe with the Sioux; and by their deeds obtained an influence over their fellows of the Mississippi.

During their short career, they earned a name that will be long remembered.

Song-uk-um-ig was as fine a specimen of an Indian as ever proudly trod the soil of America. He was one of those honor-loving chiefs, not only by name, but by nature also. He was noted for his unflinching bravery, generosity, and solidity or firmness; the last of which is a rare quality in the Indian, among whom but one out of ten is possessed of any firmness of character.

As an instance of his daring, on one occasion, he fought singly, by the side of a mounted comrade, with seven Sioux, and drove them off with loss.

His first fight was, when a mere boy, at Long Prairie battle. Again, he was present on an attack of a Sioux camp at Poplar Grove, on Long Prairie, where they killed many of their foes. Again, he led a night attack on a camp at Crow river.

At Round Prairie, also, he with an Ottowa cut off, from a large Sioux camp, three boys while they were sliding on the ice, in plain view of their friends.

At Fort Snelling, he was the one who fearlessly went into the guard-house, and led out four Sioux prisoners, armed with their knives, who had shot into their camp, (as usual in time of peace,) and killed four Ojibwas. These prisoners Song-uk-um-ig took out of the fort, and in presence of the officers and garrison of the fort and a large assembly of Sioux; he bade them run for their lives from the bullets of the Ojibwas, whose relatives they had killed.


He was present on many other occasions that tried the man's heart. He died but a few years since, at about the age of forty-eight.

Bug-on-a-ke-shig, his younger brother, was equally brave at the moment of trial, but some of his cotemporary warriors say of him, that his extreme bravery did not last. "At the moment of excitement he could have thrown himself into the fire." These are the words of one of his noted braves who often fought at his side. He had not the firmness of his brother Song-uk-um-ig, but was more cunning, and soon came to understand the policy of the whites perfectly. He was ambitious, and, through his cunning, stepped above his more straight-forward brother, and became head chief. He was a proud and domineering spirit, and loved to be implicitly obeyed. He had a quick and impatient temper. A spirit like this is little calculated to be loved and obeyed by the free wild sons of the forest, who love liberty too well to become the slaves of any man. Bug-on-a-ke-shig was more feared than loved by his bands, and had it not been for the strong support of his more influential brother, he could never have been really chief over his bands.

On one occasion, he turned out and dispersed a whole camp of his fellows with a wooden paddle. The Indians were drinking liquor, and fighting among themselves, after Bug-on-a-ke-shig had twice loudly ordered them to drink in quiet. He struck with his paddle promiscuously, and on this single occasion mortally offended some of his best warriors.

Notwithstanding his harsh and haughty temper, there was in the breast of this man much of the milk of human kindness; and he had that way about him that induced the few who really loved him to be willing even to die for him.

During his lifetime, he distinguished himself in eight different fights, where blood was freely shed. At St. Peters, he was almost mortally wounded — a bullet passing through his right breast and coming out near the spine. On this occasion, his daughter was killed; and from this time can be dated the bloodthirstiness with which he ever afterwards pursued his enemies.

His bravery was fully proved by his crossing the Mississippi, and with but two brave comrades, firing on the large Sioux village of Ka-po-sia below the mouth of the St. Peters. They narrowly escaped the general chase that was made for them by many Sioux warriors, crossing the Mississippi under a shower of bullets. There is nothing in modern Indian warfare to equal this hardy exploit.



By Philander Prescott.


[THE following responses to interrogatories drawn up by the Indian Bureau of the United States in 1847, are from Mr. Philander Prescott, U. S. Interpreter at St. Peters. The respondent is himself allied to the Sioux tribe; of whom he records the customs and traditions, speaks their language fluently, and has lived many years among them in various situations and positions. His means of personal observation have, therefore, been ample; he is, moreover, a man of entire integrity of character, and unimpeachable veracity. A plain man, without pretence to education, he records simply what he has seen and heard. There is no attempt to assimilate the native words he employs to any plan of orthography. It has been deemed better, in all respects, to leave his paper in its original garb. The testimony it bears to the actual state of Indian opinion and tradition is important; and its manifest truthfulness commends it to respect. The question of the popular division of the Sioux tribe into six or seven bands, he discusses himself, more at length, in a note. Their numbers, according to the most recent count, as given by him, will be found under the statistical head, — H.R.S.]


2. "By what name are they called among themselves; and by what name, or names, are they known among other tribes; and what is the meaning of these respective names?"

Dacota is the word generally used for the Sioux nation, but they have different names for separate bands or villages.

Mendawahkanton — People of sacred or spirit lakes.
Wahkpatons — People of the leaves.
Wahkpacoota — People who shoot in the leaves.
Sussetonwah — People who shoot in the leaves.


Eyank-ton-wah — People of sacred or spirit lakes.
Tetons— People of sacred or spirit lakes.


Supposed to be eight thousand inhabiting the Mississippi, St. Peters, Shiane, and Devil's Lake. These are the great divisions; but the tribe is still separated into smaller bands and villages, numbering from fifty to one thousand souls.

Of the eight thousand Dacotas inhabiting the Mississippi and St. Peters country, also Shiane and Devil's Lake, we will say two thousand are men, who hunt more or less; and we should average them at one fourth of a pack each, of furs and peltries. This would make five hundred packs, which I think is a full average for several years. Some seasons they come short of this average, and at others overrun it. Last year, 1847, there were over five hundred packs taken from the Sioux country.

Some of the Sioux interpreters interpret the word Dacota to mean confederacy or a nation united, which no doubt is correct.

The word Sioux is given by old French traders; what it was taken from, no person knows. The Indians know not what it originated from. If you talk about Sioux, among those Indians who are not acquainted with the whites, they will not understand you; but the moment you mention Da-co-tas, the whole nation know who you mean.

9. "Does the tribe speak one or more dialects, or are there parts of several languages spoken, or incorporated in it, requiring more than one interpreter in transacting business with them?"

The Men-da-wa-kan-ton — Eyankton (Yanktons) — differ somewhat in dialect; but they are readily understood by the other bands. No separate interpreter is wanted for a Da-co-ta to pass through and converse with the whole nation.

10. "What rank and relationship does the tribe bear to others?"

Each nation thinks or considers itself superior to other nations of Indians.

The traditions of other tribes or nations do not admit that any nation of Indians is superior or more humane than their own. The mode to settle discordant pretensions to original rank, &c., is, to give them law, and a protection of rights and property

11. "Are there belts of wampum, quippas, or monuments of any kind, such as heaps of stone, &c., to prove the former existence of alliances, leagues, or treaties among the tribes?"

The Dacotas rear no monuments, &c.; all the proof that I can find is tradition.

12. "What is the totemic system of the tribe; or, if it consist of separate clans or primary families, what is the number of these clans, and what is the badge of each? And, do these totems or badges denote the rank or relationship which is sought to be established by these queries?"


The badge or name of a village is generally taken from the position or place in which it is situated, as in the following instances, viz.: Wi-atta-ch-chah, or Bad; Ohah-hans-hah, situated on a long reach of the river; Humine-chan, from the mountain of rocks above Lake Pepin; Wahk-patons, from their being settled where there is a large quantity of foliage; Kah-po-sia, from the Indians having gone on a hunting tour. Some of them took up their burdens, which were said to be heavy, and walked off lightly, and made long marches, which gave rise to the name Kah-po-sia, which means light.

As for clans, there are many, and there are secret badges. All that can be noticed, as to clans, is, that all those that use the same roots for medicines constitute a clan. These clans are secretly formed. It is through the great medicine-dance, that a man or a woman gets initiated into these clans. Although they all join in one general dance, still the use, properties, &c., of the medicine that each clan uses is kept entirely secret from each other. They use many roots of which they know not the properties themselves; and many of them have little if any medicinal properties in them. These clans keep up constant feuds with each other; for each clan supposes that the other possesses supernatural powers, and can cause the death of any person, although he may be living at a remote distance from it. These clans have been kept up from time immemorial, and are the cause of most of the blood shed among the Sioux. If a person dies, it is laid on some one of a different clan; and from that time, revenge is sought by the relations of the deceased, and all the supernatural powers are set to work to destroy the supposed offender. If this fails, then medicine is tried; and if that does not succeed, then the more destructive weapons, such as the knife, axe, or gun, are made use of, and often prove effectual. When the Indians are drinking strong or spirituous liquors, and are intoxicated, revenge is sought after with avidity. After an Indian has succeeded in killing a supposed murderer, the relatives of the deceased seek to retaliate; and so their troubles are kept up from one generation to another. It is as much an impossibility to get one of the members of these clans to divulge any of their secrets, as it is to get a freemason to disclose those of his lodge. They pretend to have the power to heal as well as to kill; and if a conjurer cannot heal a sick person, he says at once, some one of another clan is opposing him; and the nation never will have peace and happiness until these superstitions and juggleries are broken up by civilization and by sending physicians among them.

13. "Have geographical features, within the memory of tradition, or the abundance or scarcity of game, had any thing to do with the division and multiplication of tribes and dialects, either among the Atlantic or Western States? Are there any remembered feuds, family discords, or striking rivalries among chiefs or tribes, which have led to such separations, and great multiplication of dialects?"

Tradition informs us that the Dacota or Sioux were much more numerous on the


lower part of the St. Peters river than at present; that after the traders came into the country, and purchased furs and peltries, &c., the wild animals began to recede, and a large number of the Sioux kept pace with the game; that they were in the habit of killing for food, and for the peltries. The territory now claimed by the Sioux nation is about nine hundred miles in length, and from two to five hundred miles in breadth.

The Sioux have suffered much for want of food, and have been compelled to divide into small parties, to enable them to embrace a larger circuit of country to find food. Notwithstanding, they have been compelled to eat those that had died of starvation and cold. The different villages and bands have arisen mostly from feuds amongst the clans.

14. "What great geographical features, if any, in North America, such as the Mississippi River, Allegheny Mountains, &c., are alluded to in their traditions of the original rank and movements of the tribe; and was the general track of their migration from or towards the North or the East?"

The Sioux migrate, at this time, from the North to South-west. Tradition informs us that they once inhabited the head-waters of the Mississippi. They used to go to war to the Lake of the Woods and Lake Superior; and when they went on long hunting excursions, they came down the Mississippi to hunt. At that time there were different nations of Indians on the St. Peters and Mississippi, below its mouth.

16. "What are the chief rivers in the territory or district occupied by the tribe?"

The principal river is St. Peters, which is three hundred miles in length, navigable for steamboats, in high water, about one hundred and twenty miles, to Traverse do Sioux. There is one rapid about thirty miles above Fort Snelling, which is not perceived in high water. The St. Peters takes its rise in the Coteau de Prairie. The Chiane river is a large stream; it empties into the Red river of the North. Goods are landed at Traverse de Sioux from Mackinac boats and small durhams, and from these taken to all parts of the Sioux country in carts.

17. "Are there any large springs or lakes in the district, and what is their character, size, and average depth; and into what streams have they outlets?"

There are large springs at the commencement of the Big Wood on the St. Peters, the largest of which can be seen only at low water. At this place there is an Indian village, the chief of which told me he had found mineral of a yellow colour. There was also a spring which possessed medicinal properties. There are many lakes in the Sioux country, varying from one mile to ten in length, and from half a mile to two miles in width. The valley of St. Peters river abounds with springs of the finest water in the world. Many of the streams have good water-power.


18. "What is the general character of the surface of the country occupied by the tribe? Is it hilly or level, fertile or sterile; abundant or scanty in wood and water; abounding or restricted in the extent of its natural meadows or prairies?"

The Dacota country is generally level, and very fertile; scanty in wood; abounds with water. There are a great many natural meadows. The Indians raise small quantities of corn. The agricultural advantages are good throughout the Dacota country.

19. "Are cattle and stock easily raised? Do the prairies and woods afford an abundant supply of herbage spontaneously? Are wells of water to be had at moderate depths, where the surface denies springs or streams; and is there a practicable market for the surplus grain and stock?"

Cattle and stock are easily raised by cutting wild grass for the winter's hay. The prairies and woods furnish a spontaneous growth of herbage that millions of cattle can graze upon. There is no market for any great quantity of produce at present.

20. "Has the old practice of the Indians, of burning the prairies to facilitate hunting, had the effect to injure the surface of the soil, or to circumscribe, to any extent, the native forests?"

The practice of firing the prairies is generally condemned by the Indians; and many of them will not do it. They say the fires destroyed a large amount of game. The fire does much injury to the soil, and destroys large quantities of timber, particularly pine.

21. "Are there extensive barrens or deserts, marshes or swamps, reclaimable or irreclaimable, and what effect do they produce on the health of the country; and do they offer any serious obstacles to the construction of roads?"

There are but few barrens in the Dacota country. There are many marshes and swamps, some reclaimable and others not. Some seasons, particularly when the water is low, the Indians are more or less sickly. The summer of 1846 and 1847, they suffered severely from sickness. Some of the swamps will be serious obstacles to the construction of roads.

22. "Is the quantity of arable land diminished by large areas of arid mountain, or of volcanic tracts of country, with plains of sand and cactus?"

There are no visible signs of volcanic tracts in the Dacota country.

23. "Is the climate generally dry or humid? Does the heat of the weather vary greatly, or is it distributed through the different seasons with regularity and equability? What winds prevail? Is it much subject to storms of rain, with heavy thunder, or


tornadoes, and do these tempests of rain swell the streams so as to overflow their banks and destroy fences, and injure the crops?"

The climate is generally dry. The heat varies, in summer, from temperate to rising of 90° Fahrenheit, in two or three days, and then falls as much in the same time. The winds are about equal from all points of the compass. Southeast, east, and northeast, are the prevailing winds for rain and snow. Some winters, we have not more than two inches of snow at a time, and no sleighing at all by land during the whole season; and then again, the snow is a foot and a half in depth. The thermometer ranges from freezing to 40° below zero. However, the intense cold does not last but a few days at a time. Very heavy rain storms are not frequent, neither are very heavy peals of thunder common. Tornadoes are seldom heard of. The low grounds of the St. Peters sometimes overflow in the spring freshets and injure the Indian corn. The valley of the St. Peters is from one to two miles wide. This is the only part that overflows. The prairies are from fifty to one hundred and fifty feet above the valley of the St. Peters. (Plate 24.) The Indians say "that a number of years since there came a great freshet in July, that destroyed all the corn in the Mississippi and St. Peters valley.

24. "Does the district produce any salt-springs of value, any caves yielding saltpetre earth, or any beds of gypsum, or plaster of paris; or of marl, suitable for agricultural purposes?"

The Eyankton (Yankton) country in the neighborhood of Devil's Lake abounds with salt lakes.

25. "Has the country any known beds of stone-coal, iron, lead, copper-ores, or any other valuable deposites of useful metals or minerals?"

The country in the vicinity of Lake Pepin is said to contain lead-ore on the half-breed tract and Indian lands. I once saw a lump of lead-ore that a Sioux Indian said he found near Lake Pepin, but never could be persuaded to show the place where he found it, on account of a superstitious notion that some persons of his family would die if he should cause a mine to be opened on their lands. There is said to be copper-ore on Rum river, that enters into the Mississippi, above the falls of St. Anthony. Something like slate is found on Red-wood river by the Indians. It possibly may be coal; if so, it will be of great value, as wood is scarce.

26. "What is the general character and value of the animal productions of the district? What species of quadrupeds most abound?"

There are deer, but this animal is now scarce; bears, beavers, raccoons, otters, minks, muskrats, weasels, wolves, (large and small,) foxes, (gray and cross,) red fox, lynx, badger, ground-hog, (wood-chuck,) porcupine, red squirrel, three kinds of striped


squirrel that burrow in the ground, no gray or black squirrel, some rabbits or conies. Of all these animals the muskrat is the most numerous; buffalo, elks, and deer, are next in quantity. Tradition says that most of the above mentioned animals were very numerous before the fur-traders came into the country; but they began to diminish as soon as traps and fire-arms began to be used to collect furs and peltries for the traders. I have heard old hunters say that there are thousands of buffalo killed for the hide and tongue. The bear, the Indians say, began to decrease first, and then the buffalo.

27. "Do the Indian traditions make any mention of larger or gigantic animals in former periods?"

The Indians say that large animals had existed once in that country, of which they have pieces of bones that they use for medicine. They assert that formerly there was a giant who could stride over the largest rivers and the tallest pines with ease, but he was pacific in his nature, lived on the fat of animals, and carried a large bow and arrow. The Indians have a tune that they sing to the giant, particularly when they have done something they wish to boast of. There are still giants of great power, it is believed, but where they are they cannot tell; but they are sure these giants can destroy the thunder, and kill all kinds of animals by a look of the eye.

29. "Have they any peculiar opinions or striking traditions respecting the serpent, wolf, turtle, grizzly bear, or eagle, whose devices are used as symbols on their arms or dwellings, and how do such opinions influence their acts on meeting these species in the forests?"

These animals are held in great veneration by some of the Indians, owing to the clan-system spoken of in No. 12. The men, when initiated into the great medicine-dance and clan, have some animate object of veneration, which they hold to, as sacred through life. Whatever it may be, they cannot, or dare not kill it, or eat any part of the flesh thereof. Some fix on a wolf, some a bear, some a deer, a buffalo, an otter; others different kinds of birds, or different parts of animals; some will not eat the tail or rump-piece, others the head, the liver, and so on. Some will not eat the right wing, some the left, of a bird; the women also are prohibited from eating many of the parts of the animal that are forbidden. When they enter into the clan, any person that breaks any of these rules, by eating any thing forbidden, brings upon himself trouble of some kind. The offence is the same, even if accidentally committed. If an Indian has bad luck in hunting, he at once says some one has been breaking their laws, either by eating some parts of the animal forbidden, or they have stepped over it, or on it, particularly a woman; if she steps over any of the things held sacred, a great trouble is soon expected in the family; therefore precaution is taken, as soon as possible to appease the animal held in veneration, for they think that diseases arise from some animal entering in spirit into their system, which kills them.


31. "Are they expert in drawing maps or charts of the rivers, or sections of country which they inhabit?"

Their capacity is very limited. All their drawings or figures are very inaccurate. They have no knowledge of the rules of proportion.

33. "What is generally thought, by men of reflection, to be the probable origin and purpose of the western mounds?"

Mounds are not common in the Dacota country. There are a few about seven miles west of Fort Snelling, in which human bones are found. The Indians say the Iowas once inhabited this country, and that it is very probable these mounds were made by them. The mounds are in the vicinity of St. Peters river; there are some also at the mouth of the St. Croix river, but they are low running east and west. The oldest Indians know nothing about the structure, neither have they been opened to see what they contain. They are some fifteen or twenty in number, round in form, and from ten to twenty feet in diameter. I am informed there are more mounds in the Sioux country.

40. "If pipes are found, what is the material; is it stone, steatite, or clay — how are they formed — to admit a stem, or to be smoked without, and what are their shapes, sizes, and ornaments?"

Pipe-stone is found at the Coteau des Prairie, of a deep and pale red colour. It is similar to slate in substance. It is imbedded between two strata of sand and lime-rock, from five to ten feet deep. It is surprising to see what work the Indians have performed to get this stone: they make with their knives beautiful pipes from it. The stone is quarried with axes and hoes. There are no forests here. The Indians have to carry wood from twelve to twenty miles to cook with, while quarrying. The pipe-stone quarry is about twelve miles from Big Sioux river, its nearest point. Mr. Catlin claims to be the first white man that visited the pipe-stone, but this is not so. In 1830 I found a 6 lb. cannon-ball there.

41. "How many kinds of cooking utensils were there? Describe them."

Tradition informs us that the Dacotas once used the skin of the animals they killed to cook in. This was done by putting four stakes in the ground, and fastening the four corners of the skin to the stakes, so as to leave a hollow in the centre, into which was poured water — from one to two gallons. Then a quantity of meat was cut very fine, and put in with the water. Then stones were heated and thrown in. They say three or four stones, the size of a six-pound shot, cooked the meat and made a good dish of soup.

42. "What was the process of manipulation of their darts?"


The darts, in former times, were worn down on a coarse sandstone. This stone is very hard in its natural state, but they burn it, which softens it, and makes a very sharp grit, which will wear away iron very fast by constant rubbing. In this way, the arrow-points were made, and some few are still manufactured in the same way of iron. The arrow used for hunting is differently shaped from that they use for war. The arrow-heads are from two to four inches in length, formerly made of bone, and deer and elk horn, and sinews from the necks of buffalo.

44. "How many kinds of wampum were there? What shells were employed? What was the value of each kind? How was it estimated?"

Wampum has been in use only since the whites commenced trade with the Indian tribes, and is valued as white people value property. Wampum is manufactured by people on the sea-coast, from shells found in the ocean. Traders formerly sold from two to five strings for an otter. At the present time, ten to twenty strings are given for an otter's skin.

48. "Have they any idea of the universe, or other creations in the field of space, which have, in their belief, been made by the Great Spirit?"

The Dacotas believe the Great Spirit made all things except rice and thunder.

52. "How many moons or months compose the Indian year, &c.?"

The Dacotas count time by seasons — spring, summer, autumn, and winter, which is counted one year. Twenty-eight days or nights are counted one moon. They can tell, pretty well, about what time the new moon will appear.

53. "Do they notice the length of the summer and winter solstices, and of the vernal and autumnal equinoxes?"

The Dacotas count three months for spring, three for summer, three for fall, and three for winter, and each month or moon has a name, viz., January, the severe or hard moon, February, the moon in which raccoons run, March, the moon of sore eyes, April, the moon that the geese lay, May, the moon for planting, June, the moon for strawberries and hoeing corn, July, midsummer, August, the moon that corn is gathered, September, the moon that they make wild rice, October and November, running of the does, December, the moon when the deer shed their horns.

55. "Have they any name for the year, as contra-distinguished from a winter?"


56. "Have they names for any considerable number of the stars?"

The Dacotas have a few names for stars.


60. "In what part of the heavens or the planetary system do the Indians locate their paradise, or their happy hunting grounds and land of souls?"

The Dacotas have no particular place in the heavens for their departed souls. They say there are large cities somewhere in the heavens, where they will go to, but still be in a state of war with their former enemies, and have a plenty of game.

61. "Does the tribe count by decimals?"

The Dacotas' count commences 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. Then they commence again and double the count, by saying ten and one, ten and two, ten and three, ten and four, and so on to two tens; then it is two tens and one, two tens and two, two tens and three, and so on to three tens, or thirty. They keep on counting tens, until they arrive at ten times ten, which is a hundred. Some can count a thousand very readily. Others can count ten million, but they cannot understand anything about the quantity, without saying it.

63. "How were accounts formerly kept?"

Accounts were formerly kept in skins. A buck-skin was the standard currency. After the beaver failed, five to ten bucks was the price of blankets of different qualities. Five muskrat-skins were valued as equal to one buck-skin. A beaver or an otter was called a plue, the French for furs. Buffalo-robes are taken so many for a blanket, from two to five at this time. Where Indians receive annuities, their accounts are kept in dollars and cents by the traders. The Indian mode of trading among themselves is merely an exchange of articles; for instance, an Indian wants a horse, a lodge, or a canoe; he will take what he thinks is the value of the articles wanted, and carry it to some person that he believes most likely to strike a bargain with him. He then tells him what he wants, and although what he brings may not be sufficient in the estimation of the other, to purchase what he wants, still the offer or price is not refused; because it is understood that such refusal might cause his horse to be killed, or his lodge to be cut, or his canoe broken, or some kind of mischief might happen to him.

65. "Did a single perpendicular stroke stand for one, and each additional stroke mark the additional number?" &c.

Their count is by one single stroke. For a hundred they make one hundred marks. Their ages are not accurately known. Some of their grave-posts are marked by characters of the number of persons killed. Although an Indian may never have actually killed one of his enemies, he may count with those that do kill. After an enemy is killed, or shot down, four of the first persons of the war-party count it an honor, or can wear an eagle's feather, and be entitled to as much honor as the man that shot the enemy. Therefore there is great strife amongst the warriors to see who


shall touch the body first, to gain a feather, which is a great distinction, or mark of bravery. Sometimes, however, they are sadly disappointed; as if the enemy is not dead, the first one that approaches is apt to get shot, and then a pair of them die together.

66. "What is the general character of their medical practice?"

Their sick are attended as well as could be expected by a people so ignorant and superstitious. Children and youth are better nursed than the old and decrepid. The Indians say that many years ago, the E-yankton of the plains had an old man that could scarcely walk, and his sons and relations got tired of handing him about, and therefore told the old man they were going to leave him, but not to suffer a lingering death; that they would give him a gun, and put him out on the plain to be shot at by the young warriors, that he might defend himself the best way he could, and that if he succeeded in killing any one of them, it would be an honor he could take with him to the land of spirits. The young warriors, however, were quite too active for the old man, who could not hit one of them, before he himself was shot.

67. "Have their professed doctors and practitioners of medicine any exact knowledge of anatomy, of the theory of the circulation of the blood, or the pathology of diseases?"


68. "How do they treat fevers, pleurisy, consumption of the lungs, obstructions of the liver, deranged or impeded functions of the stomach, constipation, or any of the leading complaints?"

By charming, or singing over the sick, and shaking a gourd-shell over them. (Plate 46, Part 1st.) The gourd-shell has beads in it, to make it rattle. They also stuff the patient with meat and strong soup.

69. What species of plants or other roots are employed as emetics or cathartics?"

They have many plants and roots that they use, but know not the properties of but few of them. Some of them use old bones of a large animal that they say once existed in the country, and others use pieces of stone for medicine. They dig the roots and dry them, to preserve them, and then pound them when they want to use them. They have one root that is very powerful, and used as a cathartic; but it often operates as an emetic also.

70. "Do they bleed in fevers? and what are the general principles of the application of the Indian lancet? Is the kind of cupping which they perform with the horn of the deer efficacious, and in what manner do they produce a vacuum?"


The Indians bleed in the arm, but not when they are very sick. When they bleed, it is generally before they get very low. They cup sometimes for the headache. The Indian's knife or lancet, in these cases, is a piece of flint. A scale of the common flint is knocked off, generally with the fire-steel, which is very sharp, and a piece of this is used for scarifying and for cupping. Sometimes they tie a small piece of wood, six or eight inches long, to the flint, and use it like a phlegm. The point of the flint is laid on the vein, and struck a light tap with a small stick; the blood then runs very freely. They most generally use the tip-end of a buffalo horn for cupping.

71. "Have they any good styptics, or healing or drawing plasters?"

They have some roots that heal new wounds very easily. Bandages and lint are not skilfully applied, nor removed in time.

72. "Is the known success with which they treat gun-shot wounds, cuts, or stabs, the result of the particular mode of treatment, or of the assiduity and care of the physicians?"

The healing-art of gun-shot wounds is mostly in nature itself.

73. "Do they ever amputate a limb, and how, and with what success? Are the arteries previously compressed?"

They seldom amputate a limb. They have no surgical instruments. They are not skilful in splints. If a limb is broken, it is almost sure to be crooked afterwards. The mode of carrying the sick or wounded is in a litter on two poles lashed together, and a blanket fastened on to it. (Plate 25.) Two men carry it, one at each end of the litter, by his head-strap, which he fastens to each side of the litter, then brings the strap over his neck. It is wonderful to see how far two Indians will carry a heavy man in this way.

74. "What is the state of the Indian Materia Medica?"

They have some medicine, that is, roots and plants. They have no metallic medicine. Their compound decoctions are simple, but no reliance can be placed on them. They have some roots that are healing to wounds. They all use one kind of medicine for cathartics. They have also medicine for injections; but the principal catholicon for all diseases is the gourd-shell, or a shell made of birch-bark, by which they charm away sickness and pain. They say the sick person has been afflicted by some quadruped, biped, or amphibious animal. The remedy to remove the animal from the body of the sick is for the doctor or conjurer to get the shape of the animal cut out of bark, which is placed outside of the lodge near the door, in a small bowl of water with some red earth mixed in it. The juggler is inside of the lodge, where the sick person is, making all sorts of noises, shaking his shell, and gesticulating in every


way. The animal made of bark in the vessel outside is to be shot: two or three Indians are in waiting, standing near the bowl with guns loaded with powder and wad, to shoot the animal when the conjurer makes his appearance out of the lodge. But to be sure that the conjuring shall have the desired effect, a woman must stand astride of the bowl, when the men fire into it, with her dress raised as high as the knees. The men are instructed how to act by the conjurer, and as soon as he makes his appearance out of doors, they all fire into the bowl, and blow the little bark animal to pieces. The woman steps aside, and the juggler makes a jump at the bowl upon his hands and knees, and commences blubbering in the water, and singing, and making all manner of noises. While this is going on, the woman has to jump on the juggler's back, and stand there a moment; then she gets off, and as soon as he has finished his incantations, the woman takes him by the hair of his head, and pulls him along into the lodge from whence he emerged. If there are any fragments found of the animal that has been shot, they are carefully buried, and then the ceremony is over for the present.

If this does not cure the sick, a similar ceremony is performed, but some other kind of an animal is shaped out and shot at.

75. "How do they treat imposthumes and eruptions of the skin? Do men ever interpose their skill in difficult cases of parturition; and what is the general character of the medical treatment of mothers and children? Do they employ vapor-baths efficaciously for the health of their patients?"

There is not much done for eruptions of the skin except greasing it with such soft fat meat as they can get. Small-pox is a disease they know nothing about the treatment of; and in fact any diseases that are dangerous and difficult they have no idea of a remedy for. In cases of parturition the men seldom, if ever, are called upon to assist; but if a man and his wife should be on a hunting excursion, and such a thing should happen, then of course he is forced to do what he can to assist her. The women crack many jokes at the men for their unskilfulness in such matters.

It is seldom they have a difficult case in parturition, owing, I suppose, to the women being accustomed to hardships. There have been instances known of women going out after a load of wood, and returning in a short time with the wood on their backs and a new-born babe on the top of the load. (Plate 26.) There is seldom any thing done to the mother in these cases, as she is generally well enough in one or two days to do any ordinary work. The child is wrapped in a new blanket, and kept very warm a few days. Then they begin to lash it on the cradle for carrying about on the back, by a strap attached to each side of the cradle, and then brought over the forehead. (Fig. 2, Plate 15.) In this way they will carry a child half a day, and sometimes a whole day, and the child appears perfectly at ease.

They have no treatment for paralysis but shaking the shell and singing, and


shooting the animals that the jugglers think have caused the disease. Vapor-baths are used by them, but not frequently. The manner of preparing this bath is to set four sticks in the ground, and bend them all inward, which makes them cross, and become round on the top. This enclosure is three or four feet in diameter, and about three or four feet high, with two or three blankets thrown over, which excludes the air all round. In the centre of this is placed a red-hot stone, that would weigh from six to eight pounds. The patient's posture is half-sitting or stooping over the stone. Another Indian is inside, and pours water over the stone. The steam arising from it is very oppressively hot, and causes great perspiration in a short time. After the patient has endured it as long as he can, he goes with the other man, and they both plunge into the water, which ends the vapor-bath.

76. "Does the tribe consist of one or more clans or subdivisions, &c.?"

See No. 12, for clans. See No. 2, of this book.

78. "Were the chiefs originally hereditary or elective? If hereditary, is the descent in the male or female line, &c.?"

The chieftainship is of modern date; that is, since the Indians first became acquainted with the whites. Tradition says, they knew of no chiefs until the white people began to make distinctions. The first Sioux that was ever made a chief among the Dacotas, was Wah-ba-shaw, and this was done by the British. Since that time, chieftainship has been hereditary. There are small bands existing that have no recognized chiefs. The females have nothing to do with, nor any rights in the chieftainship. There is no particular ceremony to instal a man chief, only the father, before he dies, may tell the band that he leaves his son to take his place. The son generally presents himself to the Indian agent, the principal soldier speaking for him, saying to the agent, "Our former chief has left this his son to be our chief." This is about all of the ceremony.

79. "To what extent is an Indian Council a representative assembly of the tribe, and how far are the chiefs invested with authority to act for the mass of the tribe, &c.?"

The chiefs have but little power. If an Indian wishes to do mischief, the only way a chief can influence him is to give him something, or pay him to desist from his evil intentions. The chief has no authority to act for the tribe, and dare not do it. If he does, he will be severely beaten, or killed at some future time. Their office is not of much consequence as chief, for they have no salary, and are obliged to seek a livelihood in the same way that a common Indian does; that is, by hunting. A chief is not better dressed than the rest of the Indians, and often not so well. The chief is sustained by relationship. The band of which an Indian is chief is almost always of a kin totem, which helps to sustain him.


81. "Do the chiefs, in public council, speak the opinions and sentiments of the warrior class, previously expressed by the latter in their separate or home councils; or do they particularly consult the old men, priests, warriors, and young men composing the tribe, &c.?"

The democratic principle is implanted a little too deep in the Indians in general. They all wish to govern and not to be governed. Every Indian thinks he has a right to do as he pleases, and that no one is better than himself; and he will fight before he will give up what he thinks right. No votes are cast. All business is done by the majority of the band assembling and consulting each other. Some one will set up for or against a motion; and the one that appears the best is adopted by general consent. The voice of the chief is not considered decisive until a majority of the band have had a voice, and then the chief has to be governed according to that voice or opinion of the tribe.

82. "In what manner are the deliberations opened, conducted and closed, &c.?"

Councils are generally opened by some chief. When the subject-matter concerns the soldiers or "braves," the first or principal soldier is authorized to speak or act as orator for the party assembled. There is most generally some remark made about the weather, as an omen that the Great Spirit accords with or opposes their wishes. Questions of a grave character, that is, with the white people, are deliberated upon by all interested; and cases of revenge acted on precipitately. (Plate 27.)

83. "Are decisions made by single chiefs, or by a body of chiefs in council, carried implicitly into effect, &c.?"

Decisions made by a delegation are considered lawful and binding, but the acts of a single chief are binding only upon his own village. In cases of murder, the parties aggrieved generally seek revenge themselves, although there are some instances where a murderer is put to death by the authority of the council. An instance of this kind happened near this place in 1846, at Little Crow's village.

An old chief had three wives, and also had children by each of the three, who were always wrangling with each other, although the father had taken great pains to bring them up to be good men. After the old chief's death, the eldest son of each of these three sets of children, set up claims to the chieftainship, although their father had previously given it to his first son. The younger brothers were very jealous, and made an attempt to kill him, and very nearly succeeded. They shot him with ball and shot; both his arms were broken, and he was also wounded in the face and breast. After this heinous act, the young men made their escape, and a month afterwards returned home again, got drunk, and threatened to kill other persons. The village called a council, and resolved to put the young men to death. One of them had fallen asleep, the other was awake. The three appointed to kill them, one of whom was a


half-brother, went to the lodge where they had been drunk, and shot them. No notice, or time, or place, was given them. The executioner seeks the most favorable opportunity he can find to kill the man. Guns are generally used for this business, although the tomahawk or clubs sometimes are preferred. Messengers are sent out for the restoration of property. The most of the pilfering among themselves is done by women and children. The men say it is too low a practice for them to live by. Stealing horses, however, from an enemy, the men regard as an act of bravery and right. The women have severe and bloody fights on account of stealing from each other. The men scarcely ever interfere in these quarrels. Polygamy also generates bloody battles among the women, and the strongest generally keeps the lodge. The men attend to their own difficulties, and let the women settle theirs.

84. "Is the succession of a chief to an office vacated by death, or otherwise debated and decided in council, or may a person legally in the right line of descent, forthwith assume the functions of office?"

At the death of a chief, the one nearest of kin, in a right line, has a right to set himself up as chief. If there are no relatives, a chief is made by a council of the band. It seldom happens that a chief is deposed. There is but one chief in each band or village. Some villages have a second chief, but his functions are very limited. The custom of wearing medals is modern, and from the whites.

85. "What is the power of the priesthood as an element in the decision of political questions, &c.?"

The power of the priesthood is very great. The priests or jugglers sit in council, and have a voice in all national affairs. They are the persons that make war, and they also have a voice in the sale or cession of lands.

86. "Define the power of the war-chiefs."

The power of a civil and the power of a war chief is distinct; the civil chiefs scarcely ever make a war-party. The war chiefs often get some of the priests or jugglers to make war for them. In fact, any of the jugglers can make a war-party when they choose. The war chiefs are generally distinguished from the other officers of the band. The young men often sit in councils, but seldom speak before they are twenty-five or thirty years old. Matrons never appear in council, but the women express their opinion at home; in fact, I have seen cases where the wishes of women have been carried.

89. "State what is the law of retaliation, or the private right to take life."

Any one, two, or three, may revenge the death of a relative, and it sometimes happens that two or three are killed for one. A compromise is frequently made by the offending party giving large presents. Fleeing, too, from justice has saved the


life of a murderer for years, and he sometimes escapes altogether, and dies a natural death. Other murderers are killed years after the offence; when they think all is forgotten, revenge is taken in a moment, and they are killed. They have no particular place of escape, as the people of old had. In feuds arising from polygamy, if a death occurs, the relatives of the deceased almost always seek revenge.

90. "What are the game laws, or rights of the chase, &c.?"

Each village has a certain district of country they hunt in, but do not object to families of other villages hunting with them. Among the Dacotas, I never knew an instance of blood being shed in any disputes or difficulties on the hunting grounds. The Sesetons and Yanktons have sometimes objected to the Mendawahkcantons hunting on their lands, but they can obtain permission to do so by giving some small presents.

91. "Are furs surreptitiously hunted on another man's limits subject to be seized by the party aggrieved, &c.?"

All furs and game are held in common. The person that finds and kills game is the rightful owner. There are instances of great contention over the carcase of an animal, and some get severely cut; but this only occurs when the Indians are starving. The furs they seldom quarrel about, unless it is from stealing from each other which is the cause of quarrels among some of them. The chief rarely meddles in these contentions.

92. "Are warnings of local intrusions frequently given? or is injury to property redressed privately, like injury to life?"

Injury to property is sometimes privately revenged by destroying other property in place thereof. Indians sometimes kill each other for killing horses.

93. "If hunting parties or companions agree to hunt together for a special time, or for the season, what are the usual laws or customs regulating the hunt?"

The rules of the hunters are, to divide the meat of the animal they kill. There are many instances where an Indian kills a deer, and reserves only the hide and the very smallest portion for himself. If four or five others should come up while he is dressing the deer, they must all get a piece. As soon as a deer is killed, the Indians kindle a fire and commence roasting bits of it, so that they generally make a good meal in a few minutes. While the deer is being dressed and divided out, if an Indian wounds another deer, and it runs a considerable distance, and then another Indian kills it, he claims the animal and gets the hide, but the first man, if he comes up in time, will get a part of the meat. Stealing from each other's traps is a frequent occurrence. The loser satisfies himself by doing the same thing to the one that he suspects, on some one else.


94. "If a tribe or band pass over the lines, and hunt on the lands of another tribe, and kill game there, is it deemed a just cause of war?"

Yes, but they remonstrate first with each other.

95. "Has commercial intercourse promoted the general cause of Indian civilization?"

We believe that commerce has done nothing towards civilizing the Indians, but rather retarded it, and many of the traders oppose civilization, because they say it will stop the Indians from hunting, and the trade will decrease on that account. The traffic in furs and skins is carried on by companies, and by individuals. The goods, most of them, come from England to New York, then are re-shipped, with a profitable tariff, west to Mackinac and St. Louis. At these places the traders assemble once a year, and take their outfits, with another tariff put upon the goods. These outfits are taken into the Indian country, and petty traders and voyagers are furnished or outfitted again. So it is tariff upon tariff, and when the goods get into the hands of the Indians, the blankets cost from eight to fifteen dollars a pair, and sometimes that much for single blankets. The risk in trade is considerable; first, failures in hunting, and second, irregular prices in furs. A trader in the wilderness is guided by his last year's prices, and pays the Indians accordingly. Being so far from market, he does not learn the fluctuations, and then when he makes his return of furs, he will probably find that they are not worth half as much as the year before. So the Indians are benefited by the high price, and the actual trader has to be the loser; while the equippers at New York hoard up immense fortunes. Look at John J. Astor, for instance, as equipper.

96. "Are the chiefs and hunters shrewd, cautious, and exact in their dealings, making the purchases with judgment, and paying up their debts faithfully?" &c.

The chiefs and hunters are shrewd enough in dealing and bartering. Many people say the poor Indians are imposed upon, but it is a rare case that the trader gets the advantage. Competition is so great, that an Indian can go from one trader to another until he gets a fair price for his furs. In fact I have known instances where an Indian has got one-third more for his furs than they were worth. They rely on memory to keep their accounts, but sometimes an Indian notches on his pipe-stem, to keep an account of the amount he gets on credit. Some Indians are punctual in paying their debts, but many of them fail. I have known some of them to fall short four and five hundred dollars, which amounts stand on the trader's books until the next year. But the trader does not often get any of the old debt paid; for the Indians, owing to their improvidence, are alike every year needy, consequently the trader is compelled to give as much credit the following year, and the old debt stands unpaid for years, and probably never is paid at all. Furs diminish sometimes, owing to low water or drought, and only a small quantity of snow, so that the ponds and lakes freeze to the bottom,


and all the animals perish in the ice. The Indians seldom make any opposition to having the old debts charged, but seldom pay the amounts, or any part of them.

97. "Is it necessary for the trader to send runners to the Indian hunters' camps, or private lodges, to collect their debts, &c.?"

It is frequently necessary to send runners after debtors, because some other trader might come along and purchase the furs, or a part of them, and so the proper claimant lose his debt. The runners are generally Canadians, employed by companies or individuals. Floods do not affect the animals only for the better. Seasons of abundant rain and high water are considered good years for furs, but dry seasons are always the contrary.

98. "Is the tariff of exchanges such as generally to protect the trader from loss?"

The tariff of the traders would protect them from loss if the Indians would punctually pay, but many of the traders make shipwreck in Indian trade, owing to the many bad debts. Those debts are hardly ever thought of by the Indians after the first year, and the actual Indian trader becomes bankrupt, of which there are many instances. It is customary for the trader to give large quantities of provisions to hungry Indians, particularly to the Dacotas, who are always hungry. The sick also get a considerable quantity of necessaries. These are seldom paid for: in fact, the Indian thinks the white man ought to give him all he asks for, because they have an idea that a white man has only to ask in order to get what he wants at the very lowest rates. The trader seldom makes a charge of provisions, unless an Indian wants a large quantity. Three and four, and sometimes as many as ten, arrive at a trader's house, with furs to sell or to pay a debt. They all get supper and breakfast, and even sometimes stay two or three days, without any charge being made. I think a small trader gives away as many as a thousand meals a year in this way, and, in many instances, saves families from suffering by such liberality.

99. "Have the purposes of commerce, since the discovery of the continent, had the effect to stimulate the hunters to increased exertions, and thus to hasten the diminution or destruction of the races of animals whose furs are sought?"

The introduction of fire-arms, and traps, and commerce, has caused all kinds of animals, whose furs and peltries are sought by the white people, to decrease.

100. "What animals flee first, or diminish in the highest ratio, on the opening of a new district of the remote forest to trade? Is the buffalo first to flee? is the beaver next?"

It is difficult to tell which diminishes first, the buffalo or the beaver. The buffalo is more abundant in the Dacota country than the beaver, at the present time.


101. "Are the lands, when denuded of furs, of comparatively little value to the Indians while they remain in the hunter state? Is not the sale of such hunted lands beneficial to them?"

An Indian's land, without game, is of little value to him, for he cultivates but a small part of it — say from one-fourth to two acres is about the extent of the farm of any one family; and Indians drawing an annuity of fifteen to thirty dollars per capita, is more than most of them make by hunting at present, or for many years past.

102. "What quantity of territory is required to be kept in its wilderness state, in order to afford a sufficient number of wild animals to sustain an Indian family?"

The territory required to sustain an Indian family would be two thousand and two hundred acres of land, or thereabouts.

103. "What are the ultimate effects of the failure of game on the race? Does it not benefit by leading the native tribes to turn to industry and agriculture? And is not the pressure of commerce on the boundaries of hunting a cause of Indian civilization? Has not the introduction of heavy and coarse woollen goods, in place of valuable furs and skins, as articles of clothing, increased the means of subsistence of the native tribes?"

The failure of wild animals has, in some instances, led the Indians to believe in planting corn as a safeguard against want; but the greatest obstacle to the success of agricultural life among them is the unqualified laziness of the men and the boys, who will not work. They have a haughty spirit of pride, and I dare say you would as soon see a president or a king working with the hoe, as a young man of the Indian race. The men hunt a little in summer, go to war, kill an enemy, dance, lounge, sleep, and smoke. The women do every thing — nurse, chop wood, and carry it on their backs from a half to a whole mile; hoe the ground for planting, plant, hoe the corn, gather wild fruit, carry the lodge, and in winter cut and carry the poles to pitch it with; clear off the snow, &c., &c.; and the men often sit and look on. Commerce, I believe, does little towards the civilization of the Indians. I have resided among them twenty odd years, and I do believe they are more filthy and degraded than when I first came. I cannot observe that the introduction of woollen goods increases civilization in the least, or aids them materially in subsistence.

104. "What are the moral consequences of civilized intercourse, &c., &c.? Has not the introduction of ardent spirits been by far the most fruitful, general, and appalling cause of the depopulation of the tribes?"

The evil effects of whiskey-traders is immense, but the moral effects of Indian trade by lawful traders in the Indian country has not been detrimental, especially when carried on by the American people. The Indians complain bitterly of the white people


settling down on the lines with large quantities of whiskey. They say they believe it is done on purpose to ruin them, and they have often in council called the attention of the President to this fact, and hoped their great father would take pity on them, and stop the white people from bringing the spirit-water so near their settlements. Some of these whiskey-shops are within a half mile of Indian camps; in fact, all they have to do is to cross the Mississippi, and they can get it by barrels full. The introduction of fire-arms does not appear to have changed their condition, only by making the game more scarce. As to their moral character, fire-arms do not appear to have changed them any. The war-spirit, one hundred years ago, was as great as at present. They make peace and smoke and eat together, but break the peace the first opportunity they can get of surprising one or two persons alone. The prominent cause of discord and war, from time immemorial, is aggressions upon the rights of their hunting grounds. Trade and commerce has had but little to do with the Indian wars. Its influence has been exerted to try and make the nations live in peace with each other; for these wars are very injurious to trade and commerce, and therefore it is to the interest of the traders that there should be peace among the Indians.

105. "Are there any serious or valid objections on the part of the Indians to the introduction of schools, agriculture, the mechanic arts, or Christianity?"

The Indians think all people are bad except themselves, and they have no faith in the whites. They say the white people cannot be trusted; that if they make a treaty with them for land, the stipulations are not fulfilled; and that Indians are always imposed on by the white people, (which is not the case.) The Indians make strong opposition to schools, but the money is the cause of this. The traders want the money, and they encourage the Indians to oppose schools, by telling them that the school-fund would be paid over to them if there were no schools, and that the money would do them much more good than the schools ever would. The Indian, fond of idleness, would like to drink and smoke away the remainder of his days, and let his family look out for themselves.

Our government ought not to listen to the Indians, but go on and establish good schools; and then, when the traders find the funds are appropriated, and there is no chance of getting hold of the money, the opposition will cease. Agriculture is an art that the Indians are as fond of the proceeds of, as any human being. The most of them are the greatest gormandizers that ever lived. The only way to make them till the soil, and become civilized, is to take from them all their war-implements, and stop their jugglers, and give them physicians in the place thereof. The jugglers or Indian doctors are a curse to the nation, and help them on to ruin as fast as any thing else can. They oppose the schools on account of this system. The jugglers say schools will break up the system after a time, and cause their ruin. Christianity they acknowledge


to be good for white people; but they say they cannot resist temptation like white people, therefore it is useless for them to adopt the system, as they would soon break the commandments, and be worse than ever. They also say many of the white men are worse than they are. As much as Indians are opposed to religion, I never heard them scoffing or making a mock of Christianity.

106. "Are the existing intercourse laws of the United States, as last revised, efficient in removing causes of discord, and preserving peace between the advanced bodies of emigrants or settlers on the frontiers and the Indian tribes?"

The existing laws have very little practical effect on the Indians or the white people. All that keeps the Indians in subjection is the troops stationed in the Indian country. I have heard them say, "If it was not for the stone walls at Fort Snelling, they would have fine times." The laws now existing have no influence between tribe and tribe. The Indians set all laws at defiance, and go to war, and murder or kill whenever they choose. They say the white people make war when they please, and they will do the same. It is of no use to make laws for Indians, unless they are carried out. It only makes the matter worse. The late law respecting the whiskey-trade the Indians say is all a humbug, and can avail nothing. The most contemptible of the whiskey-traders laugh at the law, and sell as much, if not more, than if there was no law on the subject; because there is no one to enforce it. The late law of making Indian testimony lawful in the Indian country, is also of no effect at all, because the Indians go to the ceded land for the whiskey. The whiskey traders are very careful about crossing the Mississippi with whiskey; when they do so, it is at a time when no person can see them. In fact, it is almost impossible to get any testimony against them, under the now existing laws. The Indians came and reported the white people for selling whiskey to Indians on the ceded lands, and they were told that their testimony was good only in their own country. They laughed, and said such laws were of no use.

