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Red Hunters And the Animal People   By:

Red Hunters And the Animal People by Charles A. Eastman

First Page:

Transcriber's Notes:

1. Passages in italics are surrounded by underscores .

2. In the Glossary of Indian Words and Phrases located at the end of this e text, vowels with diacritical marks are represented as follows:

macron (straight line, for long vowel sound) as [=x] caron (v shaped accent for short vowel sound) as [)x]

where "x" is the vowel represented.

3. Additional Transcriber's Notes appear at the end of this e text.

Red Hunters And the Animal People

By

Charles A. Eastman (Ohiyesa) AUTHOR OF "INDIAN BOYHOOD"

[Illustration]

New York and London

Harper & Brothers Publishers, 1904

Copyright, 1904, by HARPER & BROTHERS.

All rights reserved. Published November, 1904.

[Illustration: [See p. 149 "THERE STOOD, IN ALL HIS MAJESTY, THE GRAY CHIEFTAIN"]

Contents

PAGE

THE GREAT CAT'S NURSERY 3

ON WOLF MOUNTAIN 24

THE DANCE OF THE LITTLE PEOPLE 46

WECHAH THE PROVIDER 66

THE MUSTERING OF THE HERDS 89

THE SKY WARRIOR 106

A FOUNDER OF TEN TOWNS 123

THE GRAY CHIEFTAIN 143

HOOTAY OF THE LITTLE ROSEBUD 159

THE RIVER PEOPLE 177

THE CHALLENGE 200

WILD ANIMALS FROM THE INDIAN STAND POINT 224

GLOSSARY OF INDIAN WORDS AND PHRASES 247

Foreword

"And who is the grandfather of these silent people? Is it not the Great Mystery? For they know the laws of their life so well! They must have for their Maker our Maker. Then they are our brothers!"

Thus spoke one of the philosophers and orators of the Red men.

It is no wonder that the Indian held the animals to be his brothers. In his simple mind he regards the killing of certain of them for his sustenance to be an institution of the "Great Mystery." Therefore he kills them only as necessity and the exigencies of life demand, and not wantonly. He regards the spirit of the animal as a mystery belonging to the "Great Mystery," and very often after taking its life he pays due homage to its spirit. In many of the Dakota legends it appeared that such and such an animal came and offered itself as a sacrifice to save the Red man from starvation.

It was formerly held by him that the spirits of animals may communicate important messages to man. The wild hunter often refused during the remainder of his life to kill certain animals, after he had once become acquainted with their spirit or inner life. Many a hunter has absented himself for days and nights from his camp in pursuit of this knowledge. He considered it sacrilege to learn the secrets of an animal and then use this knowledge against him. If you wish to know his secrets you must show him that you are sincere, your spirit and his spirit must meet on common ground, and that is impossible until you have abandoned for the time being your habitation, your weapons, and all thoughts of the chase, and entered into perfect accord with the wild creatures. Such were some of the most sacred beliefs of the Red man, which led him to follow the trails of the animal people into seclusion and the wildest recesses of the woods and mountains.

Observations made for the purposes of the hunt are entirely distinct from this, the "spirit hunt," and include only the outward habits and noticeable actions of the game.

The stories contained in this book are based upon the common experiences and observations of the Red hunter. The main incidents in all of them, even those which are unusual and might appear incredible to the white man, are actually current among the Sioux and deemed by them worthy of belief.

When the life story of an animal is given, the experiences described are typical and characteristic of its kind... Continue reading book >>




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