107. "From whence do causes of difficulties and war usually arise, and how are they best prevented?"

The sources of discord have existed from time immemorial. One of the causes is, that the different nations cannot understand each other; another is revenge; and another the evil and wicked propensities of the heart. The only way to prevent Indian wars, is to hang the guilty. It would require only a few examples to put a stop to them, within any reasonable distance of a military force. Some might say this would be hard usage, but by hanging a few guilty ones, you may save the lives of many of the innocent, and establish a permanent peace amongst the tribes and the nations.


108. "What provisions of existing laws appear susceptible, in your opinion, of amendment, in order to secure more effectually the rights or welfare of the Indians?"

The existing laws protect the Indians from the intrusion of white people upon their rights, and also keep the white people from entering their country or purchasing their land. Of course the white man can take no advantage, unless sanctioned by the government. In order to secure more effectually the rights of Indians among themselves, give them law, and help them to enforce it, until they are capable of doing it themselves. Give to each family or individual a tract of land, to be held for life, and then for the heirs to inherit in succession, but never allow them to sell it. This would give them a permanent home and protection of property, and would lead them to industry; but as it now is, the Indians are in villages of from two to five hundred souls. The children steal every thing in the vegetable line before it is half-grown, and the owner seeing the fruits of his or her labour taken away from him in this way, feels discouraged from planting — when if they were scattered, say a half mile or a mile apart, it would be a great preventive against pilfering children.

109. "Could important objects be secured by the introduction of any modifications of the provisions respecting the payment or distribution of annuities, the subsistence of assembled bodies of Indians, or the investment or application of treaty funds?"

We perceive that annuities facilitate the means of the Indians getting whiskey, particularly the money part. If the Government would give the Indians goods in lieu of money, the whiskey-dealers would have but a small inducement to give as much liquor to the Indians. Their annuities could then be applied to better purposes, for farming and houses, and stock, and schooling; but Government would have to control the whole business for several years; but this might be done at the expense of the Indians. The investment of the treaty fund could be advantageously employed by laying off farms for the Indians, and employing farmers to instruct them by families, say one farmer for four families, and keep them at least half a mile apart, and have good plain warm houses built for them, for they suffer very much in the winter from cold in their open lodges.

The Dacotas have two kinds of huts or wigwams; one of a conical form, made of dressed buffalo-skins, which are easily transported. This kind of wigwam is used in the winter season, and when on their hunting excursions. To erect one of them, it is only necessary to cut a few saplings about fifteen feet in length, place the large ends on the ground in a circle, letting the tops meet, thus forming a cone. The buffalo-skins, sewed together in the form of a cape, are then thrown over them, and fastened together with a few splints. The fire is made on the ground, in the centre of the wigwam, and the smoke escapes through an aperture at the top. These wigwams are warm and comfortable. (Plate 28.)

The other kind of hut is made of bark, usually that of the elm. A frame-work for


the walls and roof is first made of saplings, fastened together by withes, or sinews of the buffalo. On this frame the bark is laid, which is kept in its place by saplings laid over it, and fastened to the under frame. There are openings for entrance left at each end. The fire is made on the ground, apertures being left in the roof for the smoke to escape. These huts are used in the summer season, when they are raising corn, and forms their permanent villages. (Plate 29.) — E.

110. "Is there any feature in the present laws which could be adapted more exactly to their present location, or to the advanced or altered state of society at present existing in the tribe?"

Keep up the intercourse law, or else forbid the Indians from passing over into the ceded country, and be sure to punish any of them who pass over the boundary. Give them traders who will supply their wants as far as their money will go, and ensure the trader or traders their payment. In this way the Indians will have no excuse for crossing into the ceded territory for goods.

111. "What provisions would tend more effectually to shield the tribes from the introduction of ardent spirits into their territories, and from the pressure of lawless or illicit traffic?"

There is but a small quantity of alcoholic drink carried into the Indian country by white men. It is done mostly by the Indians themselves. Some of the Indians travel as many as four hundred miles, and come into the ceded territory where the whiskey-traders are, and get whole barrels of whiskey, and carry it off to the Sisseton country.

112. "Is there any feature in the present system of negotiation with the tribes susceptible of amendment and improvement?"

The chiefs prefer going to Washington to treat, but the Indians, in general, would prefer treating in their own country. It would be easier to treat with the Dacotas at Washington than in their own country, on account of the influence of the traders and their relatives. The expenses would be about the same either way. The Indians often speak of the President, and say his views or orders are not carried out; that they believe their great father wishes to do them justice, but his officers will not do as he tells them.

113. "Are the game, and wood, and timber of the tribes subject to unnecessary or injurious curtailment, or trespass from the intrusion of emigrating bands, abiding for long periods on their territories?"

The principal complaint is against other nations destroying their game. Chippewas and British half-breeds are the ones they complain of most.


114. "Are any of the tribes sufficiently advanced in your district to have their funds paid to a treasurer of the tribe, to be kept by him and disbursed, agreeably to the laws of their local legislature?"

No; there is none.

115. "Are payments of annuities to chiefs, or to separate heads of families, most beneficial? Should the principal of an Indian fund be paid in annuities to the Indians at the present period, under any circumstances, and are members of the tribe generally capable of the wise or prudent application of money?"

It is best to pay annuities to separate heads of families; and it is far more beneficial to the Indians to receive only the interest of the principal. A large number of the Indians spend their money for the benefit of their families.

116. "How is the elective franchise expressed and guarded, &c. &c. ?"

In giving a vote, no qualifications are required, no individual rights are surrendered. Murder, and the other crimes, are sometimes punished by council; and, frequently, individual murderers stand as high in office as the best of them. No boon is offered as security for life.

117. "Have original defects been remedied by adapting them more exactly to the genius and character of the people than they were, apparently, in the first rough drafts?"

This is what is very much wanted, but it has never been tried by this people.

118. "Have the legislative assemblies adopted a practical system of laws for the enforcement of public order, the trial of public offences, the collection of debts, the raising of revenue, the erection of public buildings, and ferries, and school-houses, and churches; or the promotion of education, the support of Christianity, and the general advance of virtue, temperance, and the public welfare, &c. &c.?"

No; but could such a system as this be established, it would, no doubt, save this nation from ruin.

119. "What ideas have the Indians of property? How do they believe private rights accrued? Have they any true views of the legal idea of property, &c. &c.?"

Private rights are held and respected by this people. Purchase, conquest, or labor, give private or national rights as long as life lasts. The starting of a deer, and pursuing it, gives no right if another Indian kills it; but if the man that first started the deer wounds it, he naturally claims it, even if another should kill it, but they generally divide the meat, the skin going to the first shot. The fact of an Indian going and planting on another person's field gives him no right to the land. Instances


of this kind have taken place; sometimes the land is given up with a little compensation for use and labor; at other times, the crop has been divided. The Indians understand what is right and wrong among themselves, as well as white people do. As to the rights of debtor and creditor, the following is a summary evidence.

Two brothers were Indian traders. One was trading with the Dacotas, the other with the Chippewas. The debtors of the Dacota trader went to war, and killed one of the debtors of the Chippewa trader, (who was hunting and stealing on the Dacota hunting grounds,) and took his furs that he had collected, and brought them to the Dacota trader in payment of his debts. The Chippewa trader claimed the furs, and applied to his brother, the Dacota trader, for them, but his brother refused to give them up, on the ground that he came lawfully by them. The Indians highly approved of the decision, as they were taken by conquest, and the Chippewa had been stealing off of the Dacota hunting ground.

120. "Was the right of a nation to the tract of country originally possessed by it, acquired by its occupancy of it by them, to the exclusion of all others, &c. &c.?"

They believe the Great Spirit gave them their land, and that no other nation has a right to hunt within the circle or territory that they occupy from time to time. They have no idea in what way they came in possession of the land they formerly possessed. Each nation thinks it is doing itself justice in taking from the enemy's land all the game it can kill. The Indians do not pretend to own or claim any country but that they occupy in hunting. As to the rights of invasion of territory, the Indians acknowledge the claims of each nation to the country they travel over in hunting; and the murderous war which is carried on they say is right, because each nation should stay within their hunting boundaries.

121. "Is the descent of property fixed? Is the eldest son entitled to any greater rights or larger share of property than the other children? Does a parent express his will or wishes before death, as the descendant of Uncas did, how his property should be disposed of, &c. &c.?"

As to property among the Dacotas, there is rarely any thing of any consequence left at the death of a parent. All the property is most generally used up in employing jugglers to sing, or charm, or drive away the disease by magic.

Orphan children among the Indians are very miserable, although their relations do all they can for them. The eldest son of the chief is entitled to his father's office. Sometimes a chief is suddenly killed in war, or by accident, on which occasion the bund or village make his eldest son chief. The general usage, when a parent dies, is that the other Indians step in and take what little property is left without any sort of ceremony, and the children consequently are thrown upon their relations, to get a


living the best way they can. As to heirship in property, they seem to know nothing at all about it, or if they do, they have no chance to leave it to their children.

122. "What are the obligations felt by the Indians to pay debt? Does time greatly diminish, in their view, these obligations, and how? Does the Indian fancy that ill luck in hunting is a dispensation from the Great Spirit, and that he is exonerated thereby from the obligation of paying his debts, &c.?"

Time does diminish, in their view, the obligation to pay a debt, because they say the white people can get goods by merely going after them, or writing for them, and that when a trader obtains a new supply of goods, he is not in want of the debts due him, and that the Indian is in greater need of the amount than the trader is. Therefore they often cheat the trader by selling his furs to some person they do not owe.

If an Indian has bad luck in hunting, he says it is caused by the misconduct of some of his family, or by some enemy; that is, his family have not properly adhered to the laws of honoring the spirits of the dead, or some one owes him a spite, and by supernatural powers has caused his bad success and misery, for which he will take revenge on the person he suspects the first time an opportunity offers.

The Indians are, many of them, punctual in paying their debts as far as lies in their power. There is, I think, a general inclination to pay their national debts, which are, by Indian rule, individual debts of such long standing, that they cannot pay them within themselves. They know they all owe their traders, and they are willing to make it a national business to pay them.

As to the value of property in skins and furs, they always over-estimate it. Indeed any kind of property that they are judges of, is valued too high, and they often suffer by so doing. There are cases where Indians have sold the same article twice, but this rarely happens.

123. "What constitutes crime? Has man a right to take his fellow's blood? Is the taking of life an offence to the individual murdered, or to the Great Spirit, who gave him his life, &c. &c.?"

The Indians say it is lawful to take revenge, but otherwise, it is not right to take their fellow's blood; they consider it a great crime. When murder is committed, they regard the victim as injured, and not the Great Spirit, because all have a right to live. They have very little notion of punishment for crime hereafter in eternity: indeed, they know very little about whether the Great Spirit has any thing to do with their affairs, present or future. All the fear they have is of the spirit of the departed. They stand in great awe of the spirits of the dead, because they think it is in the power of the departed spirits to injure them in any way they please; this superstition has, in some measure, a salutary effect. It operates on them just as strong as our laws


of hanging for murder. Indeed, fear of punishment from the departed spirits keeps them in greater awe than the white people have of being hung.

124. "Can the Deity be offended? Is a man under high obligations, by the fact of his creation, to worship the Great Spirit?"

The Deity, they say, is always offended with them. They do not know by what means they were created; and when any calamity befalls them, they do not understand why. They worship, it is true, but what? — they hardly know themselves. Large stones are painted and worshipped; these stones they call their grandfathers. For the expiation of sins or crimes, a sacrifice is made of some kind of an animal. Sometimes, the skin of an animal dressed, sometimes, rare pieces of white cotton and new blankets, are made use of for sacrifices, all of which are suspended in the air.

125. "Is falsehood a moral offence, because the Great Spirit abhors it, or because injuries may result to man, &c. &c.?"

The practice of lying, among the Indians, is considered very bad. In this respect, every one sees the mote in his brother's eye, but does not discover the beam that is in his own. They often would like to see falsehood punished, but have not the moral stamina to speak truth themselves. Many even desire to reward truth, but have not the ability to do so, often.

126. "Is want of veneration a crime among the Indians? Is an Indian priest or a chief more venerated than a common man, &c. &c.?"

Veneration is very great in some Indians for old age, and they all feel it for the dead. Their priests or jugglers, also, are very much venerated, but it is from fear, as much as any thing else, of some supernatural punishment. The Indians are very remarkable for their fear of uttering certain names. The father-in-law must not call the son-in-law by name; neither must the mother-in-law: and the son-in-law must not call his father-in-law or mother-in-law by name. There are also many others, in the line of relationship, who cannot call each other by name. I have heard of instances where the forbidden name has been called, and the offender was punished by having all of his or her clothes cut off of their backs and thrown away. An Indian priest or juggler is fully as much venerated as a father or mother, but it is from superstitious fear. Indian children sometimes, but very rarely, strike their parents: the punishment is generally a blow in return. We have no accounts of Indians having been stoned to death. I have known Indians killed, however, in a drunken riot, both with stones and clubs.

127. "What can the sages and wise men of the tribe say, in defence of the Indian code of doing like for like?"


There are cases where the Indians say retaliation is wrong, and they try to prevent it, and sometimes succeed in pacifying the parties. If a bad deed is done, and the offender is punished in some way, they say he has got what he gave. A person of bad character among the Indians, is scorned by them; but from fear of his cutting their lodges, killing their horses, or doing some mischief, they are obliged to invite him to their feasts. A bad man often runs at large amongst the Indians for years, on account of the above named fears. They even are obliged to let him join in their great medicine-dance. The chastity of the women is much more attended to than many people would suppose. There are but few lewd, loose women among them, and only a few will drink ardent spirits.

128. "Do they believe that there is a Deity pervading the Universe, who is the maker of all things. What ideas do they possess of the Great Spirit?" &c.

The Indians believe there is a Great Spirit; his powers they do not comprehend, nor by what means man was created, or for what purpose. They believe the Deity consists of two persons, or as they themselves express it, "The Great Spirit and his wife." How man became possessed of the power he now possesses over the animal creation they cannot account for. They have no knowledge of God's having given any laws for the Indians to follow, and they do not know or believe that they will have to give an account of their deeds in another world.

129. "How does the Great Spirit manifest his presence on the earth, or in the sky? In what forms is he recognized? Is thunder considered his voice? Are storms regarded as his acts? Are cataracts evidences of his power?"

The Indians say there is a Great Spirit, but where he is they know not. They say the Great Spirit did not make the wild-rice, it came by chance. All things else the Great Spirit made. There are instances where the Indians charge the Deities with being angry with them, in cases of heavy storms; and they even go so far as to say the Deity is bad, for sending storms to give them misery.

130. "Is death the act of the Great Spirit? Do war and peace happen according to his will?"&c.

Some of the Indians say that death is caused by the Great Spirit; others, that it is caused by the supernatural power of individuals. All evil, they say, comes from the heart; but who or what implanted it there, they know not. The Indians know nothing of the Devil, except what the white people have told them. All the punishment they expect to receive is in this world.

They fear the persons they have offended, and the spirits of the dead more than any thing else.


131. "How are they excused from offences against the Great Spirit?"

The Indians make sacrifices to appease the spirits, but they hardly know what kind of spirits sacrifices are made to. All of their sacrifices are made upon supposition. They often say after a violent storm, and when much injury has been done by it, "Now that the storm has done so and so, it will stop."

132. "Have they any idea whatever of atonement, or a belief or expectation that some great personage was to come on earth and answer for them to the Great Spirit?"

They have no idea of atonement, nor do they show in any of their religious ceremonies any signs of Christianity. The sacrifice of animals is to appease something that they suppose is offended with them. We never heard of but one human sacrifice, and that was a father who offered up his infant child, but for what cause we never could learn. The bad treatment of prisoners is from revenge.

133. "What is the moral character of the Priesthood? Do they bear any badge of office, &c.?"

The Indian Priesthood is made up of the very worst class. They have no badge of the office. There is but one kind or class. The priest is both prophet and doctor. Any person belonging to the great medicine-dance has a right to perform its rites and ceremonies. The office of the priests is not hereditary. Women take part in the ceremonies; they pretend to foretell events, and also to find lost articles. I once lost my watch, and told an Indian juggler that I wanted him to find it. He said yes, but I must first give him a looking-glass to look through. I gave him a small glass, and he looked into it for some time, when he asked for a black silk handkerchief, which I also gave him, together with some other little things. And when he wanted to know if I could show him pretty near the place where I had lost the watch, I told him I thought I had lost it in a certain foot-path. He asked me to go along with him there, so I went. Every now and then he would look in his glass, and keep on walking, and at last nearly stept on the watch, but did not see it either with his glass or the naked eye; so I found it myself, and showed it to him. He did not appear to care any thing about it, as he had already got possession of the glass, the black silk handkerchief, and some other little things, and he walked off. There is a class of Indians that say they can bring blessings or curses by their own power. This class is called We-chas-tah-wah-kan, or spiritual men. They attend the sick, and doctor them, when well paid for it. If an Indian is taken sick, some of the family will go to the lodge of the juggler, carrying with him a gun, a new blanket, or some other article; sometimes a horse. With a pipe filled with tobacco, this messenger approaches the juggler, pipe and payment in hand. The pipe is lighted, and the messenger presents the stem to him. Sometimes the messenger makes great lamentations while the doctor or juggler is smoking. He then takes the payment, puts it aside, and goes to see the sick man,


but seldom takes any medicine with him. When he arrives at the lodge he walks in, and sits down a little distance from the sick. He never touches his pulse to see what state he is in, but calls for a rattle, (which is made of a gourd-shell, cleaned out, with beads put inside.) Sometimes birch-bark is used for a rattle, when gourds cannot be had. The doctor then strips himself naked, except the cloth around the loins; the leggins and moccasins are also kept on. In this state of nudity the doctor or juggler commences to sing, and shake his rattle to charm away the disease. The words of the song are, hi, le, li, lah — hi, le, li, lah — hi, le, li, lah, uttered in quick succession for half a minute; then a chorus commences, ha — ha — ha — ha-ha-ha-ha. This is gone over three or four times, and then, the juggler stops to smoke; after which, he sings and rattles again, and commences to suck the parts supposed to be diseased. After he sucks and draws for half a minute, shaking the shell all the time, he rises half-way up from his seat, apparently almost suffocated, hawking and gagging, and thrusts his face into a little bowl of water, gurgling and making all sorts of gestures and noises. This water is used to wash his mouth with, and cleanse it from the disease that he has drawn from the sick person. They pretend that they can draw bile from a sick person in this way; but a disease that has been brought on by supernatural powers must be treated in another manner. (See No. 74.) Many of the Indians have faith in this mode of doctoring; but it had not the desired effect in the summer of 1847, when about one hundred and fifty of them died of bilious and other fevers, which they were compelled to confess. Some Indians punctually attend funerals, and in many instances appropriate addresses are made; the habits of the deceased are narrated; advice is given; the customs of their forefathers they are admonished to keep, &c. Any of his relations may draw devices on the grave-post of the deceased. The only device I ever saw on a grave-post was the number of persons he had killed or taken prisoners of his enemies, men, women, and children. For a person killed, it was represented without a head; for a prisoner, a full figure with the hands tied; for a female, a woman's dress was on it.

134. "What general beliefs and superstitions prevail? Are there some points in which all agree? Do they believe in angels or special messengers of the Great Spirit, &c. &c.?"

Superstition prevails throughout the Indian tribes. They believe in spirits, and also that if the Indians do not live up to the laws or customs of their forefathers, the spirits will punish them for their misconduct, particularly if they omit to make feasts for the dead. They suppose these spirits have power to send the spirit of some animal to enter their bodies, and make them sick. (See No. 74.)


VI. Intellectual Capacity and Character.



WE place on record the following additional facts on this topic, and shall cont: to present, in succeeding parts, the accumulating materials, from the consideration which, the inductive and inventive faculties of the race may be judged.

1. Choctaw.
2. Dacotas.
3. Cherokee.
4. Ojibwa of Chegoimegon.
5. Winnebago.
6. Chippewa.
7. Wyandot.
8. Hitchittee.
9. Cumanche.
10. Cuchan or Yuma.


1. Indian Census Roll.
2. Magic Song.
3. Medicine Animal of the Winnebagoes.
4. Haצkah — a Dacota God.
5. Indian Signatures.
6. Mnemonic Symbols for Music.

1. Cherokee Syllabical Alphabet.

1. Transformation of a Hunter Lad.
2. Origin of the Zea Maize.
3. The Wolf Brother.
4. Sayadio.


A. Numeration.

1. Choctaw.
2. Dacota.
3. Cherokee.
4. Ojibwa of Chegoimegon.
5. Winnebago.
6. Chippewa of the Upper Mississippi.
7. Wyandot.
8. Hitchittee or Chellokee.
9. Comanche.
10. Cuchan or Yuma.

Transmitted by John Drennen, Esq., U. S. Agent.

1. One.............................Chuffa
2. Two.............................Tuk lo
3. Three...........................Tu chi na
4. Four.............................Ush ta
5. Five.............................Tath la pi
6. Six...............................Han a li
7. Seven...........................Tin tuk lo
8. Eight............................Un tu chi na
9. Nine.............................Chak ka li
10. Ten...............................Po ko li
11. Eleven...........................An ah chuffa
12. Twelve..........................An ah tuk lo
13. Thirteen........................An ah tu chi na
14. Fourteen.......................An ah ush ta
15. Fifteen..........................An ah tath la pi
16. Sixteen.........................An ah han a li
17. Seventeen.....................An ah un tuk lo
18. Eighteen.......................An ah un tu chi na
19. Nineteen.......................Abi cha ka li
20. Twenty........................Po ko li tuk lo
21. Twenty-one..................Po ko li tuk lo a ku cha chuffa
22. Twenty-two.................... " " " tuklo


23. Twenty-three..................Po ko li tuk lo a ku cha tu chi na
24. Twenty-four................... " " " ush ta
25. Twenty-five.................... " " " tath la pi
26. Twenty-six..................... " " " han a li
27. Twenty-seven.................. " " " un tuk lo
28. Twenty-eight................... " " " un tu chi na
29. Twenty-nine................... " " " chak ka li
80. Thirty...........................Po ko li tu chi na
40. Forty............................Po ko li ush ta
50. Fifty ...........................Po ko li tath la pi
60. Sixty............................Po ko li han a li
70. Seventy........................Po ko li un tuk lo
80. Eighty..........................Po ko li un tu chi na
90. Ninety..........................Po ko li chak a li
100. One hundred..................Tath le pa chufla
101. One hundred and one....... " " chuffa aiana
102. One hundred and two...... " " tuk lo "
103. One hundred and three..... " " tu chi na "
104. One hundred and four...... " " ush ta "
105. One hundred and five...... " " tath la pi "
106. One hundred and six........ " " han a li "
107. One hundred and seven.... " " un tuk lo "
108. One hundred and eight .... " " un tu chi na aiana
109. One hundred and nine..... " " chak a li "
110. One hundred and ten....... " " po ko li "
120. One hundred and twenty... " " po ko li tuk lo "
130. One hundred and thirty ... " " po ko li tu chi na aiana
140. One hundred and forty..... " " po ko li ush ta "
150. One hundred and fifty...... " " po ko li tath la pi "
160. One hundred and sixty..... " " po ko li han a li "
170. One hundred and seventy.. " " po ko li un tuk lo "
180. One hundred and eighty... " " po ko li un tu chi na "
190. One hundred and ninety... " " po ko li chak a li "
200. Two hundred.....................Tath le pa tuk lo
300. Three hundred...................Tath le pa tu chi na
400. Four hundred.....................Tath le pa ush ta
500. Five hundred.....................Tath le pa tath la pi
600. Six hundred.......................Tath le pa han a li
700. Seven hundred...................Tath le pa un tuk lo
800. Eight hundred....................Tath le pa un tu chi na
900. Nine hundred.....................Tath le pa chak a li
1,000. One thousand..................Tath le pa si pok ni chuffa
2,000. Two thousand.................Tath le pa si pok ni tuk lo
3,000. Three thousand...............Tath le pa si pok ni tu chi na


4,000. Four thousand...................Tath le pa si pok ni ush ta
5,000. Five thousand...................Tath le pa si pok ni tath la pi
6,000. Six thousand.....................Tath le pa si pok ni ban a li
7,000. Seven thousand.................Tath le pa si pok ni un tuk lo
8,000. Eight thousand..................Tath le pa si pok ni un tu chi na
9,000. Nine thousand...................Tath le pa si pok ni chak a li
10,000. Ten thousand.....................Tath le pa si pok ni po ko li
100,000. One hundred thousand......Tath le pa si pok ni tath le pa chuffa
1,000,000. One million.......................Mil yan chuffa
2,000,000. Two million.......................Mil yan tuk lo
3,000,000. Three million.....................Mil yan tu chi na
10,000,000. Ten million........................Mil yan po ko li
20,000,000. Twenty million..................Mil yan po ko li tuk lo
30,000,000. Thirty million...................Mil yan po ko li tu chi na
40,000,000. Forty million.....................Mil yan po ko li ush ta
50,000,000. Fifty million......................Mil yan po ko li tath la pi
60,000,000. Sixty million.....................Mil yan po ko li han a li
70,000,000. Seventy million.................Mil yan po ko li un tuk lo
80,000,000. Eighty million...................Mil yan po ko li un tu chi na
90,000,000. Ninety million...................Mil yan po ko li chak a li
100,000,000. One hundred million........Mil yan tath le pa chuffa
200,000,000. Two hundred million........Mil yan tath le pa tuk lo
300,000,000. Three hundred million, &c..Mil yan tath le pa tu chi na
1,000,000,000. One billion........................Bil yan chuffa

By Philander Prescott.
Transmitted by Nathaniel McLain, Esq., U.S. Agent.

1. One.............................Wan chah, or Wa je tah
2. Two.............................Nom pah
3. Three...........................Yah mo nee
4. Four.............................To pah
5. Five..............................Zah pe tah
6. Six................................Shack coope
7. Seven............................Shack o
8. Eight.............................Shah en do
9 .Nine..............................Nep e chu wink ah
10. Ten...............................Wick o chimen ee
11. Eleven...........................Akka wah ju (ten and one)
12. Twelve..........................Akka nom pa (ten and two)


13. Thirteen........................Ahka yah mo nee (ten and three)
14. Fourteen........................Ahka to pah (ten and four, and so on to 20)
15. Fifteen..........................Ahka zah pe tah
16. Sixteen.........................Ahka shack coope
17. Seventeen......................Ahka shack o
18. Eighteen.......................Ahka shah en do
19. Nineteen.......................Ahka nep e chu wink ah
20. Twenty.........................Wick chim ne no pah (20, or two tens and one, up to
30, when they say three tens and one,
up to 40; so they keep adding by saying sampah wah je tah,
which means, beyond or one more than 10, or 20, or 30, as the case may be)
21. Twenty-one.....................Wick a chimen ne nopah gam pah wah je tab.
22. Twenty-two....................Wick a chimen ne nopah sam pah nom pah
23. Twenty-three..................Wick a chimen ne nopah sam pah yah mo nee
24. Twenty-four...................Wick a chimen ne nopah sam pah to pah
25. Twenty-five....................Wick a chimen ne nopah sam pah zah pe tab
26. Twenty-six.....................Wick a chimen ne nopah sam pah shack coope
27. Twenty-seven..................Wick a chimen ne nompah sam pah shack ko
28. Twenty-eight...................Wick a chimen ne nompah sam pah shah en do
29. Twenty-nine...................Wick a chimen ne nompah sampah nep e chu wink ah
30. Thirty...........................Wick a cbimen ne yah mo nee (three tens)
40. Forty...........................Wick a chimen ne to pah (four tens)
50. Fifty ...........................Wick a chimen ne zah pe tab (five tens)
60. Sixty............................Wick a chimen ne shack coope (six tens)
70. Seventy........................Wick a chimen ne shack ko (seven tens)
80. Eighty..........................Wick a chimen ne shah en do (eight tens)
90. Ninety..........................Wick a chimen ne nep e chu wink ah (nine tens)
100. One hundred..................Opong wa
101. One hundred and one.......Opong wa sam pah wah je tah
102. One hundred and two......Opong wa sam pah nom pah
103. One hundred and three.....Opong wa sam pah yah mo nee
104. One hundred and four......Opong wa sam pah to pah
105. One hundred and five......Opong wa sam pah zah pe tah
106. One hundred and six........Opong wa sam pah shack coope
107. One hundred and seven.....Opong wa sam pah shack ko
108. One hundred and eight ....Opong wa sam pah shah en do
109. One hundred and nine.....Opong wa sam pah nep e chu wink ah
110. One hundred and ten.......Opong wa sam pah wick a chimen ne
120. One hundred and twenty...Opong wa sam pah wick a chimen ne no pah
130. One hundred and thirty ...Opong wa sam pah wick a chimen ne yah mo nee
140. One hundred and forty.....Opong wa sam pah wick a chimen ne to pah
150. One hundred and fifty......Opong wa sam pah wick a chimen ne zah pe tah
160. One hundred and sixty.....Opong wa sam pah wick a chimen ne shack coope


170. One hundred and seventy..Opong wa sam pah wick a chimen ne shack ko
180. One hundred and eighty...Opong wa sam pah wick a chimen ne shah en do
190. One hundred and ninety...Opong wa sam pah wick a chimen ne nep e chu wink ah
200. Two hundred................Opong wa no pah
300. Three hundred.............Opong wa yah mo nee
400. Four hundred ..............Opong wa to pah
500. Fire hundred...............Opong wa zah pe tah
600. Six hundred................Opong wa shack coope
700. Seven hundred.............Opong wa shack ko
800. Eight hundred .............Opong wa shah en do
900. Nine hundred...............Opong wa nep e chu wink ah
1,000. One thousand...............Kick ta opong wa wah je tah
2,000. Two thousand...............Kick ta opong wa nom pah
3,000. Three thousand............Kick ta opong wa yah mo nee
4,000. Four thousand..............Kick ta opong wa to pah
5,000. Five thousand..............Kick ta opong wa zah pe tah
6,000. Six thousand................Kick ta opong wa shack o pee
7,000. Seven thousand.............Kick ta opong wa shack ko
8,000. Eight thousand.............Kick ta opong wa shah en do
9,000. Nine thousand..............Kick ta opong wa nep chu wink ah
10,000. Ten thousand................Kick ta wick a chinem nah
100,000. One hundred thousand ...Kick ta opong wa opong wa wah je tah
1,000,000. One million..................Kick ta opong wa tunkah (big thousand)
2,000,000. Two million.................Kick ta opong wa tunkah nom pah
3,000,000. Three million...............Kick ta opong wa tunkah yah mo nee
10,000,000. Ten million..................Kick ta opong tunkah wick chimen ne
20,000,000. Twenty million.............Kick ta opong wa tunkah wick a chimen ne nom pah
30,000,000. Thirty million..............Kick ta opong wa tunkah wick a chimen ne yah mo nee
40,000,000. Forty million...............Kick ta opong wa tunkah wick chimen ne to pah
50,000,000. Fifty million ...............Kick ta opong wa tunkah wick chimen ne zah pe tah
60,000,000. Sixty million...............Kick ta opong wa tunkah wick chimen ne shack coope
70,000,000. Seventy million............Kick ta opong wa tunkah wick chimen ne shack ko
80,000,000. Eighty million..............Kick ta opong wa tunkah wick chimen ne shah en do
90,000,000. Ninety million..............Kick ta opong wa tunkah wick chimen nenep e chu wink ah
100,000,000. One hundred million......Kick ta opong wa tunkah opong wa wah je tah
200,000,000. Two hundred million......Kick ta opong wa tunkah opong wa no pah
300,000,000. Three hundred million, &c.Kick ta opong wa tunkah opong wa yah mo nee
1,000,000,000. One billion..................Kick ta opong wa tunkah opong wa wick e chimen ne

The Indians themselves have no kind of an idea what these amounts are; the only way they could form any kind of an idea would be to let them see the amount counted out. One thousand is more than or a higher number than some of them can count. We hear some of them talk about thousands, and sometimes a million, but still they can give no correct idea how much of a bulk it would make; and I believe if a Sioux Indian was told he could have a million of dollars if he would count it correctly, he could not do it. P. Prescott.


Transmitted by William Butler, Esq., U.S. Agent.
Te Sai Stee (Numerals).

1. One...........................Sar quoh
2. Two...........................Tar lee
3. Three.........................Chaw ie
4. Four..........................Ner kee
5. Five...........................Hisk skee
6. Six............................Su tah lee
7. Seven.........................Gar le quoh kee
8. Eight.........................Choo na lah
9. Nine...........................Law na lah
10. Ten...........................Ar sko hee
11. Eleven........................Lar too
12. Twelve.......................Tul too
13. Thirteen.....................Chaw i gar too
14. Fourteen.....................Nee gar too
15. Fifteen........................Skee gar too
16. Sixteen.......................Dar lah too
17. Seventeen....................Gar le quah too
18. Eighteen.....................Nai lar too
19. Nineteen.....................So na lah too
20. Twenty.......................Tah lar sko kee
21. Twenty-one..................So i chaw na
22. Twenty-two..................Tah le chaw na
23. Twenty-three................Chaw i chaw na
24. Twenty-four.................Ner kee chaw na
25. Twenty-five..................Hisk ku chaw na
26. Twenty-six...................Su tah lu chaw na
27. Twenty-seven...............Gar le quoh ku chaw na
28. Twenty-eight................Nai lar chaw na
29. Twenty-nine.................Lo nai lar chaw na
30. Thirty........................Chaw ar sko hee
40. Forty.........................Ner gar sko hee
50. Fifty.........................Hisk skar sko hee
60. Sixty..........................Su dar lee sko hee
70. Seventy......................Gar lee quah sko hee
80. Eighty........................Na lah sko hee
90. Ninety........................Lo nah lah sko hee


100. One hundred................Ar sko hee choo que
101. One hundred and one....Ar sko hee choo que sar quoh
102. One hundred and two....Ar sko hee choo que tar lee
103. One hundred and three...Ar sko hee choo que chaw ie
104. One hundred and four ...Ar sko hee choo que ner kee
105. One hundred and five....Ar sko hee choo que hisk kee
106. One hundred and six.....Ar sko hee choo que su tah lee
107. One hundred and seven..Ar sko hee choo que gar le quoh kee
108. One hundred and eight...Ar sko hee choo que choo na lah
109. One hundred and nine...Ar sko hee choo que saw na lah
110. One hundred and ten....Ar sko hee choo que ar sko hee
120. One hundred and twenty.. Ar sko hee choo que tar lar sko hee
130. One hundred and thirty...Ar sko hee choo que chaw ar sko hee
140. One hundred and forty....Ar sko hee choo que ner gar sko hee
150. One hundred and fifty...Ar sko hee choo que hisk skar sko hee
160. One hundred and sixty...Ar sko hee choo que su dar lee sko hee
170. One hundred and seventy... Ar sko hee choo que gar le quoh sko he
180. One hundred and eighty...Ar sko hee choo que saw na lah sko hee
190. One hundred and ninety...Ar sko hee choo que saw na lah sko hee
200. Two hundred...............Tar le choo que
300. Three hundred..............Chaw ie choo que
400. Four hundred...............Ner kee choo que
500. Five hundred...............Hisk skee choo que
600. Six hundred.................Su dar lee choo que
700. Seven hundred..............Gar le quoh ke choo que
800. Eight hundred..............Nai lar choo que
900. Nine hundred...............Saw nai lar choo que
1,000. One thousand...............Sar quoh e yar gar yer lee
2,000. Two thousand..............Tar lee e yar gar yer lee
3,000. Three thousand............Chaw ie e yar gar yer lee
4,000. Four thousand..............Ner ke e yar gar yer lee
5,000. Five thousand..............Hisk kee e yar gar yer lee
6,000. Six thousand................Su dar le e yar gar yer lee
7,000. Seven thousand............Gar le quoh ke e yar gar yer le
8,000. Eight thousand.............Choo nai lah e yar gar yer lee
9,000. Nine thousand..............Saw nai lah e yar gar yer lee
10,000. Ten thousand...............Ar sko he e yar gar yer lee
100,000. One hundred thousand ...Ar sko he choo que e yar gar yer lee
200,000. Two hundred thousand ...Tar le choo que e yar gar yer lee
300,000. Three hundred thousand...Chaw ie choo que e yar gar yer lee
400,000. Four hundred thousand....Ner kee choo que e yar gar yer lee
1,000,000. One million..................Sar quoh e you quah te ner ter
2,000,000. Two million.................Tar le e you quah te ner ter
3,000,000. Three million...............Chaw ie e you quah te ner ter


10,000,000. Ten million..................Ar sko he e yew quah te ner ter
20,000,000. Twenty million.............Tar lah sko he e yew quah te ner ter
30,000,000. Thirty million..............Chaw ie sko he e yew quah te ner ter
40,000,000. Forty million...............Ner gar sko he e yew quah te ner ter
50,000,000. Fifty million...............Hisk skar sko hee e yew quah te ner ter
60,000,000. Sixty million...............Su de le sko he e yew quah te ner ter
70,000,000. Seventy million.............Gar le quoh sko he e yew quah te ner ter
80,000,000. Eighty million..............Nai lar sko he e yew quah te ner ter
90,000,000. Ninety million..............Saw nai le sko he e yew quah te ner ter
100,000,000. One hundred million......Ar sko he choo que e yew quah te ner ter
200,000,000. Two hundred million......Tar le choo que e yew quah te ner ter
300,000,000. Three hundred million, &c. Chaw ie choo que e yew quah te ner ter

By William W. Warren

1. One...........................Ba shik
2. Two...........................Neensh
8. Three.........................Nis we
4. Four..........................Ne win
5. Five...........................Nב nun
6. Six............................Nin god wבs we
7. Seven ........................Ninsh wבs we
8. Eight.........................Shous we
9. Nine..........................Shang בs we
10. Ten............................Me dבs we
11. Eleven........................Me dבs we בshe ba shig
12. Twelve........................Me dבs we ashe neensh
13. Thirteen......................Me dבs we ashe nis we
14. Fourteen.....................Me dבs we ashe ne win
15. Fifteen........................Me dבs we ashe nב nun
16. Sixteen.......................Me dבs we ashe nin god wבs e
17. Seventeen ...................Me dבs we ashe ninsh was we
18. Eighteen......................Me dבs we ashe shous we
19. Nineteen.....................Me dבs we ashe shבng as we
20. Twenty.......................Nish tun ב
21. Twenty-one..................Nish tun ב ashe ba shig
22. Twenty-two..................Nish tun ב ashe neensh
23. Twenty-three................Nish tun ב ashe nis we
24. Twenty-four.................Nish tun ב ashe ne win


25. Twenty-five..................Nish tun ב ashe na nun
26. Twenty-six...................Nish tun ב ashe nin god was we
27. Twenty-seven...............Nish tun ב ashe ninsh was we
28. Twenty-eight................Nish tun ב ashe shous we
29. Twenty-nine.................Nish tun ב ashe shang as we
30. Thirty........................Nis e me dun ב
40. Forty.........................Ne me dun ב
50. Fifty.........................Nan im e dun ב
60. Sixty.........................Nin god waus im e dun ב
70. Seventy......................Ninsh was im e dun ב
80. Eighty........................Shous im e dun ב
90. Ninety........................Shang as im e dun ב
100. One hundred...............Nin god wבc
101. One hundred and one....Nin god wבc ashe ba shig
102. One hundred and two....Nin god wבc ashe neensh
103. One hundred and three...Nin god wבc ashe nis we
104. One hundred and four ...Nin god wבc ashe ni win
105. One hundred and five...Nin god wבc ashe na nun
106. One hundred and six.....Nin god wבc ashe nin god was we
107. One hundred and seven...Nin god wבc ashe ninsh was we
108. One hundred and eight...Nin god wבc ashe shous we
109. One hundred and nine...Nin god wבc ashe shang us we
110. One hundred and ten.....Nin god wבc ashe me dבs we
120. One hundred and twenty..Nin god wבc ashe nish tun ב
130. One hundred and thirty...Nin god wבc ashe nis e me dun ב
140. One hundred and forty...Nin god wבc ashe nim e dun ב
150. One hundred and fifty...Nin god wבc ashe naun e me dun ב
160. One hundred and sixty...Nin god wבc ashe nin god was e me dun ב
170. One hundred and seventy..Nin god wבc ashe ninsh wבs im e dun ב
180. One hundred and eighty...Nin god wבc ashe shous im e dun ב
190. One hundred and ninety...Nin god wבc ashe shבng us im e dun a
200. Two hundred................Neensh wבc
300. Three hundred.............Nis wבc
400. Four hundred..............Ne wבc
500. Five hundred...............Naun wבc
600. Six hundred................Nin god wבs wבc
700. Seven hundred.............Ninsh wבs wבc
800. Eight hundred .............Shous wבc
900. Nine hundred...............Shang us wבc
1,000. One thousand...............Me dבs wבc
2,000. Two thousand...............Ninsh ing me das wac or Nish tun ac
3,000. Three thousand............Nis sing me dבs wבc or Nis e me dun בc
4,000. Four thousand..............Ne wing me dבs wבc or Ne me dun בc
5,000. Five thousand..............Nבn ing me dבs wבc or Naun im e dun בc


6,000. Six thousand................Nin god wautch ing me das wac
7,000. Seven thousand.............Ninsh wautch ing me dבs wac
8,000. Eight thousand.............Shoutch ing me das wac
9,000. Nine thousand..............Shang utch ing me das wבc
10,000. Ten thousand................Me datch me dבs wבc
100,000. One hundred thousand ...Nin god wac dב ching me das wac
1,000,000. One million..................Me das wac dב sing me das wac
2,000,000. Two million.................Ninsh ing me dבs wבc dב sing me dבs wבc
3,000,000. Three million...............Nis im e dun בc me das wבc
10,000,000. Ten million..................Me dבtch ing me dבs wבc me dבs wבc
20,000,000. Twenty million.............Nish tun ing me dבs wבc me dבs wבc
30,000,000. Thirty million..............Nis im id un ing me das wבc me das wac
40,000,000. Forty million...............Nim id un ing me das wac me das wac
50,000,000. Fifty million ...............Naun im id un ing me das wac me das wac
60,000,000. Sixty million...............Nin god wבs im id un ing me das wac me das wac
70,000,000. Seventy million............Ninsh wבs im id un ing me das wac me das wac
80,000,000. Eighty million..............Shous im id un ing me das wac me das wac
90,000,000. Ninety million..............Shang us im id un ing me dבs wac me das wac
100,000,000. One hundred million......Nin god wac me das wac me das wac
200,000,000. Two hundred million......Ninsh wac me das wac me das wac
300,000,000. Three hundred million, &c.Nis sing me das wac me das wac
1,000,000,000. One billion..................Me das wac me das wac as he me das wac

One million is also called Ke che med as wac, which would abbreviate a great deal in counting. There is no more limit (in thus counting) in the Ojibwa than there is in the English language.
W. Warren.


There is another mode of counting the decimals, which is more commonly used by the Pillagers and northern Ojibwas, as follows:

1. One...........................Nin god juבsh
2. Two...........................Ninsh wבs
3. Three ........................Nis wבs
4. Four..........................Ne wבs
5. Five...........................Nan wבs
6. Six............................Nin god was we
7. Seven........................Nin shous we
8. Eight.........................Shous we
9. Nine...........................Shבsng
10. Ten...........................Quetch

From this point, the counting is as interpreted in the printed form. — W. W.


By Miss Elizabeth Lowry.
Transmitted by J.E. Fletcher, Esq., U.S. Agent.

1. One...........................He zun ke ra
2. Two...........................Noomp
3. Three.........................Taun
4. Four..........................Jope
5. Five...........................Sarch
6. Six............................Ha ka wa
7. Seven.........................Sha ko we
8. Eight.........................Ha roo wunk
9. Nine...........................He zun ke choo shkoo ne
10. Ten...........................Ka ra pa ne za
11. Eleven........................Ka ra pa ne za nuka he zun ke ra shun na
12. Twelve.......................Ka ra pa ne za nuka noompa shun na
13. Thirteen.....................Ka ra pa ne za nuka tan e a shun na
14. Fourteen.....................Ka ra pa ne za nuka jope a shun na
15. Fifteen.........................Ka ra pa ne za nuka sarch a shun na
16. Sixteen.......................Ka ra pa ne za nuka ha ka wa a shun na
17. Seventeen....................Ka ra pa ne za nuka sha ko we a shun na
18. Eighteen.....................Ka ra pa ne za nuka ha roo wunk a shun na
19. Nineteen.....................Ka ra pa ne za nuka he zun ke choo shkoon a shun na
20. Twenty.......................Ka ra pa ne noomp
21. Twenty-one..................Ka ra pa ne noompa nuka he zun ke ra shun na
22. Twenty-two..................Ka ra pa ne noompa nuka noomp a shun na
23. Twenty-three................Ka ra pa ne noompa nuka tan e a shun na
24. Twenty-four.................Ka ra pa ne noompa nuka jope a shun na
25. Twenty-five..................Ka ra pa ne noompa nuka sarch a shun na
26. Twenty-six...................Ka ra pa ne noompa nuka ha ka wa a shun na
27. Twenty-seven...............Ka ra pa ne noompa nuka sha ko we a shun na
28. Twenty-eight................Ka ra pa ne noompa nuka ha roo wunk a shun na
29. Twenty-nine.................Ka ra pa ne noompa nuka he zun ke choo shkoon a shun na
30. Thirty........................Ka ra pa ne taun
40. Forty.........................Ka ra pa ne jope
50. Fifty.........................Ka ra pa ne sarch
60. Sixty..........................Ka ra pa ne ha ka wa
70. Seventy......................Ka ra pa ne sha ko we
80. Eighty........................Ka ra pa ne ha roo wunk


90. Ninety........................Ka ra pa lie lie zun ke choo shkoon e
100. One hundred................Ho ke he za
101. One hundred and one....Ho ke he za nuka he zun ke ra shun na
102. One hundred and two....Ho ke he za nuka noomp a shun na
103. One hundred and three...Ho ke he za nuka tan e a shun na
104. One hundred and four ...Ho ke he za nuka jope a shun na
105. One hundred and five....Ho ke he za nuka sarch a shun na
106. One hundred and six.....Ho ke he za nuka ha ka wa a shun na
107. One hundred and seven..Ho ke he za nuka sha ko we a shun na
108. One hundred and eight...Ho ke he za nuka ha roo wunk a shun na
109. One hundred and nine ...Ho ke he za nuka he zun ke choo shkoon a shun na
110. One hundred and ten....Ho ke he za nuka ka ra pa ne a shun na
120. One hundred and twenty..Ho ke he za nuka ka ra pa ne noomp a shun na
130. One hundred and thirty...Ho ke he za nuka ka ra pa ne tan e a shun na
140. One hundred and forty....Ho ke he za nuka ka ra pa ne jope a shun na
150. One hundred and fifty ...Ho ke he za nuka ka ra pa ne sarch a shun na
160. One hundred and sixty...Ho ke he za nuka ka ra pa ne ha ka wa a shun na
170. One hundred and seventy...Ho ke he za nuka ka ra pa ne sha ko we a shun na
180. One hundred and eighty...Ho ke he za nuka ka ra pa ne ha roo wunk a shun na
190. One hundred and ninety...Ho ke he za nuka ka ra pa ne he zun ke choo shkoon a shun na
200. Two hundred...............Ho ke he noomp
300. Three hundred..............Ho ke he taun
400. Four hundred...............Ho ke he jope
500. Five hundred...............Ho ke he sarch
600. Six hundred.................Ho ke he ha ka wa
700. Seven hundred..............Ho ke he sha ko wa
800. Eight hundred..............Ho ke he ha roo wunk
900. Nine hundred...............Ho ke he zun ke choo shoon e
1,000. One thousand...............Ho ke he hhutaza
2,000. Two thousand..............Ho ke he hhutara noomp
3,000. Three thousand............Ho ke he hhutara taun
4,000. Four thousand..............Ho ke he hhutara jope
5,000. Five thousand..............Ho ke he hhutara sarch
6,000. Six thousand................Ho ke he hhutara ha ka wa
7,000. Seven thousand............Ho ke he hhutara sha ko we
8,000. Eight thousand.............Ho ke he hhutara ha roo wunk
9,000. Nine thousand..............Ho ke he hhutara he zun ke choo shkoon e
10,000. Ten thousand...............Ho ke he hhutara ka ra pa ne za
100,000. One hundred thousand ...Ho ke he hhuta ro ke he za
1,000,000. One million..................Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen za
2,000,000. Two million.................Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a noomp
3,000,000. Three million...............Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a taun
10,000,000. Ten million..................Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ka ra pa ne za


20,000,000. Twenty million.............Ho ke ho hhuta hhu chen a ka ra pa ne noomp
30,000,000. Thirty million..............Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ka ra pa ne taun
40,000,000. Forty million...............Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ka ra pa ne jope
50,000,000. Fifty million...............Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ka ra pa ne sarch
60,000,000. Sixty million...............Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ka ra pa ne ha ka wa
70,000,000. Seventy million.............Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ka ra pa ne sha ko we
80,000,000. Eighty million..............Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ka ra pa ne ha roo wunk
90,000,000. Ninety million..............Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ka ra pa ne zun ke choo shkoon e
100,000,000. One hundred million......Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ho ke he za
200,000,000. Two hundred million......Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ho ke he noomp
300,000,000. Three hundred million, &c.Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ho ke he taun
1,000,000,000. One billion..................Ho ke he hhuta hhu chen a ho ke he ka ra pa ne za

By MR. Fairbanks.

1. One...........................Ba shick
2. Two...........................Nizh
3. Three.........................Niss wi
4. Four..........................Ni win
5. Five...........................Na nun
6. Six............................Ning o dwa swi
7. Seven ........................Nizh was swi
8. Eight.........................Nish was swi
9. Nine..........................Shong gas swi
10. Ten............................Mi das swi
11. Eleven........................Mi das swi a shi ba shick or ba jig
12. Twelve........................Mi das swi a shi nizh
13. Thirteen......................Mi das swi a shi nis swi
14. Fourteen.....................Mi das swi a shi ni win
15. Fifteen........................Mi das swi a shi na nun
16. Sixteen.......................Mi das swi a shi ning o dwa swi
17. Seventeen ...................Mi das swi a shi nizh wa swi
18. Eighteen......................Mi das swi a shi nish was swi
19. Nineteen.....................Mi das swi a shi shong gas swi
20. Twenty.......................Nizh ta na
21. Twenty-one..................Nizh ta na a shi pa shick
22. Twenty-two..................Nizh ta na a shi nizh
23. Twenty-three................Nizh ta na a shi nis swi


24. Twenty-four.................Nizh ta na a shi ni win
25. Twenty-five..................Nizh ta na a shi na nun
26. Twenty-six...................Nizh ta na a shi ning o dwas swi
27. Twenty-seven...............Nizh ta na a shi neezh was swi
28. Twenty-eight................Nizh ta na a shi nis was swi
29. Twenty-nine.................Nizh ta na a shi shong gas swi
80. Thirty........................Nis si me da na
40. Forty.........................Ne me da na
50. Fifty.........................Na ni me da na
60. Sixty.........................Ning o dwas si me da na
70. Seventy......................Nizh was si me da na
80. Eighty........................Nish was si me da na
90. Ninety........................Shong gas si me da na
100. One hundred...............Ning o dwac or Ning od wac
101. One hundred and one....Ning od wac a shi ba jij or ba shick
102. One hundred and two....Ning od wac a shi nizh
103. One hundred and three...Ning od wac a shi nis swi
104. One hundred and four ...Ning od wac a shi ni win
105. One hundred and five....Ning od wac a shi na nun
106. One hundred and six.....Ning od wac a shi ning o dwas swi
107. One hundred and seven...Ning od wac a shi nizh was swi
108. One hundred and eight...Ning od wac a shi nish was swi
110. One hundred and ten.....Ning od wac a shi ba shick o me da na
120. One hundred and twenty..Ning od wac a shi nizh ta na
130. One hundred and thirty...Ning od wac a shi nis si me da na
140. One hundred and forty...Ning od wac a shi ne me da na
150. One hundred and fifty...Ning od wac a shi na ni me da na
160. One hundred and sixty...Ning od wac a shi ning od was si me da na
170. One hundred and seventy..Ning od wac a shi nizh was si me da na
180. One hundred and eighty...Ning od wac a shi nish was si me da na
190. One hundred and ninety...Ning od wac a shi shong gas si me da na
200. Two hundred................Nizh wac
300. Three hundred.............Nis wac
400. Four hundred ..............Ni wac
500. Five hundred...............Na wac
600. Six hundred................Ning od was wac
700. Seven hundred.............Nizh was wac
800. Eight hundred.............Nish was wac
900. Nine hundred...............Shong gas wac
1,000. One thousand...............Mi das was wac
2,000. Two thousand...............Nizh ta nock
3,000. Three thousand............Nis si me da nock
4,000. Four thousand..............Ni me da na nock
5,000. Five thousand..............Na ni me da nock


6,000. Six thousand................Ning od was si me da nock
7,000. Seven thousand.............Neezh was si me da nock
8,000. Eight thousand.............Nish was si me da nock
9,000. Nine thousand..............Shong gas si me da nock
10,000. Ten thousand................Ke che me das wac
100,000. One hundred thousand ...Ning od wac me das wac

By William Walker.
Transmitted by D.D. Mitchel, Esq., Superintendent of the Indian Department, St. Louis.

1. One...........................Skot
2. Two...........................Tendee
3. Three........................Schenk
4. Four..........................N'dauhk
5. Five...........................Oo wיehsh
6. Six............................Watt zhבu
7. Seven ........................Tsoo tau rיh
8. Eight.........................Au a ta rיh
9. Nine...........................Eh en tr×£oh
10. Ten...........................Auh seh
11. Eleven........................ " scot e skau reh
12. Twelve........................ " ten dee ta skau reh
13. Thirteen...................... " schenk e skau reh
14. Fourteen...................... " n'dauhk e skau reh
15. Fifteen........................ " oo weehsh e skau reh
16. Sixteen....................... " wau zhau e skau reh
17. Seventeen................... " tsoo tau reh e skau reh
18. Eighteen..................... " au a ta reh e skau reh
19. Nineteen..................... " eh en trooh e skau reh
20. Twenty.......................Ten dee ta wבu seh
21. Twenty-one.................. " " " scot e skau reh
22. Twenty-two.................. " " " ten dee ta skau reh
23. Twenty-three............... " " " schenk e skau reh
24. Twenty-four................. " " " n'dauhk e skau reh
25. Twenty-five.................. " " " oo weehsh e skau reh
26. Twenty-six................... " " " wau zhau e skau reh
27. Twenty-seven............... " " " tsoo tau reh e skau reh
28. Twenty-eight................ " " " au a ta reh e skau reh


29. Twenty-nine.................Ten dee ta wau seh eh en trooh e skau reh
30. Thirty........................Schenk e wau seh
40. Forty.........................N'dauhk e wauh seh
50. Fifty.........................Oo weehsh e wauh seh
60. Sixty..........................Wau zhau e wauh seh
70. Seventy......................Tsoo tau reh e wauh seh
80. Eighty........................Au a ta reh e wauh seh
90. Ninety........................Eh en trooh e wauh seh
100. One hundred................Scot ta ma en gau a wee
101. One hundred and one.... " " " " scot e skau reh
102. One hundred and two.... " " " " ten dee ta skau reh
103. One hundred and three... " " " " schenk e skau reh
104. One hundred and four ... " " " " n'dauhk e skau reh
105. One hundred and five.... " " " " Oo weehsh e skau reh
106. One hundred and six..... " " " " wau zhau e skau reh
107. One hundred and seven.. " " " " tsoo tau reh e skau reh
108. One hundred and eight... " " " " au ta reh e skau reh
109. One hundred and nine... " " " " eh en trooh e skau reh
110. One hundred and ten.... " " " " auh seh e skau reh
120. One hundred and twenty... " " " " ten de ta wau seh
130. One hundred and thirty... " " " " schenk wau seh
140. One hundred and forty.... " " " " n'dauhk wau seh
150. One hundred and fifty ... " " " " oo weehsh wau seh
160. One hundred and sixty... " " " " wau zhau wau seh
170. One hundred and seventy... " " " " tsoo tau reh wau seh
180. One hundred and eighty... " " " " au a ta reh wau seh
190. One hundred and ninety... " " " " eh en trooh wau seh
200. Two hundred...............Ten dee ta ma en gau a wee
300. Three hundred..............Schenk " " "
400. Four hundred...............N'dauhk " " "
500. Five hundred...............Oo weehsh " " "
600. Six hundred.................Wau zhau " " "
700. Seven hundred..............Tsoo tau reh " " "
800. Eight hundred..............Au a tau reh " " "
900. Nine hundred...............Eh en trooh " " "
1,000. One thousand...............Son gwot
2,000. Two thousand..............Ta hon gwo yeh
3,000. Three thousand............Schenk hon gwo yeh
4,000. Four thousand..............N'dauhk hon gwo yeh
5,000. Five thousand..............Oo weehsh hon gwo yeh
6,000. Six thousand................Wau zhau hon gwo yeh
7,000. Seven thousand............Tsoo tau reh hon gwo yeh
8,000. Eight thousand.............Au a tau reh hon gwo yeh


9,000. Nine thousand..............Eh en trooh hon gwo yeh
10,000. Ten thousand...............Au seh hon gwo yeh
100,000. One hundred thousand ...Scot ta ma en gua a wee hon gwo yeh
1,000,000. One million..................Auh seh ta ma en gau a wee hon gwo yeh
2,000,000. Two million.................Ten dee auh seh ta ma en gau a wee hon gwo yeh
3,000,000. Three million...............Schenk auh seh ta ma en gau a wee hon gwo yeh

Beyond this the Wyandots cannot go. — W. W.

Spoken by Several Tribes of the Great Muskokee Race.
By Captain J.C. Casey, U.S.A., Florida.

1. One...........................Thlah' hai
2. Two...........................To kai
3. Three.........................To chay
4. Four..........................See tah
5. Five...........................Chah' kee
6. Six............................Ee pah
7. Seven.........................Ko la pah
8. Eight.........................Tos nap pah
9. Nine...........................Os ta pah
10. Ten...........................Po ko lin
11. Eleven........................Po ko lin thlah' wai kan
12. Twelve....................... " tok la wai kan
13. Thirteen..................... " to che na wai kan
14. Fourteen..................... " see tah wai kan
15. Fifteen........................ " chah' kce pa wai kan
16. Sixteen....................... " ee pah wai kan
17. Seventeen.................... " ko la pah wai kan
18. Eighteen..................... " tos na pah wai kan
19. Nineteen..................... " os ta pah wai kan
20. Twenty.......................Po ko to ko lin
30. Thirty........................Po ko to che nin or to chay nin
40. Forty.........................Po ko see tah kin
50. Fifty..........................Po ko chah' kee bin
60. Sixty..........................Po ko lee pah kin
70. Seventy......................Po ko ko lo pah kin
80. Eighty........................Po ko tos na pah kin
90. Ninety........................Po ko los ta pah kin
100. One hundred ...............Chok pee thlah' min


200. Two hundred................Chok pe to ka lan
300. Three hundred.............. " to chay nin
400. Four hundred............... " se tah kin
500. Five hundred............... " chah kee pan
600. Six hundred................ " ee pah kin
700. Seven hundred.............. " ko la pah kin
800. Eight hundred.............. " tos na pah kin
900. Nine hundred............... " os ta pah kin
1,000. One thousand............... " chok thlah min

NOTE. — a always as in father; ai like long i in fine; ay like a in famous; ah like long a in master; ah the same and guttural, the h being sounded like ch in the Scotch word loch.

9. COMANCHE. (Vide p. 129.)

10. CUCHAN OR YUMA. (Vide p. 119.)


B. Art of Recording Ideas.


THIS mode of recording ideas is found to have been very generally practised by the American tribes, from the earliest period. From the accumulating mass of materials on that head, the following topics are here introduced.


Transmitted by J.C. Fletcher, Esq.

(Plate 54.)

The subjoined census of an Indian band at Mille Lac, in the territory of Minnesota, in symbolic characters, was drawn and given in to the agent by Nago-nabe, a Chippewa Indian, during the progress of the annuity payments in 1849. It represents, by pictographic characters, each family of the band, by its name and its numbers.

There is no particular key to it, but it manifests the off-hand ingenuity of the author of it, in adapting general pictographic symbols to a particular purpose. The Indians generally designate their family names by their particular totem; but in this case, as the band are nearly all of one totem, he has designated each particular family by some symbol denoting their common, or current name. Thus Fig. 2 denotes a valley, the name of the master of the wigwam: Fig. 4 denotes a man shooting at a mark: No. 5 a cat-fish: No. 8 a beaver-skin: No. 9 the sun: No. 13 an eagle; No. 14 a snake; No. 18 the earth crossed: No. 22 a buffalo: No. 34 an axe. All of which are respectively the tribal, but not the totemic names of the individuals.

Although the regular system is thus departed from, those intimately acquainted with the band and the individuals, can readily read it. No. 35 is easily recognised as the chief possessing sacerdotal authority. These are the distinctions preserved of thirty-four families, numbering 108 souls. Mr. Fletcher, the Government Agent, transmits it as denoting the aptitude of Nago-nabe, the head of the band, for this species of writing, and his close attention in regarding the interests of each family composing his village.

The marks in each division indicate the number of persons in each family.



Transmitted with the Preceding.

(Plate 55.)

Fig. 1. A Lynx. The meda sings —
Nah me ba o sa yaun
Neen a ne mah je o sa yaun neen
I walk about in the night.
I that walk along — 'tis I.
Fig. 2. A human figure, denoting bad speeches from a medicine-man.
Neen none daun ke tone
Ma ne do we aun.
I hear your mouth.
You that are a spirit.

Fig. 3. A Lynx. He is represented as just having emerged from the ground. The bar across the neck denotes this. This lynx is a symbol of a first-rate Meda-man — one deeply versed in the medical mysteries.
Shi equah mo mo ke aun e
Nin bishue
I ah ne aun ך.
Now I come out of the ground,
I that am a lynx.
Fig. 4. The Lynx — a symbol of the Meda.
Ben ah, neen bishue
Ah nah ke me nuah bum e nak?
See! I am a lynx;
Do you like my looks?


Transmitted with the Preceding.

(FIG. 7. Plate 55.)

The idea of a medical panacea for human diseases, appears to be deeply implanted in the Indian mind. Equally deep and general is the expression, that this remedy is to be exhibited in connexion with a supernatural, magical, or necromantic power, of which the professors of the medical art are the depositories. These professors, in their supposed order, are the medas, or higher proficients of Indian occult knowledge.

The Jossekeed or seer, or what is denominated the prophet or foreteller of future


events, must be classified as a meda, for he is ever supposed by the Indians to be conversant with the highest arts. 2. The Madה-win-inee, or doctor, practises his arts of curing on personal experience or knowledge, relying on the material virtues of his simples.

Sorcerers, wizards, and tricksters, or Wabenos, arise from one or the other of these classes, the boundaries between whose arcana of knowledge are of course not very accurately defined.

As a general belief, animals, to the hunting of which so much of the lives of the Indians is devoted, are associated with the exhibition of magic medicines; and individuals, in all portions of the Indian country, acquire a local celebrity for their skill in this department of Indian traditionary knowledge.

The annexed Fig. 7, Plate 55, was drawn by Little Hill, a Winnebago chief of the upper Mississippi, west. He represents it as their medicine animal. He says that this animal is but seldom seen — that it is only seen by medicine-men after severe fasting. He has a piece of bone, which he asserts was taken from this animal. He considers it a potent medicine, and uses it by filing a small piece in water. He has also a small piece of native copper, which he uses in the same manner, and entertains like notions of its sovereign virtues.

d. HAײKAH — A DACOTA GOD. (Plate 55.)

To the Indian mind, many of the phenomena of nature, which are familiar to persons of even the lowest grade of information in civilized life, are invested with the attributes and functions of a god. Whatever, in fact, is mysterious, abstruse, or unknown in nature or art, is referred to the power of a deity. It is with him the short cut to solve every question beyond his depth. Superstition is exceedingly acute in observing phenomena, in the great area of the forest. Not a sound escapes his ever quick ear, and if there be any thing in the attending circumstances in which he is placed, to raise a suspicion, it is immediately set down as of superhuman influence.

It is one of the notions of the ancient poets, that the spirit of a man might inhabit a tree, injuries to which were, in such cases of transition, to be regarded as shocking cruelties. It is not conceived by the Indians, that a mere man could be thus transformed, without, at the same time, possessing the attributes of a god. The evidence of the enchantment or transformation is to be drawn from the senses.

If a tempest sweeps the forest, producing a tumult of sounds, there is no cause for wonder. It is an ordinary event. But should a tree emit from its hollow trunk or branches a sound during a calm state of the atmosphere; or what is more probable,


should an excited mind, anxious to accumulate the number of facts upon which the superstitious reverence of the people relies in their estimate of him, fancy an emission of such sounds, the tree would at once be reported, and soon come to be regarded, as the residence of some local god.

Should he find in perambulating the prairies, or crossing the table-lands, elevated above the present level of the waters, or resting among the boulders and drift, still accumulated along the shores of existing lakes and rivers, a mass of drift in some imitative form, it is in either case regarded as something out of the common course, and regarded as the residence, or material form, or exuviז of some local god. In this manner the Indian country is found to reveal many points of local allusion by the natives, where the geologist or the meteorologist would find nothing strange to remark.

The Indian mind creates, in truth, the intellectual atmosphere within which it dwells; and in our endeavors to account for its modes of action, we are not authorized by a summary philosophy, to sweep away his theories.

It is seldom, however, in their deification of geologic and organic monuments, that we behold the pictographic symbols of these gods of the imagination, such as is presented in the accompanying figurative device of Haצkah. This god is presented under the form of a giant. The following is a complete key of the separate symbols, as taken from the lips of a Dacota.
Fig. 8. The giant.
9. A frog that he uses for an arrow-point.
10 and 11. Birds that he has kept within his court.
12 and 13. Ornaments that he keeps over his door.
14 and 15. His court-yard, ornamented with red down.
16. A deer living in his court.
17. A bear " " "
18. An elk " " "
19. A buffalo " " "
20 and 21. Incense offerings.
22. A rattle of deers' hoofs, used in singing.
23. A long flute or whistle.
24. 25, 26, and 27, are meteors that he sends out for defence, or to protect him from invasion.
28, 29, 30, and 31. Lightning which surrounds his house, with which he kills all kinds of animals.
32. A large fungus that grows on trees.
33. Touchwood. Nos. 32 and 33, are eaten by animals that enter his court, causing immediate death.


34. Lightnings from the giant's cap.
35. The giant's cap.
36. His bow and arrows.


The subjoined signatures are copied from an invoice of Indian goods, delivered by General William Hull to the Indian tribes at Detroit, in 1809. It embraces some of the distinguished aboriginal actors of the time. What is particularly entitled to notice is the fact, which is however in accordance with popular observation, that the totems of the signers are not generally the common names of the individuals. Thus No. 1, Kimi-ke-chawgon, or Big Nose, makes the totem of the bear; No. 4, Apeche-caw-boway, or the front-standing man, the totem of the wolf, apparently; No. 6, Skaw-o-mut, or Black Chief, a tree; No. 16, Macconce, or Little Bear, a turtle, &c. &c. The latter signs or symbols, standing in each case for the clans or generic names of the families of the individuals, and not what we should denominate their Christian or common names.

The exceptions, such as Siginoc, a grain-eating bird; and No. 7, Miezay, an insect that walks on the water, are to be regarded as men who had acquired a noted reputation under their common names, and departed from a rule by employing symbols for their popular or common names.

Such notoriety, tradition affirms, attached to the names of the chiefs No. 3 and No. 7, namely, Siginoc of Michilimackinac, and Walk-in-the-water of Detroit.


Examples of the capacity of the Indian medas for singing their songs and incantations by means of signs depicting the chief objects of stanzas committed to memory, have been given in detail in Plates 51 and 52, Part I. The application of this rude system of musical annotation to magical hunting songs, has also been depicted in Plate 53, Part I.; and to the leading and most ambitious subject of the Indian mind, namely, war-songs, in Plate 56, Part I.

A new phase in the philosophy of the human mind in its hunter state, is thus exhibited. Further evidence of this trait of the Indian mind is given in the accompanying symbols, Plate 57. This pictographic record, copied from a scroll of


birch-bark, is deposited in the miscellaneous cabinet of the New York Historical Society.

It is remarkable that the system of pictography of the North American Indians becomes universal to the cognate tribes, at the moment that its symbols are committed to record. Bark, skin, tabular pieces of wood, or smooth faces, or angles of standing rock, or boulders, may constitute the material chosen for inscription. This is a matter of pure caprice, choice, or convenience. Its interpretation is not a question of distinctive symbol language. The system is one of recording — not words, but concrete ideas, and this is done by the power of association. The picture of a bear recalls the ideas, not simply of a particular kind of quadruped, but of a strong, black, clumsy, cunning animal, with powerful claws, whose flesh is deeply coated with a tender kind of white fat; whose skin is suitable for particular purposes. These are but parts of the ideas recalled by the symbol. The animal is fond of sweet fruits and berries, loves certain precincts, and is to be hunted in a certain way. To capture him, and to foil his natural sagacity, is a prime achievement.

To ensure success in this, the Indian seeks necromantic knowledge. He draws the figure of the animal, depicting its heart, with a line leading to it from the mouth. See Figs. 4, 8, 13, 37, 47, Plate 57. By uttering a certain incantation of charmed words, he conceives himself to get a necromantic power over this heart. He believes he can control its motions and desires. He believes this firmly. He raises his song in confidence. Already he sees his victim in his power. He draws him from his lair. He leads him into his own path in the forest. He exults in an imaginary triumph.

With such views this scroll is inscribed. It is a Sioux, (Dacota.) It resembles in some respects Plate 54, 1st Part. The chief figure, No. 1, is a man named Catfish. He is represented as completely armed. He begins to recite his arts and exploits. The leading ideas of the song, dismissing charms, and some verbiage, may be concentrated thus:

1. Hear my power (alluding to voice, or drum.)
2. My swiftness and vengeance are the eagle's.
3. I hear the world over.
4. The bear must obey the medicine of my lodge.
5. My secret lodge is double; (two divining-stones.)
6. Fear then, man.
7. A snake shall enter thy vitals.
8. Can a bear escape my arrow?
9. A river — ha! — ha!
10. Can a bear fly from my magic.
11. My medicine is strong.


These boastings of secret supernatural skill and power, are curiously symbolized. The words may be greatly varied, so that they convey the chief symbol.

In No. 2, the beak of a bird is put for the head of a man, to denote vengeance. In No. 3, the capacity of hearing is symbolized by an extension from the ears. In Nos. 4 and 5, is expressed the magic power that is given over the movements of the bear by means of the medicine lodge and its arts. The ideas excited by each symbol are concrete.


THE aged and venerable missionary, Mr. Butrick, whose death has just (1851) been announced, is believed to have been the earliest teacher in the Cherokee country, being employed under the society of United Moravian Brethren. The first, school established by the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, was in 1817. These efforts appear, in their development, to have stimulated the vital spark of inventive thought, which led a native Cherokee to give his people an original alphabet. Sequoia, or Guess, appears to have been some time engaged in perfecting his invention. About 1824 it was definitely announced, and examined by the missionaries, who found it to be a syllabical system, and pronounced it well adapted to teach the Cherokee population. It seemed particularly suited to the adults, who immediately embraced it, and it has since been taught to all classes, conjointly with the English. Two of the characters being found homophanous, have been abolished in practice. The alphabet, in its most perfect form, is given on the subjoined plate. It will be perceived, that the Indian mind, accustomed to view and express objects in the gross or combined form, has fallen on this plan for an alphabet. Nearly all the words of the vocabulary end in a vowel. Each vowel is preceded by thirteen combinations of the consonant, making sixty-four syllables. To this scheme there are added twelve characters, to represent double consonants. No other American language, with which I am acquainted, could be written by such a simple scheme. It cannot be applied to any dialect of the Algonquin, the Iroquois, the Dacota, the Appalachian, or the Shoshonee. Consequently its application is limited. It provides for the expression only of such sounds as occur in the Cherokee language. Still, its utility in that language has been highly appreciated, and it remains a striking phenomenon in the history of American philology. (Plate A.)

A specimen of the application of this alphabet is added in a version of the lesson of the Prodigal Son. (Plate B.)


C. Oral Imaginative Legends.

1. Transformation of a Hunter Lad. An Allegory of Over-fasting.
2. Origin of Zea Maize.
3. The Wolf-Brother.
4. Sayadio.

Three of the following tales were obtained from the oral traditions of the Chippewa, during my residence between A. D. 1822 and 1832, at Sault Ste. Marie, at the foot of Lake Superior. The fourth legend is derived from the Wyandots, and the narrative will be seen to be essentially the same as that given by Brebœf, the first Catholic missionary among the Wyandots, who were living, at the period, north of the great lake-chain between the head of Lake Erie and the eastern shores of Lake Huron.



AN ambitious hunter had an only son, who now approached that age when it is proper to fast, in order to choose his guardian or personal spirit; and he was very ambitious that his son should show great capacity of endurance in this fast, that he might obtain a powerful spirit.

For this purpose he gave him every instruction, and when the time arrived, bid him be courageous, and acquit himself like a man.

The young lad first went into the sweating lodge, and having heated himself thoroughly, plunged into cold water. This he repeated. He then went into a separate lodge, which had been prepared for him at a short distance in the forest, and laid himself down on a new mat made of rushes, woven by his mother. To this place his father accompanied him, and told him he must fast twelve days, and that he would come to see him once a day, every morning. The young man then covered his face, and his father left him. He laid still until the next morning, when his father visited him to encourage him to persevere in his fast.

This he did, and the same visits were renewed for eight days, when his strength had failed so much that he could not rise, and the youth lay with nearly the composure and rigidity of one without life. On the ninth day, he spoke to his father as follows:


"My father, my dreams are not good. The spirit who visits me is not favorable in the way you wish. Let me break my fast now, and at another time I'll try again. I have no strength to endure any longer."

"My son," he replied, "if you give up now, all will be lost. You have persevered in your fast eight days. You have overcome the hardest trials. Only a little time now remains. Some other spirit will come to you. Strive a little longer."

The lad covered himself closer, and lay still, never moving or saying a word till the eleventh day, when he faintly repeated his request. "To-morrow," answered the old man, "I will come early in the morning, and bring you food."

Silence and obedience were all that remained. The young man made no reply. He seemed as one dead. No one would have known that life was not fled, but by watching the gentle heaving of his breast. Day and night appeared to be alike to him.

The next morning the father came with the promised repast in a little kettle. But on drawing near to the wigwam, he heard sounds from within, as if from some one talking. Stooping to look through a small opening, he was surprised to see his son painted, sitting up, and in the act of laying the paint on his shoulders, as far as his hands could reach, and muttering at the same time to himself, "My father has destroyed me. He would not listen to my requests. I shall be for ever happy, for I have been obedient to my parent, even beyond my strength. My spirit is not the one I sought, but he is just and pitiful, and has given me another shape."

At this moment the old man broke in, exclaiming, "Ningwis! Ningwis!" (my son, my son,) leave me not — leave me not." But the lad, with the nimbleness of a bird, had flown to the top of the lodge, and perched himself on the highest outer pole, having assumed the shape of a beautiful robin-red-breast. He looked down on his father, and said, "Mourn not my change. I shall be happier in my present state than I could have been as a man. I shall always be the friend of men, and keep near their dwellings. I could not gratify your pride as a warrior, but I will cheer you by my songs, and strive to produce in you the lightsomeness I feel. I am now free from cares and pains. My food is furnished by the fields and mountains, and my path is in the bright air." So saying, he flew away to the woods.


A POOR Indian was living with his wife and children in a beautiful part of the country. His children were too young to give him any assistance in hunting; and he had but ill luck himself. But he was thankful for all he received from the forest, and although he was very poor, he was very contented.


His elder son inherited the same disposition, and had ever been obedient to his parents. He had now reached the age at which it is proper to make the initial fast, which the Indian lads all do at about fourteen or fifteen. As soon as the spring arrived, his mother built him a little fasting-lodge in a retired spot, where he would not be disturbed; and when it was finished he went in and began his fast. He amused himself for a few mornings by rambling about in the vicinity, looking at the shrubs and wild-flowers, (for he had a taste for such things,) and brought great bunches of them along in his hands, which led him often to think on the goodness of the Great Spirit in providing all kinds of fruits and herbs for the use of man. This idea quite took possession of his mind, and he earnestly prayed that he might dream of something to benefit his people; for he had often seen them suffering for the want of food.

On the third day he became too weak and faint to walk about, and kept his bed. He fancied, while thus lying in a dreamy state, that he saw a handsome young man, drest in green robes, and with green plumes on his head, advancing towards him. The visitor said: "I am sent to you, my friend, by the Great Spirit, who made all things. He has observed you. He sees that you desire to procure a benefit to your people. Listen to my words, and follow my instructions." He then told the young man to rise and wrestle with him. Weak as he was, he tottered to his feet and began, but after a long trial, the handsome stranger said, "My friend, it is enough for once; I will come again." He then vanished.

On the next day the celestial visitor reappeared, and renewed the trial. The young man knew that his physical strength was even less than the day before; but as this declined, he felt that his mind became stronger and clearer. Perceiving this, the stranger in plumes again spoke to him. "To-morrow," he said, "will be your last trial. Be strong and courageous; it is the only way in which you can obtain the boon you seek." He then departed.

On the third day, as the young faster lay on his pallet weak and exhausted, the pleasing visitor returned; and as he renewed the contest, he looked more beautiful than ever. The young man grasped him, and seemed to feel new strength imparted to his body, while that of his antagonist grew weaker.

At length the stranger cried out, "It is enough — I am beaten. You will win your desire from the Great Spirit. To-morrow will be the seventh day of your fast, and the last of your trials. Your father will bring you food, which will recruit you. I shall then visit you for the last time, and I foresee that you are destined to prevail. As soon as you have thrown me down, strip off my garments, and bury me on the spot. Visit the place, and keep the earth clean and soft. Let no weeds grow there. I shall soon come to life, and reappear with all the wrappings of my garments and my waving plumes. Once a month cover my roots with fresh earth; and by following these directions your triumph will be complete." He then disappeared.

Next morning the youth's father came with food, but he asked him to set it by, for


a particular reason, till the sun went down. Meantime the sky-visitor came for his final trial, and although the young man had not partaken of his father's offer of food, he engaged in the combat with his visitor with a feeling of supernatural strength. He threw him down. He then stripped off his garments and plumes. He buried his body in the earth, carefully preparing the ground, and removing every weed; and then returned to his father's lodge. He kept every thing to himself, revealing nothing to denote his vision or trials. He partook sparingly of food, and soon recovered his perfect strength. But he never for a moment forgot the burial-place of his friend. He carefully visited it, and would not let even a wild-flower grow there. Soon he saw the tops of the green plumes coming out of the ground, at first in spiral points, then expanding into broad leaves, and rising in green stalks; and finally assuming their silken fringes and yellow tassels.

The spring and summer had now passed; when one day, towards evening, he requested his father to visit the lonely spot where he had fasted. The old man stood in amazement. The lodge was gone, and in its place stood a tall, graceful, and majestic plant, waving its taper leaves, and displaying its bright-coloured plumes and tassels. But what most attracted his admiration was its cluster of golden ears. "It is the friend of my dreams and visions," said the youth. "It is Mon-da-min, it is the spirit's grain," said the father. And this is the origin of the Indian corn.


An Indian stood on the borders of a solitary forest, one morning early, during the summer season. A deep silence reigned around, and there was nothing to break the stillness and solitude of the scene but the wigwam that stood near by, in which the hand of death was about to be laid upon the master of the lodge — his father. He was now prostrated by sickness, and as the barks that covered its sides were lifted up to admit the air, the low breathings of the dying man could be heard, mingled with the suppressed moans of the poor disconsolate wife, and three children. Two of the latter, a son and daughter, were almost grown up; the other, a boy, was yet a mere child.

These were the only human beings near the couch of the lonely and fast-sinking hunter. As the breeze came in from a neighboring lake, he felt a momentary return of strength, and raising himself a little on his elbow, addressed his poor and disconsolate family.

"I leave you — you, who have been my partner in life, but you will not stay long behind me. You shall soon join me in the happy land of spirits. Therefore you have not long to suffer in this world. But oh! my children, you have just commenced life,


and mark me, unkindness, ingratitude, and every wickedness is in the scene before you. I left my kindred and my tribe to come to this unfrequented place; because of the evils of which I have just warned you. I have contented myself with the company of your mother and yourselves, and you will find that my motives in leaving the haunts of men, were solicitude to keep you from bad examples, which you would inevitably have followed.

"But I shall die contented, if you, my children, promise to cherish each other, and on no account to forsake your youngest brother. Of him I give you particular charge."

Exhausted by the effort, he took breath a little, and then, taking the hand of each of his elder children, continued: "My daughter, never forsake your little brother; my son, never forsake your little brother." "Never! never!" responded both; and the father sunk back on his pallet, and soon expired. His wife, agreeably to his predictions, followed him to the grave after the brief lapse of five months. In her last moments, she reminded her children of the pledges made to their departed father, and pressed its fulfilment. They readily renewed their promise.

A winter passed away. The girl, being the eldest, dictated to her brothers, and seemed to feel a tender and sisterly affection, particularly for the younger, who was sickly and delicate. The other boy soon showed symptoms of restlessness, and addressed the sister as follows:

"My sister, are we always to live as if there were no other beings in the world? Must I deprive myself of the pleasure of associating with my own kind? I shall seek the villages of men. I have determined, and you cannot prevent me." The girl replied, "My brother, I do not say no to what you desire. We are not prohibited the society of our fellow-men; but we were told to cherish each other, that we should not act separately and independently, and that neither pleasure nor pain ought to draw us from our helpless little brother. If we follow our own gratification, we shall surely forget him, whom we are alike bound to support."

The young man made no answer, but, taking his bow and arrows, left the lodge and never more returned.

Many moons had come and gone after his departure, during which the girl administered to the wants of the younger brother. At length, she found solitude irksome, and began to desire society; but, in meditating a change of life, she thought only of herself, and took measures to abandon her little brother, as her elder brother had done.

One day, after she had collected all the provisions she could in the wigwam, and provided a quantity of wood for making fire, she said to her little brother, "My brother, you must not stray from the lodge; I am going to seek our brother, and shall soon return;" then, taking her bundle, she set out in search of habitations. She soon


found them, and was so much taken up with the pleasures and amusements of society, that her little brother in the lonesome forest was entirely forgotten.

She finally accepted a proposal of marriage; and, after this, dismissed all remembrance of the helpless being she had abandoned. Her elder brother had also taken a wife, and entered so deeply into the cares and business of life, that he had no thoughts about the distant home where he had drawn his first breath, and where the object of a pledge made to a dying father, was left to his fate.

As soon as the little boy had eaten all the food collected by his sister, he went into the woods and picked berries, and dug up roots, which satisfied his hunger as long as the weather was mild. But as the winter drew on, he was obliged to quit the lodge, and wander about in very great distress. He often passed his nights in the clefts and hollows of old trees, and was glad to eat the refuse meals of the wolves. The latter soon became his only resource, and he was so fearless of these animals, that he would sit close by them while they devoured their prey; and the animals themselves seemed to pity his condition, and would always leave something. Thus he lived, as it were, on the bounty of fierce wolves, until spring came on, and began to enliven the forest. As soon as the ice melted in the big lake, and left it free, he followed his newfound friends and companions to its open shores. It happened that his elder brother was fishing in his canoe in the lake, a considerable distance from shore, when he thought he heard the cry of a child, and wondered how any could exist on so bleak a part of the coast. He listened more attentively, and heard the cry repeated. He made for the shore as quickly as possible, and when he reached the land, saw at a distance his little brother. He heard him singing in a plaintive voice these lines:

Nesia, Nesia, shieg wuh, gushuh!
Ne mien gun-iew! Ne mien gun-iew!
My brother, my brother,
I am turning into a wolf,
I am turning into a wolf.

At the termination of his song, he howled like a wolf; and the elder brother was still more astonished as he came nearer, to see his little brother half turned into a wolf. He, however, leaped forward, and strove to catch him in his arms, crying out, "My brother, my brother, come to me." But the boy eluded his grasp and fled, still singing, "I am turning into a wolf" and howling in the intervals.

The elder brother, conscience-struck, felt his affections returning with redoubled force, and therefore continued to exclaim in great anguish, "My brother, my brother, come to me." But the more eagerly he approached, the more rapidly the child fled away, and the change in his body went on until the transformation was complete. At last he said, "I am a wolf," and bounded out of sight.

The young man, and his sister when she heard it, felt the deepest remorse, and both upbraided themselves as long as they lived, for their cruelty to the little boy.



SAYADIO mourned for his sister, for she had died young and handsome. At length, he resolved to go to the land of souls and bring her back. His journey was long and full of adventures, but it would have proved of no advantage, if he had not met an old man just as he was on the point of giving up in despair. This old man gave him a magic calabash, with which he might dip up the spirit of his sister, should he succeed in finding her. He also gave him the young damsel's brains, which he had carefully kept; for it turned out that this old man was the keeper of that part of the spirit-land to which he was journeying.

Sayadio now went on with a light heart, but was astonished, when he reached the land of spirits, that they all fled from him. In this perplexing exigency Tarenyawago, the master of ceremonies, kindly aided him. It so happened that all the souls were at this time gathered for a dance, according to the custom of the place.

The young man soon recognized his sister floating through the dance, and rushed forward to embrace her, but she vanished like a dream of the night.

Tarenyawago furnished him with a mystical rattle of great power to bring her back. At the same time, the deep-sounding Taiwaiegun, or spirit-drum, was beat for a renewal of the choral dance, and the Indian flute poured forth its softest notes.

The effect of the music was instantaneous, and the throng of spirits became innumerable. Among the number, he again saw his sister. Quick as thought, Sayadio dipped up the entranced spirit with his calabash, and securely fastened it, in spite of all the efforts of the captivated soul to regain its liberty. He then retraced his steps back to earth, and safely reached his lodge with his precious charge.

His own and his sister's friends were immediately summoned, and the body of the maiden brought from its burial-place to be reanimated with its spirit. Every thing was ready for the ceremonies of the resurrection, when the thoughtless curiosity of one of the female friends frustrated all. She must needs peep into the calabash to see how the disembodied soul looked, upon which the imprisoned spirit flew out.

Sayadio gazed with both his eyes, but could see nothing. Her flight could not be traced in the air, and he sat with his head down in his lodge, moaning and lamenting that, through the idle curiosity of one person, all the trials and perplexities of his journey to the land of spirits had come to naught.


VII. Topical History.



1. Mandans.
2. Pontiac Manuscript: Journal of the events of the Siege of Detroit by the confederated Indians in 1763.
3. Anacoana, Queen of the Caribs.


IN a prior paper, (Vol. I., p. 257,) we noticed the depopulation caused by the ravages of the small-pox among the Indian tribes of the Valley of the Missouri in 1837, and its particular severity on the Mandans. In the excitement of the moment, this tribe was reported to have been nearly or quite exterminated. Inquiry, however, denoted that a remnant survived, who fled from their villages to their nearest neighbors and friends, the Minnetaries, with whom they resided till their population began to recover. Their existing population was estimated in our last tables, (Vol. I., p. 623,) at 300.

In February last, the attention of the Superintendent of Indian Affairs at St. Louis, (D. D. Mitchell, Esq.,) was called to the subject. He remarked that he was on the Missouri at the period of their calamities in 1837, and was conversant with the facts. They were reduced by small-pox to about 145 souls, who fled from the scenes of their disaster to the Minnetaries. They subsequently returned to their old villages, where he estimates their present numbers at about 500.

He describes them as having some peculiarities of character. They formerly dwelt in five villages, on a small territory which does not exceed twenty miles square, and thinks there are archזological indications of their having formerly had a considerable population. Their numbers have been thinned by the Sioux, their inveterate enemies. He thinks they do not speak a language cognate with that stock; a conclusion in which he is not sustained by the researches of the late Mr. Gallatin. Vide Synopsis of the Indian Tribes of the United States.


While arrangements are on foot for obtaining a complete vocabulary of the tribe, and its claims to distinct historical notice, these details are submitted to gratify the inquiries of the philologist and antiquarian.


The fall of Canada effected one of the most important changes which, so far as is known, has ever occurred in the political condition and international relations of the Indian tribes.

For one hundred and fifty years, dating from the reputed colonization of Canada in 1608, to this celebrated era, consummated by the heroic enterprise of General Wolfe, and the chivalric death of Montcalm, two rival sovereign powers had been held up to the Indian tribes for their preference. To them, each of these powers had been represented by opposing sides, as embracing every element of exaltation, splendor, and munificence, that could dignify a human ruler.

Each power was depicted to their ever-wavering minds as governed by higher dictates of love and justice, in the adoption and regulation of their Indian policy, than the other; and the fitful and uncertain periods of peace that existed between the two shining crowns of England and France, were employed by the local officials of each power in strengthening the rival claims of each to the respect, preference, and fealty of the tribes.

This struggle for the supremacy in the Indian mind and policy was suddenly terminated by the lowering of the French flag on the castle of St. Louis, and the consequent cession of all New France, save Louisiana, to her old and constant rival.

Only one sovereignty was henceforth destined to sway the aboriginal councils throughout all the colonies, from the confines of Georgia, the Spanish colony of Florida, and the French possessions of Louisiana, to the Arctic Ocean.

The northern and western tribes, who had been long accustomed to march into the colonies on their bloody forays under the sanction of the French power, often led by its military officers, and always having their natural ferocity whetted by the hope of plunder and the rewards of cruelty, did not hear this intelligence with pleasure. It was received by them as the news of a defeat. They believed the war would be resumed. To them the French monarch had been depicted as the first and most glorious of human sovereigns; unbounded in wisdom, power, benevolence, and love for them. If fleets and armies were subdued when he sent them against the English, he had at will, they had been told, new fleets and armies to send.

That such a power, so long held up as the acme of human greatness and governmental authority, should have dropt for ever the truncheon of dominion — or, to assimilate the term to their phraseology — the war-club in the Canadas, was to them incredible and inconceivable.


Foremost among those bold and original men, who believed not in this report, was Pontiac, the leader of the united Algonquin and Wyandot tribes in Canada and Michigan. He saw clearly that the fall of the French in Canada would be the fall of the Indian supremacy; that Canada had been sustained, in a great measure, from an early day, by the Indian power; and that the defeat of the one would be the defeat of the other. He resisted, by every art, their crossing the Alleghany Mountains. He had eloquence as well as foresight. To the tribes, whom he addressed in their native tongue, he made the most popular and persuasive harangues. He appealed to their ancient prejudices. He told them he was under a divine influence. He related to them, on a formal occasion, the dream of a visit of a Delaware prophet to Paradise, in a manner to secure the belief of his hearers. He exhorted them to adhere to their ancient customs, arms, and arts. "Rely," said he, "on your native resources, and drive those DOGS IN RED CLOTHING into the sea." To Major Rogers, whom he met on his way as he marched a detachment destined for the English garrison at Detroit, he exclaimed in a proud tone, "I stand in the path."

He and his Indian allies had adroitly carried eleven out of the twelve military posts which the English possessed west of the Alleghanies, and in the area of the lakes. The most noted of these Indian conquests was the old fort of Michilimackinac, which was carried on the 4th June, 1763, by the masque of a ball-play; and the garrison massacred on the spot. Detroit, the twelfth post, and the best garrisoned of all, alone held out; and he had reserved the conquest of this as his own work. He assembled a large body of the Indian tribes near and around it, with all their forest-arms, and at first concealed his design under the guise of friendly negotiation, and attempted to take the fort by a coup-de-main. Being foiled in this, through the revelations of an Indian belle, he besieged the fort with great strictness. He fired burning arrows into the roofs of the houses. He captured a brigade of boats, sent up the river from Niagara with supplies. He sent down a burning raft to destroy a public vessel.

He afterwards defeated, at Bloody Bridge, a large and well-appointed party; which, under Captain Dalzell, aid to Sir Jeffrey Amherst, sallied out at midnight to attack his camp, and drove them in with a sanguinary slaughter, in which the commander fell. The garrison, at one period, was driven to the utmost straits. Every resource was cut off. Not a soul could venture beyond the walls with impunity. They talked of a surrender. His auxiliaries committed some great atrocities during the siege, among which was the murder of Major Campbell, who went to his camp with a flag of truce: but this act was decried by Pontiac as being without his knowledge or sanction. The fort received succour that year, after a three months' siege.


The following journal, detailing the operations of this siege, was kept in French, by an inmate of the fort, who was conversant with the daily transactions and rumours. It is translated literally from the ill-composed original, its historical value consisting entirely in its authenticity.


DETROIT, May 7th, 1763.

Pontiac, head-chief of all the Ottawas, Santeurs, Poux, and all the nations of the lakes and rivers of the north; a proud, vindictive, warlike, and irritable man; under pretence of some insult which he thought he had received from Mr. Gladwin, commander of the fort; fancied that, being great chief of all the nations of the north, none but he and his nation had a right to inhabit that part of the earth: (the French, for the facility of trade, had had a post there for above sixty years, and owing to their conquest of Canada, the English had governed it about three years.) This chief of a nation (whose bravery consists in treachery, and who had acquired his influence by his handsome appearance,) resolved, within himself, the entire destruction of the English and Canadian nations. To succeed in his project, which he had not yet imparted to any of his Ottawas, he engaged them in his party by a speech. Being naturally inclined to evil, they did not hesitate to obey him, but as they were not sufficiently numerous for that enterprise, the chief tried, in a council, to draw into his party the Poux (Pottowattomie — S.) nation. This nation was governed by a chief named Minivoa, a weak, irresolute man; who, recognising Pontiac for his principal chief, and knowing him to be of a ferocious disposition, joined him with all his band. The two nations were composed of about four hundred men. The number not being sufficient, Pontiac tried to bring over the Huron nation, then divided into two bands, and governed by two separate chiefs of very different dispositions; (they were nevertheless directed by Mr. Potico, a father Jesuit.) One of the chiefs of that nation, Yaka resembled Pontiac in his disposition; the other a man of great circumspection, consummate prudence, not naturally inclined to evil, and not easily persuaded, would not listen to Pontiac's deputies, and sent them back as they had come. The deputies sent to that


part of the same nation under Yaka, were heard, and the war-necklaces (wampum-belts) sent by Pontiac and Minivoa, chiefs of the Ottawas and Poux, were received. They resolved upon * * * * (a customary mode among the Indians,) that a council should take place on the twenty-seventh of April, at the river Ecorces; to fix the day and hour of the attack, and to resolve upon the precautions necessary to prevent a discovery of their treason. According their usual mode of counting, the Indians decided, as I mentioned above, that the council should take place on the 15th day of the moon; i. e. Wednesday, 27th of April.

On the day fixed for the council, the Poux, conducted by Minivoa, and the Hurons by Yaka, repaired to the rendezvous on the river Ecorces, four leagues below the fort, towards the S. W. This place had been selected by Pontiac for his camp, on leaving his winter quarters, that he might not be troubled in his projects; this step produced some surprise among the French, who could not find the cause of it, and attributed it to the whimsical temper common to the Indians.

The council was held between the three following nations; the Ottawas, the Poux, (Pottowattomies,) and the wicked band of Hurons. Pontiac, as head-chief of all the nations of the north, presided. He exposed as a reason for his actions, supposed necklaces, (wampum-belts) which he said he had received from the Great Father, the King of France, to fall upon the English. He mentioned several imaginary insults which he and his people had received from the English commander and officers, as also a blow given by a sentinel to one of his Indians, who was following his cousin. The Indians listened to him as their chief, and to flatter his vanity and increase his pride, they promised to be guided by him. This cunning man, glad to see in those three nations (in all 450 men) so much submission, took advantage of their weakness to obtain a complete sway over them. To accomplish this, he related in the council the story of a Loup Indian, (Lenape) who had made a journey to heaven, and spoken to the master of life. This story he related with so much eloquence, that it made on them all the effect he expected. The story deserves a place here, it being as the principal of the blackest of crimes against the English nation, and perhaps against the French, had not God in his grace ordered it otherwise. It was thus. An Indian of the Loup tribe, anxious to know the master of life, (the name given to God by the Indians,) resolved, without mentioning his design to any one, to undertake a journey to Paradise, which he knew to be God's residence. But to succeed in his project, it was necessary to know the way to the celestial regions. Not knowing any person who, having been there, might aid him in finding the road, he commenced juggling, in the hope of drawing a good augury from his dream. The Indians, even those converted to the Christian religion, are very superstitious, and place much faith in dreams. It is very difficult to cure them of that superstition. This story is a proof of what I advance.


The Loup Indian in his dream imagined that it sufficed to commence his journey, and that by continuing his walk he would arrive at the celestial abode. The next morning very early, he equips himself as a hunter, * * * * ammunition, and a boiler to cook, * * * * to perform the journey to * * * *. The commencement of his journey was pretty favorable; he walked a long time without being discouraged; having always a firm (conviction) that he would attain his aim. Eight days had already elapsed without his meeting any one to oppose his desires. On the evening of the eighth day at sunset, he stopped as usual, on the banks of a stream at the entrance of a little prairie, a place he thought favorable for his night encampment. As he was preparing his lodging, he perceived at the other end of the prairie three very wide and well-beaten paths; he thought this somewhat singular; he however continued to prepare his retreat, that he might shelter himself from the weather; he also lighted a fire. "Whilst cooking, he fancied he perceived that the darker it grew by the disappearance of the sun, the more distinct were those paths. This surprised him; nay, even frightened him; he hesitated a few moments. Was it better for him to remain in his camp, or seek another at some distance? While in this incertitude he remembers his juggling, or rather his dream. He thought that his only aim in undertaking this journey had been to see the master of life. This restored him to his senses, in the belief that one of those three roads was the one leading to the place which he wished to visit. He therefore resolved upon remaining in his camp until the morrow, when he would at random take one of these three roads. His curiosity, however, scarcely allowed him time to take his meal; he left his encampment and fire, and took the widest of the paths. He followed until the middle of the day, without seeing any thing to impede his progress; but as he was resting a little to take breath, he saw suddenly a large fire coming from under ground. It excited his curiosity; he went towards it, to see what it might be; but as the fire appeared to increase as he drew nearer, he was so overcome with fear that he turned back and took the widest of the other two paths. Having followed it for the same space of time as he had the first, he perceived a similar spectacle. His fright, which had been lulled by the change of road, awoke, and he was obliged to take the third path, in which he walked a whole day without discovering any thing. All at once a mountain of marvellous whiteness burst upon his sight; this filled him with astonishment. Nevertheless, he took courage, and advanced to see what the mountain might be. Having arrived at the foot, he saw no signs of a road; he became very sad, not knowing how to continue his way. In this conjuncture he looked on all sides, and saw a female seated upon the mountain; her beauty was dazzling, and the whiteness of her garments surpassed that of snow. This woman said to him, in his own language, "You appear surprised to find no longer a path to reach your wishes. I know that you have for a long time


longed to see and speak to the master of life, and that you have undertaken this journey purposely to see him. The way which leads to his abode is upon this mountain. To ascend it you must undress yourself completely, and leave all your accoutrements and clothing at the foot of the mountain. No person shall injure them. You will then go and wash yourself in the river which I am showing you, and afterward ascend the mountain."

The Loup Indian obeyed punctually the woman's words; but one difficulty remained. How could he arrive at the top of the mountain, it being steep, without a path, and as smooth as glass? He questioned the woman on the way to accomplish this. She replied, that if he really wished to see the master of life, he must in mounting only use his left hand and foot. This appeared almost impossible to the Indian. Encouraged however, by the female, he commenced ascending, and succeeded after much trouble. When at the top, he was astonished to see no person, the woman having disappeared. He found himself alone and without guide. Three unknown villages were in sight; they appeared to him constructed on a different plan from his own, much handsomer, and more regular. After a few moments' reflection, he took the way towards the handsomest in his eyes. When about half-way from the top of the mountain, he recollected he was naked, and feared to advance; but a voice told him to proceed, and to have no apprehensions; that having washed himself, (as he had done,) he might walk in confidence. He proceeded without hesitation to a place which appeared to be the gate of the village, and stopped until it might be opened. While he was considering the beauty of the exterior of the village, the gate opened; he saw coming towards him a handsome man, dressed all in white, who took him by the hand, telling him that he was going to satisfy his wishes, by leading him to the presence of the master of life. The Indian suffered himself to be conducted, and they arrived at a place of unequalled beauty. The Indian was lost in admiration. He then saw the master of life, who took him by the hand, and gave him for a seat a hat bordered with gold. The Indian, afraid of spoiling the hat, hesitated to sit down; but, being ordered to do so, he obeyed without reply.

The Indian being seated, God said to him: "I am the master of life whom thou wishest to see, and to whom thou wishest to speak. Listen to that which I will tell thee, for thyself and for all the Indians. I am the maker of the heaven and the earth, the trees, lakes, rivers, men, and all that thou seest or hast seen on the earth * * * *. And because I love you, you must do my will, you must also avoid that which I hate. I dislike you to drink, as you do, until you lose your reason; I wish you not to fight one another. You take two wives, or run after other people's wives; you do wrong; I hate such conduct; you should have but one wife, and keep her until death. When you go to war, you juggle, you sing the medicine-song, thinking you


speak to me, you deceive yourselves; it is to the Manito that you speak; he is a wicked spirit who induces you to evil, and to whom you listen for want of knowing me. The land on which you are I have made for you, not for others. Wherefore do you suffer the whites to dwell upon your lands? Can you not do without them? I know that those whom you call the children of the Great Father, supply your wants; but were you not wicked as you are, you would not need them. You might live as you did before you knew them. Before those whom you call your brothers had arrived, did not your bow and arrow maintain you? You needed neither gun, powder, nor any other object. The flesh of animals was your food, their skins your raiment. But when I saw you inclined to evil, I removed the animals into the depths of the forest, that you might depend on your brothers for your necessaries, for your clothing. Again become good, and do my will, I will send animals for your sustenance. I do not, however, forbid suffering among you, your fathers' children; I love them, they know me, they pray to me. I supply their own wants, and give them that which they bring to you. Not so with those who are come to trouble your possessions. Drive them away, wage war against them; I love them not, they know me not, they are my enemies, they are your brother's enemies. Send them back to the land I have made for them; let them remain there.

Here is a written prayer which I give thee, learn it by heart, and teach it to the Indians and children. (The Indian observing here that he could not read, the master of life told him, that when he returned upon earth, he should give it to the chief of the village, who would read it and teach it to him, as also to all the Indians.) It must be repeated, said he, morning and evening. Do all that I have told thee, and announce it to all the Indians, as from the master of life. Let them drink but one draught or two at most, in one day. Let them have but one wife, and discontinue running after other people's wives and daughters. Let them not fight between themselves. Let them not sing the medicine-song, but pray; for in singing the medicine-song, they speak to the Evil Spirit. Drive from your lands, added the master of life, these dogs in red clothing, they are only an injury to you. When you want any thing, apply to me, as your brothers do, and I will give to both. Do not sell to your brothers that which I have placed on earth as food. In short, become good and you shall want nothing. When you meet one another, bow, and only give one another the * * * * hand of the heart. Above all, I commend thee to repeat, morning and evening, the prayer which I have given thee."

The Loup promised to do the will of the master of life, and also to recommend it strongly to the Indians; adding, that the master of life should be satisfied with them.

The man who had brought him in, then came and conducted him to the foot of the mountain, and told him to take his garments and return to his village, which was immediately done by the Indian.

His return much surprised the inhabitants of his village, who did not know what


had become of him. They asked him whence he came, but, as he had been enjoined to speak to no one, until he saw the chief of the village, he motioned to them with his hand, that he came from above. Having entered the village, he went immediately to the chief's wigwam, and delivered to him the prayer and laws entrusted to his care by the master of life.

This adventure was soon spread among the inhabitants of the village. They came to hear the word of the master of life. The report soon reached the neighboring villages. Crowds came to see the pretended traveller, and carried their news from village to village; until it reached Pontiac. This chief, believing it as we do an article of faith, fixed it to the minds of all the council, who listened to him as to an oracle. They told him that he had only to speak, for they were ready to do whatever he required of them.

Pontiac, glad of the success of his speech, told the Hurons and Poux (Pottawatto-mies) to return to their villages, that in four days he and the young men of his village would go to the fort, and dance the pipe-dance; and during the dance, other young men would go about the fort to examine every thing; — the number of the English garrison, that of the traders, and the houses they inhabited. This design he carried into execution.

On Sunday, 1st of May, about three in the afternoon, (the French then returning from vespers,) Pontiac, with forty chosen men, appeared at the gate, but the commander, who had learnt something of the conduct of the Indians, had ordered the sentinels to prevent the entrance of any of them. This surprised Pontiac and his troop, as they expected to be admitted as usual. They sent Mr. La Butte, their interpreter, to tell the commander that they came to amuse him, and to dance the pipe-dance. By M. La Butte's desire, their request was granted, and thirty of them repaired before Mr. Campbell's house, (the second commander.) They commenced dancing and striking the post, showing forth their warlike exploits. From time to time they gave * * * * to the commander and the officers who were present. The Indians said to them, to brave them, that they had several times struck the English, and would do so again, and finishing their discourse, they asked for bread, tobacco, and beer, which were given them. They remained long enough to give their companions time to examine every thing in the fort. Neither English nor French mistrusted them, it being customary for the Indians to wander every where without any opposition. The latter, after having gone round the fort and well examined every thing, came to the dancers, who, without taking any notice, accompanied them to their village, then situated a little above the fort, on the other side of the river, about E. N. E. To this place, according to Pontiac's orders, all the Indians had repaired on the preceding Friday.


On their return to the village, the spies related minutely to their chief all they had seen, the movements of the English, and the probable number of the garrison. After this report, Pontiac sent deputies to the Hurons and Poux, (Pottawattomies,) that they might know, through the wampum-belts, what was taking place in the fort. Mackatepelicit, second chief of the Ottawas, and another Indian of note among them, were sent to Yaka, chief of the wicked band of Hurons. Two others, also of note, were sent to Minivoa, chief of the Poux, (Pottawattomies,) who received them joyfully, and promised that he and his tribe should be ready at the first warning of their head-chief.

Pontiac, ever occupied with his project, and who nourished in his bosom, a poison which was to prove fatal to the English, and perhaps to the French; sent on the following day, May the 2d, messengers to each village, Huron and Poux, with orders to examine every thing among those tribes; for he feared opposition in his designs. His messengers were ordered to tell those tribes, that on Thursday, the 5th clay of May, at midday, should be held a great council at the Poux village, situated half a league below the fort at the south-west. That the three nations must be there. No women were to be admitted for fear of a discovery. On the day appointed, all the Ottawas, headed by Pontiac, and the Hurons by their chief Yaka, repaired to the village of the Poux, where the council was to take place. They took care to send away the women, that they might not know the result of their deliberations. To prevent interruption, Pontiac caused sentinels to be placed around the village. These precautions having been taken, the Indians sat down, forming a circle, each one being placed according to his rank, and Pontiac, as chief of the league, spoke to them as follows:

It is important, my brothers, that we should exterminate that nation which only seeks our death. You know as well as I do, that our wants are no longer supplied as they were with our brothers, the French. Those Englishmen sell us their goods twice as dear as the French did, and their merchandise is good for nothing; scarcely have we bought a blanket, or any other covering, than we must think of getting another; when we wish to go to our winter-quarters, they will not give us credit as the French did. When I go and see the English chief, and tell him of the death of our friends, instead of weeping as did the French, he laughs at me and you. If I ask him for any thing for our sick people, he refuses, and tells me that he has no need of us. You may well see that he seeks our death. Brothers, let us unite to vow their destruction, we must wait no longer, there is no obstacle, their number is small, we can manage them; all our friendly tribes are their enemies, and wage war against them, wherefore do we not? Are we not men as well as they? Have I not shown you the wampum-belts I have received from our Great Fathers, the French, to induce us to fall on them? Why do we not listen to his word? What do we fear? Do we fear that our brothers the French, who reside here, may prevent us? They are unacquainted with our designs,


and did they know them, they could not do it if they wished. You know all, as well as I do, that when the English came on our lands, to drive away our father Bellester, they took from the French their guns, and that they have no arms to defend themselves. The time is come, let us strike. If some of the French join them, make war to them, as if they were English. Recollect what the master of life said to our brother the Lenape Indian, that concerns us as much as it does that tribe. I have sent wampum-belts and messages to our brothers the Santeur (Chippewas) of Saginaw, to our brothers the Ottawas of Michilimackinac; to those of the river a la Franche, to induce them to join us. They will be here ere long. Before they come, let us strike. No time is to be lost. When we have defeated the English, we shall see what is to be done. We shall prevent their returning on our lands.

This speech, pronounced by Pontiac with much energy, had on the council all the effect he expected. They all vowed the entire destruction of the English.

They agreed, at the end of the council, that Pontiac, at the head of sixty men should go to the fort to ask the commander for a grand council; that he and his men should have arms concealed under their blankets, and that the remainder of the tribe should follow, armed with clubs, poniards, and knives, also concealed; and should also enter the fort as if they were walking, that they might not be suspected; while the others were holding a council with the commander. The Ottawa women were also to be provided with short guns and other offensive arms, hidden in their blankets, and to go in the street behind the fort, there to wait the signal, which was to be a war-cry from the great chief, when all were to fall on the English. They were to take great care not to injure the French who dwelt in the fort. The Hurons and the Poux were to form two bands, one of which was to go to the lower part of the river to stop all comers, and the other was to surround the fort at a distance, to kill those who were working out of it. Each tribe was to sing the war-song in their village that same day. Every measure being agreed upon, each tribe withdrew to its village, determined on executing the orders of the great chief. But, however careful they wrere to prevent discovery, God did not permit their designs to remain concealed, as I am going to relate.

An Ottawa Indian, called Mahigan, who had entered but reluctantly into the conspiracy, and who felt displeased with the steps his people were about taking, came on the Friday night without the knowledge of the other Indians, to the gate of the fort, and asked to be admitted to the presence of the commander, saying that he had something of importance to tell him. The gates having been opened, they conducted him to Mr. Campbell, second commander, who sent word to Mr. Gladwin his chief. They wished to send for the interpreter, Mr. Labutte, to which the Indian objected, saying that he (the Indian) spoke French well enough to be understood by Mr. Campbell. He unfolded to those two commanders the conspiracy of the Indians, making known their bad intentions, how they had sworn the loss of the English, how


in the course of the next day they were to fall on them. He advised them to be on their guard, he afterwards begged the commander not to mention any thing of his communication with them, either to the French or the English, fearing it would sooner or later come to the ears of the other Indians, who, on being told of it, would not fail to put him to death, enraged as they would be at their being disappointed. The commander thanked him, and wished to make him some presents. The Indian refused them, desiring the commander not to betray him. They gave him a promise to that effect, and kept it.

The commanders, on that report, which they saw no reason to doubt, without however imparting any thing of what they knew, ordered that at daybreak the guard should be doubled; that there should be two sentinels at each large gate; and that the two smaller ones should be stopped up, which was immediately executed. They ordered the officers to examine the arms of their soldiers, and have them ready to appear at the first sound of the drum. They also ordered that all should be done quietly; that the Indians, on coming into the fort, should not know that they were discovered. These orders were so well executed that the French perceived nothing new.

The day which might have proved fatal to the English, and perhaps to the French, having arrived, (it being the 7th of May and the 26th of the moon as the Indians are wont to reckon,) Pontiac, who still thought his design undiscovered, ordered in the morning his people to sing the war-song in his village, and desiring * * * * and * * * * to put down feathers upon his head, the dress used by Indians going to war. Each was to be provided with the necessary weapons, and thus equipped to come about ten in the forenoon, and ask for a council. All his people, sixty in number, prepared for the council, entered the house occupied by Mr. Campbell, second commander, where they found the commander-in-chief, Mr. Gladwin, with part of the officers, whom he had acquainted with the rash design of Pontiac. They had arms concealed in their pockets. The officers were preparing the troops to appear in the case of need. All this was done so well, that the Indians had not the least suspicion. The council took place, and meanwhile all the other Ottawas entered, and each took the place which had been previously assigned to him.

Pontiac, in the council, thinking the time had come for his people to be in the fort, and ready to commence the attack, went out to see if all were ready, and also to give the signal which was to be, as I have mentioned above, a war-cry. He perceived that some movement was attracting the attention of his people towards the square. He wished to see what it was, and perceived the soldiers under arms and exercising. This forbode no good for his design. He saw that he was discovered, and that his intention was defeated. This disconcerted him, and obliged him to re-enter the council-room, where his people were waiting for him to give the signal to commence the attack. They were much surprised on seeing him return. They mistrusted that being discovered,


and not being able to succeed on the present occasion, they must then go and defer their intention till another day. They spoke some time among themselves, and without bidding any one adieu, or uttering a word, they went to their village to take other steps not to be discovered, and try their success again.

On arriving at the village, Pontiac was agitated by different passions; anger, fury, rage, he resembled a lion which has lost its young. He assembled his young people, and inquired of them if they knew who had betrayed him. I see, said he, that the English have been warned. He ordered them to make inquiries and endeavor to discover the traitor, as his death was necessary.

Their inquiries, however, proved fruitless. He who had betrayed them had taken care to prevent their discovering him. However, about four in the afternoon, a false rumor was spread in the village, that a (Sauteuse) woman had betrayed them, and that she was in the Poux (Pottowattomie) village. Pontiac immediately ordered four of his warriors to fetch her. Those people, naturally fond of disorder, were not slow in executing the order of their chief; they crossed the river and passed into the fort, with no other things than their band and knives in their hands, exclaiming as they went along, that they were disappointed. This made the French inhabitants of the coasts, who were unacquainted with their designs, think they had some bad intention either towards them or the English. They arrived at the Poux village, and effectually found the woman, who was not thinking of them. They took her, and making her walk before them, uttered cries of joy, as if they had a victim to satisfy their cruelty. They brought her to the fort, and led her before the commander, to learn if it was not from her that he had found out their design. But all this was to no purpose. They obtained of the commander bread and beer for the woman and themselves, and took her before their chief, in the village. The question now was, in the village, to invent some new trick to mask their treason, and execute their bad designs. Pontiac, whose genius always provided him with new resources, said that he had prepared another plan, which would be more successful than the first. That on the ensuing day he would commence on it, and would go and speak to the commander, and try to persuade him that the information he had received was false, and that he would manage so well in proving what he said, that the English, falling insensibly into his snare, could not fail to be defeated.

But, fortunately, the commander and officers who had escaped the danger which threatened them, but who were secure no longer than when they were upon their guard, were not men to suffer themselves to be surprised by the flattering speeches of a traitor. So that all that the cunning of Pontiac might make him assert was sure to prove useless. He, nevertheless, feeling confident of success, came to the fort on Sunday, the 8th of May, about one, accompanied by Mackapecelite, Breton, and Shawawnon, chiefs of the same Ottawa tribe. They brought with them a calumet, (called among them the calumet of peace,) and asked to be admitted. The commander


gave them a hearing; and they endeavored by their speeches to deceive him, and draw him and his troops into the snares they had prepared for them. The commander, who had received a recent warning, pretended to believe them, notwithstanding what he had been told. He, however, was on his guard.

Pontiac told him, as a proof of his having no bad design, that he had brought the calumet of peace, for them all to smoke, as a sign of union and confidence; and that he intended to leave it in their hands, as a mark of his uprightness; and that so long as the commander had it, he should fear nothing from them. The commander accepted the calumet, knowing it, however, to be but a small guarantee against the bad faith of an Indian. After the commander had received it, Pontiac and his chiefs went away, highly pleased; believing they had succeeded in drawing the English into the snares prepared by his treachery; but he was deceived in his expectations.

They returned to their village, as glad as if their whole enterprise had succeeded; they told, in a few words, their young people of their negotiation, and sent deputies to the wicked band of the Hurons, to tell them of what had passed; as also that the next day was to decide the fate of the English, and that they must be ready at the first warning.

Pontiac, the better to play his part, and show that he had abandoned all thoughts of his bad designs, invited, about four in the afternoon, all the Hurons and the Poux to come and play at ball with the young people; many French from both sides of the river came to play also, and were well received by the three nations. The play lasted until seven, and being ended, every one thought of returning home. The French who lived on the other side of the river, to return home, were obliged to cross the river, and in entering their canoes, they uttered cries and saw-saw-quas, (war-whoop,) as is done commonly by the Indians who conquer in the plays.

The commander, all the time on watch, thought by those cries that the Indians were crossing the river, and coming to the fort to murder them. They ordered the gates to be shut, and the soldiers and merchants to repair to the ramparts, to defend them in case of attack. But it was only a false alarm, caused by the imprudence of the young French people, who knew no better.

Pontiac, who had no thought of their coming to the fort, was at that time occupied with the Hurons and Poux, who had remained in the village, when the game was over. He mentioned to them all the circumstances of the negotiation between the commanders and himself, (with his chiefs,) telling them that, as he had agreed with those gentlemen, he was to return on the ensuing day to smoke the calumet of peace, (or rather of treason,) and that he hoped to succeed. But he was reckoning without his host.

On the moon day, (9th of May,) the first day of Rogations, according to the custom, the curate and all the clergy made a procession out of the fort, very peaceably.


The mass was celebrated in the same manner. Every one went home, wondering what the day would bring forth, well knowing that Pontiac would make some new attempt. The well-inclined people secretly bewailed the sad fate which threatened the English, whose garrison only consisted of about one hundred and forty men, including the officers, eight in number, and about forty merchants, or men in their service. They had also boats of different sizes, placed opposite the fort, to defend it on the side of the river. This was little, if, unfortunately, the Indians had been good soldiers.

Pontiac, who concealed in his heart the murderous knife, which was to cut the thread of the life of the English, prepared (as he had the day before mentioned to the Hurons and Poux) to come to the fort with fifty men of his tribe. The remainder were to act in the same way as on the preceding Saturday. He came to the gates with his people, about eleven, but entrance was refused him, according to the orders of the commander. He insisted on being admitted to the presence of the commander, saying that he and his chiefs came only to smoke the calumet of peace, as had been promised by the commander. The answer was, that he was welcome to come in, but only with twelve or fifteen of his principal people, and no more. He replied, that all his people wished to smell the smoke of the calumet, and that if his people were not admitted, he would not come in. This was refused, and he was obliged to return to his village much displeased. The English, however, cared but little for that.

Pontiac, enraged at the failure of this last stratagem, and that of all his projects, on entering his village, took a war-club and sang the war-song, saying, that since he could not destroy the English who were in the fort, he would kill those who were out of it. He ordered that all his people, men, women, and children, should cross the river to the same side as the fort, in order the better to harass the inhabitants, and his camp should be placed on the river below Mr. Baptiste Meloche's half a league above the fort. This was done exactly. He divided his people into several bands, to strike in different places. One band went twelve leagues from the fort, where dwelt an old English woman with her two boys, who cultivated about seven or eight acres of their own land, and who had many horned cattle, such as oxen and cows. These poor people came to their death very unexpectedly; they were scalped, their furniture plundered, their house burnt. One would have thought, to behold this terrible spectacle, that fire was on the side of the Indians; for the bodies were more than half burnt in the house. The Indians killed a part of the cattle, and drove off the remainder; some of which escaped, and were picked up by the inhabitants of the coast.

While the first band were committing those murders, the other band went to Hog Island, where dwelt one Fisher, a sergeant of the English troops. This man and


family, composed of five or six individuals, were tilling "on halves" a farm which the English, had appropriated to themselves. Those poor people, who were then thinking of nothing but their labor, became, when they least thought of it, the sad victims of the fury of the Indians, who first killed the man and scalped him. They wished to make a prisoner of the woman, because she was pretty. She would not follow them, saying, that since her husband was dead, she wished to die also. They killed her, as also the servant, and took the two little children to make slaves of them.

A Frenchman called Goslin, who was in the island hewing building-timber, and who knew nothing of what was to happen to Fisher, hearing the cries uttered by the Indians as they were landing on the island, wished to secure himself from the danger which he thought threatened him as well as the English; he was, however, stopped on the bank by the Indians, who placed him in a canoe; they told him to stay there; that he had nothing to fear; that they would not hurt him. He was incredulous, and would not stay where the Indians had placed him; his incredulity cost him dear; for as he was running into the middle of the island, the Indians, taking him for an Englishman, ran after him, and killed him; and as they were going to scalp him, they knew him to be French, took his body in their canoes, and gave it to the French, who buried it in the church-yard. About four in the afternoon, an inhabitant of the east coast, named Deonoyers, who came from the pinery twenty-five leagues above the fort, where he had been cutting building-timber, came back in company with the Sauteurs of Saginaw, who conveyed him. They learnt through him the death of two officers; one Mr. Robinson, captain of the boats, and the other Sir * * * *, a colonel in the militia. Those gentlemen had been ordered by the commander to go with six soldiers and sound the channels, to find out if the water was deep enough to pass with a barge, if wanted. Those gentlemen, who, in leaving the fort, had heard nothing of the bad design of the Indians, went on quietly, believing themselves perfectly secure. As they were passing by the pinery, the French, who were working there, and who knew the bad intentions of the Indians against the English, called them to give them a warning of it. Those gentlemen went to them, but would not believe what the French said, observing that when they left the fort every thing was quiet. The French warned them again, advising them to go no further, for the Indians would attack them, and their best plan was to return to the fort. They would not listen to these warnings, and went on; they met with some Indians camped on a point close to the river. These seeing them, showed them meat and other food to induce them to come; but those gentlemen would not go to them. This vexed the Indians, who pursued and killed them all, except a young man of fifteen or sixteen, and a slave, whom they kept as slaves.


The two bands of Indians, (Ottawa,) who had been, according to Pontiac's orders, to the two places mentioned above, returned to the camp and related with emphasis all the circumstances of their cruel expeditions; among others the death of Goslin, whom they had killed by mistake, and which caused them a few moments' sorrow.

Pontiac, after having heard his young people, assembled all his warriors to consult with them about approaching the fort and attacking it without running any risk. This was not very difficult, as there were several barns and stables built about thirty yards behind the fort, the property of individuals who dwelt within. On the northeast side of the fort, about fifteen yards distance to the right side of the gate, was a large garden with the gardener's house, belonging to the interpreter, M. La Butte. All these buildings were as many intrenchments, sheltered by which the Indians might approach the fort without incurring any danger. They had looked well at all this, and intended to take advantage of it for some time to harass the garrison. Having made their arrangements, the Indians went to rest, waiting for the morrow to commence again.

While the Indians were making the preparations to trouble the fort, the commander ordered the two end gates to be closed and fastened, not to be reopened until the end of the war. However, that on the south-west end was opened twice to admit cows belonging to some inhabitants of the fort. It was not opened afterwards. The gate opposite the river was opened from time to time for the public wants, it being guarded by the barges which the Indians feared much. About six in the evening, M. La Butte, by the order of the commander, went out several times to appease the Indians, and try to extract from them their secrets. But these, and above all, Pontiac getting weary of his going and coming, told him to withdraw and not to return, as if he did they would all fall upon him. Not being able to do any thing with them, he withdrew to the fort, telling the commander that he hoped that the Indians would be more-accessible on the morrow. The commander in the evening ordered the English who were in the fort, traders and soldiers, to watch by turns on the rampart, in order not to be taken by surprise at the break of day, which is an hour generally chosen for an attack by the Indians when at war. The commander gave the example, spending the night on the watch (on the battery) in company with his officers.

Tuesday, 10th of May, according to the commander's orders, the gates remained shut. The Ottawas, who thought that on their attacking the fort, the English would surrender at discretion, came about four in the morning and fired; violently running around the fort, as if they were going to storm it. This rather intimidated the English, who were not yet accustomed to the manners of the Indians, and who had not time to make any preparations for their defence. There were, however, in the fort, two six-pounders and one three-pounder, and a grenade mortar, which was placed about the gate as a useless article. The three-pounder was on the battery behind the fort, opposite the woods, and almost concealed by buildings. The other two cannons were


on the military square, and useless, there being no proper place to fix them. The larger only fired; but, however, those only protected the river-side, which the Indians took great care not to approach, keeping themselves always behind the fort, where the buildings sheltered them; or beyond the hill which overlooked the fort, and at the foot of which it was built. So that the place was rather defended by the courage and intrepidity of the besieged, than attacked by the besiegers, who continued the violence of their firing until ten; only firing afterwards from time to time, not having much ammunition, intending to recommence the charge after having obtained more. The commander, seeing that the firing of the Indians was nearly over, ordered M. La Butte to go out and speak to them. M. Chapoton, a resident of the fort, joined M. La Butte to go to the Indian camp. Several residents of the fort, with the approbation of the commander, took this opportunity of going out to dwell with the settlers on the coasts, not to be present at the death of the English, which they thought would take place. Messrs. La Butte and Chapoton went on, and took with them M. Jacques Godfrey, who willingly joined them, as they were endeavoring to promote public tranquillity, hoping also that three persons, who were known and loved by the Indians, would with less difficulty appease them. The two gentlemen mentioned last, spoke to the Indians without letting them know that they wished to favor the English. The Indians appeared to give them a favorable hearing; this made M. La Butte think that every thing would go on well, and leaving Messrs. Chapoton and Godfrey with the Indians, he returned to the fort, and told the commander that his affairs with the Indians were in a fair way, that he had left Messrs. Godfrey and Chapoton to continue to speak, and that he hoped the end of it would be in a few presents from the English. M. La Butte, trusting in his knowledge of Indian character, expected no disappointment, as the Indians concealed their designs under fair words. Mr. Campbell, the second commander, wishing for nothing but peace and harmony, desired him, in the name of the commander, Mr. Gladwin, to return to Pontiac's camp, to aid Messrs. Godfrey and Chapoton to complete their work; stifling the fire of sedition, and replacing peace between both parties. M. La Butte promised to do all in his power, and returned to the camp, where he found Messrs. Chapoton and Godfrey, who had not left Pontiac, and were endeavoring to bring him over to their views. M. La Butte joined them, according to the desire of the commanders. The cunning Pontiac dissembled, and appeared to consent to all the wishes of those gentlemen, and to convince them that he wished for peace and union, he sent M. La Butte with some Indians to speak on his part to the commander. He did this to get rid of M. La Butte, whom he began to suspect. Six or seven Indians entered the fort with M. La Butte, and went to greet the commander and officers, who received them well, and shook hands with them. The Indians spoke in the name of their chief, and appeared themselves to listen to


what the commander desired M. La Butte to tell them. After a few moments' conversation, they asked for bread, and received as much as they could carry away. While the Indians were in the fort, the English exhibited a newspaper, stating that Colonel Boquet was coming with two thousand soldiers. On hearing this false statement, the Indians wished to go out and carry the news to their chief. The gate being opened, they returned by themselves to the camp, and related this news to Pontiac, who, without showing astonishment, said at once that it was false, and that the English spread the report to frighten them. He desired Messrs. Godfrey and Chapoton to leave the camp for a short time, saying that he would call them again, when he had mentioned to his people what they had told him. This he did only to have leisure to think of some bad design. About five in the afternoon, he sent for Messrs. Godfrey and Chapoton, as also for several other French settlers, and told them that he had appeased his young people, that they consented to make peace, but to conclude it effectually, he would be glad to speak to Mr. Campbell, second commander, in his camp, as he had known him three years, (the time he had commanded the fort,) and he and his people looked on him as on their brother. But the barbarian concealed in his bosom a dagger which was to be fatal to that worthy man.

The French, from whom he concealed his designs, believing he spoke with frankness, told him they willingly engaged to bring Mr. Campbell, if he would promise to let him return without molestation after the interview. He promised it, (promises cost him no trouble,) and the better to cover his malice, he gave them the calumet of peace, as a certain proof of his people's word and his own. The French, especially Messrs. Godfrey and Chapoton, fell into the snare which Pontiac had laid for them and the English. While the Indians were preparing this new intrigue, a Frenchman called Gouin, who by chance had seen through the Indians' designs, and who, in several conversations he had had with Pontiac, had seen no favorable symptom towards the English, and who had had some presentiment of what was going to happen to Mr. Campbell; desired a Frenchman, who was passing before his house on his way to the fort, to warn Mr. Campbell of what was going on in the camp, entreating him not to leave the fort, and not to trust the word of a badly-inclined Indian.

However, the French took their way to the fort, thinking that the mere presence of Mr. Campbell would be sufficient to appease the Indians. M. Gouin, who saw them coming at a distance, and who feared that one warning was not sufficient, begged M. Morau, to whom he mentioned in a few words the matter in question, to run to the fort, and again caution the gentlemen against going out. This was done by M. Morau, who came at full speed to relate word for word to the officers M. Gouin's information. He desired, with tears in his eyes, Mr. Campbell not to leave the fort, adding, that if he went to the camp, he would never return. In the mean time Messrs. Godfrey and Chapoton, with several of the French, arrived at the fort, related to the English the fair words of Pontiac, and showed there the calumet of peace which they had brought.


The calumet and fine words had all the effect on the English that Pontiac exacted, and M. Gouin's two warnings were useless. Afterwards, when it was too late, the English wished they had listened to him instead of the others. Mr. Campbell, whose temper wished for nothing but union and concord, thought that it was in his power, by going to the camp, to appease the Indians, and that his presence for a single moment would more than suffice to restore peace between the two parties. This, joined to the importunities of Messrs. Godfrey and Chapoton, who said they would venture their life for his, decided him to go to the camp. He went out, accompanied by Mr. M'Dougal, an officer, by M. La Butte and a great number of the French inhabitants of the fort, who thought that in fact the presence of this worthy man would put an end to this cabal, and after his return, which was (it was said,) to take place immediately, they would be free to see to their affairs. But they were disappointed in this expectation.

Mr. Campbell arrived at the camp. The Indians, seeing him arrive, uttered the most frightful cries. It required all the authority of Pontiac to make them keep silence. Pontiac went and met Mr. Campbell, took him by the hand to conceal his felonious designs; made him sit on the same seat with himself, telling him that he was glad to see him, as he considered him as a Frenchman; that he and his people were going to speak on business. Mr. Campbell remained a full hour, without the Indians saying a word to him. Mr. Campbell drew a bad augury from this. He communicated his thoughts to the French who had brought him; they told him that according to Pontiac's promise he might leave when he pleased. He wished to do so. As he began to grow a little uneasy, he sent word to Pontiac, that as he had nothing to say, he was going away. Pontiac, who feared that such a valuable prey might escape him, and who thought that by detaining these two officers in his camp, the others would accede to his wishes, announced that after they had slept two nights with him, he would send them back to the fort. Thus those gentlemen found themselves of their own accord prisoners of the Indians. The French who had accompanied them returned more sad than when they had left, judging that it was a stratagem, by which Pontiac hoped to hold the officers of the fort in check. On their arrival at the fort, they related to the commander, Mr. Gladwin, all that had passed in the camp, and the detention of his officers. This gave him room to think that he would have done better to believe M. Gouin, in preference to all the others. The Poux (Pottawattomies) who, as I have said, had, in concert with the Ottowas, vowed the death of the English, and who had not yet appeared much around the fort, went, according to Pontiac's order, in the woods at a distance, on the shores of the lake and river, to stop all the English who might be on their way to the fort, and made two prisoners. They were two men, whom the commander of St. Joseph had sent from his fort to bring letters here, to Mr. Gladwin. They were taken and brought to Pontiac's camp, who caused his people to put them to death. About eight in the


evening, Pontiac sent messengers to the Hurons of the wicked band, and to the Poux, to let them know what had just happened in his camp, as also his having detained the two officers. He sent them word that on the next morning, very early, he and four of his chiefs would walk along the coast before the fort, to give new orders and obtain ammunition. He gave notice to Ninivoan, (Ninivois,) chief of the Poux, to place twenty of his people in an ambuscade near the fort, that no Englishman might go out without being taken.

11th May. Wednesday, the 11th day of May, Pontiac, as a good general, ordered thirty of his young people to conceal themselves near the fort, and take all the English who might go out, as also to fire from time to time on the little boat; while he and his chiefs went on the other side, to give orders for the attack of the fort. His people did as they had been desired, and came to this effect and placed themselves in the suburb, which was built northeast from the fort, at a distance of about four hundred feet; this was a good intrenchment for them. However, Pontiac, followed by four chiefs, who were Macapacelite, Breton, Shawawnon (Chavoinon) and his nephew, went through the wood behind the fort to the coast on the southwest of the fort; a little below; they entered the houses of all the settlers, especially those who traded, and desired them, in a speech, to give them powder and balls, adding that if they would not give any, they would plunder their goods and all their possessions ; giving them as a good reason, that they had nothing more to fear on the part of the English, who were unable to injure them. They also gave them to understand that all the tribes, among whom the English had traders or garrisons, would kill them (the English.) That the Sauteux of Saginaw and Grand river were coming to join them. That when all were assembled, they would close the way, so that no more English might come and live on their lands. The traders, forced by their fair words and threats, were obliged, to obtain peace, to give the Indians that which they demanded; and by thus giving part of their powder and balls, they preserved their goods, houses, and families. The Poux, who, in accordance with Pontiac's orders, had been to the rendezvous, had their share; after which they separated, to return to the camp, and distribute the ammunition to the warriors, and take measures for the attack intended for the next day. During all the day the officers were very quiet in the fort, not being troubled by the Indians. This induced many inmates of the fort to ask the commander's leave to go out; this was granted, and they went to the coasts, to stay with the settlers, leaving their houses and part of their goods, hoping that this tragical event would only last a few days.

In the afternoon, Pontiac crossed the river with four chiefs, and went to hold a council with the Hurons, to induce the good band to join him; if they would not, he was determined to fall on them. These Indians, who had not hitherto left their cottages, and who disliked all that was going on, being thus threatened and pressed closely, and being besides so few in number, were obliged to do what the others


required. They promised that the next day after mass they would join the Poux in the enterprise, but they could not come sooner, it being a great festival, and they could not think of going to fight without hearing mass. Pontiac agreed to wait until then, and ordered the attack to be put off until the arrival of the Hurons.

12th May. Thursday, the twelfth of May, it being the festival of the ascension of our Lord, Pontiac, who regarded neither festivals nor Sundays, who thought all days alike, professing no religion, ordered in the morning all his young people to be ready by the time the Hurons came, in order to go all together to the attack; and fearing that the Hurons might not keep their word, he sent to them one of his chiefs with several young people, to tell them not to fail, as soon as their missionary had finished, to come to the Poux, as they were waiting their arrival to commence the attack. The Hurons gave their word and kept it. Although Pontiac waited for the Hurons to commence the attack of the fort, he had however desired his people to take their stations behind the barns and stables, in order that all might be ready at the first signal, and also that they might prevent the besieged from leaving the fort.

Peatan and Baby, both chiefs of the good band of Hurons, who had hitherto remained neutral, and would have wished longer to remain so, seeing themselves thus threatened, assembled their band, which consisted of about sixty men, and said to them, "Brothers, you see as well as we do the situation of affairs; our only alternative is to join our brothers the Ottawa and Poux, or to abandon our lands and flee with our wives and children, a thing not easily effected. Hardly shall we have commenced the flight when the Ottawas, Poux, and our own Hurons, will fall on us and kill our wives and children, and then oblige us to do as they do. Whereas, if we do it now, we are assured of the safety of our wives and children in our village. We know not the wishes of the master of life; perhaps it is He who inspires this war to our brothers the Ottawas. If He do not order it, He will let us know His will, and we shall at any time be able to withdraw without spilling the blood of the English. Let us do what our brothers require of us. Let us not spare ourselves." Immediately after this speech they took a war-club, and sang the war-song, and invited their people to do the same, while waiting for the mass which their wives sang, and which they heard very devoutly. The mass being over, every one went to his cabin to take the necessary arms. They crossed the river in twelve canoes, and went to the Poux, who uttered cries of joy on seeing their arrival. These cries warned Pontiac of the arrival of the Hurons, who became more obstinate in firing than all the other Indians put together.

Ninivoan at the head of the Poux, Takay and Peatan at the head of the Hurons, went, although without orders, and invested the fort on one side. Pontiac, heading his people, did the same on the other side; and all at the same time commenced attacking the fort and barges. They kept up a very sharp fire until seven in the evening, remaining all this time sheltered by the buildings, to avoid the fire of the fort, which could not do them much injury, as they had but one cannon fit for use.


This was but little supported by the fire of the garrison. All this firing could have but little effect on the outside. The officers perceived it in time. To remedy this, and give more effect to the gun-balls, they fastened together with wire several bolts which they made red-hot and placed in the cannon of the battery, and sent this on two barns which were full and thatched; they were burnt up in less than half an hour. This caused the Indians to remove and take shelter behind the hill, to be able to continue their firing without running any risk. The two barges, during all this, were not sparing of their trouble and powder, firing with much effect above and on both sides of the fort, opposite which they were moored. There were in this action two Indians killed and two wounded; one of them had his thigh and the other his arm broken by the same shot behind the fort. With regard to the English, they took care to conceal their dead, for fear the Indians would come to know it. Notwithstanding their precautions it was known that several were killed in the large barge, and many wounded in the barges and fort. This was seen by all the inhabitants.

About seven in the evening, the fire of the Indians having abated a little, the commander fearing lest the Indians might be favored by the night, make some attempt to storm the fort or set it on fire, ordered two things to be done; first, that tubs and barrels should be placed at the four corners of the fort, in the streets and on the ramparts, and that the French who had voluntarily remained in the fort (twenty in number) should draw water from the wells to fill those vessels — secondly, as they were few in number, and there was no probability that the expected succor might very soon arrive, and the lack of people, ammunition and provisions, would prevent their standing out. Having first ordered the French to withdraw to their houses at curfew and put out their fires, they directed the soldiers to carry from the fort to the barges the baggage of the officers, their own, and that of the traders; and that every one should be ready to start for Niagara at the first signal.

Nothing happened during the night; this made the English think that they might keep the fort longer than they had hoped. They came a little to their senses to sustain the attack which took place on the next day.

13th May. Almost all the Indians who inhabit these regions are like the wind, going only by puffs. If they knew they should lose some of their warriors in going to war, they would not go. This often makes them end a war almost when they commence it. Sometimes, however, it only excites them more. These Indians, as I have said, had some people killed and wounded; this induced them to juggle to find out how they could manage to lose no more warriors, and to obtain the fort, which they said must sooner or later come into their hands, considering the reinforcement which, according to their account, was coming in a short time.

The Indians, in the preceding day, had been so active that when evening came, they were overcome with fatigue. They went to rest, and slept all the night and almost the whole of the morning. The commander, who with the dawn of day


expected an attack, and who, with his officers, had watched all the night on the rampart, to give orders and prevent surprise, seeing the Indians so quiet, ordered that the intrenchments of the Indians should promptly be destroyed by fire. To effect this, Mr. Hopkins, captain of a new company and a good officer, went out at the head of forty volunteers completely armed, and set fire to the suburbs, which was soon burnt up, except two houses which the fire could not reach. They immediately returned to the fort, to give time to another officer to go on a similar expedition on another side. This was done by Mr. Hays, a lieutenant in the American troops, who sallied out with thirty men, and set fire to two barns and stables behind the fort, and immediately returned, thinking that Pontiac and his Indians, seeing these fires at a distance, might try to prevent their retreat; but, fortunately, some other thing occupied him all the morning. There were, however, a few on the watch, but so few in number, that they did not dare show themselves, or fire, for fear that if they were discovered they might be fired at. Thus both parties feared each other.

While the English officers, with part of their troops, were endeavoring to render the vicinity of the fort free and clear, all the Indians in Pontiac's camp held a council, to which the oldest French inhabitants of the coasts had been called. The Indians tried by fair words to induce these to join them, to instruct them in opening a trench, which the French did not wish to do; besides, the greatest part of them knew not the way, and those who did, took good care not to say any thing about it; on the contrary, they said they were unacquainted with such work. Pontiac, seeing he could make no impression upon them, and who did not as yet wish to obtain by force what he hoped they would grant by their own free will, (I mean their labor,) attempted a new trick. Pie desired Mr. La Butte to tell Mr. Campbell to write to the commander what he was about dictating, in presence of all his brothers, the French. Mr. Campbell, who did not wish to displease a man whose wickedness he began to discover, obeyed. This letter mentioned that Pontiac granted the commander liberty to withdraw with all his people, taking only what they actually had about their persons, as had been the case with Mr. Bellertre; and that the remainder of their property and that of the traders should remain for him. He thought that granting their lives was doing much. He promised, that himself and his people should do them no harm, and that he would answer for the other nations; and, if the commander did not consent to their conditions, he would recommence the attack and storm the fort, and if he took him alive, he would treat him. as the Indians treat their prisoners; and that he must have a speedy answer.

This letter was brought to the commander by a Frenchman. He read it, and, without caring much for an Indian speech, replied, that neither he nor his officers had any wish to tear off their noses to please the Indians, as by leaving the fort he ran the risk of losing his life in his own country; and, as the king had sent him to


command the fort, he would remain there until death; adding, that he cared very little for his threats and those of the other Indians.

Pontiac, who had flattered himself with the idea of intimidating the commander by this letter, and who was in hopes of plundering the merchandise of the traders, was much disappointed in receiving so dry an answer. He learnt, at the same time, the sallies made by the English and the destruction of his intrenchments. He was ready to burst with spite. He ordered his people to return to the fort, and recommence the attack. This they did with as much spirit as on the preceding day; but they did not come so near, having only two buildings to conceal them, they could not all stand behind them. Some were farther off, firing from behind the hillock; their balls often passed above the fort. Nevertheless, the sharpness of the fire rendered the English uneasy, fearing all the time an assault. They were as upon thorns, and hesitated, whether they should remain or escape by water. What reassured them a little, was a Frenchman, who had for a long time dwelt among the Erie Indians, and had also gone to war with them. He explained to the English the manner of Indian warfare, assuring them, on his life, that the Indians would never attempt to storm the fort. This assurance, coming from a man disinterested, acquainted with the ways of the Indians, with their manner of making war, (which he explained to the commander and officers,) rendered their minds easy. The firing of the Indians only lasted until seven in the evening, after which they only fired at long intervals. However, the commander and officers spent this night like the last, that they might not be surprised.

The Hurons knew nothing of what was taking place in Pontiac's camp, not having been warned to come to the council. Thinking that no attack would take place, they did not come to harass the besieged. Having heard the approach of a trader, with barges loaded with goods for themselves and the traders of the fort, as also with refreshments for the officers, they went and waited for him down the river. The traders, not aware of what was going to happen, seeing the Indians on the shore calling them, thought they wanted to exchange venison, as they sometimes do, and went to them. The Indians took and tied them with belts, and sent away all the French who were in the barges, without hurting them. They took the barges, with the English traders and their assistants, to their village, where, on their arrival, they slew a part of their prisoners, and adopted the others.

One Jackman, who acted as conductor of a barge, was given by the Hurons to the Poux, who accepted and kept him among them. The goods remained in the possession of the Hurons, and occupied them so much that they forgot the fort. Among the goods were liquors. The Huron women, fearing that liquor would cause their husbands to commit greater fooleries than those they had commenced, threw themselves on the barrels, burst them open, and spilt the contents, except a barrel of thirty-two quarts, which one Indian took from the women and concealed in the woods. It was divided


between them and the Poux. Very few of them however drank any, for fear it might contain poison. They had been told that the English wished to poison them.

14th May. Saturday, 14th, the Indians, who had undergone much fatigue in firing at the fort, slept, waiting for the time of recommencing hostilities, which was about ten in the morning. The commander ordered his people to improve the respite, by finishing the work which had been commenced on the preceding day. This was done by a sergeant, who went out at the head of twenty men (volunteers) and burnt two barns which had escaped fire the preceding day through the approach of the Indians. This done, the incendiaries came back, and the vicinity of the fort was free. They could then see every thing from the posts of enclosure to the top of the hillock. This was doing great injury to the Indians, who, perceiving this expedition, came to prevent it, thinking they would arrive soon enough. They were disappointed, and found nothing to shelter them from the fire except the hillock, behind which they placed themselves, and commenced the same game as on the preceding days. The English, who expected it, were not surprised to see the attack recommenced, as they were beginning to be accustomed to it. They however dreaded an assault, as in the night they had been advised by a Frenchman that the Indians were going to storm it; and the steps taken by the latter this day, more than the preceding, showed their intention to be such. The only resource of the English in such an emergency was to go into their barges, where their baggage had been ever since the first day, and then to sail for Niagara. This did not come to pass. They were assured that if the Indians did not storm the fort this day, they would never do it, as they knew well that in so doing they would lose some of their people, and this they dreaded too much.

Father Potier, a Jesuit missionary of the Hurons, who, in the quality and by the power that he had over them, had brought part of them, particularly the good band, within the bounds of tranquillity by refusing them the sacrament; and who, to finish bringing them all to order, needed aid, desired Mr. Laboise, an inhabitant of the fort, who had then been for some time at home, to cross the river, to go and entreat in his name the oldest and most sensible inhabitants, those whom he knew to be loved and respected by the Indians, to come and join him to stop the storm, which in threatening the English appeared to threaten the French. M. Laboise did as he was desired. The French, who knew and respected the Father Jesuit as a worthy ecclesiastic, and considered him as a saint upon earth, went willingly to his residence. They concerted together the means to be used to soften Pontiac, and the arguments to be used to induce him to discontinue this intestine war.

The French, after this deliberation, went, twelve in number, (the most respectable,) to Pontiac's camp, who was much surprised to see them, and asked them the cause of their visit. The deputies, seeing him so easy of access, flattered themselves with a good success, and told him they came for good affairs; whereupon, Pontiac took them to M. Baptiste Melochיs' house, where they found Messrs. Campbell and M'Dougal, his


two prisoners. He called his chiefs to come and hear the good words of their brothers the French. When they had all arrived, the oldest of the French spoke in the name of all the settlers, and asked Pontiac what were his intentions in this war. He replied that his intention was to drive the English from the fort and from their lands, to make room for the French commander, who he had been told was to arrive soon.

The French told him, that since he so soon expected a French commander, he had better remain quiet on his mat, that it would be time enough to attack the fort on his arrival. In vain did they tell him that this war ruined them, and prevented their attending to their affairs, using the most touching Indian expressions to show him their distress. Pontiac persisting in the same sentiments, and moved by nothing, replied, that to be sooner free, they had better join him in driving away the English, and that afterwards they would return to their lands, waiting for the French who were coming. The French replied that this was impossible, as they had promised to be faithful to the English. Thus, nothing being gained on either side, the French were obliged to return to Father Potier, who made them an exhortation on their present calamity, desiring them to pray with fervor, that heaven might withdraw this war which injured them. This they promised, and each returned to his house, more fatigued with this useless step, than pleased with his enterprise.

15th May. Sunday, 15th May, the Indians, who had spent uselessly the three preceding days, resolved on remaining still, awaiting the reinforcement which they expected from the Saulteurs of Grand river, who, they said, would shortly arrive, hoping that with their help they would more easily achieve their foolish enterprise. The English, who had passed a very quiet night, and saw no movement on the part of the Indians in the morning, hoped that things, with regard to the Indians, would take a better aspect than it was at first anticipated. The commander, who, although somewhat uneasy, had never lost courage, ordered that during the inaction they should destroy M. La Butte's garden. This was executed by the officers at the head of forty volunteers; they destroyed the garden, of which the enclosure was made of cedar posts ten feet high. It contained a quantity of fruit-trees and the gardener's house, which the Indians had found of great service. The posts were torn up, the house burnt, and the trees cut down and thrown into the river. This was done in a very short time, and the men returned to the fort without molestation. The Indians, however, saw them, but, finding themselves that it was too late to prevent the destruction of their retreat, they remained quiet until one in the afternoon, when they fired a few shots at the little barge, but this was a mere waste of powder on their part.

The English, who hitherto had scarcely had time to breathe, seeing, that to all appearances they would not be harassed that day, caused some of their men to take repose until the evening. The others labored to render the two cannons of some use. They had until now been of no service for want of a place. The commander ordered that on each side of the large gate of the fort, which faced the highway on the south-west


side, should be made one port-hole to place the cannons, one of which was to sweep the highway, and the other to point towards the dwelling of M. Jacques St. Martin on the same side.

16th May. Monday, 16th May, the commander, who had learnt that the good band of Hurons had withdrawn from the cabal, by the mediation of Father Potier their missionary, and that, in order to have no more to do with it, they had gone into another district, resolved to give the wicked band room to repent their foolishness in sending the large barge to ravage their village with cannon, and burn it up if possible. They were also on the way to do the same with the Poux. Captain Hopkins had the command of this expedition; Officer Hay, ten soldiers, and one trader went on board the large barge. The wind, which had turned to the east, appeared to favor them in their expedition. They took up their anchor to go down to the right of the two villages, but had not gone one eighth of a league, when the wind turned to the south and increased. The wind was then almost in front of them, and they were obliged to tack about to arrive at their destination; this they did. Most of the inhabitants of the coasts, unacquainted with their manœuvre, were afraid, thinking the English were going to fire at them, and that the barge merely came down to ravage the coasts, and burn the houses, a thing which they could not do, having no forge on board. Some of the settlers, however, went and concealed their goods in ditches in the middle of their farms, and some in the woods. Other French inhabitants, who were acquainted with the movements of the barge, came and quieted them, showing them that their fears were groundless. An event which most tended to tranquillize them, was what happened to the barge, and which would have caused its entire destruction had any Indians been near. The wind, which went on increasing, was against the barge. The English, who wished by all means to go to the Indian villages, sailed against the wind from one coast to the other. As they wished to tack, there came a puff of wind which took the sails in every direction, and stranded the barge about twenty feet from the land, and a quarter of a league from the fort; the barge for about a quarter of an hour was nearly on its side; they were obliged, at all hazards, to go and cast anchor about sixty yards off the land, to free the barge; by dint of labor they succeeded, and returned dripping wet to the fort, very glad to have escaped the claws of the Indians; for certainly, in the situation in which the barge was placed, ten Indians would have done their affairs without their being able to defend themselves, and they would have paid dearly for their imprudence. Some Indians, it is true, saw them from a distance, and came to fall on them, but they were too late, and might have repeated the proverb, "While the dog is eating the wolf escapes." They were so vexed to have so favorable an opportunity, that they fired at the fort from two till six in the evening, without killing a fly. During that time, the French who had remained in the fort, were drawing water from the wells and carrying it into the vessels destined to receive it.


17th May. On Tuesday, May 17th, Pontiac, who in commencing this war had not taken care to collect provisions, was obliged to employ cunning to obtain some. He and four of his chiefs went to the inhabitants of the coasts to ask for provisions, which they were determined to obtain with or without their consent, threatening to kill the cattle. This they had indeed commenced doing, although many of the settlers fed even thirty of them, which did not prevent their doing damage. The settlers, who dreaded lest the Indians might turn against them, granted the demands of the chiefs, and every settler contributed in furnishing food to those Indians who dwelt on his side of the river; so that Pontiac and his people had their sustenance from the north coast. Ninivona and tribe had theirs from the southwest coast, and the Hurons from the east and south. About ten o'clock, when each nation was provided with food, the chiefs assembled in Pontiac's camp, and decided in a council among themselves, that no Frenchman residing out of the fort should go there, and that no inhabitant of it should go out. For, said they, those who reside within mention all that happens there, and those who reside outside mention all that takes place in the camp; and the effect of all that is bad. Their reasons were good enough, for in effect some of the French, under the pretext of restoring harmony between the parties, sowed dissension. They agreed to place at each end of the fort a guard of twenty from each nation. They were to prevent all intercourse, and fire on those who attempted to pass. This was said and done. Some of the French who tried to pass, very nearly, were the dupes of their attempt. In the course of the afternoon, a few shots were exchanged without injury.

18th May. On Wednesday, May 18th, the Indians being engaged with a design they had conceived a few days before, of sending to M. de Leon in Illinois, forgot the fort during the whole of this day. Pontiac assembled the chiefs and most respected of each nation to hold a council; he sent messengers to the oldest French to invite them to the council, where they admitted the two officers, their prisoners. All having arrived, Pontiac took a war-wampum belt, (?) and said, addressing himself to all, "You are acquainted with the reasons which make me act as I do; I have neglected no opportunity of showing my wishes; but, as I fear our Father may not arrive soon enough to take possession of the fort, when I have expelled or killed the English, and that the French having no commander, my brothers, the Indians, may insult them: I have determined, to obviate this difficulty, to send to Illinois messengers from our brothers, the French, and ourselves, to carry our wampum belts and our words to our Father, M. de Leon; to desire him to send us a French commander to guide us, and take the place from the English. You, my brothers, will please me by writing to your Father on the subject, joining your words to mine." He sent for a writer, in presence of his two prisoners, and desired him to write to M. de Lיon the reasons of his actions, as I have mentioned them in the commencement of this writing. He joined to this a letter from the French, who earnestly beseeched M. de Leon,


considering the circumstances, to quiet the nations. All those writings being finished, Pontiac, who directed every thing, named the two Frenchmen and the two Indians whom he wished to carry the letters and words, desiring them to get ready to start the next morning; and that those of the French and Indians who wished to go might speak; that he would not prevent them, but would make the inhabitants give them all they needed for the journey.

19th May. On Monday the 19th, Pontiac, who thought that M. de Leon would, agreeably to his wishes, send a commander, hastened in the morning to provide for the wants of his messengers. He made them go on board a canoe, and told them to go and wait for him below the fort, at the mill; that he was going along the coast to get them provisions. He went from house to house, to ask of every one, according to his means, provisions and ammunition for his couriers, in order that they might quietly depart. The travellers, having received the necessary things, departed, about ten, for Illinois. The messengers being gone, Pontiac returned to his camp, and ordered his young people to go and amuse themselves by firing at the barges, merely to harass them, knowing very well they could not injure them. They continued this until five in the afternoon, when, weary of firing, they returned to the camp to repose, after the fatigue they had incurred so uselessly.

20th May. Friday, May the 20th, the commander, who intended to send one of the barges to Niagara, and who wished to hasten the arrival of the succor he had daily expected for a considerable time, ordered Mr. Legrand, who was appointed judge instead of Mr. St. Cosme, to desire the French who dwelt in the fort to pick up the stones which were in the streets, and carry them to the banks of the river, to serve as ballast for the barge which was to go. They changed places with the barges, and the soldiers took the stones to the smallest. This day passed without any hostility on either side.

21st May. Saturday, May 21st, at eleven A. M., the barge left its station opposite the fort, to go to the head of Lake Erie to discover if the reinforcement expected by the English was coming. The crew were ordered to remain stationary eight days, to favor the arrival of the reinforcement, and at the end of that time to proceed to Niagara. The Indians, either through laziness or contempt, neither fired at the fort nor at the barge. About five in the evening they knew in the fort of a Frenchman who had gone out of the fort, that Cekaas, great chief of the Saulteurs of Grand river had arrived, according to Pontiac's request, with one hundred and twenty men of his tribe.

22d May. Sunday, May 22d, it being Pentecost-day, a most impetuous wind and heavy rain obliged both parties to remain quiet.

23d. The weather in the morning (May 23d, Monday) somewhat resembling that of the day preceding, kept the Indians quiet. The commander, who mistrusted them, and foresaw they would not longer remain still, and who wished to use every means


of defence against any attempts which might be made, ordered that all the iron and steel which were in the warehouse should be converted into war-clubs, swords, lances, and hooks, to arm his soldiers and provide against an assault, in case the Indians should attempt to storm the fort. This was done by two French blacksmiths who were in the fort. About four in the afternoon it was reported in the fort that the Indians were going to set the fort on fire, the posts of the enclosure, and the houses inside; this was to be done with ignited arrows. This, however, they could not do, as luckily they had not the necessary things. But as a measure of precaution, and to prevent surprise, they put on the royal storehouse, and on the houses, ladders, at the foot of which were tubs full of water, to be used if wanted. The commander ordered the French inhabitants of the fort to watch during the whole night, and that three or four should collect in every house, that they might be ready at the first warning. About two in the afternoon the weather became fair. They expected then that the Indians would make some incursion; this however did not come to pass, and the remainder of the day elapsed as in the morning.

May 24th. Tuesday, May 24th, the Indians, who had been idle the day before, remained so this day until four, when shaking off their slothfulness, they recommenced firing at the fort, and did not stop until midnight. Their firing had no more effect than if they had remained quiet, having merely wasted powder and balls.

The commander, who foresaw that this tragical scene might not end very quickly, and that it might not be easy to obtain provisions from the outside, fearing also a scarcity of provisions before the return of the barge and the arrival of the convoy which he daily expected, ordered, that to obviate this, they should make a search in all the French houses, to take from them every superfluous article they might have, in order to economise them for the sustenance of his people. This was done by officer Hay, the commissioner of the victualling, and the judge, who went to every house collecting wheat, flour, peas, as also some maize belonging to the Indians, and of which the French had the care, and which they had neglected to take away before commencing their foolish undertaking. They also collected oil, tallow, and every article of food, making a list of all, stating every separate thing, and the names of the owners, to whom they gave bills. The Indian corn belonging to the Indians was alone confiscated. All the provisions were carried to the public storehouse, and were taken care of against the scarcity with which the English were threatened.

May 25th. Wednesday, May 25th, the Indians, who, during part of the preceding night, had fatigued themselves with using ammunition to no purpose, rested until five in the afternoon, when they recommenced as the day before. The chiefs and old men did not fire, but while the others were sleeping, walked about to examine every thing, that there might be no surprise. They were all the time mistrustful of the English.

The inhabitants of the coasts were divided by different sentiments. Some, the truly worthy people, penetrated with sentiments of humanity and religion, bewailed the


foolish enterprise of the Indians, and would willingly have given all their possessions to stop the nations, and restore peace. Others, governed by an ill-founded sentiment of antipathy, and over whom submission and respect had no power, would willingly have taken the part of the Indians, had they not been afraid of incurring general contempt. Some were undecided, not knowing what part to take. All were weary of the war and of the presence of the Indians, and had assembled several times at the houses of the oldest inhabitants to concert some plan of stopping the nations. They resolved to go to Pontiac's camp and ask him for a council, and to try to find out his views respecting the war. To effect this, fifteen of the most respected, being known and liked by the Indians, went to the camp and asked for a council. Pontiac, who had not been warned of this visit, was surprised, and began to suspect there was some hidden meaning in it which he could not find out. He however received them well, and asked what brought them, for his curiosity did not allow him to wait until they should mention it of their own accord. They all replied that they came to speak on business, and that they would be glad if all the chiefs could hear them. Pontiac, who longed to know what brought them, sent messengers to the Poux and the Hurons of the wicked band, who came in a short time. When all had arrived, the most respected of the French, taking Pontiac by his hand, said, addressing himself to all:

My brothers, you appear surprised to see us, but we only come here to renew the alliance formed between our ancestors and yours, which you now destroy in destroying us. When you commenced your attack upon the English, you gave us to understand that you would do us neither harm nor injury; it is true that you have not hurt our persons, but in killing our cattle do you not injure us? When you have killed them all, how can we plough our lands, to save them and make bread for you? Even if killing them you did not waste half of them, they would last you longer, and we should not lose so many. When you enter our houses, you do so with uplifted war-clubs, as if you wished to kill us while asking us for food. Did we ever refuse you food when you asked for it? You no longer speak as our brothers, but as our masters, but you treat us as slaves. How long have you known the Indians command the French? Is this the promise you gave your father Bellestre on his departure, that you would love and support the French? Avenge the insults you have received, we do not oppose this, but remember that you and we are brothers and children of your Great Father the King of France. You expect him, say you, when he comes and brings you necessaries as he used to do, and finds that you have killed us and taken all that we kept for him, what will he say to you? Do you think that he will make you presents to cover the evil you have done us? No! he will consider you as rebellious children, as traitors. And far from caressing you, he will wage war against you. Then shall you have two nations against you, the French and English. See then whether you wish to have two enemies, or live with us as brothers should live.

Pontiac, who had not lost one word of all this, spoke now in his turn in the name of


all the chiefs addressing the French: My brothers, it has never been our intention to do you either hurt or wrong, nor have we ever wished either to be done to you, but there are among my young people, as among yours, some who, notwithstanding all the care which may be taken, always commit some injury. Besides, it is not for mere revenge that I make war against the English. It is on your account, brothers, as well as ours. When the English, in the councils we have held with them, have insulted us, they have insulted you without your knowing it, and do I not know as well as my brothers, that the English have taken from you all means of revenge, in disarming you, and making you write on a paper which they sent into their country. This they could not make us do. Therefore do I wish to revenge you as well as ourselves, and I swear their death, as long as they remain on our lands. Besides, you do not know all the reasons I have for acting as I do. I have merely told you what regards you, you shall learn all with time. I know well, brothers, that many of you think me foolish, but the future will show what I am, and whether I am wrong.

I know also, brothers, that some of you take the part of the English, to make war against us. But I am only sorry on their account, and when our Great Father returns, I will name and point them out to him, then will they see which will be the most satisfied.

I know, my brothers, that you must be weary of the war, on account of the movements of my brothers, who are at all times going to and coming from your houses. I am sorry for it; but I do not believe, my brothers, that I am the cause of the injury which is done you, I am not. Only remember the war with the Fox Indians, and the manner I behaved towards you. It is now seventeen years since the Saulteurs and Ottawas of Michilimackinac, and all the nations of the north came with the Sac and Fox Indians to destroy you. Who defended you? Did I not? Did not my people? When Mekinak, great chief of all those nations, said in his council that he wished to carry to his village the head of your commander, eat his heart, and drink his blood, did I not take your part, by telling him in his own camp, that if he wished to kill the French, he must begin by killing me and my people? Did I not assist you in defeating them and driving them away? Could I now, my brothers, turn my arms against you? no, my brothers, I am the same French Pontiac, who, seventeen years ago, gave you his hand. I am French, and I will die a Frenchman. I repeat it, I avenge your interests in avenging mine. Let me go on; I do not ask you to join me, as I know that you cannot do so, I merely ask you provisions for myself and people. Should you, however, wish to aid me, I would not refuse your assistance, it would afford me pleasure, and you would sooner be free; because I promise you, that as soon as the English are killed or expelled, we will withdraw to our villages, according to our custom, and there await the arrival of our Great Father. These, my brothers, are my sentiments. Be easy, I shall watch and see that you receive no more injury from my people. I hope you will allow our wives to sow wheat, (plant corn,) on your


lands and on your clearings; we shall feel obliged to you for it. All the French replied that they were willing. The council being over, the French returned to their houses, pleased with their interview with Pontiac. In the same day, the squaws commenced to sow the wheat, (plant the corn,) and several of the settlers ploughed the land for them. Pontiac, in the afternoon, went and gave his orders throughout the coasts for the sustenance of all the Indians, and also to prevent their taking any thing by force from the French.

The commander, who, since the departure of the barge, had perceived that the Poux Indians, whose camp was to the south-west of the fort, came along the river sheltered by a rise of ground which runs parallel with it. There were in it two lime-kilns, in which the Indians hid themselves to fire upon the soldiers who were obliged to go to the river. He ordered, to prevent the Indians from harassing them on that side, that a platform should be made and placed on the bank, to guard and defend the border of the river, in order that free access might be had to it. To effect this, two carpenters and several persons acquainted with the use of the axe, commenced working at this edifice on the military square; and as there was in the fort no framing-timber fit for this work, the workmen took the causeway from the front of the houses, and used it for this building, which was ready to be raised about five in the evening. To carry it to its destination, it became necessary to take it out of the fort piece by piece. All the French who were in the fort, and some soldiers who were in the garrison, were ordered to do so, and all took out the wood by a port-hole on the side of the river. All the timber having been carried out, they put the work together and framed it; it was then to be raised, which could not be done easily on account of the weight. But, every one willing to be of service to the officers, they attempted to overcome this difficulty. The work being put together, they attempted to erect it, but it was in vain, for two reasons; first, there were not men enough; the second and strongest obstacle was, that the Indians, who were watching in a ditch at a distance of two hundred yards, had seen some English among the French, and who also foresaw that the building was going to be an obstacle for to them, made several discharges at them. This caused them to leave the work on the ground and to put off the raising until the next morning at day-break.

May 26th. Thursday, May 26th, at dawn, the French and some soldiers were ordered to raise the platform which they had been obliged to leave on account of the Indians. These being now asleep in their camp, gave time to raise it more early. This was done with all possible vigilance, and as they finished and were preparing to re-enter the fort, a Frenchman wished to take a walk towards the lime-kilns; he came very near being wounded by an Indian concealed in one of the kilns, who, as soon as he had fired, went and hid himself with some others who were further off in a ditch. The Frenchman, mistrusting that more of them were concealed, withdrew quickly and re-entered the fort with the others. During this time, a French inhabitant of the fort,


M. Labrosse, who, on the preceding day, with the commander's leave, had gone out on business, came back and brought news of the taking of Sandusky by the Indians, Hurons of the wicked band, who in fact had the day before passed on the other side of the river, in a canoe with a red flag on the stern. This had been noticed by several persons, who not being able to find out what it was, could only suspect that the Indians had made some new prize. This was verified by the report of that man, who said that he had seen, the commander of the captured place; that the garrison had been slain, the fort burnt, and the baggage of the troops and goods of the traders plundered. The commander would believe nothing of it until he saw a letter from that officer, who was then a prisoner among the Ottawas, to whom the Hurons had brought him. This poor gentleman, on his arrival, was very ill treated by the Indians, who, on his landing, struck him with sticks, and made him sing until he arrived at their camp. He was immediately taken by a squaw who had lost her husband, and who, having pity on him, took him for her second husband, and thus he was saved.

Pontiac and the Ottawas, having learned from the Hurons that on their return the little barge was still at the mouth of the river, formed the design of taking it. They went accordingly early in the morning to the village of the Poux, to whom they communicated their project. The latter joined them joyfully as if they had already succeeded. The former had brought with them Mr. Campbell, and his interpreter, M. La Butte, hoping that the presence of that officer would cause the people to surrender into their power. They were greatly mistaken; the people of the barge would not listen to their proposals, and only replied with gun and cannon-shots. This made the Indians wait until night, thinking that they would then succeed better in the dark. But the crew of the barge, who became every day more and more acquainted with their manoeuvres, thinking that during the night the Indians would make some new attempt to capture them, and knowing that their number was too small to resist a long time two hundred men, resolved to sail at large, thus to forestall the hopes of the Indians, and to save themselves and barge from the talons of the Indians. They raised their anchor during the night, and went into the lake towards Niagara, according to the orders they had received from the commander on their leaving the fort.

27th May. Friday, May 27th, the Indians, who had undergone much useless fatigue in their attempt to take the barge, having, fortunately for the crew and barge, failed, returned to the camp, with Mr. Campbell and the interpreter, and rested all the day.

28th May. Sunday, May 28th, the Indians remained inactive the whole day, as they were expecting news from the reinforcement which, according to the report of an Indian messenger who had arrived in the night, was to come during the day. This prevented their troubling the fort. But they broke the promise they had made to the French, and recommenced killing and taking away cattle. About five in the


afternoon, there were seen in the woods behind the fort a great number of Indians, who were returning from the lake, and going to the camp; they carried scalps. They uttered twenty death-cries, and then twenty cries of joy, to announce their having struck in some place. They were the remains of those who had taken Fort Sandusky. In the mean while there came a report into the fort, which stated that all the French who had been engaged by Indian traders to go to Michilimackinac had been killed by the Saulteurs and Ottawas who dwelt there. But this was afterwards found to be false.

The commander, seeing that the Indians were quiet, ordered Mr. Officer Hay to go out with twenty men, and destroy an intrenchment which the Indians had erected during the night, southwest of the fort, opposite the door, one hundred and twenty yards from it. The Poux and Hurons had come in the darkest part of the night, without making any noise, to M. St. Martin's enclosure, and had arranged some hewn timber (nearly twenty feet long) one piece upon another; they had made two rows of them breast-high, and had driven stakes on both sides, to keep them up; so that, being concealed behind the timber, they did not fear the shots of the cannon which were opposite. This having been seen in the morning by the sentinels, they immediately informed the commander of it. It was immediately destroyed by the twenty soldiers, who burnt the enclosure, and placed the timber against the fort; and the field remained clear, so that no one could approach the fort without being seen.

29th May. Sunday, May 29th, the weather was unsettled all the day, and this gave rest to both parties.

30th May. Monday, May 30th. — The officers had a seine, which had not been used since the commencement of the fatal scene. Several French young men asked the loan of it, saying they would bring them part of the fish which they caught. It was lent to them. Two soldiers, who knew how to manage it, were also sent. But they had no time to catch a single fish, nor even could they throw the seine into the river. The Indians, who were concealed in a ditch sixty rods from the fort, and who saw them without being seen, and who knew that the French did not use a seine for fishing, thought that the fish was to be partly for the officers, and fired several times at the barge and fishermen, who quickly went towards the shore, and re-entered the fort as they had left it. They brought back the seine, which has not been used since that time.

About nine in the morning, a soldier walking the rounds with the sentinel, in the Bastion opposite the river, and talking with him, perceived, at Montreal point, on the side of the Huron village, some crafts, which appeared to be barges containing people. This soldier, who, as well as his comrades, knew that the convoy was hourly expected, and that it was to contain troops and provisions, ran quickly and mentioned the discovery to the officer on guard. The officer lost no time in acquainting the


commander with it. The latter, with his officers and soldiers, as also the traders, came upon the small bastion, to verify by themselves the report of the soldiers, and find out exactly what it might be. They saw, by means of a telescope, that it was indeed the long-expected convoy. This caused a great joy; all being in hopes that, on its arrival at the fort, it would intimidate the Indians. But this joy was short, and stifled at its birth by a number of death-cries, which were heard from the place where the barges were. This produced sadness, as they all thought that the Indians had discovered the barges, and taken them, after having killed the crew; and this proved to be the case.

The Hurons of the wicked band and the Poux, who had a few days before heard that the sergeant, who in the preceding April had gone to Niagara, was returning with provisions and troops for the fort, resolved to destroy all. To this effect, they went and concealed themselves on the lake-shore. The sergeant, who was unacquainted with what was taking place in the fort, and who did not mistrust the Indians, was sailing peaceably and fearlessly on the lake, until he came to the point, eighteen leagues from Detroit, where he encamped in the evening, according to the custom of voyagers, to cook his provisions for the next day. The Indians, who were concealed among the bushes and thick brush in the same place, suffered them to land and arrange their camp. They even left them unmolested during the night. The convoy, thinking themselves perfectly secure, merely placed a guard over the barges, for fear that the wind during the night might send them adrift; the remainder slept quietly.

The Indians, intending to fall on them, took no sleep that night, for fear that their prey might escape. At break of day, they attacked our travellers, without giving them time to awake, killed several, and made the others prisoners, except thirty-five men and an officer, who, almost naked, threw themselves into the barges, and crossed the lake at all hazards towards Sandusky, without knowing whither to go. The remainder of the barges, eighteen in number, with from twenty to thirty men, remained in the hands of the Indians, who took them and brought them to the river, to convey them to Pontiac's camp. They took them in a file, on the other side of the river. In the first were four English soldiers and three Indians, and in the same proportion in the other barges. The number was about even on both sides. Other Indians followed the barges by land, uttering death-cries, and cries of joy, from time to time. The four Englishmen who were in the first barge, finding themselves opposite the large barge which was before the fort to guard it, undertook, in spite of the Indians who were with them, to run away, without considering the risk they incurred; they hoped that the barge, seeing their danger, would favor them. It was so indeed. The English soldiers turned the barge towards the large one. The Indians, seeing the danger of losing their prisoners, fell on them to make them take another route; but the English pursued the same way, crying out to the barge, from


which there came a cannon-ball on the Indians who were on the shore, who were firing on the English in the barge; and another with grape-shot, on the back part of the bark, where the Indians were placed. These two shots had the desired effect. The ball put the Indians to flight on the shore, and the grape-shot caused those Indians in the barge to leave it and throw themselves into the water; one of the three, in leaping out of the barge, drew with him one of the soldiers, and both were drowned. The others went to the shore, and taking guns from the other Indians, fired on the run-away barge, and slightly wounded one of the soldiers in the right arm. The barge then fired two cannon-shots at the Indians, who disappeared from the shore, and the barge and three soldiers went to the shore with difficulty. They took with them several barrels of flour and five of pork.

The other Indians, who had remained behind and had seen that in spite of their friends, the first barge and soldiers had escaped, and fearing the others might escape in the same manner, took other means to reach the camp. Making the prisoners land, they bound them; and they were conducted in this state to the Ottawa village. They then took them in their canoes, which had been brought by their wives, to Pontiac's camp. On their arrival, and in pursuance with his orders, they butchered them in a most dreadful manner. The recital of it makes-one shudder. As soon as the canoes had arrived opposite the camp, these barbarians caused them to land, one after another, and undressed them completely, and shot arrows into every part of their bodies. Sometimes these poor creatures wished to turn, or throw themselves on the ground, to avoid some arrows; the Indians, who were by their side, made them arise, striking them with sticks or with their fists. It was necessary to content these tigers, eager for human blood, that these poor patients should stand until they fell dead, after which those who had not shot fell on the dead bodies, and cut them in pieces, cooked them, and fed on them. On some others they exercised other cruelties, cutting them when alive with flints, and striking them with lances. They cut off their feet, and left them, bathed in their own blood, to die in suffering. Others were tied to stakes, and burnt by children, with a slow fire. No cruel invention of barbarity was left untried on those unfortunate men. To see this terrible spectacle, one would have thought that the furies were let loose on these poor people. Each one vied to make them suffer. To crown their tyranny, they left the dead bodies on the highway, without burying them. Others threw them into the river, which thus became the sad heir of their rage.

The squaws even assisted their husbands in feeding on the blood of these sad victims, and inflicted on them a thousand cruelties; some stabbing them with knives, as we do when we lard beef. Others cut from them that which forms man. I should never end, were I to describe minutely the cruel sacrifice and the sorrowful end of these unfortunate men. Some, however, were spared, being saved to serve as slaves


in the Indian camp. Thus they became spectators of the tyrannical end of their unfortunate fellow-citizens.

The Hurons, who had given up their prisoners to the Ottawas, had returned to those who took care of the "barges. They took them to their village, with the sergeant whom they had kept, that they might treat him as the Ottawas had treated the others, and waited until dark to take the barges unto Pontiac, their head-chief, and to divide their prize with him and his band.

Their barges were laden with powder and bar-lead: this was a good thing for the Indians, who had nearly used all they had. They also contained flour and pork in barrels, each barge contained eight barrels of flour or pork. There were also liquors and refreshments for the officers of the fort. These liquors caused a great disorder in the Indian camp; they got intoxicated, and fought among themselves, reproaching one another. These reproaches caused, the next day, the death of two of their foolish young men.

The Indian squaws, who were acquainted with the customs of the Indians when inebriated, concealed all their offensive arms, for fear they might kill one another, and also fearing danger for their adopted prisoners, they placed them out of the sight of their husbands. The chiefs alone remained sober, and perceiving the disorder caused in their camp by liquor, they broke open the remainder of the barrels, and spilt the liquor, thus restoring harmony among them.

Pontiac, who did not lose sight of the two prisoners whom he made by his cunning, caused them to be taken to a distance, in the houses of the French settlers; that no harm might happen to them, he committed them to the charge of ten Indians of note.

May 31. Tuesday, May 31st; notwithstanding the precautions taken by Pontiac to prevent disorder among his people, some of them had filled kettles with brandy, and had gone into the woods to drink more at their ease during the night. Being tipsy, they began to quarrel with the young people, reproaching them with wanting the courage which ought to belong to a warrior. The latter, who were a little intoxicated, were so vexed, and their pride was so touched, that, to prove their courage, they imprudently came to seek their death at the foot of the fort, running as if they, (two in number,) wished to take it by storm. The sentinels placed above the northeast gate, seeing them coming at full speed, and mistrusting some bad design on their part, fired, and wounded them mortally, one received a ball through his head, it had entered by the right eye, and came out above the jaw; he had also small shots through his body. This caused him to fall on the spot. He was picked up by the soldiers of the garrison, and brought into the fort, where he was exposed to the sight of the public until he died of his wounds. He was then buried in a corner of the small bastion. The other Indian had two balls through his body, and went and died five arpents from the fort, where he was taken up by the other Indians, and buried near the camp. The Indians in


the camp being sick with the drink they had taken on the preceding day, rested all this day, and did not come and fire on the fort.

A Frenchman, who had remained in the fort to take care of a private house, and who did not like thus to be shut up, sought every means of going out, but did not know how to bring it about. As he knew that the commander was seeking for a trusty man to be sent to Niagara by land, to impart to the commander of that place what was taking place here, he resolved to appear to wish to serve the English in this, under pretence that he could speak a little English, hoping by this means to be able to go out. To effect this, he wished to employ the means of an English trader, to whom he mentioned all that the other French said amongst themselves. This trader having conversed with him several times, and seeing through him, knowing him for a knave, and a traitor to his country, would not present him to the commander. Lamare, (thus was the man called,) finding he could not succeed by means of this trader, resolved to employ the credit of a lady well-acquainted with the English commander. This lady, Mlle. des Rivieres, proposed him to the commander, and praised his talents, saying he could speak English. The commander wished to see him, and without much examination, depending on the lady's recommendation, he was received for the message which the commander wished to send. He was provided with all that could be necessary for his journey, and his days were reckoned from that time at six livres each, to be paid on his return; and on the evening he received letters for Niagara, and was taken across the river by soldiers. This rascal, instead of taking his way for Niagara, as he had promised the officers, remained in the east coast during the whole day, divulging all that was taking place in the fort; he then went to the south coast, slandering the English, and telling all manner of nonsense about the French who were in the fort. Several persons, perceiving that he was a villain, threatened to take him and carry him to the fort, to have him punished. Fearing they would make their threats good, he went towards Illinois, and has not returned hereabouts since that time.

The commander having learnt from the same lady that the Frenchman had repeatedly offered himself, and had endeavored to gain access by means of the traders, reprimanded the trader for not having mentioned it to him. The latter excused himself on his not being acquainted with the man, and his not being willing to present him without knowing him well, trusty and faithful men being needed for similar errands. As soon as the commander had learnt the villany of the Frenchman, he praised the conduct of the trader, and blamed the indiscreet zeal of the lady, who was, if we may so speak, looked upon with contempt. This is the reward she received for her labor.

June 1st. Wednesday, June 1st, about two in the morning, two soldiers and a trader, who had been taken and adopted by the Indians, escaped from the camp and entered the fort. They learnt from them that Owasson, great chief of the Saulteurs of


Saginaw, had arrived on the preceding day with two hundred men of his band; and on his arrival at Pontiac's camp, they had decided in a council to harass the fort no more until the passages were barred, in order that the English might receive no more assistance; and to effect this, the Ottawas, Hurons, and Poux, were to start that day and go about the lake and take all the English they would find. What confirmed the report of the escaped prisoners was the sight of about three hundred men who passed through the woods behind the fort, and who went down to join the Hurons and Poux, whose camp was half a league below the fort. They wished to go all together and cruise on the lake. The chiefs of each nation remained in the camp to give orders to the young people who remained with them, and to guard the environs of the fort, for fear the English might go about the coasts, a thing that the latter did not wish to do, knowing well that it was no place for them.

The same day the judge and commissioners made their third visit in the French houses to obtain food to last until the arrival of the barge, which was shortly expected.

June 2d. Thursday, 2d of June, it being Trinity-day, a few shots were fired by the Indians who were guarding the neighborhood of the fort. But this was so trifling that the English did not return them, knowing well it would be using powder to no purpose. During the night, an English trader's assistant who was among the Ottawas, ran away quite naked, and came to the fort, bringing a letter sent by Mr. Campbell, a prisoner in the camp, to Mr. Gladwin. This letter had been found by the Hurons among the spoils of the conductors of the barges. These brought it to Pontiac, who desired Mr. Campbell to read it, and M. La Butte, his interpreter, to explain it. Mr. Campbell, to send this letter to Mr. Gladwin, assisted the prisoner in his escape. The letter was from an officer of Niagara to his friend, commander at Miami. He mentioned in it the conclusion of peace, with every circumstance. This caused in the evening a concert of instruments as a mark of joy for the good news.

June 3d. Friday, June 3d, the Indians were quiet all the day, with the exception of the guard around the fort, who behaved as usual. The judge was ordered by the commander to assemble all the French who were in the fort, that he might read the letter, which he had received on the day preceding by the prisoner. This letter had been translated into French by a trader who spoke French well. It stated that peace was concluded between England and France, and that by an agreement made between the two powers, Canada and Illinois remained in the power of the English.

June 4th. Saturday, June 4th. The Indians behaved on this day as they had done on the preceding day. About four there were heard death-cries from the Indians, who were returning from the lake by land on the other side of the river. They did not exactly know the meaning of those cries, but suspected that the Indians had made some prize on the lakes.

June 5th. Sunday, 5th of June, the Indians fired a few shots at the fort, to let the


besieged know they had not all gone to the lake, and that they had not given up their foolish enterprise. Their shots were so few that the English paid no attention to them.

About two in the afternoon, there were heard, as on the preceding day, death-cries on the other side of the river. These cries were uttered by Indians. Several persons went on the ramparts to find out what those cries meant. They saw a number of Indians on shore, some on foot, others on horseback, making saw-saw-quas and cries of joy. Other Indians were bringing two barges laden with merchandise, with traders that they had taken. They were going up the river on the other side. The crew of the barge, hoping to make them leave their prize, sent them several shots, but they were fired too high or too low. The Indians laughed at this, and continued their way to Pontiac's camp with their prizes.

June 6th. Monday, June 6th, the weather being gloomy, and even a little rainy, the Indians merely watched in the neighborhood of the fort, without firing a shot. Others went to the settlers to ask for provisions, which they gave willingly. This did not prevent the Indians doing them some damage all the time, killing sometimes their oxen, cows, hogs, destroying their wheat and coming through it, as they did not dare to walk on the highway on account of the large barge from which shots came whenever they were in sight.

June 7th. Tuesday, June 7th, the Indians, who had not fired for two or three days, becoming weary of not using gunpowder, came about ten in the morning to fire on the fort, and continued this until about seven in the evening; as they had neither barn nor any other building to conceal them, they fired from behind the hillock, and often from the wood, a distance of ten arpents from the fort; besides, this place was overlooked by the hillock, so that their shot passed above the fort. Other Indians were farther off, concealed by the enclosure of the farms, or in barns at a distance, often out of reach of the shots of the sentinels, as they were afraid of the cannons which were on the three principal sides of the fort. About seven they went away, as well satisfied as when they commenced.

June 8th. Wednesday, June 8th. The Indians came about eight in the morning; it appeared from their preparations that they intended to fire a long time, but a small rain made them change their minds, and obliged them to retire to their camp. The guard remained, according to their custom, to prevent any one going in, or coming from the fort. However, some one was always going or coming. Those being liked by the Indians were not mistrusted.

In the afternoon, the officers were told by an inhabitant of the fort, that the Indians intended to storm it the next night, as the weather was bad. The officers, who were getting acquainted with the ways of the Indians, answered that they were ready for them, thinking that the intended enterprise would end as had already been the case. But as prudence is the mother of safety, they were on their guard during the


whole night, with their soldiers, to avoid being surprised; but the night elapsed quietly. At sunset there were heard, in the direction of the Huron village, three death-cries, the meaning of which was unknown.

June 9th. Thursday, June 9th. Second Trinity-day, the Indians, who only acted by fits, were quiet all day. About three in the afternoon, the Indians uttered, on the other side of the river, thirteen death-cries; this excited the curiosity of many English and French people, who got upon the palisades of the fort to find out the meaning of those cries. They perceived a great number of Indians on foot and horseback, running and uttering cries of joy, and repeating their death-cries in firing on the large barge which was before the fort. Other Indians were on the water along the shore with three barges, and prisoners taken on the lake. As they were passing opposite the large barge, the latter sent them five cannon-shots, with ball and grape-shot. These wounded several of the Indians, without being able to prevent their pursuing their way. In the evening of the same day, they learnt from a Frenchman that the remainder of the band of Sekakos, chief of the Saulteurs of the river a la Tranche, arrived during the preceding night, forty-five in number. The number of the Indians, including this last band, was eight hundred and fifty in the camp and on the lake. They belonged to different nations, and were governed by different chiefs. Two hundred and fifty Ottawas, commanded by Pontiac; one hundred and fifty Poux by Minivoa; fifty Hurons by Takug; two hundred and fifty Saulteurs by Owasson; and one hundred and seventy other Saulteurs commanded by Sekos. All were under the authority of Pontiac, their great chief, and quite ready for mischief.

June 10th. Friday, June 10th. The Indians, who had remained in the camp, having heard on the preceding day from a Huron hunter just returned from the woods behind Little Sandusky lake, that the officer who had escaped with his thirty-five men was with them in Sandusky islands; Pontiac said they must be taken, to prevent their carrying the news to Niagara. He sent fifty men (these passed behind the fort,) to mention it to the three hundred who had been sent on the first day of this month. Fortunately, before their departure, the officer and party had left the islands, and taken his way to Niagara on the south side of the lake.

The Poux of St. Joseph had attacked the English and taken the fort, afterwards killed a part of the garrison, and made prisoners of the remainder. They gave the fort to the French who had settled there. They came with their prisoners, seven in number, to join the Poux at Detroit, and arrived at their village during the preceding night. Having heard that the English had two prisoners of their nation in the fort, they came about four in the afternoon, with one M. Gammelin, to treat with the commander of the fort, and exchange the commander of St. Joseph for the two Indians who were in the fort. This did not suit the commander, who wished the Poux to give them seven persons for the two Indians. They would not agree to this, and went away, putting off the conclusion of their exchange to the next day.


June 11th. Saturday, June 11th. As there still remained in the suburbs a house and workshop which the fire had not reached, on account of their being situated at a little distance from the other buildings; these places served as retreats for the Indians. An officer and twenty men were sent to burn them and clear the plain. As they returned from this expedition, the officer and his people emptied and freed the boats and barges which were ashore before the fort, and rendered them fit for service, as they might be needed in case the barge which had been sent to Niagara did not return, and the garrison were obliged to leave the fort. In such a case, these crafts and the large barge might have been used to transport them to Niagara. The Indians did not fire this day.

This day Mr. Laselle, junior, arrived from Montreal, with two canoes full of goods and liquors, which he took to Widow Gurvain's house, to conceal them from the Indians; but he was betrayed. The Poux came and asked him for some, threatening to plunder his goods, if he did not grant their demands. To get rid of them, he gave two barrels of wine. Pontiac, who learnt his arrival almost as soon as the Poux, and who heard that these had obtained liquor, fearing not to have his share, he and his chiefs crossed the river, went to Laselle, made him go with his liquor to M. Jacques Compan's, near the camp. His goods were taken safely to Mr. Labadie, uncle to Mr. Laselle. Pontiac, on making Mr. Laselle change his quarters, gave him to understand that in the vicinity of his camp he should not be troubled for drink, on the part of his people. However, to purchase quietness, he gave them five barrels, and the Indians did not trouble him.

The Poux, who on the preceding day had come to exchange prisoners, came this day about four, but to no purpose, as they could not bring the exchange to a conclusion.

June 12th. Sunday, June 12th. This day passed quietly on both sides. About ten in the forenoon, Mr. Lavallיe arrived at Widow Gurvain's with canoes laden with wines and goods. He said that abundance reigned at Montreal, goods and provisions being very cheap. About three in the afternoon, the guardians of the barge brought on shore several of the bodies of those who had been massacred by the Indians on the preceding day. They were buried on the shore opposite the fort.

June 13th. Monday, June 13th. The weather being rainy, nothing was done on either side.

June 14th. Tuesday, June 14th. This day resembled the preceding, until four in the afternoon, when the Indians fired a few shots, which were not noticed by the English. On this day the Indians went to Mr. Lavallיe's to obtain drink, which he refused to give. The Indians, enraged against him, plundered his liquors, goods, and even his provisions, which he had brought for his return, thinking he could purchase them at a cheaper rate in Montreal than here.

June 15th. Wednesday, June 15th. The Indians, who are generally careless of


things when they obtain them without trouble, having consumed all the provisions they had taken in the barges of the convoy they had defeated, were obliged to have recourse to the settlers until they could obtain more provisions. Besides receiving food from the settlers, they killed their cattle. About ten in the forenoon, the Poux came for the third time to exchange prisoners, and offered the commander of St. Joseph for one of the Indian prisoners who were in the fort. They were deceived in their exchange; they wanted one called Large Ears, who was much respected among them; but they received, instead of him, one No-kan-ong, who passed among them for a great rogue. But No-kan-ong was the cause of this trick: he sent word to the commander not to give the Poux the one they wanted, but to give him in place of the other; because the Poux did not care for him, and as the other enjoyed much consideration among the tribes, by keeping him, they would obtain from the Poux in exchange all the other prisoners. Although the advice came from an Indian, it was followed, and Nokanong was given in exchange, and Large Ears kept, that other prisoners might be obtained for him. The Poux went away displeased and disappointed.

June 16th. Thursday, June 16th. The Indians were very quiet all this day. It is usual, in places besieged and blockaded, to observe silence, and not on any account to ring the bells of the churches, in order that the enemy might not know the time that people go to church. The bell of the French church of the place had not been rung since the commencement of the siege. The commander, having inquired of the curate why the bell was not rung, permitted it to be rung; and it commenced its function by ringing the Angelus.

About three in the afternoon, the chiefs of the good band of Hurons, who, since Father Potier, in order to stop them, had denied the sacraments, had not annoyed the English, came and asked for an interview. They entered the fort, and asked the commander for peace, making many excuses about what they had done. The commander heard them, and gave them a flag, which they accepted as a sign of union. They then went home.

June 17th. Friday, June 17th. Nothing was done on either side, although in the council, which had taken place on the seventeenth day of the preceding month, it had been decided to suffer no communication between the inhabitants of the fort. Some, however, were favored and allowed egress and ingress when they wished to attend to their affairs. Through one of the persons, the commander learnt that the barge was in the lake, at the mouth of the river, having been seen by one Repus, while he was hunting in that neighborhood. The commander, on the departure of the barge, had told the one who had charge of it, that as soon as its approach was known to the fort several cannon-shots should be fired, that the crew might know that the English were still possessed of the fort. The signal was therefore ordered to be fired, consisting of two cannon-shots at sunset, that


the barge might know the way was clear, and the commander master of the fort and its neighborhood.

June 18th. Saturday, June 18th, a resident of the east coast opposite the fort, crossed the river about two in the morning, to give the commander positive information about the barge. Whereupon, the commander ordered that the cannon placed upon the side of the southeast gate should be fired twice, at intervals; this was done about five in the morning. On the same day, Father du Jonais, a Jesuit missionary of the Ottawas of Michilimackinac, arrived with seven Indians of that tribe, and eight Saulteurs from the same place, commanded by one Kinochamek, son of the principal chief of those tribes. They brought the news of the defeat of the English of that post by the Saulteurs, on the 2d day of this month. The Father Jesuit went and took his abode with his brother, the missionary of the Hurons.

June 19th. Sunday, June 19th, the fort was not attacked. The arrival of the son of the great chief caused a truce between the English and Indians. He pitched his tent half a league above Pontiac's camp, in a meadow one league above the fort. The Detroit Indians went to him to greet him on the part of their chiefs; they met with a cold reception, and were told that about noon he and his people would go to Pontiac and hold a council. Upon this, Pontiac ordered the Indians of every tribe to remain on their mats all the day, to listen to the words sent by the chief of the Saulteurs through his son. While the Indians were preparing for the council, there came to the village of the Hurons, about ten, two canoes containing some of the Shawanous Indians and some Loups (Lenape Indians) from Belle Riviere, who came to see what was going on. On their arrival they learnt that Nouchkamek was come, and also the place of his camp. They did not land, but went to him to hold a council on the present occurrences. Two or three French settlers were called to give information on all that had taken place since the first attack of the fort by the Indians, as also on all that Pontiac had done. After this they were sent home. About two P. M., Kenon-chamek, followed by his people, by the Shawanous and Lenapes, came to Pontiac's camp to hold a council according to the message he had sent. On his arrival at the camp, all the chiefs assembled, and formed according to the custom a circle, observing silence. When every one was seated, Kenouchamek arose, and thus began in the name of his father, addressing his speech to Pontiac:

"While at home, brothers, we were told that you made war in a manner very different from ours. We also undertook to expel the English from our lands, and we accomplished our enterprise, but without drinking their blood. Instead of taking them as you do, we seized them while they were playing at ball, and knew nothing of our designs. Our brothers the French even knew nothing of them. The English, on our


attacking them, surrendered themselves prisoners, and were by us sent to their father at Montreal, without our injuring them. The soldiers wished to defend their chiefs: we slew them, but only during the action. No injury was done by us to the French as by you; on the contrary, we entrusted them with our prizes. But you! You have made prisoners on the lake and river; and when they were brought to your camp, you murdered them, drank their blood, and ate their flesh. Is the flesh of men fit for food? You should eat only the flesh of deer, and other animals placed on the earth by the master of life. Besides, while you were waging war against the English, you were injuring the French by killing their cattle and eating their provisions; and when they refused to supply you, you ordered your people to plunder their property. Our conduct has been very different; we did not depend on the French for our provisions. We took care when we formed the design of expelling the English, to collect provisions for ourselves, our wives and children. You should have done the same. You should not have exposed yourself as you have to the reproaches of our great father the king of France, when he comes. You expect him, say you; so do we. He will be pleased with us, but not with you."

Pontiac, at this discourse, was like a child surprised in a fault, who, having no excuse to give, knows not what to say. When Kinouchamek had finished speaking, the chief of the Chats (Shawnees) commenced thus in the name of his tribe and Lenapes:

"Brothers, we also expelled the English, because we were ordered to do so by the master of life, through our brother the Lenape. But the master of life forbade our injuring the French, which you have done. Is that done in accordance with the message and wampum-belts we have sent you. Inquire of our brothers the Lenapes about the message which they received from the master of life. It is very well to slay during the combat, but not when it is over, and you have made prisoners. You should not eat the flesh of men. You should not drink their blood. As you are French like ourselves, inquire of our brothers the French if, after they have been to war, made prisoners, and brought them home, they kill them? They do not. They keep them, and give them in exchange for their people, taken prisoners by their enemies. We see your motives for acting in this manner towards our brothers the French. You did not commence this war in the right way, and are vexed not to have the English garrison in your power, and wish our brothers the French to feel your anger. We intended to come and assist you, but we will not do it, for you will accuse us with all the wrongs done by you and your people to our brothers the French, and we do not wish for any difficulties with our Great Father."

During this council, and for some time after it, not a word was uttered by Pontiac, who was conscious of being in the wrong; so that Kenouchamek, the Chats, and Lenapes went away without being answered. They returned to their camp to take repose.


About three in the afternoon, news was brought of the defeat of the English at Misamies (Miami) and Vouilla ( ) by the Indians of those places.

About seven in the evening, they heard that a large party of * * * * * * * gone down to Turkey Island, opposite the place where the barge had anchored. The crew, seeing many people in the island, fearing lest some attempt might be made to take it, raised the anchor, and withdrew to *****, to wait for a favorable wind to ascend the river without risk.

June 20th. Monday, June 20th. About ten in the morning, the Indians came and fired several shots at the fort, on the northeast side. After this, the officers perceived the Indians coming fearlessly along the highway. To stop this boldness, they made a port-hole on that side, that a cannon might fire towards the place where the suburb was, and thus stop the Indians. About four, news was brought in the fort that the fort of the Presque Isle (Peninsula) and riviere aux Bœufs (formerly built by the French and since three years in the possession of the English) had been taken by the Indians.

Marginal note. — Departure of Father du Jonais; council between him and Pontiac for the liberty of the English.

June 21st. Tuesday, June 21st. Daybreak, a great movement was observed on the part of the Indians, who passed back and forth behind the fort, uttering cries, as if they were going about some enterprise. This caused the English to examine them, and keep on their guard during the whole day. They tried to find out the reason of all this. They learnt it during the following night from Mr. Baby, who came about two in the morning, and told the commander that several of the inhabitants of the south coast, on the banks of the river, had mentioned to him their having seen the barge, which appeared well-laden and full of people. Of this the Indians had received the earliest and fullest information, which had caused their motions. Upon this recital of Mr. Baby, the commander again ordered that two shots should be fired towards the southwest, as a signal for the barge.

Marginal note. — Answer to the preceding council.

June 22d. Wednesday, June 22d. The Indians, who, as I have mentioned it above, had heard of the approach of the barge, did not come near the fort. The garrison improved this time in destroying the enclosures and cutting down the fruit-trees, and removing from the neighborhood of the fort every thing that might serve to shelter even one single Indian. In the course of the day, the capture of the Presque Isle was confirmed, as the Indians were seen returning from this expedition. They were very numerous, and brought by land their prisoners, in the number of which were the commander of that fort and a woman: these two were given to the Hurons.

About three, the commander was apprised of the cargo of the barge, and the number of people it contained. At four, the commissary and judge made their fourth visit to the houses to obtain provisions.


Marginal note. — Departure of Kenouchamek for Michilimackinac.

June 23d. Thursday, June 23d. The Indians did not come to fire at the fort, being engaged in their project of taking the barge, which was at the head of the lake. A great number of them passed behind the fort very early in the morning. They went to join those who had left two days before. They all took a station on Turkey Island, which forms a little strait, the river being very narrow at that place. The Indians in the island made an intrenchment with trunks of trees which they cut down and laid on the bank, towards the place where the barge was to pass. They also built a bank with earth and bush; so that, if they were discovered, they might have nothing to fear from the cannon-shot. Thus sheltered, they watched the passing of the barge. About six in the morning, the wind appearing favorable to go up the river, the crew of the barge wished to improve it, and raised the anchor. When opposite the island, the wind having gone down, they were obliged to cast anchor, as they knew nothing of the trap laid for them. The Indians deferred their attack until night. The crew, however, who knew well that they could not arrive at the fort without being attacked, kept a good watch, determined to sell their lives dearly. The Indians in their intrenchments, who, since the time the barge had anchored opposite them, had not stopt examining it, perceiving only twelve or fifteen men, thought they might attack it without risk. It contained, however, seventy-two men; the commander having during the day concealed sixty of them in the hold, thinking that the Indians, who were always wandering about those parts, seeing only twelve men, would attempt to capture the barge: this proved to be the case. Between eight and nine in the evening, the Indians entered their canoes, to surround the barge and take it by storm. A sentinel, watching on the quarter-deck, perceived them at a distance, rowing slowly, for fear of being heard. He gave notice of it to the captain of the barge, who brought, without noise, all his people on deck, and placed them around behind the gunwale with arms in their hands; the cannons were loaded in silence; they were told to await the signal, which was to be a stroke with the hammer on the * * *. They suffered the canoes to come within gun-shot. The Indians, pleased with the silence which reigned in the barge, believed it contained only twelve men; but they were soon undeceived; for, when they were within gun-shot, the signal was made, and the discharge of the cannon and musketry took place in such good order, that the Indians were glad to return to their intrenchments: they went back more quickly than they had come. They had fifteen men killed, and the same number wounded. They did not again attempt to approach the barge, but fired at it during the whole night, and wounded two of the crew. There being no wind, the next day the barge returned to the lake, to await a better wind.

June 24th. Friday, June 24th, the fort was pretty quiet the whole day. The Indians were engaged in their design of taking the barge, and forgot the fort for some time. There remained but a few loiterers, two of whom came near enough to be seen.


Twenty men and one officer were sent out to take them. The Indians seeing them, and thinking they were sent for, fired their guns and ran away, and the English came back without effecting any thing.

June 25th. Saturday, June 25th, the weather was unsettled, and nothing was done on either side.

June 26th. Sunday, June 26th, several soldiers who had, as was the custom, been watching on the bastion during the night, mentioned to the commander that they had seen two Indians enter a house near the fort at a distance of eight arpents. Whereupon, at four in the morning, the commander ordered Captain Hopkins and twenty-four men of his company to invest that house and take them prisoners. When the soldiers arrived at the house, they only found the person who had charge of it. They searched the house, thinking that the Indians might be concealed. They only found two sows with young. They took them and brought them to the fort. This prize was better than the one they hoped to seize. The same day, about ten, a Mr. * * * * *, servants who had tied their master's horses one arpent from the fort, were seen at a distance by two Indians. These came stealthily through the grass, which was very tall, cut the cords, and took away the two horses, which belonged to two officers.

June 27th. Monday, June 27th, the Indians, according to their custom, wandered around the fort during the whole day, but without firing. Mr. Gammulin, who, since Mr. Campbell and M'Dougall were prisoners in Pontiac's camp, had paid them a visit every other day, and sometimes every day, returned this day about three, and brought to the commander a letter which Pontiac had dictated, and Mr. Campbell had written. This letter required the commander and his people to leave the fort immediately, as Pontiac expected, within ten days, Kenouchamek, high chief of the Saulteurs, with eight hundred of his tribe, for whom he could not be answerable. That on their arrival they would take the fort by storm. The commander replied that he was ready for them and for Kin, and that he cared not for them. This answer did not please Pontiac nor his Indians, but this gave no concern to the English.

About eight in the evening they learnt indirectly that the barge had raised the anchor and was ascending the river.

June 28th. Tuesday, June 28th, the party of Indians who had gone down the river to take the barge, having fortunately failed in their enterprise, came back, and as they passed the fort, fired a salute, which hurt nobody. The Hurons arrived at their village. About four in the afternoon, news was brought that the barge had weighed anchor; this was the case. The wind having turned to the S. W., they improved the opportunity, and came as far as the river Rouge, one league below the fort. The wind then failing, they cast anchor a little below. The barge was seen from the fort. About seven, two cannon-shots were fired from the fort, but the barge did not reply. This gave room to think that the Indians had taken it in a second


attempt. This was said openly in the fort by the judge. The officers nevertheless performed a concert of instruments facing the place where it was anchored.

June 29th. Wednesday, June 29th, it being St. Peter's-day, the Indians did not fire at the fort; part of them were sleeping. Others went to the houses of the settlers to make up for their useless trouble. At * * * * in the afternoon they heard behind the fort about twenty death-cries; these came from the Indians who were returning from the capture of the fort of Presque Isle. During the whole of this day the barge kept its station, there being no wind.

June 30th. Thursday, June 30th. The Indians were quiet all this day, expecting, as they said, a reinforcement. About six in the morning they were heard uttering their death-cries and several cries of joy; but the meaning of those cries was unknown. The wind arising from the S. W., the crew of the barge weighed anchor to improve it. Passing before the Huron village, they saw the Indians with their arms crossed upon their breasts, wrapped in their blankets, at the doors of their cabins. The barge sent them a few grape-shot and balls; these wounded a few of them, and made them enter their cabins. Some of them took their guns and fired at the barge until it arrived before the fort, which it reached without accident at four P.M. The barge contained the thirty-five men and the officer who fled towards Sandusky, as I said above. This officer landed and brought letters to the commander. These letters mentioned the conclusion of peace. Canada was to belong to the English. All the expenses incurred in Canada since the commencement of the war, were to be paid by his Britannic Majesty.

July 1st. Friday, July 1st. The Indians, who continued wandering in the vicinity of the fort and settlement, having frightened the cattle, one herd came to the fort; it consisted of three oxen, three cows, and two calves, and belonged to Mr. Curllerier. Mr. St. Martin, the interpreter of the Hurons, who, since the commencement * * * * had abandoned his house, which was built at a distance of six arpents from the fort, in a southwesterly direction, because the Indians concealed themselves behind it to ca * * * * caused the English to fire on it, and he did not feel secure on the part of the English or Indians; he had gone to Father Potier's, there to remain until the end of the war; but having had, on the preceding day, a conversation with a Huron, on whom he could depend, he learnt from him that the Indians wished the French to take arms against the English, and having not wished to do so, came and asked leave to withdraw into the fort; his request was granted. He came with his mother, his mother-in-law, and all his * * * * he remained one day with Mr. La Butte, and went afterwards to Mr. Bellastres.

July 2d. Saturday, July 2d. Mr. M'Dougal, who had left the fort in company with Mr. Campbell, and who had been detained prisoner, escaped with three other English prisoners. They entered the fort about three in the morning. As they were on the point of leaving, they made their endeavors to bring Mr. Campbell with them,


but in vain. He wished much to follow them, but being very short-sighted, he feared that in attempting to escape he might fall in with another party of Indians, and come to an untimely end, and he had no wish to die before his time.

At five in the morning, an officer and twenty soldiers went out to destroy the inclosure of Mr. St. Martin's farm, and also to cut down the wheat which concealed the Indians. These latter, seeing that their hiding places were being destroyed, came in a determinate manner to attack the English, who re-entered the fort more quickly than they had left it. The Indians fired at the fort during the whole day, without causing any injury. The garrison kept good watch during the whole day, and placed four sentinels on platforms outside the fort, on the brow of the hill behind it. Since this time, four sentinels were placed on the platform day and night. The garrison and new-comers unloaded the barge, and conveyed the cargo to the storehouse.

About seven, P. M., it was reported in the fort, that the Indians had called on all the settlers, and brought to their camp all the old men and heads of families, to be present at a council they were to hold, in order to oblige the French to take arms against the English. They learnt during the night, that the Indians, when the council mentioned above was over, had sent the heads of families and old men uninjured.

* * * * vexed at the fortunate arrival of the barge, and that in spite of his precautions and those of his people, the provisions and ammunition had reached the English, resolved to cause the settlers to take up arms, and to accomplish this he invited the old men and heads of families to come to the camp on business which concerned them. When they had all arrived, Pontiac began to speak, according to custom, addressing himself to all the French and * * * * a war-belt in the middle of the council. Brothers, said he, I am growing weary of seeing the vermin on our lands: such I suppose is also the case with you. I think you wish for their expulsion as much as I do. We ought to try to remove these troublesome people. I have already told you, and I repeat that I commenced this war on your account as much as on ours, and that I knew what I was doing * * * * I know, I say, what I am about, and during the present year, however numerous they may be, they shall be expelled Canada. The master of life commands it, and we must do his bidding. Should you, who know him better than we do, try to appease his will? Hitherto I have said nothing, hoping you would offer no interruption to our designs. I have not asked you to join, because I did not know you would assist them against us. You will probably say that you are not on their side. That I know, but are you doing nothing against us when you tell them all that we do, and all that we say? * * * * now you have a choice to make; you must be French, as we are, or English like them. If you are French, accept this belt for yourselves or your young people, that they may join us. If you are English, we declare war against you. This would be a sad alternative for us, you being, as well as we, the children of our Great Father. It would grieve us to


wage war against our brothers on account of such dogs. It would give us great concern to fall on you, as we are all French. If we should do it, we should no longer be so. The interests we defend are those of our fathers, yours and our own. Give us an answer, brothers, we listen to you; look at this belt, which is intended for you or your young people.

One of the most respected among the French, who had mistrusted Pontiac's design, and had taken with him in the council the copy of the capitulation of Montreal and Detroit, arose, and thus spake in the name of all the others, holding in his hand that copy, and addressing the Indians: — My brothers, your wishes are known to us; when you declared war against the English, we foresaw that you would desire us to join with you against them. We do not for one moment hesitate in following you, but you must in the first place loosen the bonds which our father and the father of the English have placed upon our arms. These bonds prevent our taking your belt. Do you think, brothers, that we do not grieve in seeing you take our interests, without being able to assist you? Our grief is great. Do you not recollect that which we told you in our last council held on this subject? The king of France, in giving the lands to the king of England, forbade our fighting against his children, and ordered us to consider them as our brothers, and the king of England as our father. You may think that we say this through ill-will; not so. Our common father has acquainted us with his will, by sending us this his writing. Pie commands us to remain on our mats until his arrival, because he wishes himself to unbind us. Without considering all this, you say that if we do not take your belt, you will make war against us. Our father has forbidden our fighting, when our brothers * * * * war. Although you call us English, we shall not fight against you; but French as we are * * * * always been. We feel surprised, brothers, you have * * * * when our father left the place, what did you promise him? * * * * us our wives and children, and that you would attend to our welfare. What injury have we done you? Is it on account of * * * * Did you not promise our father that you would wait for him? Have you done so? You say you are fighting for him; wait for him as * * * * and when he comes, he will unbind us; we will join you, and all will do his will. Reply in your turn, my brothers.

Pontiac, who was impelled by a band of French volunteers, who, having no fixed place of residence, had raised the mask and cared for nothing, replied they should do as he did, and if the old men did not, the young people should.

The French then, closely pressed by Pontiac, asked for one day's delay, at the end of which they would all come and give him an answer. One of the chiefs of the volunteers, thinking himself perfectly secure if he joined Pontiac, rose from his seat, and taking up the belt, said, in addressing the Indians: Brothers, I and my young people have broken our bonds and accept your belt. We are ready to follow you. We will go and seek our young people to join us. We shall find some. We shall soon be in possession of the fort and all it contains. Such a mean speech, made by people


who were void of courage and honor, vexed all the old men who had been called to the council. After having asked one day to consider on the matter, they asked Pontiac's leave to withdraw. Having shaken hands with all the chiefs, each Frenchman went home, displeased with having been witness to such a mean action, which could not fail sooner or later to bring blame on all the French. Those who had accepted the belt remained in the camp, well aware that after the conduct of which they had been guilty, no one would receive them. This council commenced at * * * * and ended at eight; so that the day being too far gone to * * * * other Indians.

July 3d. * * * * July 3d. The Indians employed all this day in a feast * * * * to treat their new warriors. The commander, who had learned in the morning what had taken place on the preceding day, ordered the judge to demand the axes and picks of all the French who were in the fort, and to * * * * those who had arms, and those who had none * * * * of all to serve in case of need. About two in the * * * * twenty men of the garrison to take down a fence * * * * a fruit-garden. The trees were cut down, and the posts of the fence taken up and burnt with the trees, and they cleared the ground, * * * * belonged to Mr. Caesar Bourgeois of the fort. * * * * day. The judge was ordered by the commander to assemble all the French who were in the fort before the door of the church, to read to them an account of the conclusion of peace. This being done, an instrumental concert took place, and lasted one hour.

An inhabitant of the fort, who unfortunately had a son in the number of the cabalists, having by his remonstrances convinced his son of his fault, and that of his friends, the son left the troop and took with him the belt which he gave to his father, that he might return it to Pontiac. The father went early in the morning to Pontiac, who had a great regard for him, and thus addressed him. You are a chief, and I have hitherto known you as a sensible man; you appear no longer so, when you believe these young people; in a short time, instead of assisting you they will betray you, and will perhaps give you up to the English. You, who command so many men, suffer yourself to be commanded by people who have no sense, and who, instead of assisting you in taking the fort, will be the first to run away * * * * you * * * * who have always despised a man who placed himself * * * * saying that he was a bad fellow; and now * * * * have you lost your wits? Why place * * * * like you, young people who have no sense * * * * and come and cry to get off from what they have promised * * * * subject with you because perhaps they will kill you * * * * are men, and that you need not lose * * * * make use of these young people. What obligations will be due to you * * * * come when he knows that you have compelled the * * * * to take arms * * * * will say to you. You have not driven away the English, the French done that but you have merely * * * * take no notice of you, thus, Pontiac believe me, take back your belt, sent by my son, and think well of what I have told you.

Pontiac, who, though an Indian, did not lack wit * * * * as well as his Ottawas


* * * * attentively what the Frenchman had told him, * * * * are right, my brother. I thank you for your advice; and taking the belt, they parted, one to go to the camp, and the other to return home * * * * to trouble the French no longer about taking up arms. The Saulteurs, Poux, and the wicked band of Hurons, threatened, however, several times the French with war, as I shall mention hereafter.

The Hurons of the wicked band, who were never of any service to the French or English, knowing that Pontiac, contenting himself with the volunteers, had determined not to trouble the French any more about joining him, went with the Poux and Saulteurs to endeavor to oblige the French to join with them, threatening them with war, and taking away their young people in spite of their parents. This caused a great commotion among the French, as they wished to remain neutral. But fearing lest the Indians might effect their threats, they took arms among themselves, to guard the roads for fear of a surprise. Those Indians, seeing the French on the watch, did not dare attack them, but revenged themselves on the stray cattle. Mr. Peter Bיaume, whose farm is opposite the fort, across the river, fearing that the storm might fall upon him, came and asked leave to withdraw into the fort, which was granted.

* * * * Bיaume, who, during the preceding night, had obtained leave to come to the fort with all his family, crossed the river at dawn * * * * furniture, luggage, and animals, and took up his quarters in a house of Mr. Dequindre's, which was then vacant. The commander * * * * the Indians with some volunteers had opened * * * * night, behind Mr. Baby's house, at a distance of * * * * arpents from the fort, in a north westerly direction; on this report the commander * * * * to fill the nocturnal work of the Indians * * * *. Mr. Hay, an officer in the royal American troops, went out * * * * ty men to go and reconnoitre * * * * the commander's orders. The party who were not * * * * the Indians were concealed, advanced speedily * * * * they had just come to the place * * * * discovered and attacked them without wounding them * * * * face animated his people by his example * * * * to the enemy, and fell on them with his people. The fire * * * * victory balanced. The commander, hearing the "report of muskets upon the rampart * * * * the action, and fearing the approach of a larger number of Indians * * * * friends and consequently his party would be too * * * * hold sent immediately relief to Mr. Hay. Mr. Hopkins, at the head of forty soldiers, and some Frenchmen of the fort, went at full speed. The Indians held * * * * first because they were intrenched; but when the succor arrived, they found themselves too few. The volunteers were the first to decamp. The Indians contended some time with the English for the possession of the place. Mr. Hopkins, seeing the obstinacy of the Indians, made a circuit to take the Indians in flank, while his friends attacked them in front. This manoeuvre succeeded. The Indians abandoned their retreat. The English pursued


them, and killed two of their number; one of them was scalped by an English soldier who had been a prisoner among the Indians. One soldier was slightly wounded in the head by the blow from the butt-end of a gun, which he had received from one of the Indians who was afterwards killed; as this soldier had killed him, he took all his silver ornaments to pay himself for his wound. After the Indians were put to flight, their trench was filled up, and all the neighboring fences burned. The expedition being over, the troops re-entered the fort with the French. The commander called these on the military square to thank them for having assisted his soldiers, inquired if all the French were provided with arms, and ordered some to be given to those who had none; he also ordered those which had arms that wanted repairing, to carry them to the royal stores, to have them repaired at the king's expense, and that he wished to give them the choice of going out as volunteers, when they thought proper, or to select an officer to command them in case of need. The French chose Mr. Sterling for their commander, and altogether went with an officer * * * * the judge who told him of the choice which the militia had made of him for their commander, and at the same time * * * * captain of the militia. That worthy man thanked * * * * their choice, and told them that he hoped when opportunity * * * * room to be displeased with their choice. Every one * * * * pleased and determined to do his duty * * * * under such a chief.

About four in the afternoon, an officer who had * * * * from Sandusky, and taken prisoner by the Indians * * * * ran away as fast as he could, from a French house in which his wife * * * * placed him to conceal him. They were told by him, that the Indian who had been killed and scalped was a chief of the Saulteurs and nephew of * * * * chief of the Saulteurs of Saginaw, and that this Owassa (?) having learnt that his nephew was slain, went * * * * whom he abused and asked him for Mr. Campbell. You like those bad people so well, said he, that you take care of them: I will have him now, give him to me. Pontiac suffered Owassa to take Mr. Campbell to his camp, where he was stripped by his young people, and then killed with war-clubs. When he was killed, they threw him into the river, and the body floated as far * * * * where the French had brought him when he left the fort, before Mr. Cuillerie's house, where he was buried.

About six in the evening, powder and balls were given, by Mr. Sterling, to the French militia.

July 5th. Tuesday, July 5th. The Indians did not trouble the fort; they went to the settlers, and took all the axes and picks which they could catch, and carried them to some blacksmiths, to have them mended. These refused to work for them, saying their forger was in the fort. On this day, the chief of the volunteers who had joined the Indians undertook to engage in his party the children of the settlers, to aid him in taking or burning one of the barges. To effect this, he went to those houses where he knew there were young people, to induce them to join him; but he could


not succeed; and resolved on escaping to Illinois, as some of the settlers threatened to give him up to the commander, who would not have spared him, but rewarded him according to his deserts.

July 6th. Wednesday, July 6th. The Indians, who for some days had formed the design of ****** the large barge, which annoyed them on the highway and prevented their approaching the fort in that direction, ****** how to bring it about, they went to several of the French to find out the way they could manage it. The settlers told them they did not know, when the Indians went away.

* * * * July. The Indians did not trouble the fort. ***** gave them some occupation in their camp, in the following manner: ***** in the morning, a light southwest breeze sprung up; this appeared ***** the English in the design they had formed to go and pay a visit ******* his camp with the large barge. As they were getting ready to start, the wind went down, and anchor was cast, to wait for a favorable breeze, which was not long. * * * eleven o'clock, it having increased, they weighed anchor for a second time, and went up the river, opposite Pontiac's camp, where they stopped, and saluted it with balls and grenades, without sparing ***** neither he nor his people expected such a visit, left the shore and their goods, which were damaged by the balls and bombs. This diversion lasted from noon *****. The barge had cast anchor until four, when she returned to her station. During all this, not one Indian was wounded.

While one part of the English were thus destroying Pontiac's camp, the Poux came, with Mr. Gammulin, to sue for peace. It was granted them, on condition that they should remain neutral and return all the prisoners. They promised, but did not keep their word.

On this day, the two bands of Hurons held a council about coming to the fort and making peace with the commander. Marginal note partly destroyed — ****** Indians, having seen that ******** in the camp, before Mr. * * * * their prisoners escaping * * * * Mr. Marsac's.

July 8th. Friday, July 8th. The commander, who intended to send the barge back to Niagara, ordered that, in order to procure ballast, they should demolish an old building, which had formerly been raised as a powder-house, to obtain the stones. This was done, during the forenoon, by the French and the English soldiers.

About two P. M., the Hurons came to parley with the commander, as they had agreed in the council on the preceding day. The commander caused them to be admitted, and a council was held on the military square, ****** to make peace with the English. The English replied, that if they were willing to return all the prisoners and merchandise, and remain quiet on their mats, that all should ***** and what had passed forgotten. They replied, that they would return to their village and speak with their other brothers, and make them agree to the conditions. They went away fully resolved to do that which was required of them, and promising to


return the next day. About five, the Poux came, with Mr. Gammelin, to promise the restitution of the English prisoners who were in the village, on condition of obtaining their friends who were in the fort.

About six, the Ottawas concealed themselves behind Mr. Beaubien's house, and fired for * * * * at the large barge, which returned their fire, but without injuring them. On this day, Mr. Maisonville arrived with ***** brandy, lead, salt, and packages, and reached * * * * with much trouble.

July 9th. Saturday, July 9th. The Ottawas and Saulteurs formed the design of burning the barge, while at anchor, if possible. To effect this, ***** to make a small fire-boat to send adrift on the river, ***** barge, when finished. They were two days about this, during which time they did not trouble the fort. About four, the Hurons came, as they had promised on the preceding day, and brought with them seven prisoners. The commander of the Presque Isle, a woman, and child, were in the number. They gave them to the commander, and asked for peace. He replied, that they must return all the goods they had taken from the merchants, even to the last needle, and that afterwards peace would be granted. They went away, promising to return all the merchandise they had in their village.

About seven, the commander was told that the Indians were about setting fire to the fort with arrows, and had joined together small fire-boats to burn, the two barges during the night. They indeed spared no trouble to execute their design of burning the barges, but could not succeed.

July 10th. Sunday, July 10th, the Indians, who had spent two days in making their preparations to burn the barges, sent their work about two in the morning. Their work consisted of two boats fastened together with white wood-bark, and filled with dry split wood with * * * * the whole of which was ignited. The boats drifted on the shore about one arpent from the barges, without causing these the slightest injury. Thus the labor of the Indians became useless, and their time was lost. The Indians seeing this, commenced another fire-boat, and did not trouble the fort this day.

At nine in the evening the commander was told by some Frenchman that surely the Indians intended setting the * * * * on fire favored by darkness, a thing which perhaps * * * * very often these newsmongers were * * * * to be well received, often supposed * * * * and framed some falsehood, which they came and mentioned to the officers. These often, instead of thanking them, laughed at them. However, as truth will sometimes be found in a number of falsehoods, the commander ordered immediately * * * * Frenchmen and four soldiers to go and bivouac at a short distance from the fort at each corner. These were told to fire if they perceived any thing, and to withdraw under the fort after having fired.

July 11th. Monday, July 11th, the Indians who were busy about an undertaking nearly similar to the other, did not trouble the fort during the whole of this day.


About ten in the morning the Hurons came and performed their promise, bringing back all the goods which had been taken from the merchants on the lake and river, and peace was made between them and the English.

About six, a Frenchman who dwelt out of the fort came and told the commander that the second fire-boat was ready, and that they intended to send it during the night. This information was correct.

July 12th. Tuesday, July 12th, at one in the morning, the Indians sent off their fire-boat, with as much success as the first time. Two cannon-shots were fired from the fort; these dispersed the Indians, who were seated on the highway towards the S. W. They had come on the bank of the river to admire the effect of their works. Two shots were sent from the barge on the fire-boat; these broke it, and thus destroyed the labor of the Indians.

About ten, the Poux came, according to their promise, and brought three English prisoners that * * * * might be granted them. They asked for their man. The commander replied that when they had returned all the prisoners that were in their village, their man would be given them, and all should be concluded. They promised to come in the afternoon. About three, the barge which had come from Niagara took its departure, with orders to bring provisions and soldiers. About the same time the Poux returned according to their promise, and brought with them seven prisoners, and asked the commander for their comrade. As he was going to be given up to them, one Jacquemane (Jackman) a prisoner formerly given to the Poux as a present, and just returned by them, said to the commander in English, that the Poux had still * * * * their village. This made the commander change his mind and retain his prisoner, telling the Poux to bring back * * * * and they should have what they wanted. They looked at each other, and formed the design at all hazards to kill the commander and the officers who accompanied him. An occurrence prevented this. An Ottawa having entered the fort with them, was recognized by Mr. M'Dougal, arrested, and put into prison under a safe guard. This frightened the Poux, who, though displeased in not obtaining what they wanted, withdrew, determined in taking revenge the preceding (ensuing) night, [nuit prיcיdente, original.]

July 13th. Wednesday, July 13th, the Indians having perceived that sentinels were placed out of the fort, to detect them in their nightly visits around the fort, resolved on taking revenge for the refusal they had incurred on the preceding day. To effect this, they came during the night to discover them; they fired on them, and wounded severely a French sentinel who was stationed on the south-west side. The day was tolerably quiet with regard to the fort. On this same day at noon the Hurons asked for a secret council. A lady wished to be admitted, but on the desire of the Indians she was requested to leave.

July 14th. The Frenchman who had been wounded on the Wednesday morning, died about the same hour as he had been wounded. He was interred * * * * that


those out of the fort might not know that a person had been killed. Notwithstanding the precaution taken to conceal his death, the French and Indians found it out.

July 15th. Friday, 15th. Nothing occurred deserving attention.

July 16th. Saturday, July 16th. A slave, belonging to Mr. Beaubien, came * * * sent by his master, to claim and demand ***** which, having been frightened by the Indians, had taken refuge *****. The slave was arrested and confined, it being said that he had been seen firing with the Indians on the English and barges.

July 17th. Sunday, July 17th. Several persons, who knew the slave to be a worthy man, and who had known him since the commencement of the war, came to the mass in the fort, and undertook to justify him, and obtain his release. But this favor ***** other witnesses ***** in the evening, Mr. Gammelin came to the fort with two men ***** Indians intended to attack the French settlers, and asked for arms and ammunition. These were granted. They were advised to be on their guard, and to desire the settlers to be on theirs; and that, at the first shot fired on the coasts, troops would be sent to assist the settlers. The commander ordered all the French in the fort to stay up during the whole night, that they might assist the settlers. But, fortunately, they spent a quiet night, as the worst of it was their watching.

July 18th. Monday, July 18th. The gates of the fort, until this day, had been kept shut, for the greater security of the fort, and through fear of a surprise on the part of the Indians. This was inconvenient for the officers, who had to cause them to be opened when wanted, as also to those who wished to go out, and who, fearing a refusal, or disliking to trouble them, did not like to ask for their being opened. The commander, having been made aware of these difficulties, ordered, to put a stop to them, that the gate facing the river should be opened for the public wants, from nine in the morning until six in the evening; and that two sentinels should be placed on each side: these were ordered to suffer no Frenchman to carry any thing out of the fort, but to suffer all who came to the gate to enter, — excepting, however, the Indians. These latter, it is true, did not dare come nearer than fifteen arpents, and this with many precautions.

During this day, the Indians did not approach the fort. At * * * they came, and told the commander that the Indians (Ottawas) had commenced a work which appeared to merit attention, and about which they were very busy: this was to be composed of dry wood, placed on the barge, and burn it. But much time was necessarily to pass before it could execute what it was intended to do.

About nine in the evening, the Saulteurs came, and fired on the barge, which returned their fire. After these discharges, the Indians sang abuse to the crew, among whom was an Englishman, who had been a prisoner with the Ottawas and was


tolerably conversant with the Saulteur language. He gave the Indians an answer in their own way.

July 19th. Tuesday, July 19th. About two P. M. there came, behind Mr. Beaubien's * * * fifteen arpents from the fort, about twelve Indians, who commenced firing on the fort. They were seen, and two cannon-shots and bombs sent them; one of them fell on an apple-tree, on which six Indians were perched. This quickly put them to flight. They left the field, and went to the camp. There they remained the whole of the day.

July 20th. "Wednesday, July 20th. The commander heard again of the work of the Indians. He was told again that the Indians intended to bar the river, in order to burn the barge, which had remained * * * * and prevented their approaching the fort. But this work was but commenced, and it would take eight days more to complete it, although they had been working at it four days. They did not intend to fire at the fort until it was completed. The commander, hearing this, and wishing to improve his leisure by sheltering his barge from the fire with which it was threatened, ordered that two of the boats should be provided with a double bulwark of oak, each one inch thick; and that the side-planks should be made one foot and a half higher, and lined, as well as the bottom; so that the men, standing in their boats, might have nothing to fear from the fire of the Indians. He caused to be placed, in the front of each of these boats, a cannon, on a movable frame, which might fire on three sides. This was tried, in the middle of the river before the fort, and answered all expectations.

July 21st. Thursday, July 21st. The Indians, occupied with their projects, worked at their fire-boats as assiduously as if they had been well-paid. They took no rest; hardly did they allow themselves time to take a meal.

The two boats being prepared, the commander finding, from the information he had received of the progress of the Indians' work, that he had some time to spare for new precautions, he ordered four boarding-grapples to be made, two for each boat; one of these grapples to be of iron, and about fifteen feet long, and this and the other were to be fastened to a cable ten fathoms long. The boats, rigged in this, manner, were to go and meet the fire-boats. They were to throw one of their grappling-irons upon it; the other grapple or half-anchor was to be thrown into the water. By this manoeuvre they were to stop the fire-boats, and save the barge from the danger with which it had been so long threatened, and also render the work of the Indians useless. During this time, the barge was to weigh anchor, and go nearer the fort; and the cable and irons were to prevent the fire-boat from approaching it. * * * * evening, there was a report that the Hurons of the wicked band had resolved to attack the settlers of the S. W. coast during the night. This caused them to be on the watch; but, fortunately, the report was found to be without foundation.

July 22d. Friday, July 22d. This day was quiet on both sides. A report was


spread by an Abenaqui Indian who they said had recently arrived from Montreal. This stated that a French fleet was coming to Canada to retake it. This report died in its birth, there being nothing to confirm it. Although it proved false, it animated Pontiac, his band, and the Saulteurs, who had * * * * foolish undertaking * * * * fire-boat, the making of which * * * * wish to finish it.

About * * * * a man in the employ of Mr. Beaume wishing to cross the river on his master's business. As he had reached the middle, the Indians made several discharges at him. These made him return with more speed than he had gone.

About ten in the evening, as the sentinels were on the watch, two random shots were fired.

July 23d. Saturday, 23d. Nothing happened this day. About two in the afternoon, the inhabitants of the fort heard in the direction of the Huron village several discharges of musketry, as a salute on the arrival of some persons. The English thought it was something concerning them, but they found a short time after that it was on the account of the arrival of Andre, a Huron of Lorette, who had arrived with * * * * Lenape chief of Belle river, and that * * * * Detroit in * * * *

July 24th. Sunday, July 24th. The Indians, who were more anxious * * * * barge worked faithfully to accomplish their design * ** * * was finished. The commander, who wished to interrupt their work, ordered a reconnoitring party to go on the river in the boats described above. This was done. About ten, three officers at the head of sixty men well armed, went into the boats and a barge, and went up the river to find out the place where the Indians were at work. The Indians, seeing these boats in the distance, thought them a prey coming within their grasp. They left their work, and went, twenty in number, with their arms, in two canoes, to come and meet the three boats. The crew suffered them to come within gun-shot. The Indians, unacquainted with the construction of these boats, advanced making cries of joy, thinking the boats were in their power. They were soon undeceived; for the commander of the boats, seeing they were near enough to give effect to all the shots, ordered his people to fire immediately with the muskets and cannons. The Indians, who did not expect this salute, went away quickly and fired from the shore on the boats, and slightly wounded one man on the head; a ball pierced his hat, and took away a tuft of his hair.

The boats and barge returned to the fort about noon, not having been able to discover the retreat of the Indians, or the place of their work. The Indians escorted them on the shore as far as Mr. Chauvin's, thirty arpents from the fort. The barge having sent them some cannon-shots, they went away unharmed; the ball, however, entered the house, which it damaged much, and wounded dangerously two Indians, one in the arm and the other in the thigh; the latter died a few days afterwards.

About one P. M., the Ottawa and Saulteur chiefs went to the Huron village according


to the request of the Erie and Lenape chiefs, who early in the morning had summoned them to the council.

About three, the two boats and barge, with the same crew, were sent by the commander to the same place as on the morning, to attempt the discovery of the place in which the Indians were at work; they did not succeed. The Indians fired at them from the shore, and escorted them as they had done in the morning. The boats and barge fired at them, but without effect, as the Indians were concealed behind the fences. The boats and barge returned to the fort about six.

About ten in the evening the Ottawas fired a few random shots at the fort.

July 25th. Monday, July 25th. The Ottawas, engaged with the council which was to take place on the preceding day, but which was deferred until this day, forgot the fort, to go according to the request of the Erie and Lenape chiefs to the Huron village. Two inhabitants of the fort who some time ago had to go to the north coast on business, but had been detained by Pontiac, returned this day and said that the celebrated fire-boat had been entirely given up by means of two Frenchmen who * * * * the Indians that the two boats which they had seen **** to **** the fire-boat burning the barge, and that they contained * * * * with anchor to fasten it in the middle of the river, and that thus their work was useless, and could never succeed. This disconcerted them so much that they abandoned entirely their foolish enterprise.

About ten, news was brought in the fort of the return of Messrs. Jacques Godfroy and Mesnilchךne, who had been sent to Illinois. This news was confirmed the next day.

July 26th. Tuesday, July 26th. It being St. Ann's day, they learnt early in the morning that the messengers sent by Pontiac, head-chief of all the nations of the north, to Mr. De Leon, commander of Illinois, had returned the preceding evening. On this report, there circulated among the French of the fort several reports, which contained no truth, and were immediately contradicted. The principal of these stated that the Illinois tribes strongly recommended to the Detroit tribes that no injury should be done to the French on the coasts, or those of the fort, unless they took the part of the English.

A great council took place on this day among the Hurons, the Eries, and Lenapes, the Ottawas and Poux, at the end of the council. Pontiac, in his quality of chief of all the nations of the north, ornamented with the war-belt, and holding the tomahawk, sang the war-song against the English, inviting all the chiefs in the council to imitate him, telling them that he had been commanded by the master of life to make continual war on the English, and not to spare them, that the place must be free on the arrival of his Great Father in the autumn. All the other chiefs followed his example, and sang war-songs with their Indians. At the end of the council, according to the report of several French settlers who were present, the Erie chief said: Brothers, we must


remember that the French are our brothers, and be careful not to injure them, unless they take the part of the English; for if we did, our father would be angry with us.

July 27th. Wednesday, July 27th. This day was employed by the Indians in singing the war-song. Each tribe sang it in their village with their chief. They tried to concert new measures to take the fort, but all this was to no purpose. About two P. M., Andre, Huron of Lorette, who had been suspected by the English with having meddled in these revolutions, and even of having been the first mover of them, came to the fort to justify himself and prove his innocence. About six they came and told the English that the Indians intended to set fire to the two platforms which were on the hillock behind the fort, and on each of which were daily placed four sentinels * * * *. Nothing was done by the Indians this day. They ordered the inhabitants not to visit the fort, and sent word to the inmates of the fort not to visit the coasts, under pretext of not wishing the design they had made of taking the fort by storm, to be discovered.

July 29th. * * * *, July 29th. During the night the fog had been so dense that it was impossible to see * * * * paces ahead; at day-break it decreased a little * * * * about five in the morning they saw unexpectedly on the river, to the right of the river Rouge, a large number of barges. This caused a little alarm in the fort, as they thought this was an Indian party coming to join the Indians in this place. The English did not know that these barges came to assist them, although they expected assistance. To find out what they were, they fired a shot towards the S. W.; the barges returned the salute, being provided with four small cannon in front, and two six-pound mortars. Upon this the commander, followed by Mr. Hopkins, two officers, and ten soldiers, entered one of the boats I have mentioned, and went to reconnoitre the barges. They were twenty-two in number, and contained two hundred and eighty regulars and six gunners. At the head of these was an aid-de-camp of General Amers, (Amherst.) The barges passing before the Huron and Poux villages, were saluted by several discharges of musketry on the part of those two tribes. Fifteen were severely wounded in the body; two of these died. Others were wounded slightly in the arms and hands. These barges had been guided from Niagara to the fort by Mr. Laselle, a merchant of Montreal, who traded in these two posts.

As there were no barracks to lodge these soldiers, they were quartered on the inhabitants until otherwise provided for, according to the size of the dwellings. This was done punctually. These soldiers, on passing Sandusky, had frightened some Indians who had encamped in the vicinity of the village. Seeing so many people, they were afraid, and left their cabins, which were plundered and burnt by the English, who tore up their corn. When these soldiers had arrived, it was reported in the fort that four hundred English soldiers were coming from the north. This, however, was not the case.


July 30th. Saturday, July 30th. The commander ordered that several canoes, which were aground near the shore, should be repaired, to be used if needed. In the evening, according to custom, all the soldiers repaired on the military square to be inspected. All the old and new officers were there. It was resolved that on the following night a sally should be made by about three hundred men, headed by the aid-de-camp, commander of the newly-arrived troops.

This detachment was to go to Pontiac's camp, and * * * * Indians, and oblige them to make peace * * * * ammunition was distributed, and the soldiers were ordered to be ready at the first call for the sally, which was to take place the next night.

This same day, at two, the Hurons, who had heard that a sally was to be made, made a feint to abandon their village, and burnt at Montreal point, in sight of the fort, old canoes and useless articles, and embarked their squaws and children, and even dogs, and went down as if they had been going to their winter-quarters. Several Frenchmen believed it, and even came and mentioned it to the English, who thought so too, without, however, wishing to venture to go to the village, mistrusting some trick on the part of the Indians. This was the case: the Hurons, having gone down the river out of sight of the houses, had landed in the woods, concealing their wives, children and goods; they had come through the woods opposite the village, expecting the English would come to their village, as they had been told. This did not take place. The Hurons, however, remained two days in their ambuscade. They then returned to their village.

July 31st. Sunday, July 31st. About two in the morning, according to the order issued by the aid-de-camp, every one named for the detachment was ready. They were lightly clothed, having only their vest, ammunition, and arms, on leaving the fort. They took their way towards Pontiac's camp, which was then one league from the fort, on the north, at a place named Pointe-a-Cardinal. The English, unfortunately, had confided their design to some French in the fort, who had mentioned it in confidence to some of the settlers. Through these confidences, the Indians found it out, and kept on their guard, and not to be taken unawares. They concealed their wives and children out of the camp, where they only left their old men, as they knew the hour appointed for the departure of the English. They came to meet them, in two bands. One of these came, two hundred and fifty men in number, through the woods along the clearings, and concealed themselves on Mr. Chauvin's farm, twenty arpents from the fort. The other band, comprising one hundred and sixty men, came and placed themselves on Mr. Baptiste Meloche's farm, where they had formerly encamped, and made entrenchments which were ball-proof. They there awaited the English. These, not knowing that the Indians were aware of their design, were advancing speedily and without any order. The Indians, much favored by the moon, perceiving them in the distance, and observing the route which they took, went, sixty in number, into Mr. Francois Meloche's garden, behind the posts opposite the bridge.


When the Indians saw that the head of the detachment had passed a little the middle of the bridge, they fired. This surprised the English, who, without making any manœuvre * * * * * * *

The rest of the manuscript is missing. It has been, manifestly, torn off for waste-paper, by some one who did not know its importance.

The disastrous result of this sortie is given in the following letter, copied from the Gates Papers, which are found in the library of the New York Historical Society, from which it has been kindly furnished:

Detroit, August 8th, 1763.
Sir: Enclosed you have a letter, which was forwarded of that date, under cover to your friend Capt. Dalzell, who received it on Lake Erie, on his way here, where he arrived on the 29th July. We were agreeably surprised at his appearance, as he had under his command twenty-four battoes, with a detachment of one captain and eight subalterns of the Fifty-fifth regiment; one captain and thirty-nine men of the Eightieth, and Major Rogers and his brother and twenty men of the Yorkers. They were lucky enough not to be discovered 'till they got within a mile of the fort, when they were attacked by a few Indians, on both sides of the river, without any hurt, but wounding seventeen men. But, alas, our joy, on this occasion, only lasted 'till the night of the 31st, when Capt. Dalzell prevailed upon Major Gladwin to attack the enemy, although entirely contrary to the Major's opinion, as well as that of two Frenchmen, (the only two in this place whoso intelligence might be depended upon, and who well knew the disposition of the enemy, and the difficulty of surprising them in their camp, and who told him the disaffected French would apprise the Indians of any attempt against them.) Notwithstanding thereof, he still insisted that no time was to be lost, and that they might be surprised in their camp at break of day, and entirely put to rout. In consequence of that, and other natural arguments he made use of in his earnest solicitation, Major Gladwin agreed to give him the command ; and at three o'clock in the morning, marched, with two hundred and fifty men, to surprise Pontiac, the Indian chief, and his tribes, consisting of four hundred men, in their camp.

We imagined our plan was concocted with the greatest secresy, yet it seems the enemy were advised thereof by the French, as four hundred of them had fortified themselves in a pass within two miles of the fort, and being on our march by platoons, about twenty yards from the enemy they fired a full discharge, by which our commandant was wounded. This created some confusion in the route, it being then dark; however, we soon recovered from our disorder, and marching on a little, the enemy gave way, but it was so dark they could not be seen: soon after, they whooped on our left, when we understood they wanted to attack our rear at the same time, their chiefs talking loud in the route, animating their young men to courage, in order to bring us on, that they might, by that means, have the more time to get in our rear,


where they knew many strong stoccaded orchards and picqueted fences were, which would enable them to cut off our retreat from the fort; but daylight approaching, and discovering their designs, it was thought advisable to retire, and that being clone in good order for half a mile, to a place where the enemy had got round our left, where they were in possession of breastworks made up of a farmer's fire-wood, and garden fences very close and strong, besides a cellar dug for a new house, from which they attacked us very smartly, brought on an engagement which lasted for an hour, at least, where Captain Dalzell exposed himself very much, and the enemy, soon distinguishing him by his extraordinary bravery, killed him. Captain Grey, who succeeded him, rushed forward and drove them off from some of their strongholds, and was immediately dangerously wounded. The troops then engaged, took possession of a house, and firing at the remaining enemy a long time, under the command of Major Rogers, who had sent word by Lieutenant Bean, of the Queen's company, to Captain Grant, of the eightieth regiment, who was then in possession of a very strong orchard within eighty or a hundred yards of him, that he could not retire until the row galleys came to cover his retreat. At the same time, Lieutenant McDougal of our battalion, who acted as adjutant for the party, acquainted Captain Grant that the command then devolved on him; whereupon he sent an officer and thirty men to reinforce Major Rogers, and drive a party of Indians which annoyed Major Rogers' and Captain Grant's post; and that being done, and some Indians killed, Captain Grant put an officer and thirty men into the orchard where he was posted, and officers, or sergeants and corporals, with small parties, in all the enclosures from them to the fort, and sent to acquaint Major Rogers to come off, that all the places of strength from him to the fort were secured, and his retreat safe, as Captain Grant had sent an officer and twenty men to take possession of a barn on a rising ground, which effectually prevented the enemy from advancing farther. Soon after, Lieutenant Brown had returned with a row galley from the fort, where he had been sent by Captain Dalzell with the killed and wounded men, and also to renew a gun, the one he had having bursted. The row galley now arrived, and was instantly ordered to cover Major Rogers' retreat. Every thing being done to secure that, soon after Lieutenant Abbot of the artillery likewise returned from the fort with another row galley, which had carried Captain Grey and Lieutenant Brown, with some wounded men, to the fort, was also ordered to cover Major Rogers' retreat, which gave him an opportunity of joining the party already mentioned, about eighty or one hundred yards distant from him, and so on successfully, until the whole were collected in their march, and came to the fort at 8 o'clock, in very good order.

Our loss is Captain Dalzell killed; and his not being observed when he fell, his body was left in the hands of the savages, which I was heartily sorry for. Lieutenants Brown and Luke were wounded, and thirteen men killed and twenty-eight wounded, of the Fifty-fifth regiment. One man of the Sixtieth regiment killed, and six wounded. Two


men of the light infantry killed, and three wounded; with two of the Queen's company killed, and one wounded. The enemy's loss cannot be ascertained, as they always conceal that from every body. It is believed to be seven killed and a dozen wounded; and if the inhabitants knew any thing else to the disadvantage of the savages, they are too much interested to reveal it.

I herewith send you Captain Campbell's account. He wrote me, when prisoner, to take his papers which are now in my hands, and shall forward them to you as soon as I hear from you. The subject contained in this and the enclosed letter is as disagreeable to write or repeat as it can possibly be for you to read. I beg leave to participate with you in your present distress, and believe me to be, with greatest sincerity, Sir,

Your most obedient and faithful servant,
James McDonald.
Doctor Campbell.

The result of this sortie affords another evidence of that disregard of due precaution and respect to Indian customs and vigilance which led General Braddock, five years earlier, in the plenitude of the pride of European discipline, to hurl a brave and well appointed army into the unknown defiles of an Indian ambuscade, where mere advantages of position render numbers and discipline useless. Dalzell re-enacted this folly on a smaller scene. The actual loss of the sallying party under him is shown to have been less than popular tradition at Detroit depicts it to have been, but its effects were most disastrous to the beleaguered fort; nor was that fortress finally extricated, and restored to the full liberty of action, without the fear of Pontiac and his myrmidons, till the next year, 1764.

The fate of this bold original chief is striking. Having failed in Michigan, he transferred the scene of his operations to Illinois, where a similar course of conduct and policy marked his movements. He excited the natives to resist the surrender of the French posts, under the treaty, to the British authority. We are indebted to Mr. Nicollet for collecting and preserving the traditions of the old and most respected inhabitants of St. Louis on this subject. He says: —

"In the meanwhile, the second year after the signature of the treaty of peace had elapsed, and the British had not yet been able to take possession of Illinois. This was owing to the opposition made by several Indian tribes, who, as alluded to above, had refused to abide by the treaty, and were waging a most cruel war against the British. These tribes had formed a confederacy under the command of Pontiac, a bold warrior, who had already become celebrated for his prowess and his devoted attachment to France during the whole of the war, which the latter had carried on


against Great Britain, in America. The confederated Indian army was composed of Hurons, Miamis, Chippewas, Ottawas, Pottawatomies, Missourians, &c. &c. The name of Pontiac was the terror of the whole region of the lakes, and, by his bands, he effectually interrupted the British intercourse with the rest of the nations that had remained friendly to the government. The taking of Fort Michilimackinac, the attempt at Detroit, and the attack upon the schooner Gladwin on Lake Michigan, are memorable events, evincing a spirit of cunning and daring highly characteristic of the genius of the Reel man.

"In the winter of 1764-5, Pontiac, whilst engaged in his acts of depredation, learned that an armed British force was about to start from New Orleans, to take possession of the left bank of the Mississippi. He immediately proceeded to the neighborhood of Port Chartres, accompanied by four hundred warriors, to oppose this occupation of the country; and finding there some Illinois Indians who had placed themselves under the protection of the French garrison, he proposed to them to join him. But these people, disheartened by recent calamities, and, as it were, foredoomed to a final extinction, were unwilling to assume a hostile attitude towards their new rulers, from whom interest, if not generosity, would lead them to expect the same protection which they were then receiving. To this refusal Pontiac replied, with characteristic energy, ‘Hesitate not, or I destroy you with the same rapidity that fire destroys the grass of the prairie. Listen, and recollect that these are Pontiac's words.’ Having then despatched scouts upon the Mississippi and the Ohio, he hastened with some of his warriors to Fort Chartres, where he addressed Mr. St. Ange de Bellerive in the following terms. ‘Father, we have long wished to see thee, to shake hands with thee, and, whilst smoking the calumet of peace, to recall the battles in which we fought together against the misguided Indians and the English dogs. I love the French, and I have come here with my warriors to avenge their wrongs,’ &c. &c. Mr. de St. Ange was a Canadian officer of great bravery and too much honor to be seduced by this language. Besides, he knew too well the Indian character to lose sight of the fact that the love of plunder was probably at bottom a stronger inducement for Pontiac than his love for the French. This visit, which was terminated by an exchange of civilities, might nevertheless have brought difficulties upon the small garrison at Fort Chartres. But news arrived that the Indians of Lower Louisiana had attacked the British expedition some miles below Natchez, and repulsed it.

"Pontiac became then less active in guarding the rivers; and, as he believed that the occupation of the country had been retarded again, he and his party were about to retire altogether. During the time, however, that the news took to arrive, the British had succeeded in getting up another expedition on the Ohio; and Captain


Sterling, at the head of a company of Scots, arrived unexpectedly in the summer of 1766, taking possession of the fort before the Indians had time to offer any resistance. At this news Pontiac raved, swearing that before he left the country he would retake the fort, and bear away Captain Sterling's scalp. But the intervention of Mr. St. Ange and Mr. Laclede put an end to these savage threats. Pontiac returned to the north, made peace with the British, from whom he received a pension, and seemed to have buried all animosity against them. But, by his restless spirit, he soon aroused new suspicions; and, we are informed by Captain Jonathan Carver, that Pontiac, having gone in the year 1767 to hold a council in the Illinois country, an Indian, who was either commissioned by one of the English governors, or instigated by the love he bore the English nation, attended him as a spy; and being convinced from the speech of Pontiac made in the council, that he still retained his former prejudice against those for whom he now professed friendship, he plunged his knife into his heart as soon as he had done speaking, and laid him dead on the spot.

"Captain Carver travelled through the northern region, but was never south of the Prairie-du-Chien; so that his information is probably incorrect. The celebrity of Pontiac, as well as the distinguished part he took in the Indian wars of the West, will justify me, therefore, for introducing here a somewhat different statement of the manner of his death, as I have it from two of the most respectable living authorities of the day — Colonel Pierre Chouteau, of St. Louis, and Colonel Pierre Menard, of Kaskaskia. It is as follows: Pontiac's last residence was in St. Louis. One day he came to Mr. de St. Ange, and told him, that he was going to pay a visit to the Kaskaskia Indians. Mr. de St. Ange endeavored to dissuade him from it, reminding him of the little friendship that existed between him and the British. Pontiac's answer was, "Captain, I am a man: I know how to fight. I have always fought openly. They will not murder me; and if any one attacks me as a brave man, I am his match." He went off; was feasted; got drunk; and retired into the wood, to sing his medicine-songs. In the mean while, an English merchant, named Williamson, bribed a Kaskaskia Indian with a barrel of rum, and the promise of a greater reward, if he could succeed in killing Pontiac. He was struck with a pakamagon, (war-club,) and his skull fractured, which caused his death. This murder, which roused the vengeance of all the Indian tribes friendly to Pontiac, brought about the successive wars, and almost total extermination of the Illinois nation.

"Pontiac was a remarkably well-looking man; nice in his person, and full of taste in his dress, and in the arrangement of his exterior ornaments. His complexion is said to have approached that of the whites. His origin is still uncertain: for some have supposed him to belong to the tribe of Ottowas; others, to the Miamis, &c.; but Colonel P. Chouteau, senior, who knew him well, is of opinion that he was a Nipissing."




The accompanying song was presented to me by William S. Simonise, Esq., of Port au Prince, a native of Charleston, South Carolina, but for many years a resident of Hayti, and one of her first lawyers. In my travels upon the island, I have met with nothing else that professed to be a relic of the language or music of its aboriginal inhabitants. As to the authenticity of this song, I have neither the knowledge of music, nor other means of investigation, that would enable me to give an intelligent opinion upon the subject; I therefore submit it as it came to me.

No one familiar with Irving's "Life of Columbus" can fail to be interested in any thing that claims to be the product of the mind of the gifted and beautiful Anacoana. No portions of that inimitable work exceed in interest the passages that detail her character and virtues, her kindnesses to the whites, and her unhappy fate. I cannot forbear presenting a few of these passages in this connexion, though the author's work must be consulted to obtain her full history.

"While Columbus was in Spain, his brother, Don Bartholomew, administered the affairs of the island, as adelantado. Upon the discovery of important gold-mines, on the south side of the island, he established a fortress upon the bank of the river Oyema, which was first called Isabella, but afterwards St. Domingo, and was the origin of the city which still bears that name." ... "No sooner was the fortress completed than he left in it a garrison of twenty men, and with the rest of his forces set out on an expedition to visit the dominions of Behechio, one of the principal chieftains of the island. This cacique, as has already been mentioned, reigned over Xaragua, a province comprising almost the whole coast at the west end of the island, including Cape Tibuen, and extending along the south side as far as Point Aguida or the small island of Beata. It was one of the most populous and fertile districts, with a delightful climate; and its inhabitants were softer and more graceful in their manners than the rest of the islanders.

"With this cacique resided Anacoana, widow of the late formidable Caonabo. She was sister to Beheshio, and had taken refuge with her brother, after the capture of her husband. She was one of the most beautiful females of the island; her name in the Indian language signified ‘The Golden Flower.’ She possessed a genius superior to the generality of her race, and was said to excel in composing those little legendary ballads, or areytos, which the natives chanted as they performed their national dances. All the Spanish writers agree in describing her as possessing a natural dignity and grace, hardly to be credited in her ignorant and savage condition. Notwithstanding


the ruin with which her husband had been overwhelmed by the hostility of the white men, she appears to have entertained no vindictive feelings towards them. She knew that he had provoked their vengeance by his own voluntary warfare. She regarded the Spaniards with admiration, as almost superhuman beings; and her intelligent mind perceived the futility and impolicy of any attempts to resist their superiority in arts and arms. Having great influence over her brother Beheshio, she counselled him to take warning by the fate of her husband, and to conciliate the friendship of the Spaniards; and it is supposed that a knowledge of the friendly sentiments and powerful influence of this princess, in a great measure prompted the Adelantado to his present expedition."

"The Spaniards had heard many accounts of the soft and delightful regions of Xaraqua, in one part of which some of the Indian traditions placed their Elysian-fields. They had heard much also of the beauty and urbanity of the inhabitants; the mode of their reception was calculated to confirm their favorable prepossessions. As they approached the place, thirty females of the cacique's household came forth to meet them, singing their areytos, or traditionary ballads, and dancing, and waving palm-branches. The married females wore aprons of embroidered cotton, reaching half-way to the knee; the young women were entirely naked, with merely a fillet round the forehead, their hair falling upon their shoulders. They were beautifully proportioned, their skin smooth, and their complexions of a clear and agreeable brown. According to old Peter Martyr, the Spaniards, when they beheld them issuing forth from their green woods, almost imagined they beheld the fabled dryads, or native nymphs and fairies of the fountains, sung by the ancient poets. When they came before Don Bartholomew, they knelt, and gracefully presented him the green branches."

"After these came the female cacique Anacoana, reclining in a kind of light litter, borne by six Indians. Like the other females, she had no other covering than an apron of various-colored cotton. She wore round her head a fragrant garland of red and white flowers, and wreaths of the same round her neck and arms. She received the Adelantado and his followers with that natural grace and courtesy for which she was celebrated, manifesting no hostility towards them for the fate her husband had received at their hands; on the contrary, she seemed from the first to conceive for them great admiration and sincere friendship.

"For two days they remained with the hospitable Beheshio, entertained with various games and festivities, &c."

At a subsequent period in the history of the island, Avando was sent by Ferdinand to administer its affairs. It is a dark page that history records during his reign. The disasters of the beautiful province of Xaragua, the seat of hospitality, the refuge of the suffering Spaniards; and the fate of the female cacique Anacoana, once the pride of the island, and the generous friend of the white man.


Beheshio, the ancient cacique of this province, being dead, Anacoana his sister had succeeded to the government. The marked partiality which she had once manifested for the Spaniards had been greatly weakened by the general misery they had produced in her country, and by the brutal profligacy exhibited in her immediate dominions by the followers of Roldan.

The Indians of this province were universally represented as a more intelligent, polite, and generous, spirited race than any others of the island. They were the more prone to feel and resent the overbearing and insulting treatment to which they were subjected. Quarrels sometimes took place between the caciques and their oppressors. These were immediately reported to the governor as dangerous mutinies, and magnified into a rebellious resistance to the authority of the government. Complaints of this kind were continually pouring in upon Avando, until he was persuaded that there was a deep-laid conspiracy among the Indians of this province to rise upon the Spaniards. Avando immediately set out for Xaragua, at the head of three hundred foot-soldiers, armed with swords, arquebusses, and cross-bows, and seventy horsemen with cuirasses, bucklers, and lances. He pretended that he was going on a mere visit of friendship to Anacoana, and to make arrangements about the payment of tribute.

Anacoana, in her innocency, unconscious of his designs, gave him the same formal and cordial reception that she had given the Adelantado. When all her people were assembled, and in the midst of their national songs, dances, and games, a concerted signal was given by Avando; a trumpet was sounded, and at once the house in which Anacoana and all the principal caciques were assembled was surrounded by soldiery, and no one was permitted to escape. They entered, and seizing upon the caciques, bound them to the posts that supported the roof. Anacoana was led forth a prisoner. The unhappy caciques were then put to horrible tortures, until some of them, in the extremity of anguish, were made to accuse the queen and themselves of the plot with which they were charged. When this cruel mockery of judicial forms had been executed, instead of preserving them for after examination, fire was set to the house, and all the caciques perished miserably in the flames.

While these barbarities were practised upon the chieftains, a horrible massacre took place among the populace. No mercy was shown to any sex or age. It was a savage and indiscriminate butchery. Humanity turns with horror from such atrocities, and would fain discredit them; but they are circumstantially and minutely recorded by the venerable Bishop Las Casas, who was resident in the island at the time, and conversant with the principal actors in this tragedy. As to the princess Anacoana, she was carried in chains to San Domingo. The mockery of a trial was given her, in which she was found guilty, on the confessions which had been wrung by torture from


her subjects, and the testimony of their butchers; and she was ignominiously hanged in the presence of the people whom she had so long and so signally befriended.

"Such," says Irving, in concluding the account from which these extracts are taken, "is the tragical story of the delightful region of Xaragua and its amiable and hospitable people. A place which the Europeans, by their own account, found a perfect paradise, but which, by their vile passions, they filled with horror and desolation."

Nothing is more prominently preserved by popular tradition than the name, beauties, and misfortunes of Anacoana, the Carib Queen. The following chant, in her praise, is given on the authority of the gentleman named by Mr. Peirson in the introduction of these remarks. The repetitious character of the music is an aboriginal trait, though it rises to a strain superior to that of the United States tribes.

Aya bomba ya bombai (Bis)
Lamassam Ana-coana (Bis)
Van van tavana dogai (Bis)
Aya bomba ya bombai (Bis)
Lamassam Ana-coana (Bis)


VIII. Physical Type of the American Indians.




I. Physical Characteristics:
a. Osteological Character.
b. Facial Angle.
c. Stature.
d. Fossil Remains of the American Race.
e. Complexion.
f. Hair.
g. Eyes.
h. Artificial Modifications of the Skull:
1. The Natchez.
2. The Choctaws.
3. The Waxaws.
4. The Muskogees or Creeks.
5. The Catawbas.
6. Attacapas.
7. Nootka-Columbians.
8. Peruvians.
i. Volume of the Brain:
1. Mexicans.
2. The Barbarous Tribes.


II. Admeasurements of Crania of the Principal Groups of Indians of the United States. By Mr. J. S. Phillips.
a. Iroquois.
b. Algonquin.
c. Appalachian.
d. Dacota.
e. Shoshonee.
f. Oregonian.

I. Physical Characteristics.

It is an adage among travellers in America, that he who has seen one tribe of Indians has seen all; so closely do the individuals of this race resemble each other, notwithstanding their immense geographical distribution, and those differences of climate, which embrace the extremes of heat and cold. The Fuegian, in his dreary climate and barren soil, has the same general cast of lineaments, though in an exaggerated degree, as the Indians of the tropical plains; and these also resemble the tribes inhabiting the region west of the Rocky Mountains, those of the great Valley of the Mississippi, and those again which skirt the Eskimaux on the north. All possess, though in various degrees, the long, lank, black hair, the heavy brow, the dull and sleepy eye, the full and compressed lips, and the salient but dilated nose.

These traits, moreover, are equally common in savage and in civilized life; they are seen equally in those hordes which inhabit the margins of rivers and feed mainly on fish, and in the forest-tribes that subsist by the chase.


A similar conformity of organization is not less obvious in the cranial structure of these people. The Indian skull is of a decidedly rounded form. The occipital portion is flattened in the upward direction; and the transverse diameter, as measured between the parietal bones, is remarkably wide, and often exceeds the longitudinal line. The forehead is low and receding, and rarely arched as in the other races; a feature that is regarded by Humboldt, Lund, and other naturalists, as characteristic of the American race, and serving to distinguish it even from the Mongolian. The cheek-bones are high, but not much expanded; the whole


maxillary region is salient and ponderous, with teeth of a corresponding size and singularly free from decay. The orbits are large and squared, the nasal orifice wide, and the bones that protect it arched and expanded. The lower is massive, and wide between the condyles; but, notwithstanding the prominent position of the face, the teeth are for the most part vertical.

I have had opportunities for comparing upwards of four hundred crania of tribes inhabiting almost every region of North and South America, and have found the preceding characteristics, in greater or less degree, to pervade them all. This remark is equally applicable to the ancient and modern nations of our continent; for the oldest skulls from the Peruvian cemeteries, the tombs of Mexico and the mounds of this country, are of the same general type as the most savage existing tribes.

This law of organization has some exceptions; for we find a more elongated form among the Missouri tribes, and especially among the Mandans, Minetaries, Eickarees, Assinaboins, Otoes, Crows, Blackfeet, and some proximate tribes, and also among the different sections of the Lenape nation west of the Mississippi. The same exception appears to obtain among the Iroquois and Cherokees, and shows itself in a greater fulness of the occipital region, and a less inter-parietal diameter. Yet even among these tribes, and all others I have been able to compare, the typical rounded form, although not in preponderance, is by no means unfrequent.


In my Crania Americana I have examined this subject in detail, both with respect to the savage and the civilized nations, and have ascertained that the mean of one hundred and thirty-eight skulls is within a fraction of seventy-five degrees. This measurement is confirmed by all my subsequent experiments; and having performed these with my own hands, I submit the above result in the belief that it will stand the test of all future observation.

Since the European angle presents an average of 80°, it will be seen that the American falls five degrees below it; and I have reason to suppose that the latter measurement does not exceed that of the negro race of Africa; although on this point I am not yet prepared to speak with precision. The modification of the facial angle resulting from artificial distortions of the skull, will be noticed in another place.


When submitted to the test of anatomical examination, the reputed giant and dwarf races of America prove to be the mere inventions of ignorance or imposition. Some


of the tribes of Patagonia embrace a remarkable number of tall men, and perhaps their average stature exceeds that of any other of the affiliated nations. But the observations of the naturalists who have been associated with the modern Exploring Expeditions, have proved that much that is recorded of these people by the early voyagers is fanciful and inaccurate; and that neither among the dead or the living races of this continent, is there any evidence of a tribe or community of giants. The error has arisen from hasty inferences on the part of unpractised observers.

Whole tribes which possess a comparatively low stature, exist in South America. Among these are the Powrys and Coroados of Brazil, and the Chaymas of the upper Orinoco. I know of no analogous examples in North America; yet Bartram asserts that at the time of his sojourn among the Creeks, the women of that nation were seldom above five feet high, although the men were tall, and of athletic proportions. He adds that the same remarks would in a degree apply to the Choctaws and Chickasaws, the confederates of the Creeks. A similar disparity in the stature of the men and women has also been observed in many of the Missouri tribes.

So much has been asserted with respect to the supposed pygmies of the Valley of the Mississippi, that I gladly take this occasion to correct some prevailing misconceptions on that subject.

It had long been asserted that these remains pertained to real dwarfs, whose stature never exceeded four feet, and was often much within that measure. Fortunately I succeeded in obtaining the greater part of one of them, which was obtained by Dr. M'Call from a "Pygmy Cemetery," near the Cumberland Mountain, in White county, Tennessee. These relics were kindly sent me by Dr. M'Call at the instance of the late Dr. Troost, of Nashville.

The former gentleman, in a letter addressed to me, makes the following remarks from a personal observation of the facts connected with the disinterment of these remains:

"The coffins are from eighteen to twenty-four inches in length, by eighteen inches deep, and fifteen wide. They are made of six pieces of undressed sandstone or limestone, in which the bodies are placed with their shoulders and heads elevated against the eastern end, and the knees raised towards the face, so as to put the corpse in a reclined or sitting posture. The right arm rested on an earthen pot of about two pints in capacity, without legs, but with lateral projections for being lifted. With these pots, in some graves are found basins and trays of pipe-clay and comminuted shells mixed, and no one of these repositories is without cooking-utensils.

"In one of the graves was found a complete skull, and an os femoris, but most of the other bones were broken in removing them. This is said to be the largest skeleton ever found in any of these burying-grounds. It has the cranium very flat and broad, with very projecting front-teeth, and appears to have pertained to an individual not over twelve or fourteen years old."


The bones sent me with this letter indicate a very juvenile subject. For example, many of the deciduous or first teeth yet remain, while the only teeth of the second teeth which have appeared above the jaw, are the first molars and the incisors, which, as every anatomist knows, make their first appearance about the eighth year. Of the other permanent teeth, some have no portion complete but the crown, and are yet contained within the maxillary bones. The presence of the new incisors, isolated from the cuspidati which have not appeared, obviously gave rise to Dr. M'Call's remark respecting the "very projecting front-teeth," but which, however, are perfectly natural in position and proportion. The cranial bones are thin, and readily separable at the sutures; nor does the "flat and broad" configuration of the cranium differ from what is usual in the aboriginal American race. The long bones have their extremities separated by epipleyses; and every fact connected with these remains is strictly characteristic of early childhood, or about the eighth year of life. Even the recumbent or sitting posture, as we shall hereafter see, has been observed in the aboriginal cemeteries from Cape Horn to Canada; and the utensils found with them are the same in form and composition with those taken from the graves of the Indians everywhere.

These facts are to me an additional and convincing proof of what I have never doubted, viz.: that the asserted Pygmies of the western country were mere children, who, for reasons not precisely known, but which appear also to influence some communities of even our own race, were buried apart from the adult people of their tribe.


It is also necessary to advert to the discoveries of Dr. Lund among the bone-caves of Minas Gerdas, in Brazil. This distinguished traveller has found the remains of man in these caverns, associated with those of extinct genera and species of animals; and the attendant circumstances lead to the reasonable conclusion, that they were contemporaneous inhabitants of the region in which they are found. Yet even here the form of the skull differs in nothing from the acknowledged type, unless it be in the still greater depression of the forehead, and a peculiarity of form in the teeth. With respect to the latter, Dr. Lund describes the incisors as having an oval surface of which the axis is antero-posterior, in place of the sharp and chisel-like edge of ordinary teeth of the same class. He assures us that he found it equally in the young and the aged, and is confident that it is not the result of attrition, as is manifestly the case in those Egyptian heads in which Prof. Blumenbach noticed an analagous peculiarity. I am not prepared to question an opinion which I have not been able to test by personal observation, but it is obvious, that if such differences exist,


independently of art or accident, they are at least specific, and consequently of the highest interest in Ethnology.

The head of the celebrated Guadeloupe Skeleton forms no exception to the type of the race. The skeleton itself, which is in a semi-fossil state, is preserved in the British Museum, but wants the cranium; which, however, is supposed to be recovered in the one found by M. L'Hיrminier in Guadaloupe, and brought by him to Charleston, South Carolina. Dr. Moultrie, who has described this very interesting relic, makes the following observations: — "Compared with the cranium of a Peruvian presented to Prof. Holbrook by Dr. Morton, in the Museum of the State of South Carolina, the craniological similarity manifested between them is too striking to permit us to question their national idenity. There is in both the same coronal elevation, occipital compression, and lateral protuberance accompanied with frontal depression, which mark the American variety in general."


The American aborigines have been aptly called the Brown Race; for, notwithstanding some variations, the vast multitude conforms to this color, and all other tints are but exceptions to a rule. Yet these exceptions are very remarkable, and appear to be wholly independent of atmospheric influences. Among the darkest tribes are the Charruas, who are represented as almost black; and yet they inhabit the southern shores of the Rio de la Plata, in the fiftieth degree of south latitude. An analogous phenomenon is seen in some California tribes, which are as dark as the Charruas, without the operation of any known local agencies to account for this exceptional colour; for these people range between the thirty-second and the fortieth degrees of north latitude. Among the numberless tribes which are geographically intermediate between the Charruas and Californians, we find some equally paradoxical appearances; for Humboldt has remarked that the Indians of the burning plains of the Equinoxial region are not darker than those inhabiting the mountains of the temperate zone. The Batocudys of Brazil, and the Borroas of Chili, are examples of a comparatively fair tint; and we are told that among the islanders of St. Catharine's, on the coast of California, young persons have a fine mixture of red and white in their complexions, thus presenting a singular contrast to the tribes of the adjacent main land.

When Bartram the naturalist travelled among the Cherokees, a hundred years ago,


he described the men as having a lighter and more olive complexion than the contiguous Muskogee tribes; and he adds that some of their young girls were nearly as fair and blooming as European women. Might there not then be, as there certainly has been since, some exotic mixture to account for this phenomenon?

Yet the complexion of the Mandans who inhabit the upper Missouri region is yet more enigmatical. The proverbial fairness of these people has probably given rise to the fable of the Welsh Indians of America, and, in the imaginations of some writers, they are the remains of Prince Madoe's army. But the Mandans are not only remarkable for their comparatively fair complexions, but also for the various tints that gradually merge into the characteristic cinnamon hue of their race.

"There are many of these people," says Catlin, "whose complexions appear as light as half-breeds; and among women, particularly, there are many whose skins are almost white, with the most pleasing symmetry and perfection of features, with hazel, with grey, and with blue eyes." Lewis and Clark, and all subsequent travellers, agree on this point, though not to the extent to which Mr. Catlin's observations have gone; and in this remarkable example, also, the phenomenon has been conjectured to be the result of remote though unrecorded associations with Europeans.

The people of Nootka are also comparatively fair when deprived of their accumulated filth; and one of the lightest complexioned Indians I have ever seen was a Chenouk boy from Oregon, who was not darker than an Italian peasant.

f. HAIR.

Among the interesting discoveries of Mr. Browne, in the application of the microscope to this tissue, is the invariably cylindrical form of the hair in all American natives, from the most ancient to the most recent tribes. It thus presents a contrast to the hair in the Caucasian group of races, in which it is oval, and also to the negro nations, in which it is eccentrically elliptical. The texture is equally uniform, being proverbially long, lank, and coarse; nor are these characteristics altered by the vastly diversified climates inhabited by the people of this race. They are the same in Terra del Fuego and under the equator, in the mountains and on the plains; so that if climate or temperature had any influence in producing those remarkable varieties of the hair so familiar among other races, we ought certainly to find them here. Such, however, is not the case; for no native tribe, from Cape Horn to Canada, is characterized by either woolly or frizzled locks.

Mr. Catlin states that the hair of the Mandans of Missouri "is generally as fine and soft as silk;" and he speaks of seeing among them individuals with hazel, grey, and


blue eyes. Yet the same traveller adds the extraordinary fact, that there are among them "many of both sexes, and of every age, from infancy to manhood and old age, with hair of a bright silvery grey, and, in some instances, almost perfectly white.

"This singular and eccentric appearance is much oftener seen among the women than among the men; for many of the latter who have it seem ashamed of it, and artfully conceal it by filling their hair with glue and black and red earth. The women, on the other hand, seem proud of it, and display it often in an almost incredible profusion, which spreads itself over their shoulders, and falls as low as the knee. I have ascertained, on a careful inquiry, that about one in ten or twelve of the whole tribe are what the French call cheveux gris, or grey hairs; and that this strange and unaccountable phenomenon is not the result of disease or habit, but that it is unquestionably an hereditary character, which runs in families, and indicates no inequality in disposition or intellect; and by passing this hair through my hands, as I often have, I have found it uniformly to be as coarse and harsh as a horse's mane."

We must be permitted to differ with this intelligent traveller on the physiological proposition, for nothing but a morbid state of the hair could permit it to present the two extremes above noticed; from the softness of silk, for example, to the coarseness of horse-hair. The grey color, at least in the early periods of life, is probably connected with some condition of albinism; and that also is certainly a preternatural condition, which is wholly unlike the uniform texture of the hair in every other division of this widely distributed race. Perhaps, therefore, all the peculiarities of the Mandans may be explained on the supposition that an albino variety has largely intermixed with the normal members of the tribe; thus giving rise, as in many other instances in the animal economy, to strange developments from the blending of incongruous elements.

Other exceptions are seen among the Athapascans or Chepewyans, who inhabit the slope of the Rocky Mountains yet further north. Mackenzie describes their hair as of a dark brown color, inclining to black; but in proof that this peculiarity is not due to climate, we may cite the Knistenaux, or copper-colored tribe contiguous to the Athapascans on the south, and whose hair has the characteristic blackness of the race; and again, to the north of them all, are the Eskimaux, in whom it is uniformly as sable as coal itself.

The aboriginal Americans might be relatively styled a beardless race. A small tuft on the point of the chin is all that is usually observed among them; and this being assiduously eradicated by most of the tribes, has given rise to a once prevalent opinion that they are literally destitute of beard. Exceptions to this rule are occasionally met with; as among the Chopunnish Indians west of the Rocky Mountains, and among the Chippewyans and Slave and Dog-ribbed tribes of the northern part of the continent. This remark is also true of the Californians, and also of some yet more southern


nations. The extirpation of the beard appears to be a, conventional usage of nearly all the multitudinous tribes of this people. The reason is not evident, excepting that the beard is not regarded as an ornament; and perhaps it is not more singular that they should pluck it out by the roots, than that more civilized nations should shave it off every day.


The Indian has a low, bushy brow, beneath which a dull, sleepy, half-closed eye seems to mark the ferocious passions that are dormant within. The acute angles of the eyes seldom present the obliquity so common in the Malays and Mongolians. The color of the eye is almost uniformly a tint between black and grey; but even in young persons it seldom has the brightness, or expresses the vivacity, so common in the more civilized races.

This sameness of organization amongst such multitudinous tribes seems to prove, in the geographical sense, the origin of one to have been equally the origin of all. The various demi-civilized nations are to this day represented by their lineal descendants, who inhabit the same ancestral seats, yet differ in no physical respect from the wild and uncultivated Indians. And with respect to the royal personages, and others of the privileged class, there is ample evidence to prove that they belonged to the same indigenous stock, and possessed no distinctive traits, excepting of a social or political character.

The observations of Molina and Humboldt are sometimes quoted in disproof of this pervading uniformity of physical character. Molina remarks that the difference between the inhabitants of Chili and a Peruvian is as great as between an Italian and a German; to which Humboldt adds, that the American race embraces natives whose features differ as essentially from one another as those of the Circassians, Moors, and Persians. But let us not forget that all these people belong to the same group of races, with which they are readily identified, notwithstanding certain marked differences of feature and complexion; and the American nations present a precisely parallel example.


The practice of moulding the head into a variety of fanciful forms, was once prevalent among many of our aboriginal tribes. I have elsewhere enlarged on this singular usage in Mexico and Peru, in the Charib islands, in Oregon, and among some tribes that formerly skirted the Gulf of Mexico. The acquisition, however, of some


additional materials, has induced me to recur to a custom which is yet extensively practised within the limits of the United States. Within these limits, it is now restricted to a few cognate tribes on the coast of the Pacific, but was formerly in use on both sides of the lower Mississippi, as the following enumeration will show.

1. THE NATCHEZ. — These extraordinary people, who were finally exterminated by the French, A. D. 1730, had flattened the heads of their children from immemorial time. De Soto and his companions were witnesses of this remarkable fact during their invasion of Florida; and the historian of that expedition describes the deformity as consisting of an upward elongation of the cranium, until it terminated in a point or edge; and Du Pratz, writing nearly two centuries later, gives a more circumstantial account of the process.

Yet who, in our clay, would have credited these statements, if they were sustained by no corroborative evidence? Yet the burial-places of this singular people afford the indubitable evidence of a usage which was equally prevalent in Mexico and Peru; for, in those countries, some tribes moulded the heads of their children in a precisely similar manner.

2. THE CHOCTAWS. — These Indians were of a totally different stock from the Natchez, and often at war with them; yet the two nations adopted the same conventional form of the head. Adair briefly describes the mode of accomplishing this fancied ornament; but Bartram is more explicit in his description. "The Choctaws are called by the traders Flats, or Flat-heads, all the males having the fore and hind parts of their skulls flattened or compressed, which is effected in the following manner: As soon as the child is born, the nurse provides a cradle or wooden case, where the head reposes, being fashioned like a brick-mould. In this part of the machine the little boy is fixed, a bag of sand being laid on his forehead, which, by continual gentle compressure, gives the forehead somewhat the form of a brick from the temples upwards, and by these means they have high and lofty foreheads, sloping off backwards.

It is a curious fact that among these people the flattening process was a distinction reserved for the male sex; which we shall hereafter see was also the case among the old Aymara tribes of Upper Peru.

3. THE WAXSAWS. — This nation, which has long been extinct, had a similar custom. Lawson thus describes it. "They use a roll, which is placed on the babe's


forehead, it being laid with, its back on a flat board, and swaddled down hard thereon, from one end of this engine to the other. The instrument is a sort of press, that is let out and in, more or less, according to the discretion of the nurse, in which they make the child's head flat. It makes the eyes stand a prodigious way asunder, and the hair hangs over the forehead like the eaves of a house, which seems very frightful."

4. THE MUSKOGEES, OR CREEKS. — These people were originally connected with the Choctaws into a single great nation; and some of the Creek tribes on the Gulf of Mexico are known to have flattened the heads of their children, although I can find no notice of the fact in any history of these tribes.

5. THE CATAWBA tribe once occupied the banks of the Santee river, some distance above its mouth. They, also, are said to have practised the custom of which we are speaking.

6. THE ATTACAPAS, Indians living on the western shore of the Mississippi, are placed by some writers in the same category.

7. THE NOOTKA-COLUMBIANS are so designated by Dr. Scouler, of Dublin, because of the affinity of their languages, customs, and physical characters. They comprehend the tribes of Quadra and Vancouver's Island, and the adjacent inlets down to the Columbia river and the northern part of New California. The practice of flattening the head is universal among these people, who thus possess the country between Salmon river, in latitude 53° 30' north, to the Umpqua river, in the latitude of 46°.

"These tribes have a great similarity in their habits, language, and appearance; and their method of flattening the head is extremely simple, and does not appear to be attended with any disagreeable consequences to the health of the child. As soon as the infant is born, the head is frequently and gently compressed with the hand, and this is continued for three or four days. The child is then placed in a box or cradle, which is rendered comfortable by spreading moss, or a kind of tow made from the bark of the cypress, over it. The occiput of the child rests on a board at the upper part of the box, and is supported by tow or moss; another board is then brought over the forehead, and tied firmly down on the head of the infant. The child is seldom taken from the cradle, and the compression is continued till it is able to walk. A child about three years old presents a most hideous appearance: the compression, acting chiefly on the forehead and occiput, reverses the natural proportion of the


head, and causes it to assume the form of a wedge. The eyeballs project very much, and the individual ever after has the eyes directed upwards."

Among these tribes, we may enumerate the Nootkans, Chenouks, Clatsaps, Killemooks, Clickitats, Kalapooyahs, and many others.

The apparatus, described by Dr. Scouler, for the purpose of producing this distortion, differs nothing (though some little in form) from the cradle brought me from Oregon by my friend the late Dr. Townsend, and figured in the Crania Americana.

8. PERUVIANS. — I have remarked that if we had no other evidence of this strange custom than the relation of travellers, we might be disposed to deny it altogether, and attribute the resulting deformities "not to art, but to some original and congenital peculiarity." Such has been the opinion of Pentland, Tiedemann, Tchudi, and Knox, respecting the Peruvian skulls of this class; and, at the time of publishing my Crania Americana, I adopted the same views. The acquisition, however, of a very extended series of crania from the Peruvian tombs caused me to change my opinion on this point.

I at first found it difficult to conceive that the original rounded skull of the Indian could be changed into this fantastic form; and was led to suppose that the latter was an artificial elongation of a head remarkable for its natural length and narrowness. I even supposed that the long-headed Peruvians were a more ancient people than the Inca tribes, and distinguished from them by their cranial configuration. In this opinion I was mistaken. Abundant means of observation and comparison have since convinced me, that all these variously-formed heads were originally of the same rounded-shape, which is characteristic of the Aboriginal race from Cape Horn to Canada, and that art alone has caused the diversities among them.

The simple forms were easily accomplished; but the very elongated, narrow, and symmetrical variety required more ingenuity. A fine series of the heads, recently sent me by my friends Mr. W. A. Foster and Dr. Oakford, now in Peru, has enabled me to decide this question conclusively.

It is evident that the forehead was pressed downwards and backwards by a compress, (probably a folded cloth,) — or sometimes by two compresses, one on each side of the frontal suture; a fact that explains the cause of the ridge which usually replaces that suture from the root of the nose to the coronal tract. To keep these compresses in place, a bandage was carried over them, from the base of the occiput over the forehead; and then, in order to confine the lateral portions of the skull, the same bandage was continued by another turn over the top of the head, immediately behind the coronal suture, probably with an intervening compress; and the bandaging was repeated upon these parts until they were immovably confined in their desired position.


Every one who is acquainted with the pliable condition of the cranial bones at birth, will readily conceive how effectually this apparatus would mould the head in the elongated or cylindrical form; for, while it prevents the forehead from rising, and the sides of the head from expanding, it allows the occipital region an entire freedom of growth; and thus, without sensibly diminishing the volume of the brain, merely forces it into a new though unnatural direction, while it preserves, at the same time, a remarkable symmetry of the whole structure. The annexed outline of one of these skulls, will further illustrate my meaning; merely premising that the course of the bandages (represented by dotted lines) is distinctly marked on the skull itself by a corresponding depression of the bony structure, excepting on the forehead, where the action of a firm compress has left a plane surface.

My matured opinion on this subject is most fully corroborated by the personal researches of M. Aleide D'Orbigny. This distinguished traveller and naturalist visited the table-land of the Andes, once inhabited by the ancient Peruvians, and from his researches I derive the following conclusive facts.

1. The descendants of the ancient Peruvians yet inhabit the land of their ancestors, and bear the name of Aymaras, which was probably their primitive designation.

2. The modern Aymaras resemble the surrounding Quichua or Peruvian nations in color, figure, features, expression, shape of the head, (which they have ceased to mould into artificial forms,) and, in fact, in every thing that relates to physical conformation and social customs. Their languages differ, but even here there is a resemblance which proves a common origin.

3. On examining the tombs of the ancient Aymaras, in the environs of the lake Titicaca, M. D'Orbigny remarked that those which contained the compressed and elongated skulls, contained also a greater number that were not flattened; whence he infers that the deformity was not natural, or characteristic of the nation, but the result of mechanical compression.

4. It was also remarked that those skulls which were flattened were uniformly those of men, while the heads of the women always retained the natural shape, — the squared or spheroidal form, which is characteristic of the American race, and especially of the Peruvians.

5. The most elongated heads were found in the largest and finest tombs; showing that deformity was a mark of distinction among these people.


6. The researches of M. D'Orbigny confirm the statements made at distant intervals of time by Pedro de Cieza, Garcilaso de la Vega, and Mr. Pentland, and prove conclusively, what I have never doubted, that these people were the architects of their own tombs and temples; and not, as some suppose, intruders who had usurped the civilization, and appropriated the ingenuity, of an antecedent and more intellectual race.

"The ancient skulls of Titicaca," observes Dr. Scouler, "do not exhibit a greater amount of deformity than the artificially flattened skulls of the Nootkans and Chenouks;" and to this fact we may add the personal observations of Cieza and Garcilaso de la Vega, and the abundant collateral testimony of Torquemada, Aguirre, and various later historians. It will hereafter be shown that the aborigines of North and South America moulded the heads of their children, for the most part, in the same unnatural and diverse forms, of which four are particularly conspicuous.

1. The conical head.

2. The symmetrically-elongated form.

3. The irregularly compressed and expanded form.

4. The quadrangular form.

Strange as these forms are, and contrary to all our preconceived ideas, they are not more so than two physiological truths that have been satisfactorily established in connexion with them; viz., that the process by which they are produced neither diminishes the natural volume of the brain, nor appreciably affects the moral or mental character of the individual.


On former occasions, when treating of the American aborigines, I have divided them into two great families, the Toltecan nations and the barbarous tribes. The latter designation is sufficiently expressive. The former one includes the demi-civilized nations of Peru, Bogota, and Mexico. This classification is manifestly arbitrary; but every attempt to separate these families into natural and subordinate groups has hitherto been signally defective. Much time and investigation will be requisite for this purpose; for which an admissible basis has been already furnished by the researches of M. D'Orbigny in South, and Mr. Gallatin in North America.

My collection embraces 410 skulls, derived from sixty-four different nations and tribes of Indians, in which the two great divisions are represented in nearly equal


proportions, as the following details will show. It is necessary to premise, however, of this number of crania, 338 is the number measured; the residue either pertaining to individuals under the prescribed age, or being so much broken as to be unavailing for this purpose.

The Toltecan family. Of 213 skulls of Mexicans and Peruvians, 201 belong to the latter people, and have been presented to me by Dr. Ruschenberger, Dr. Oakford, and Mr. William A. Foster. The latter gentleman visited, on my behalf, the cemeteries of Pisco, Pachacamac, and Arica, which have been but little used since the Spanish conquest, and contain the remains of the aboriginal inhabitants of various epochs of time.

Herrera informs us that Pachacamac was sacred to priests, nobles, and other persons of distinction; and there is ample evidence that Arica and Pisco, though free to all classes, were among the most favored cemeteries of Peru. It is of some importance to the present inquiry, that nearly one-half of this series of Peruvian crania was obtained at Pachacamac; whence the inference that they belonged to the most intellectual and cultivated portion of the Peruvian nation; for in Peru learning of every kind was an exclusive privilege of the ruling caste.

When we consider the institutions of the old Peruvians, their comparatively advanced civilization, their tombs and temples, mountain roads and monolithic gateways, together with their knowledge of certain ornamental arts, it is surprising to find that they possessed a brain no larger than the Hottentot and New Hollander, and far below that of the barbarous hordes of their own race. For on measuring 155 crania, nearly all derived from the sepulchres just mentioned, they give but 75 cubic inches for the average bulk of the brain. Of the whole number, one only attains the capacity of 101 cubic inches, and the minimum sinks to 58; the Smallest in the whole series of 641 measured crania. It is important further to remark, that the sexes are nearly equally represented; viz., 80 men and 75 women.

1. THE MEXICANS. — It is customary to regard Mexico as the primitive hive of the Toltecan race, and consequently the centre of the indigenous civilization of this continent. And such appears to be the fact, provided Central America is included in Mexico. From these regions were probably derived the arts and institutions of Bogota and Peru, as well as those of the ancient valley of the Mississippi; but whether the latter preceded or followed in the order of development is yet an unsettled question. But a strikingly cognate relation, mental, moral, and physical, appears to have characterized all these nations, which are in turn blended by imperceptible degrees with the surrounding barbarous tribes.

The occupation of Mexico by successive though affiliated races, renders it difficult and almost impossible to designate the true Toltecan crania, excepting in the instance


of six skulls most obligingly sent me by Don Gomez de la Cortina, of the city of Mexico, and a seventh for which I am indebted to Baron Von Gerolt. Of fifteen others my information is less precise; yet the circumstances under which they were obtained seem to warrant their being classed in the Toltecan series.

The largest of these crania measures 92 cubic inches; the smallest 67; and the mean of them all is 79, or five cubic inches above the Peruvian average. The proportion of male and female skulls is 12 to 10.

2. THE BARBAROUS TRIBES. — The demi-civilized communities, as we have just remarked, were hemmed in by savage tribes. Garcilaso de la Vega, in former times, and D'Orbigny and Von Tchudi in our own day, have given a vivid picture of the ferocious hordes that skirt the Peruvians on the East. Thus also Mexico continues to suffer from the incursions of the Apaches and Comanches — people who personify the remorseless demon of cruelty.

The skulls in my possession of this series have been collected over the vast region extending from Canada to Auracania, and from ocean to ocean; and I include among them all the skulls from the tumuli of the Valley of the Mississippi and other parts of North America. These remains correspond so entirely with those of the Nomadic Indians that I have not been able to separate them with any practical purpose in an inquiry like the present. The aborigines of the present day continue to bury their dead in the old mounds; and when we consider the long period of time that must have elapsed since the real mound-builders took their departure or became extinct, we can hardly expect to find and much less to identify their remains. It is sufficient to add that every skull I have yet seen from the mounds, caves, and graves of this country, conforms in all its essential characters to the typical form of the American race.

Of 211 crania derived from the various sources enumerated in this section, 161 have been measured, with the following results; the largest cranium gives 104 cubic inches, the smallest 70; and the mean of them all is 84. There is a disparity, however, in the male and female heads, for the former are 96 in number, the latter only 65.

We have here the surprising fact that the brain of the Indian in his savage state is far larger than that of the old demi-civilized Peruvian, or of the ancient Mexican tribes. How are we to explain this remarkable disparity between civilization and barbarism? The largest Peruvian brain measures 101 cubic inches; an untamed Shawnee rises to 104; and the average difference between the Peruvian and the savage is nine cubic inches in favor of the latter. Something may be attributed to a primitive difference of stock; but more, perhaps, to the contrasted activity of the brain in the two races.

We know that the government of the Incas was of the kind called paternal, and their subjects, in the moral and intellectual sense, were children, who seem neither to


have thought nor acted except at the dictation of a master. Theirs was an absolute obedience that knew no limit. Like the Bengalees, they made good soldiers in their native wars, not from any principle of valour, but from the mere sense of passive obedience to their superiors.

But the condition of the savage is wholly different. His life is a sleepless vigilance, a perpetual stratagem; and his brain, always in a state of activity, should be larger than that of the docile Peruvian, even though it ceased to grow after adult age. The indomitable barbarians who yet inhabit the base of the Andes on the eastern margin of Peru, may yet prove to have a much larger brain than their feebler neighbors, whose remains we have examined from the graves of Pachacamac, Pisco, and Arica.

If, in conclusion of this part of our subject, we consider the collective races of America, civilized and savage, we shall find, as shown in the TABLE, that the average volume of the brain, as measured in the whole series of 338 crania, is only 79 cubic inches.

II. Admeasurements of the Crania of the Principal Groups of Indians of the United States.

By J. S. Phillips.

THE completion of the preceding paper having been prevented by the untimely death of its lamented author, at the instance of Mr. Schoolcraft, the following table has been compiled from the measurements registered in Dr. Morton's manuscript catalogue of his collection, together with those of the crania brought by the United States Exploring Expedition, and some others in the Morton collection, now first measured to complete this table, which contains the results of the measurement of the facial angle and internal capacity of every accessible Indian cranium known to the author.

This table has been arranged in Races, grouped according to affiliation of language, as pointed out by Mr. S., and the resulting averages present a number of facts which appear to be well worthy of notice.

FACIAL ANGLE. — This measurement varies so little in this extensive series, that the greater number would be found to range within a very few degrees of the common average, 761 degrees; the lowest in the series being 70, and the highest 86 degrees; there not being in the whole number more than 6 or 7 crania over 80°, and very few below 73°. The average angle of the different great groups is strikingly similar, scarcely any of them varying from, the common average more than 12/3 degrees; from all which it may be assumed that the average facial angle of the barbarous tribes of North America is 762/3 degrees. (The crania artificially moulded are not included in this average.)


INTERNAL CAPACITY. — While the facial angle in the different groups varies so little from the common average, we find the measure of the internal capacity differing very materially from the mean.

Hitherto our aborigines have been only divided into the barbarous and semi-barbarous, or into some similar classification of no more value in ethnology. This is perhaps the first attempt to group them, on a large scale, into families according to language; and the result of the measurement of the volume of the brain is strikingly in accordance with the ascertained character of the different groups thus constituted.


The number of crania of this interesting group that could be obtained for measurement was but ten; yet in this small number most of the important tribes are represented. The average internal capacity of the cranium in this group is about 8½ inches higher than in the lowest types, and 4½ inches higher than the average; being 88½ cubic inches. This result is strikingly in keeping with the fact, that they were so completely the master-spirits of the land, that at the time of the first settlement of this country by the white race, they were so rapidly subduing the other tribes and nations around them, that if their career of conquest had not been cut short" by the Anglo-Saxon predominance, they bid fair to have conquered all within their reach.


These two groups give the same average internal capacity, viz. 83¾ inches, exactly the mean, while the range of measurements does not vary very much in the two groups, extending from about 70 to 100 cubic inches.

The average internal capacity of the cranium of these two races, approaching so nearly the common average, agrees well with their character, they both presenting a fair medium specimen of the barbarous tribes of North America.


The tribes grouped together under this name average 1¼ cubic inches higher than the two last, viz. 85 inches; and these appear to possess more force of character and more of the untameable violence which forms the most characteristic feature in our barbarous tribes.



The Shoshonees exhibit the same volume of brain with the Oregonians, and though not affiliated by language, are of a grade not much, if any, superior to them.


The lowest measurements of the internal capacity occur among the tribes west of the Rocky Mountains, the average being only 80¾ cubic inches, and the artificially compressed crania 80 inches; and this small difference may be owing to the small number of heads that have been measured not giving a fair average.

These people are known to be the lowest type of all the North American tribes, and the volume of the brain, about 4 inches less than the average, and 8 inches less than the Iroquois, is strictly in accordance with their degraded character.

Plates 61 and 68 furnish fair specimens of the unaltered crania of the Oregonian group. The similarity of outline between Plate 61, a Chenook, and Plate 62, a Winnebago, is very striking.

It is also remarkable that no effect of consequence should be produced on the volume of brain by a pressure capable of so greatly distorting its bony case.

The average volume of the brain in the barbarous tribes is shown to be from 83½ to 84 cubic inches, while that in the Mexicans is but 79, and in the Peruvians only 75; thus exhibiting the apparent anomaly of barbarous and uncivilizable tribes possessing larger brains than races capable of considerable progress in civilization.

This discrepancy deserves more investigation than time permits at present; but the following views of the subject may make it appear less anomalous.

The prevailing features in the character of the North American savage are, stoicism, a severe cruelty, excessive watchfulness, and that coarse brutality which results from the entire preponderance of the animal propensities. These so outweigh the intellectual portion of the character, that it is completely subordinate, making the Indian what we see him, a most unintellectual and uncivilizable man.

The intellectual lobe of the brain of these people, if not borne down by such overpowering animal propensities and passions, would doubtless have been capable of much greater efforts than any we are acquainted with, and have enabled these barbarous tribes to make some progress in civilization. This appears to be the cerebral difference between the Mexicans and Peruvians on the one hand, and the barbarous tribes of North America on the other.


The intellectual lobe of the brain in the two former is at least as large as in the latter, the difference in volume being chiefly confined to the occipital and basal portions of the encephalon; so that the intellectual and moral qualities of the Mexicans and Peruvians (at least as large if not larger than those of the other group) are left more free to act, being not so subordinate to the propensities and violent passions.

This view of the subject is in accordance with the history of these two divisions, Barbarous and Civilizable.

When the former were assailed by the European settlers they fought desperately, but rather with the cunning and ferocity of the lower animals than with the system and courage of men; they could not be subjugated, and were either exterminated, or continued to retire into the forest, when they could no longer maintain their ground. Had their intellect been in proportion to their other qualities, they would have been most formidable enemies.

With the Mexicans and Peruvians, the case has been the very reverse. The original inhabitants of Mexico were entirely subjugated by the Aztecs, who appear to have been a small tribe in comparison with the Mexicans; and then they were all conquered and completely enslaved by a mere handful of Spaniards; although the Mexicans had the advantage over the barbarous tribes of concerted action, some discipline, and preparation, in which the latter were greatly deficient.

The Mexicans, with smaller brains, were evidently inferior in resolution, in attack and defence, and the more manly traits of character, to the barbarous races, who contested every inch of ground until they were entirely outnumbered.

And at the present time, the Camanches and Apaches, though a part of the great Shoshonee division, one of the lowest of the races of North America, are continually plundering and destroying the Indians of northern Mexico, who scarcely attempt resistance.

Viewed in this light, the apparent contradiction of a race with a smaller brain being superior to tribes with larger brains is so far explained, that the volume and distribution of their respective brains appears to be in accordance with such facts in their history as have come to our knowledge.


  No. of crania measured. Average facial angle. Average internal capacity.
OREGONIANS. unaltered by art.
Chenook 4 79 80
From Columbia river 10 76 80
Average ...... 77½ 80
Two lowest in series ...... 70, 74 67, 72
Two highest in series ...... 80, 80 91, 95
CRANIA altered by art,
From Oregon and California 15 71½ 80
Two lowest in series ...... 66, 67 71, 72
Two highest in series ...... 77, 77½ 86, 91
Lowest measurements ...... 74 72
Highest measurements ...... 80 91
Chippewa 2 78½ 91
Cotonay 2 77 85
Illinois 1 82 broken
Lenape 3 77½ 74½
Massasauga 1 76 79½
Minsi 1 78 broken
Menomonee 8 75½ 84
Miami 3 76 89
Natick 4 76 85
Naumkeag 2 80 79½
Narragansett 9 75 83
Ottigamie 4 81 92
Ottawa 4 72 80½
Pottawatomie 2 78 92
Quinipiac 1 70 78
Sauk 2 82 91
Shawnee 1 78 72
Average ...... 77 83¾
Two lowest in series ...... 70, 72 71, 72
Two highest in series ...... 84, 86 95, 102
Cherokee 2 75½ 87
Choctaw 1 74 79
Euchee 1 75 84
Tlascalan [Aztec] 1 75 84
Muskogee 3 74 90
Miccosaukie 1 74 74
Seminole 9 76½ 88½
Average ...... 75 83¾
Two lowest in series ...... 72, 74 74, 79
Two highest in series ...... 81, 82 97, 97
Assineboin 1 79 101
Dacota 1 77 90
Otomie 4 74½ 78
Minetari 4 77 86½
Mandan 4 74 80½
Osage 2 78 87
Otoe 3 74½ 86
Pawnee 2 76½ 78½
Rickaree 3 80 78
Winnebago 2 79 89
Average ...... 77 85
Two lowest in series ...... 70, 71 76, 76
Two highest in series ...... 80, 83 94, 101
Cayuga 1 78 95
Huron 2 74½ 81
Iroquois 2 74 96
Mingo 1 77 80
Mohawk 3 73 84
Oneida 1 74 95
Average ...... 75 88½
Two lowest in series ........ ...... 70, 73 77, 80
Two highest in series ....... ...... 77, 78 95, 102½
Oregonian 14 77½ 80
Crania altered by art 15 71½ 80
Shoshonees 4 76½ 81
Algonquin 50 77 83¾
Appalachian 18 77 83¾
Dacota 26 77 85
Iroquois 10 75 88½
Average of the whole ...... 762/3 831/3

The average of 762/3 degrees facial angle is taken, excluding the flat heads. The three lowest types being measured separately for illustration, when two at least of them should be united for the common average, makes the average lower than it really is; and as Dr. Morton's average was taken without including so many of these lower types, he not having measured the crania, the common average may be safely fixed at 83½ to 84 cubic inches.


IX. Language.



I. Indian Languages of the United States. By H. R. Schoolcraft.
II. Plan of Thought of the American Languages. By Dr. Francis Leiher.
III. Essay on the Grammatical Structure of the Algonquin Language. By H. R. Schoolcraft.
IV. Remarks on the Principles of the Cherokee Language. By Rev. S. N. Worcester.
V. Reply to Philological Inquiries in relation to the Ojibwa Language of Lake Superior.
By Rev. Sherman Hall.
VI. Vocabularies.

I. Algonquin Group: —
1. Ojibwa of Sault Ste Marie.
2. Ojibwa of Grand Traverse Bay.
3. Ojibwa of Saginaw.
4. Ojibwa of Michilimackinac.
b. Miami.
c. Menomonee.
d. Shawnee.
e. Delaware. Sub-division —
Natic, or Massachusetts dialect. Vol. I., p. 288.

II. Iroquois Group: —
a. Mohawk.
b. Oneida.
c. Onondaga.
d. Cayuga.
e. Seneca.
f. Tuscarora.
g. Wyandot.

III. Appalachian Group: —
a. Muscogee East.
Muscogee West.
b. Choctaw.
c. Seminole.


IV. Dacota Group: —
a. Dacota.
b. Winnebago.
c. Iowa.
d. Osage.

V. Shoshonee Group: —
a. Comanchee.
Miscellaneous Vocabularies: —
Satsika, or Blackfeet.
Cushna. California.
Costanos. California.
Diegunos. Lower California, ante, p. 104.
Cuchan or Yuma. Rio Colorado, ante, p. 118.
Cheyenne, or Chawai.
Snake. Vol. L, p. 216.

I. Indian Languages of the United States.

No topic has, from the first, excited a deeper curiosity among the learned than the American languages. The discussion of their principles has, however, proceeded generally from writers of theoretical views, who, however imbued with the true spirit of philosophy and learning, have not themselves been practically acquainted with the dialects, and have, moreover, been limited to narrow or imprecise examples. A people who are perpetually speaking of things in their concrete and gross relations, could not be expected to discourse analytically, or to utter elementary names or phrases; nor could great certainty of forms be relied on, when it is known that the vocabularies and examples of these forest tongues have been committed to paper either by travellers wholly or measurably ignorant of the languages, or else by native interpreters, who, however well-versed with the aboriginal tongues, have yet been too ignorant of the principles of grammatical structure to give the precise equivalent of words in English, French, Spanish, or German, — the four principal modern languages in which, during the settlement of America, it has been attempted.

The attention of the author was first called to this particular, and the subject of the languages generally, in 1822, on his entering the Indian country in an official capacity, when he commenced, with excellent interpreters, the study of the Algonquin and its dialects; and he soon felt a zeal in the pursuit, and in the philosophy of languages generally, which has absorbed much of his time.


In 1847, efforts were made, under the auspices of the government, to extend these inquiries to other groups of the leading stocks of the United States. Several valuable memoirs have been received, in answer to this requisition, from persons in various quarters of the United States, who have made the Indian languages their study; and a large collection of original vocabularies, and numerical and geographical terms, has been made.

A commencement to put these philological records in print, both personal and communicated, is made in the present volume, which will be continued in the future parts of these inquiries, as time and convenience will permit: the topic itself being one which, more than any other, appears suited to throw light on the obscure origin and history of the tribes. Of the part of these investigations which are personal, it is proper to add, that none of the observations on the Algonquin and its dialects have, heretofore, been communicated, excepting the observations on the grammatical structure of the Chippewa noun, which were translated by Mr. Duponceau for the National Institute of France, I think, in 1833; also some examples which were subsequently inserted in the North American Review. These have received commendations which were decided enough to flatter the highest ambition, had the latter been limited to a casual labor, or the commendations themselves proceeded from individuals who had not lacked the advantages of personal inquiry into the subject on the spot.

Nothing could, apparently, be farther removed from the analytical class of languages than the various dialects spoken by the American Indians; who invariably express their ideas of objects and actions precisely as they are presented to their eyes and ears, that is, in their compound associations. A person and an act are ever associated, in their forms of syntax, with the object of the action. To love and to hate are, therefore, never heard in their analytical forms. This combination of the action of the speaker with the objects is universal. The substantive, which appears to have been generally anterior in age to the verb, comes under the same rule as the verb; and the adjective, which is required to perform the same office of limitation, is also, within its range, characterized by this transitive principle.

It will be sufficient to state this principle of the Indian syntax, to denote a peculiar plan of thought, to which attention has been called. It appears to be the result, in


the mind, of a crude and primitive age. Analysis, generalization, refinement, come from matured reflection. The mind that criticises, adopts or rejects. Redundancies are dropped, defects supplied, and elegancies introduced, as languages are applied to letters, arts, and sciences. The Indian, on the contrary, appears to have adhered to his original modes of distinction; piling up syllable on syllable, till his forms are infinitely multiplied, and his actual vocabulary has become a formidable mass of aggregated sounds. The antiquity of the race derives, indeed, a strong support from this consideration of the originality of grammatical structure.

That the plan itself is homogenous — that it proceeds from a peculiar view of the use of words, in their concrete forms, and from a synthesis of the same kind and power, appears to me to be a fact established by investigation. The attempt is, perpetually, to speak of objects in groups. It is a simple plan of thought, however curiously carried out, and every other purpose is made to give way to it. There are heaps of syllables clustered, as it were, on a polysyllabic stem, but nothing diverse, in its grammatical ratiocination — or that leads the mind to doubt the oneness of its synthesis, however varied the mode of accomplishing its ends, or crude and redundant in some of its forms. The development of this plan may be said to be recondite, creating the idea of many plans of thought; but there is, in fact, only one generic scheme, tending to denote compound expression. It is a fixed theory of language, built on radices, which have the singular property of retaining the meaning of their original, incremental syllables or vowelic meanings, under every varied aspect of the compounds. Not only pronouns, verbs, and substantives, are thus denoted and detected by the etymologist, but adjectives and prepositions are at once identified, and the fragments of words are perceived to be employed as the common woof or filling of the primitive grammatical web. The term "encapsulated" structure, which is employed by an acute and learned correspondent, in one of the following papers, conveys, in a striking and happy manner, the mode of compound structure which the words assume. They are, indeed, clustered or botryoidal — thought exfoliating thought, as capsule within capsule or box within box.

Gesenius says "that languages, in their earlier epochs and, as it were, in their youthful vigor, generally exhibit a strong tendency to the development of forms; but, in their later periods, this tendency continually diminishes in force, and it becomes necessary to resort to the constructions of syntax." It is also to be inferred, that the use of the common gender — he, as denoting he and she — of the same word for young man and young woman, as it is found in the Pentateuch, is an indication of the antiquity and crudity of early languages, particularly of those of the Semitic stock.

It will not escape the observer, that this anti-sexual character of the Indian


pronoun he, and the exact identity of the words for younger brother and younger sister, is, at this day, a strong peculiarity of all the groups of Indian languages of the United States, which have been examined, except the Iroquois, which has duplicate forms for these terms, founded on the distinction of sex; this sonorous tongue has, also, the advantage of a dual — two refinements, which entitle it to be distinguished as the Greek of our barbarous tongues.

From the examination of vocabularies and grammatical forms, the tribes who occupied the United States east of the Rocky Mountains, at the respective eras of the discovery, may be grouped into seven principal ethnological families, namely:

1. Algonquins.
2. Iroquois.
3. Appalachians.
4. Dacotas.
5. Shoshonees.
6. Achalaques (Cherokees.)
7. Natchez.

This classification does not include the small tribes of Texas, who may be, provisionally, referred to as Texanos. The leading stock of that State — the Nauni, or Comanche, is Shoshonee, belonging to the same group as the Snakes of the Rocky Mountains and their congeners. Neither does it embrace the small tribe of the Chawai, better known as Cheyennes, — a people who originated north of the sources of the Mississippi, — who appear, by their numerals and some imperfect vocabularies, to have claims to independent consideration; nor the Catawbas and Woccons. From partial vocabularies furnished the late Mr. Gallatin, some years since, by traders at Fort Union on the Missouri, which are however not fully sustained by a vocabulary of Mr. Moncrevie, herewith submitted, the large tribe of the Black-feet are, to our surprise, denoted to be, although remotely, of the Algonquin stock; while their character, their alleged ferocity, and their cranial indices, given herewith in VIII. A., far more, assimilate them to the Dacota, or most barbarous family of the Prairie tribes.

The Catawbas have heretofore occupied an anomalous position in our Indian languages, and have, apparently, offered grounds for a separate group. It appears, however, from a manuscript document, recently obtained by Mr. Thomas from the Office of the Secretary of State of South Carolina, that the tribe originated in the north, and is not to be considered indigenous to that State. They fled, according to this authority, from the region of the lakes, under the fury of their enemies; and, after entering into a league with the Cherokees, encountered, together with that tribe, the undying hatred of the Iroquois.

We have no vocabulary of the ancient Eries; but it is inferable, from the French missionary records, that they were a cognate tribe of the Iroquois group — that they formed a "neutrality," as between the French and Algonquins, on the one side, and


the Iroquois on the other; that this Erie league embraced several other tribes, as the Andastes, Kakwas, &c.; and that, when the final struggle came, they fell, or fled, and disappeared, before the conquering power of the more perfectly confederated and predominating Iroquois. The hint, thus furnished by this document, for making a philological inquiry, may throw light on this obscure point of our Indian history. No definite affirmation can be made respecting it, however, and the language cannot, consequently, be grouped, until this prior investigation has been made.

From traditions recently recorded by Mr. Pickett, the Cherokees, whose traditions have heretofore been silent as to their origin, appear to have anciently dwelt in the north, probably higher up the Mississippi Valley, whence they would seem to have been expelled and replaced by the Allegans or Iroquois. But whatever was their ancient history, their language, as at present understood, vindicates its claim to a peculiarity in its scheme of vowels and consonants, while its structure coincides, generally, with the American aboriginal plan of thought. It uses the fragmentary pronouns in connexion with the verbs; one of the striking peculiarities of this class of language.

The term "Mobilian" was needlessly, and with a lamentable, but, (considering the epoch,) excusable ignorance of the languages, introduced by Du Pratz, and it may be summarily disposed of. The Mobilians of this writer were pure Choctaws. The Chickasaws are of the same stock. There is no evidence whatever, that the Alabamas spoke any but a dialect of the same generic language. A similar remark applies, with equal force, to the numerous sub-tribes and bands, who are referred to by various names in this southern area; but who all eventually fell into either the Appalachian or Muscogee sub-group of languages, the affinities between which permit them to be all merged under the general name of Appalachians.

Under this term must also be included the Yamases of South Carolina; and perhaps, though with less probability, some others of the ancient southern coast tribes of that State. It is uncertain whether the term Chickorean, which was applied by early navigators to the tribes of the northern Georgia and Carolina Atlantic coasts, had respect to a language differing from the known Cherokee and "Apalachites" or Muscogee generally. And if the Catawbas be withdrawn from the proposed family, agreeably to a preceding observation, there is no element to found this group upon, unless we are compelled to do so by examples of a peculiar character and idiom in the extinct dialects of the Cheraws, Waxsaws, and Kershaws. Admitting the radices of Cher, Ker, and Wax, in these words, to be characteristic of peculiar traits, the termination in aw is clearly an Algonquin syllable, and carries the idea of people. And we should be limited, in the inquiries, to the differing bands of the Santees, Oconees, Waterees, and Pedees.


Another question in the classification of our Indian languages arises from the two small tribes of the Natchez and Utchees, the remnants of which have coalesced with the Muskogees. We may suppose that there was some ancient alliance, to lead their minds to the act; if not, some remote affinity; but, in the present state of our inquiries, they must be separately grouped.

The languages of New Mexico, California, and Oregon, require several new groups; but the labour cannot be satisfactorily attempted until our collection of vocabularies and grammars is more complete.


II. Plan of Thought of the American Languages.

By Francis Leiber, LL.D, MEM. OF THE FR. INST.

The perceptive organs carry specific images — images of things in all their thousand, yet, for the single case, peculiarly combined relations, to the mind. We never see a man, or a horse, but we see a man with brown hair, calm expression, sitting, one leg over the other, reading, black pants, near a sopha, &c., &c.; or a specific horse so or so, in its thousand relations to the world around. Now it is clear, that if each thing in all its individual relations, and each action with all its peculiarities, had its own name, or its own word, no language would be possible, because the object of language is to arrive, by skilful combinations of known signs, at the expression of something unknown to the hearer, (the idea to be conveyed); but, in the case that I suppose, each thing and action would have its own word; and as each singular thing or precise action has never existed before, (for I still speak of totalities,) the hearer could not know this word. Remember that nothing in the world is in one moment the same it was the moment before, if we speak, as I now do, of all relations. A piece of rock will be shone upon by the sun, or rained upon, or looked upon by me or by you, and in each case that rock and its totality is another; the whole, as comprehended by the eye as one thing, is a different thing every moment. In one word, the world consists of realities, and not abstractions; but realities are always individualized entities. Abstraction therefore becomes necessary for the very possibility of language. If I say, the horse in my stable is brown, I put together nothing but abstractions, in order to entrench the idea or thing to be expressed. Horse, stable, brown, is, my, are all abstractions. I never saw brown, or existence, or my, or stable, but I have seen millions of brown things, thousands of individual horses, many stables, have often thought of things belonging to me, and am all the time perceiving things that are, exist, — I am surrounded by existences, and am myself one.

On the other hand, imagine that this process of abstraction is carried on ad infinitum. We have the word riding. This is an abstraction, still it means the comprehensive idea of locomotion on the back of an animal. The French have no such word, and must say monter א cheval. Suppose they had no word for cheval, but were obliged to say the neighing animal; suppose they had no word for neighing, nor for animal, but were obliged to describe neighing, and to say for animal, breathing thing; suppose no separate words existed for either, but that you must put together other words more


generalizing still to arrive at the ideas of thing-breathing, don't you see that again language would be reduced to zero, to nothing, to an impossibility, as much as in the previous case of infinite individualization? All language, therefore, plays between these two poles; every language inclines more to the one or the other; all human speech requires the one and the other. Tone, vividness, energy, brevity, point-blank shots with words, require individualizing words, words which throw a volume of associated ideas, an idea with a hundred adjunct relations, like a shell shot into the soul of the hearer. Refinement, definition, intentional dilution, transparency, philosophical disquisition, on the other hand, require generalizing words.

When I became acquainted with the Indian languages, I was led to this whole meditation, and I found that two terms were necessary to indicate these two different characters. I found that the Indians often say in one word that for which we require ten; I then reflected that the Greek language, especially its verb, frequently does the same; I remembered that the Sanscrit has the same tendency with our Indian languages, that is, to form or to use single words which to us appear like clusters of grapes. On the other hand, I saw that the French often are obliged to use half a dozen of words where we require but one. I discovered, moreover, that as man begins with perceiving totalities, and then generalizes in his mind, so do children and early nations show the strongest tendency to form and use individualizing words — bunch words, words which, indeed, express a main idea, but along with it a hundred other ideas, which, so long as you wish to express that one idea with those hundred adjunct ideas, are excellent, — as excellent as a carpenter's word, e. g., adze, but which becomes cumbersome and ruinous so soon as you wish to express something more general, as adze would be, were there no such words as instrument, sharp-tool, handle, flat, &c., &c., and you were still obliged, each time that you wished to express the idea of hatchet, to use the term adze. These adhesions are the greatest trouble to our missionaries.

I found that William von Humboldt called these bunch words of the Indians agglutinations (in-gluings), and Duponceau polysynthetic (many compound): but I saw, at once, that this was beginning at the wrong end; for these names indicate that that which has been separated is put together, as if man began with analysis, while, in fact, he ends with it. And I saw, moreover, that there are three different kinds of bunch words. This very word has the same defect, but you will let it pass for the present. I use it merely epistolarily or conversationally. There are such words which express what now to us expresses a bunch of ideas by one striking word; others, by a variety of inflections, re-duplications, changes of vowels, and other transmutations; and others, again, which express clusters of ideas by real synthesis, with more or less changes of the elements. For all these three classes I wanted one term, and I formed the word holophrastic, from foreign text, undivided, entire, and foreign text, to say, express, utter forth. For the opposite, I selected the term analytical. Holophrastic and analytical, used in this


connexion, are, of course, but relative terms. The question is about more or less. No language, as I have shown, can be wholly holophrastic, none wholly analytical; but I believe men like yourselves will sustain me, when I say that these, or any similar ones, were necessary in general philology, and that neither agglutination nor polvsynthesis expressed what we needed to express.

You have seen those sets of boxes, where one is put into another, to save room in transposing them. These sets furnish indeed the image of some words of the American Indians, or of Sanscrit. There is occasionally a real process of en-capsulation (of boxing box within box) — a term which would in fact appear better to me than agglutination, because the latter indicates merely an increment from without which is not always the case by any means. But whether we take en-capsulation, (from capsula, a box, or little box,) or agglutination or polysynthesis, we still cannot dispense with a term which refers to the meaning of the word, considered in a philosophical point of view, and not to the purely etymological process, which is but a means, and a late one, to indicate the cluster-thought by the holophrastic word. I say a late one; because, before you agglutinate or en-capsulate, you must have the separate elements, and these elements are the results of analysis or generalization, while holophrasm is the beginning. Were it not so, we would have absolute terms for abstractions or generalities, as direct for the meaning they strive to convey as rub-a-dub is for drumming, or moaning for what it signifies, or flash for sudden bright-passing light; while the fact is that all terms for abstractions are faded metaphors, and these generally express but very lamely what they are intended to convey — so much so, that there is no absolute language except in mathematics; I mean absolute so far as the thought to be expressed is concerned. As to the etymology of mathematical terms, they are likewise but faded metaphors, or terms stripped of their original physical meaning.

Once more, holophrasm relates to the great logic of the human mind cast into utterance; en-capsulation, on the other hand, to the grammar only.

One of the leading topics of Bradford's American Antiquities is the hypothesis that the American red race is of Mongolian origin, and reached this continent by the islands of the Pacific. He adduces many facts in support of this supposition, sufficient to arrest the attention of the reflecting reader. Among other things he mentions the great grammatical similarity of all American idioms, and those spoken by the Islanders of the South Pacific Ocean. It is with regard to this point that I believe an additional fact may be mentioned.

In a letter to the Honorable Albert Gallatin on the Study of the Ancient Languages, printed about six years ago in the Southern Literary Messenger, then published by Mr. White in Richmond, Virginia, I said that the American languages distinguished


themselves, among other things, by a strong prevalence of holophrastic words, as I took the liberty of calling them. I know that holophrastic is a relative term, yet when we apply it to such words which express an assemblage of ideas, or a connexion of two ideas, which must appear even to the least analytic or generalizing mind as different ideas, or which in very many cases express by one word, ideas, which nevertheless the same language in other cases expresses by different words, the term holophrastic will be of sufficient distinctness to divide languages into holophrastic and analytical ones. If you should think it worth your while to read the letter to Mr. Gallatin, you will find the reason why I preferred to call those words holophrastic, and have not followed Mr. William de Humboldt, who called a part of them at least agglutinated words.

Now, we do not only find the holophrastic character prevailing in our Indian languages, as may be seen from a very neat article written by my friend Mr. John Pickering of Boston, for the sixth volume of my Americana, but also in the languages of the Islands of the Indian Archipelago. In Holden's Narrative, Boston, 1836, page 135, et seq., we find for instance that, in the language of Lord North's Island, the numeral one is yaht; if, however, they count cocoanuts, one is soo; and if they count fish, one is expressed by the word seemnl.

Going farther back, to Asia, we find in Father Sangermano's Description of the Burmese Empire, translated by William Tandy, D. D., and published by the London Oriental Translation Fund, Rome, 1833, on page 139, instances of the holophrastic character of the Burmese language, almost identical with those which Mr. Pickering gives on page 589, of vol. vi. of the Americana, of the Cherokee and many other American idioms. Sangermano says : "So that for to wash the hands they use one word; but to wash the face requires another; the word for to wash linen with soap is different from the one signifying to wash it simply with water; and to wash the body, the dishes, &c., are all different phrases, each expressing the action to wash by a different verb."

I am well aware that the Sanscrit, and possibly all very ancient languages, express a great variety of modifications of the original idea — all of which we express by several words — by one word only, as indeed the Greek and Latin verbs alone furnish numerous examples; but it is to be observed that these words, which express what appears to our analytic minds a whole cluster of ideas, are either compounds or agglutinations, or modifications of the original idea expressed by grammatical modifications of the original word, and moreover relate to meanings modified by the additional ideas of number, degree, time, action, condition, intensity, repetition, desire, imprecation, relation, &c.; (in general they relate to what is called in philosophy the categos,) but not to the connexion of two or more ideas of distinct objects.

It has appeared to me that this common feature of all these languages, which nevertheless is so peculiar, may deserve attention and invite farther research.


III. An Essay on the Grammatical Structure of the Algonquin Language.




§ 1. Introductory Remarks: Progress of Inquiry respecting the Study of the American Languages: Scheme of Annotation.

§ 2. Observations on the Substantive — its Changes and Inflections.

§ 3. Further remarks on the character and flexibility of the Substantive.

§ 4. Nature and Principles of the Adjective — its pseudo-substantive character and varied forms.

§ 5. Principles of the Pronoun — its coalescent character and different forms.

§ 6. The Verb — its fixed classes of conjugation, adaptiveness, and tendency to absorb, in its principles of forming compounds, all the other parts of speech.

§ 7. Further considerations on the extreme flexibility of the Verb, and its capacities for expressing the various wants and phenomena of the barbarous state.

§ 8. Non-existence of auxiliary Verbs. Considerations on the existence of a substantive-verb in the Algonquin. Distinctions which characterize the Language. Duplicate radices to express the classes of matter and being.




IT is within late years only, that the discussion of the American languages has excited the fixed attention of Americans. The causes of this neglect it would be foreign to my purpose to detail; but it is believed they may be sufficiently found in the political necessities which have incessantly absorbed the public attention from the first planting of the colonies, to the close of the American Revolution, and up to the commencement of the 19th century. The great work of reclaiming a wilderness; of protecting feeble and extended settlements from the effects of Indian wars; and the great practical duties of providing and establishing a government on solid foundations, were calculated to give a strictly utilitarian character to the intellectual exertions of those early times, which left but little room for the investigation of abstract branches of science, or the cultivation of belle lettres. Other reasons may have existed; but these causes may be said to have abated in their force, with the first quarter of the present century; and he must have been an indifferent observer of the progress of philological inquiries within late years, on this side of the Atlantic, who has not


perceived that the current of intellectualization on this topic is greatly changed, and is rapidly changing.

Philology is not, perhaps, one of the earliest topics to engage the researches, either of a fixed or expatriated people. And the interest which has been recently excited at home in a few minds, on the aboriginal languages of this continent, must be attributed to the unusual attractions which they present, as new problems of the mode of thought. Those individuals who have directed their inquiries most successfully to the subject, have manifestly labored under great disadvantages, from the paucity and incompleteness of their materials; the vague and unsatisfactory nature of some of them, and the great want of uniformity in the orthography, and consequently general comparative value of all. Under these adverse circumstances, it is less a matter of surprise, that, without such adequate data, so little has been done towards the determination and classification of the Indian languages, as that, with so slender an accumulation of facts, any valuable results at all should have been obtained.

It is rather, therefore, to supply, as far as may be, some of the deficiencies referred to, by contributing to the stock of materials for generalization, than to apply the results to the general purposes of philology, (for which great experience and consideration are required,) that these remarks are commenced. And it is felt, that even in this task, some apology may be deemed necessary for entering on a topic, which, it may be thought, others are more eminently qualified to discuss. It is no want of respect for the talents of men removed from the sphere of personal observation upon Indian manners and languages; nor is it the want of having duly estimated the labor, the caution, learning, and peculiar difficulties which a successful investigation of the subject presupposes, that induces the writer to lay the present papers before the public.

He may plead, in his behalf, the force of circumstances, which, during a period of upwards of thirty years, have placed him in the extreme solitude of the forest, in contact with the aborigines, under auspices extremely favorable to the acquisition of their languages, and to the collection and examination of facts and materials elucidating their history and condition, past, and present. The number of journeys which he has performed through the portions of country, embracing in longitude the whole extent of the Mississippi Valley, and the continental region to the Rocky Mountains and the Itasca summit; the public treaties he has attended and made, under the auspices of the United States government, with the Indian tribes, and the situation he has filled as the official organ of communication between the government and the Indians on the northwestern frontiers, have opened sources of information of which the assertion may be ventured, it is believed, without presumption, that he has neither wanted opportunies, disposition, nor assiduity to avail himself.

The inquiries which have been addressed to him, while on the frontiers, by distinguished and learned individuals, who have made the Indian languages a study, or by persons of enlarged views in the service of the United States government, and


the memoirs and occasional papers which he has drawn up to satisfy these inquiries, have sometimes served to inspire fresh ardor, or to direct it to new objects. Under every aspect, the subject has been interesting. It has, at various periods, while it has stimulated learning, furnished the hope of discovery, the charm of novelty, and the amusement of solitude.

Travel has enabled him to test his remarks at various points, to compare one idiom with another, and to perceive analogies in the etymology and syntax of a very considerable number of dialects and languages, which induce a belief that the parent languages in the United States are few and quite analogous in their general principles.

In the several narratives and accounts of travels which he has published, he has refrained, in a great degree, from the discussion of the subject. While geography, geology, and natural history were engrossing topics, it did not appear that the Indian languages could be advantageously treated; and, in casting a retrospect over the list of travellers who had visited the frontiers, it was evident that they had not furnished the highest models for imitation. Besides, the topic had none of the elements of general popularity, and, though deeply interesting to a few minds, it wall be no injustice to American readers, to say, that this interest was limited:

I have deemed this much necessary to satisfy public curiosity, and to justify, perhaps, grammatical positions, which, if they are sometimes stated with much confidence, are the result of full convictions, mature inquiry, and ample opportunities.

Not to regard what has been done on this subject in past times, would be to limit very much the view of what remains to be done at present. The first translations which were made into the Indian tongues, on this continent, were undertaken as helps to the introduction of Christianity among the tribes. This was commenced at very early periods. The most considerable and known effort of this kind at an early day, in North America, was made in Massachusetts.

In 1685, the Rev. John Eliot, (who is styled, from his venerable age and eminent services, The Indian Apostle, by his contemporaries,) published at Cambridge a revised and complete translation of the entire Bible, in the principal Indian tongue. This is believed to have been the greatest literary labor in the department of the translation into the aboriginal languages, which has ever been accomplished on this continent. It gave a great impetus to the subject; and Cotton Mather, in his letter to Dr. Leusden, Hebrew Professor in the University of Utrecht, of July 12, 1687, speaks of it in the highest terms. Prior to this time, namely, in 1661, Eliot had published a translation of the New Testament, and in 1663 the Old Testament in this language. He also published a grammar.

We are informed by Mr. Du Ponceau, that about the year 1766, more than a century after Eliot's translation, two eminent philosophers of France, M. Maupertius and M. Turgot, each published a treatise on the origin of languages.


Maupertius, in his essay, took great pains to show the importance of studying the languages of even the most distant and barbarous nations, "because," is his expression, "we may chance to find some that are formed on new plans of ideas." Turgot, who had acquired considerable distinction as a statesman, instead of approving this, tried to turn it into ridicule, by the remark that he could not understand what was meant by "plans of ideas." A new idea was at least thrown out to the philological world by Maupertius, which has been the cause of thought to grammarians ever since.

Germany, however, but not France, pursued this investigation. In an inquiry whether America was peopled from the old continent, Professor Vater of Leipsic, who had received some examples of the Lenno Lenapee from Moravian Brethren, in Pennsylvania, was struck with the richness of their grammatical forms, and on comparing them with Eliot's Bible of 1685, perceived the same philological phenomena.

Professor Rudiger has published vocabularies of the languages of the world, as far as known, and among them gives some of our Indian dialects. It appears from these that the Swedes, while they occupied Delaware, compiled a catechism in the Lenno Lenapee, which was published at Stockholm in 1696. These appear to be the earliest traces of inquiry into the principles of American philology.

In 1703, the Empress Catherine of Russia directed the collection of vocabularies in all the barbarous dialects of that Empire; a literary labor in which it is said she personally engaged with great zeal, and was also assisted by various learned men. The results of these investigations were published at Paris in 1715, and doubtless helped to fix the attention of philosophers on the then but little understood phenomena of language.

Mr. Jefferson, in his Notes on Virginia, viewed the existence of the Indians here as an anomaly in history. This work was written, I believe, in 1778. His mind was turned to the subject of the Indian languages as the readiest solution of Indian history, and he gathered a collection of vocabularies, which it is said he designed to digest and publish. For this purpose, Mr. Gallatin informed me, he took his materials along with him to Virginia, after his election to the Presidency, in 1801, that he might employ the leisure of his summer retreat in examining them; but, in crossing the Rappahannock, he had left the conduct of his baggage to negro servants, through whose carelessness the house in which they were took fire, and all his manuscripts were consumed. He had not the heart to commence his work anew, and, with the exception of the speech of Logan, which had been published with his Notes on Virginia, and his just opinions of the importance of the languages, this is all that remains of his well-directed inquiries. In his NOTES, London edition, 1787, he observes: "A knowledge of their several languages would be the most certain evidence of their derivation that could be produced. In fact, it is the best proof of the affinity of nations which ever can be referred to. How many ages have elapsed since the English, the Dutch, the Germans, the Swiss, the Norwegians, the Danes, and Swedes,


have separated from their common stock! Yet, how many more must elapse before the proofs of their common origin, which exist in their several languages, will disappear! It is to be lamented then, very much to be lamented, that we have suffered so many of the Indian tribes already to disappear, without our having previously collected, and deposited in the records of literature, the general rudiments, at least, of the languages they spoke. Were vocabularies formed of all the languages spoken in North and South America, preserving their appellations for the most common objects in nature — of those which must be present to every nation, barbarous or civilized, with the inflections of their nouns and verbs, their principles of regimen and concord, and these deposited in all the public libraries, it would furnish opportunities, to those skilled in the languages of the old world, to compare them with these, now or at any future time, and hence to construct the best evidence of the derivation of this part of the human race."

Volney, in his View of the United States, reflecting the opinions of Maupertius and other philosophers of Europe, expressed his sense of the importance of collecting vocabularies, and grammars of the Indian tongues; and declared the work to be one that should engage the notice of government.

The importance of studying the languages, as a guide to history, appears to have been realized by Dr. Benjamin Smith Barton, Professor in the University of Pennsylvania, whose work on the languages called the attention of American philologists distinctly, but vainly, it is believed, to the subject.

This was followed by Dr. Elias Boudinot's "Star in the West," which revived the ancient idea of Grotius, of the Indians being the "LOST TRIBES," or descendants of Israel. Feeling as a Christian philosopher on this head, he appears to have pursued the inquiry, rather as an historical and practical, than a purely scientific question.

In 1816, the American Philosophical Society turned its attention to the American languages, and directed the late Peter S. Duponceau to open a correspondence with the Rev. John Heckewelder on the subject. This forms an era in the home-inquiries on American philology. The results, in which we are greatly indebted to Mr. Duponceau's learning, were laid before the Historical Committee of that society, and were published at Philadelphia, in a separate volume of their Transactions, in 1819.

Amongst the materials received by the American Philosophical Society, was a grammar of the Lenno Lenape, or Delaware language, by Mr. Zeisberger. This, together with the correspondence, opened up a new field of inquiry. The verb was found to be particularly rich and varied in its inflections and forms. The "transitions," as they have since been called, offered a new feature to the mind. "I am inclined to believe," says Mr. Duponceau, "that these forms are peculiar to this part of the world, and that they do not exist in the languages of the old hemisphere." Trans, p. 370. He was led to admire the rich and varied forms of the Delaware language. "If," said he, "this language was cultivated and polished, as those of Europe have been, and if


the Delawares had a Homer and Virgil among them, it is impossible to say, with such an instrument among them, how far the language could be carried. The Greek has been admired for its compounds, but what are they to those of the Indians!" p. 415. The conception of Maupertius of "new plans of ideas," seemed to be realized in the Lenno Lenape. In considering this subject, he finally denominated the American languages poly-synthetic, (many-syntheses,) a term which they have since borne among philologists.

It appears from the transactions of the American Antiquarian Society, that the Honorable Albert Gallatin furnished vocabularies of the Indian languages to Baron Alexander Humboldt in 1823. These were subsequently enlarged, and formed the basis, as he has indicated, of his SYNOPSIS of the tribes, published by that society in 1836. (Vide Archזologia Americana, Vol. II., p. 1.)

The writer's attention was first called to the subject in 1822, when he went to reside in the capacity of Agent of Indian Affairs — a semi-diplomatic office, at Sault Ste. Marie, at the foot of the basin of Lake Superior. The advantages of this position, and his opportunities generally for investigating the languages, have been stated in the preceding pages. The observations in the following paper on the substantive, were published in 1834. (Vide Appendix to Expedition to Itasca Lake.) They were subsequently translated into French by Mr. Duponceau, and submitted to the National Institute of France. In 1844, the remarks on the Pronoun were published in the Miscellany entited Oneota. The entire Essay is now submitted.

All the examples of Indian lexicography are taken from the Ojibwa, the mother language of the Algonquins, the principles of which have been so long and so justly the theme of French eulogy. The word Ojibwa, and its anglicized form, Chippewa, appears to have been developed since the term Algonquin, in its generic sense, was applied to the people living at Lake Nepissing, (who are hence often called Nipercinians,) on the ancient portage, from the Outawais, or Grand river, leading to the waters flowing into Lake Huron, near La-Cloche. From this summit they were traced by early writers into the valley of the St. Lawrence, where, in contradistinction to the Iroquois, who lived on the southern shores, they were called Algonquens or Algonquins, a term of doubtful etymology, but which seems to mean People of the other or opposite shore. (Ethnological Researches, Part I., p. 306.)

Those bands which were found living at the Sault-de-Ste-Marie, on the outlet of Lake Superior, were called Saulteaux, or people of the Sault. Others who were encountered at the Mississagie River, on the north shore of Lake Huron, were called Mississagies, or people of the wide-mouthed stream. There was, however, no appreciable or stated difference of dialect or language noticed, such as marks the Ottawa, Pottawattomie, Kenisteno, Menomonie, and the dialects of various other tribes, who yet all employ, with slight differences, the Algonquin vocabulary and syntax.

Taking it then as the original mother language, and regarding the deviations from it as dialectic, it becomes important to inquire what are its primary sounds. For this


purpose I have constructed a table of the syllables employed by them in the formation of words, which, although probably incomplete, will facilitate the inquiry.
AI as A in Pate (1). A as in Father (2). A as in Fall (3). A as in Hat (4). Only uttered with a Consonant following.
Aib Bai Ahb Bah Aub Bau Ab
Aid Dai Ahd Dah Aud Dau Ad
Aig Gai Ahg Gah Aug Gau Ag
Aih Hai Ah Hah Auh Hau Ah
Aik Kai Ahj Jah Auj Jau Aj
Ail Lai Ahk Kan Auk Kau Ak
Aij Jai Ahl Lah Aul Lau Al
Aim Mai Ahm Mah Aum Mau Am
Ain Nai Ahn Nah Aun Nau An
Aip Pai Ahp Pah Aup Pau Ap
Ais Sai Ahs Sah Aus Sau As
Ait Tai Aht Tah Aut Tau At
Aiw Wai Ahw Wah Auw Wau Au
Aiz Yai Ahz Zah Auz Yau Az
Aizh Zhai   Auzh Zhau  
    I as in Fine (1).  
EE as in Me (1). E as in Met (2). Bi I as in Pin (2).
Eeb Bee Eb Di Ib
Eed Dee Ed Gi Id
Eeg Gee Eg Hi Ig
Eeh He Eh Ji Ih
Eej Jee Ej Ki Ij
Eel Lee Ek Li Ik
Eek Kee El Mi Il
Eem Mee Em Ni Im
Een Nee En Pi In
Eep Pee Ep Si Ip
Ees See Es Ti Is
Eet Tee Et Wi It
Eew Wee Ew Yi Iw
Eez Zee Ez Zi Iz
O as in Note (1). O as in Move (2). O as in Not (4).  
Bo Oob Boo Ob U as in But.
Do Ood Doo Od Ub
Go Oog Goo Og Ud
Ho Ooh Hoo Oh Ug
Jo Ooj Joo Oj Uh
Ko Ook Koo Ok Uj
Lo Ool Loo Ol Uk
Mo Oom Moo Om Ul
No Oon Noo On Um
Po Oop Poo Op Un
So Oos Soo Os Up
To Oot Too Ot Us
Wo Oow Woo Ow Ut
Yo Ooy Yoo Oy Uz
Zo Ooz Zoo Oz  

Each of the 17 primary syllables may be changed fifteen times, showing the possible number of elementary syllables which are employed to be 255 — a fact, significant of the capacity of the language.


The language, it will be perceived, possesses all the vowel sounds, as heard in far, fate, fall; met, meet; shine, pin; not, note, move; put, nut. It has two labials, b and p; five dentals, d, t, s, z, and j, or g, soft; two nasals, m and n; and two primary gutturals, k and g, hard. The letters f, r, v, are wanting. The sound of x is also believed to be wanting in all the Algonquin dialects but the Delaware and the old Mohegan of the Hudson valley, in which it is fully heard, as in Coxackie. The letter l is heard in the Delaware, Sac and Fox, and Shawnee dialects, where it is the transmutative of n. The sound of r, which is observed frequently in the ancient annotation of geographical terms in the Powhatanic and Abinakie dialects, and a few of the earlier Algonquin vocabularies of New France and New Jersey, is merely dropped in the attempts to pronounce foreign words; or is believed, in most cases, as employed by authors in the ancient geographical terminology, to represent the sound of ah. To the Normans who came to Canada, and to the English cavaliers of Virginia, the sound appears also to have often taken the form of ar. The transmutative consonants are p for f, n for b, and b for v. The letter x is uttered as if written egs. The most common change in the consonantal sounds, is that which exists reciprocally between p and b. Part of this, however, is the result of tense.

These changes occur with regularity in the conjugations of the verbs. Words commencing with b in the first and second persons, are rendered p in the third. Thus nim bemaudiz, I live; ke bemaudiz, thou livest, are changed to pimaudizzi, he lives. When a word commencing with a vowel has the pronoun prefixed, it takes a consonant before it; thus ossin, a stone, is rendered in the possessive, nin dosseem, my stone; ais, a shell, ke daisim, thy shell. The same rule obtains, if an adjective is prefixed. Thus addik, a rein-deer, is changed by the prefix of male, to iauba waddik, a male reindeer.

When vowels succeed each other, without the intervention of a consonant, their sounds are broad, as in penjiee, (within,) i-au, (to be.) To this observation the vowel i permits another to be added, that when followed by a consonant, it has uniformly the short sound of i, in pin. The sound of th, as heard in this, that, (the th or p of the Scandinavians,) appears to be confined nearly to a certain dialect of the Algonquin, namely, the Shawnee — a tribe whose history connects them directly, agreeably to their own traditions, and concurrent facts, with the extreme southern bounds of the United States. There is also an unmistakeable trace of it in the ancient New York type of the Mohegan — a tribe between whom and the Shawnees, there is, agreeably to the traditions of Metoxon, a close ancient affinity. The nasal sounds are frequent. That of n is heard in monz (moose), and in the diminutive termination צסs. By the use of this diminutive, annemoosh, a dog; muk woh, a bear, become annemצņs, a little dog; muk-ons, a cub. Ng, as in linger, is found in annung, (a star.) The nasal sound of m appears in m'eew (enough,) and its full sound as in minnis, (an island,) minnekwה, (he drinks.) The letter y is heard as


a consonant in yo, nyau, and tyau; the two former feminine, and the latter a masculine exclamation; but is never required as a vowel sound. Those dialects have been denoted, which employ the letters b, r, and x; and the unusual combination of th; but no examples are proposed to be exhibited from either of these excepted dialects. The distinctive sounds, indeed, from which the Algonquin, in its entire breadth of dialects throughout the land, is to be excepted, are those of the letters f and v.

Thus an alphabet of five vowels and thirteen consonants is capable of expressing, either simply or in combination, every full sound of the Ojibwa or Algonquin language; and it is from this that the examples will be exclusively drawn. In this estimate of primary sounds, the letters c, and q, and y, as representing a vowel sound, are entirely rejected. The soft of c is s, the hard sound k. The sound of g is always that of k.

With the subject thus simplified, I have been induced to adopt a system of alphabetical notation different, in some respects, from what I should have proposed without this previous information. This system is, in fact, the result of practice rather than of theory, and has been altered to suit the expression of new or unusual combinations of sounds, as they were presented to me in the course of my inquiries. A practical method, as little removed as the exact preservation of the sounds would permit from common usage, appeared to claim preference. To this end, I have introduced no new character of notation, and have attempted no new combinations of existing ones. Without attending to the foreign powers of the Roman letters, I found the English alphabet adequate to the representation of every distinct sound. It was only necessary to reject its redundancies, and to determine the precise powers of the vowels, and of such of its consonants as were required. The cedilla is used to denote the nasal sounds; and the diaeresis to mark the long sounds of the vowels in cases where they could not be otherwise indicated by the establishment of a general rule. Every vocal peculiarity I have not attempted, however, to preserve. There are several semi-tones, both nasal and guttural, for which no certain character exists; and it appeared to me that more would be lost than gained by endeavoring to convey nice distinctions, which, after all, the most critical student might find it difficult to pronounce: but I indulge the hope, that no characteristic or distinctly audible sound has been neglected or omitted. Walker's key to English pronunciation being in general use, it appeared expedient to subjoin, that one system may be converted into the other.

It is desirable, as the Indians are to be taught to read English books and English bibles, and to learn English history, philosophy, poetry, and literature, that they employ the English system of orthography, after it is pruned of its redundancies, and the inexactitude that would result to Indian ears from the use of its homophonous vowels and consonantal combinations; and that such a scheme of orthography should be pursued in their elemental teaching that they may not, at a certain point on their path to knowledge, be necessitated to unlearn the system of their school-boy days. For,


however it may appear to subserve the purposes of elementary philology, by exhibiting new plans of annotation, the English must be the language of civilization to them, if they can ever learn one; and, most assuredly, the English race will not tread back its steps in orthography to suit the sounds of barbarous dialects, however precisely or elegantly expressed.

It is believed, also, that its homophones can be so limited, defined, and expressed, as not only to subserve this practical purpose, but fulfil the higher uses of scientific philology. The foundation of English orthography is laid in the letter A, — the common English sound of A, as heard in fate. To mark this, the diphthongal sound of ai will be invariably used. Its second sound, as heard in father, is expressed by the sound of ah; its third sound, as heard in law, by au. The short sound of a, as heard in hat, (No. 4) will be, by a law of utterance in the Algonquin, always followed by a consonant, or placed between two consonants, as in ad-ik, a reindeer, ap-pah-pe-win, a chair. This attention to the syllabication will accurately and invariably dispose of the four admitted sounds of A.

The next vowel e, is uniformly long, as heard in me, whether preceding or following a consonant, or placed between two consonants. It is written ee, when under the accent. The short sound of e is marked with a short accent.

The sound of i in this language is governed by the rule which gives it the long sound of i, as heard in pine, when uttered by itself, or preceded by the letters k, g, or n. In all other positions in the syllable, as when preceded by a consonant, or when placed between two consonants, it is short, and has the sound of i in pin, as heard in the term An-o-ki-win, work, labor.

The sound of the vowel o follows a law of utterance, which makes it uniformly broad and full, as o in note, and oa in moan, when standing as an independent syllable, as in צ-mצ-de, a bottle; or when preceded by a consonant, and under the accent, as in Tצ-tצsh, a female breast; Ah-mצ, a bee; Kצn, snow. The sound of oo as heard in pool, and of ue, as in glue, due, is represented by oo. The short sound of o, as in not, is followed uniformly by a consonant, as Ot-ta-wa.

The vowel u, as heard in rule, is expressed by oo, as above stated; leaving this latter to stand uniformly for its short sound, as u in nut. No instance is known of the sound of this word in the language, as heard in consuetude, dew, &c.

Diphthongal sounds are heard in limited classes of words, ending in ia, io, and ou. The most uncommon sounds of this character are those formed of ia, in connexion with the sound of w, as heard in Shezh-o-daiw, a shore; and in the change of nouns indefinite to verbs indicative in the third